The boldest move in network TV this fall? "The Big Bang Theory" is moving to Thursday nights. Yawn. But on the Web, new-media networks like Funny or Die and performers such as Felicia Day are producing imaginative shows that redefine must-see viewing -- whether you watch on an iPad or a Web-enabled TV. Sit back, relax, and reprogram your prime time. Read the full article here
Three years ago, nobody knew who Felicia Day was, except, perhaps, as that other redhead in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. But what a difference a couple of YouTube videos can make. Day is now the writer, producer, and star of The Guild, a comedic web series chronicling the misadventures -- online and off -- of players of a fictional massively multiplayer online role-playing game. In the three years since its debut, The Guild has scored over 46 million YouTube views, as well as juicy distribution deals with Microsoft and Netflix, and spawned two iTunes-topping music videos -- and even a comic book from Dark Horse. But best of all, says Day, is that "we're still making the show that I want to make." A smart, charismatic woman with impeccable comic timing, Day has become a bit of a rock star within the geek community, a role model and sex symbol wrapped into one purple flannel. But what's it like balancing public and private lives in the online world? I caught up with Day at Gen Con 2010 to find out. Read the full Q&A at the Source
In just the latest sign that geeks rule the earth, Felicia Day has topped Katy Perry with the No. 1 best-selling pop music video on iTunes in the United States and United Kingdom. On Aug. 4, "Game On," a Bollywood-themed gamer anthem by Day and the cast of the Web series The Guild topped Perry's "California Gurls" on the chart. It's the second music video for the "Guild" crew, who last year released "Do You Wanna Date My Avatar?" "The Guild" is in its fourth season online as a Web series; the third season was recently released on DVD. "The Guild" follows the wacky real-world antics of a group of gamers who play a World of Warcraft-like game. In a recent interview with The Oklahoman, Day, who created, writes and stars in the Web TV series, talked about the differences between creating a Web series and a traditional television show. Read More at the Source
Just about a year ago, we wrote about how actress Felicia Day had turned her web production, The Guild , into a big success by building a community of fans, connecting with them, and then coming up with some interesting ways to make money from that, including a unique sponsorship deal with Microsoft. Reader tuna points us to a Fast Company profile that updates us on how the last year has gone, and it sounds like things have only improved over time. One of the keys to the success is that she chose the sponsorship deal with Microsoft, in large part because it let her retain creative control over the project -- allowing it to remain authentic and true to what her fans wanted and expected. Read More at the Source
Jeremy Redleaf, creator, Odd Job Nation "I love Between Two Ferns, Zach Galifianakis' show. I also love The Guild and The Bannen Way ." Andrew Bush, member of the sketch group Picnicface: "We're huge fans of Derrick Comedy , and we learned a lot from their experience with (feature film) Mystery Team. Personally, I'm a big fan of Jake Szymanski on Funny or Die, and we love Zach Galifianakis." Al Thompson, creator, Johnny B. Homeless and Lenox Avenue: "We Need Girlfriends was the first Web show I watched that was really good and really funny, it started back in 2006. Seeing that show was an inspiration for me, and then they got a deal with CBS, so it was encouraging." Randy Sklar, co-creator, Back on Topps; co-star, Held Up: "The best stuff on the Web, for me, is stuff I watch and I feel like it's as good as, if not better than, TV. Wainy Days ? I love David Wain. I would put Wainy Days up there with Stella and his movies. I don't look at is as 'oh, that's just his Web thing.' We like to think and hope that what we've done online stands with what we've done on TV and in movies." Susan Miller, co-creator, Anyone But Me : "I try to watch all of the series at least once to support those who toil in this crazy, difficult, wonderful Web universe, but we can't play favorites. Besides, our brains are too full of ABM at this point to be critical thinkers about other shows." Source
Watch online on Bing or MSN . Itâs also downloadable on Zune Marketplace . Season 4 marks the first time for 1080p instant streaming of The Guild on Xbox Live in over 12 countries (look for it in video marketplace). Thanks once again to our sponsors Microsoft and Sprint for making Season 4 possible. Bing video has set up a destination site for The Guild episodes â you can bookmark which will always have the latest episode. From Watchtheguild.com Watch the special season four music video Game ON
Are you bummed out about the end of the TV season? Don't worry, SideReel has a whole new section dedicated to shows that are totally independent of the TV schedule. Say hello to Web Originals ! Web Originals are shows that were made for distribution and viewing on the Web, but they're not just viral YouTube clips of cats. Take one of the most famous Web Originals, Red vs. Blue . This legendary machinima sitcom from Rooster Teeth Productions has been making people laugh since 2002, using video game characters as actors in a grand parody of science fiction and war. While they technically finished their run in 2007, Rooster Teeth is still making mini-series and sequels, all of them as weird and crazy as their predecessors. Each candy-like episode weighs in at under 10 minutes, and every one is a blast to watch. Felicia Day's gamer comedy The Guild is another great example of how good a Web Original can be, with its look at the dysfunctional lives of geeks. It's very reminiscent of The Big Bang Theory , and I highly recommend it. It even has a wildly popular music video, with the help of fellow Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog conspirator Jed Whedon. The Do You Wanna Date My Avatar? video was a certified hit on iTunes and Amazon, and is catchy in a cheesy '90s-dance way. Lest you think that the Web Originals section is made purely out of comedies like the strange talk show Between Two Ferns With Zach Galifianakis , there is plenty more you can see on the page. There are lots of educational and how-to programs available, from the kids' Super WHY! to the DIY-oriented Make Magazine: Best Weekend Projects . There's action in Angel of Death and Trenches , drama in Anyone But Me , and much, much more. There's a whole world of programming, and we're only scratching the surface of what's available! So head on over to the Web Originals today, and start exploring the world of free online shorts. You'll even be able to find some shows directly aimed at expanding the universes of popular television, like Dexter: Early Cuts , the chilling prequel to Dexter . We'll be adding more and more shows as time goes on, so don't worry - you'll never have to watch reruns again!