Sunday, May 24, 2020

The 4th post of pages from CRISIS ON INFINITE TEEN DRAMAS

For Part 1, go here.
For Part 2, go here.
For Part 3, go here.

With today's pages, we've reached that point in the story where it becomes necessary to have plot and exposition that will justify why everything is happening. I felt a little guilty about that, so instead of four pages, it turned out six pages as a bonus for the holiday weekend.

Enjoy and start your speculations on who Dark Monitor is.







Saturday, May 23, 2020

CRISIS ON INFINITE TEEN DRAMAS continues with an EVERWOOD/RIVERDALE crossover

For Part 1, go here.
For Part 2, go here.

Another day, another four pages of CRISIS ON INFINITE TEEN DRAMAS. Today, Archie and Veronica take a trip to Everwood, Colorado.




I'm firming up my plans for the rest of this. I'm 90% sure of how this ends, so I might do one more post of pages sometime this weekend, but then go silent until I have the complete script. I feel like writing the ending is going to tell me things I should revise on the way there.

So enjoy these serialized bursts while they last and at some point in the near future, you WILL get to read a complete script.

Part 4 is here.

Friday, May 22, 2020

Part 2 of CRISIS ON INFINITE TEEN DRAMAS

I wasn't sure I could get a whole script out of this... but after kicking around some things in my head yesterday, I was able to crank out the next four pages of CRISIS ON INFINITE TEEN DRAMAS late last night.

For Part 1, go here.





And I have been overwhelmed by the reaction to this very silly project. Allow me the indulgence of sharing some with you.

First, from showrunner Marc Gugginheim, who among many other shows, oversaw the actual TV crossover CRISIS ON INFINITE EARTHS:



SUPERGIRL writer J. Hothham had this incredibly kind comparison to make.


Liam here suggested something I didn't think I could do because it would conflict with another fantasy idea... but after some thought I'd say it's at least on the table.


I like how Jeremias thinks, but instead of a comic book, what about a live read?


And so, after a long morning of thinking about things I've decided that if you guys are willing to put up with a few scenes of traditional crossover exposition and some metaphysical techonobabble, I might be able to land this puppy in the next few weeks for you.

I probably won't be able to do everything you wanted to see in this, but we'll have some fun. Too early to know the posting schedule, but I imagine I might use the long holiday weekend to plow ahead and assess where I am after that. Stay tuned!

For Part 3, go here.
For Part 4, go here.

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Presenting the first four pages of CRISIS ON INFINITE TEEN DRAMAS

Yesterday, while goofing around on Twitter and talking about my latest binge of ALL-AMERICAN, I accidently gave myself a new project.



This is not too dissimilar to how a joke tweet a few years ago resulted in me writing a script for alternate timeline episode of 13 REASONS WHY that mashed that show's premise up with AWAKE. So really, no one should have been surprised when late last night I dropped this tweet on my audience.


Here are the four pages of CRISIS ON INFINITE TEEN DRAMAS.





I'm not sure if I'll continue. I have a few notions and some scenes in mind but the overall premise and story is still evolving. Maybe I'll turn out some pages, maybe this is where it ends, but I'm really getting a kick out of some of the reactions I've gotten so far.

















Is there more coming? We'll see...

UPDATE: Yes, there's more. Find Part 2 here.
Part 3 is here.
Part 4 is here.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Thought's on Quibi's muted launch, from A Friend with a Quibi show

When my twitter feed hasn't been full of people tweeting about Trump and the pandemic, I've seen a lot of tweets about Quibi and it's less-than-spectacular launch. It was the first of three major new streaming platforms set to launch in the year (HBOMAX arrives next month, and Peacock later this summer), so it would seem to be the canary in the coal mine as far as how much content can be put into the market before the audience stops consuming it.

The numbers haven't been great, the platform never seemed to have a breakout hit and all the conversation about Quibi seems to be ABOUT Quibi rather than about the shows. CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg did an interview in the New York Times where he blamed COVID-19 for the muted response. He said: "I attribute everything that has gone wrong to coronavirus. Everything. But we own it... If we knew on March 1, which is when we had to make the call, what we know today, you would say that is not a good idea... it’s regrettable, but we are making enough gold out of hay here that I don’t regret it."

I'm not sure I share this perspective. For two months, most of the country has been stuck at home starved for new content. Netflix added over 15 million subscribers in the first quarter of the year - more than double what they had projected. Correlation doesn't always equal causation, but that's an interesting data point.

This late March article from the Verge claims, "While the television industry as a whole saw a 20 percent increase last week compared to the month prior, HBO Now saw the highest usage on its platform since summer. The percentage of people binge viewing series has increased 65 percent, while movie watching is up 70 percent on HBO Now."

The captive audience is there. I don't think coronavirus was a huge factor. I think the biggest issue is Quibi made it too much work to access their content. You can only watch on an iPhone or an Android. You can't watch on Apple TV and you can't Chromecast it to your TV. Plenty of people stream to their phone, so this didn't need to be a fatal error, but I think when you're building an audience the more barriers to entry there are, the fewer people will go to the trouble of going through them.

I reached out to a Friend with a Quibi Show and here's what they had to say when I suggested that having a captive audience at home should have been a boost rather than a detriment, here's what they had to say:

"The service was always designed to be on the go. It’s the only possible way it made sense. I’ve got 10 minutes to kill. So... all of at home with HOURS to kill, we’re choosing longer things. I watched all of the baseball doc, which was 18 hours long. Same with Last Dance.

"BUT... had they actually done what they said they were going to do... they could’ve weathered it. They kept talking about being SHORT FORM HBO AT THE START and instead they did YOUTUBE, BUT YOU PAY." 

This friend had their own thoughts on what went wrong:

"#1: Their ads ignored the content and focused on the concept. "Shows are REALLY short," they told us, which is akin to the doctor telling you "don't worry about the shot...it'll be over fast." No one wants a shot. And no one is inspired by how quickly something will be over. TV is concept. Cool concepts sell. And they may have a TON of cool concepts, but they didn't seem want to tell their potential audience about it. Just IT'S FAST!

"#2: After sitting in rooms with artists and saying they were going to do high-end, short-form TV... they led with glorified YouTube entertainment...which we were going to have to eventually pay for. And it wasn't even clever YouTube entertainment. It was a judge show and a prank show...which have been around since the 80s.

"#3: All they cared about was star fucking. What's the show about? What's the draw? Who cares, it's from X with Y and Z. Moreover, while saying they were doing high end TV, they did movies. They handed control to whomever was the most namey person on the call sheet regardless of smarts or vision.

"#4: And yes... the pandemic. You can't launch 'TV you can watch on the go' when there's nowhere to go.

"BUT... #1-#3 were the REAL issues. And #4 was the nail in the coffin." 

Definitely solid points there. Even if Quibi doesn't think any of these were magic bullet issues to be concerned about, I hope their internal post-mortems look deeper than just assuming COVID-19 was a once-in-a-lifetime fluke that derailed an airtight plan.

And the reality is that even if that WAS the case, COVID-19 is a reality for every other service looking to launch in the next year, so someone is going to have to figure out how to achieve success under those circumstances. It's natural selection, the future of streaming will have to adapt or die.