Streaming TV Isn’t Just a New Way to Watch. It’s a New Genre.

Ooh, we love it when The New York Times gets all thoughtful about TV. Particularly when it runs an article about TVWriter™’s all time favorite showbiz paradigm shift:

tvupsidedownby James Poniewozik

At some point during Netflix’s “Sense8” — a gorgeous, ridiculous series about eight strangers scattered across the world who use a psychic connection to aid one another in fights and at one point have a virtual orgy — I had to ask myself: What am I watching?

I didn’t mean that the way I usually do when reviewing a baffling show. I meant what, in a definitional sense, was this maximalist, supersized, latticework story? A mini-series? A megamovie? To put it another way: Is Netflix TV? read article

Are TV Execs Racists? Or Just Idiots?

One African-American TV writer’s perspective on the condition TV’s condition is in. And it all makes sad, unhealthy, and yet in its way perfect sense:

empirefamilyby Anonymous

On a good day, after I pitched my heart out to a roomful of executives, they would not dismiss my creativity and ask if I had an “Empire-esque” idea to pitch. Why would I pitch Empire? I don’t rap, my father isn’t a rapper and even though my mother did spend time in jail, it wasn’t to serve a 17-year drug sentence. Yes, the Empire effect is real — but it’s not what you might think. The good news: If you’re an established writer of color, you can get a pitch meeting. The bad news: Everyone in Hollywood is looking for the next Empire from every black writer — because I cannot possibly have any other idea or perspective. My creative parameters are limited to the nextScandal, Black-ish or a TV version of Straight Outta Compton. (Side note: The Straight Out of Calabasas pitch that Fox purchased [a comedy about two white parents who live in the celebrity enclave and whose kid is a basketball prodigy] is a complete abomination and the reason I wonder why I even try.)

On a good day, my representation would submit me for shows that tonally fit my writing style and not merely for shows that happen to have the prototypical “person of color” character. So, I can only write for the sassy black, sassy Latino or sassy gay friend? As a person of color, I have no choice but to consider the perspectives of others! read article

The Cable Industry Thinks Cord Cutting’s Just a Fad

Despite the evidence in articles like these, TV execs can’t seem to make themselves take the impending threat to their livelihoods seriously. Some of us never learn. (And, ergo, deserve what they get?!)


cord-cutting-2015-LEAD read article

Streaming Video Binges Take Up Over 70% of the Internet

TV isn’t dead, after all. Instead, it’s just moved to a new location. Our laps:

a binge

by Kate Cox

Do you remember 2007? Way back then in the long-long ago times, movies came on physical discs and you binge-watched a TV series by happening to turn on the TV while a Law and Order marathon was running. Now, however, it seems like basically everything streams to us over the internet… and basically the whole internet, or at least a huge fraction of it, is for streaming. read article

Hurtling Toward the TV Remake Apocalypse


by Peter Bradshaw

This article was originally published in the UK, but the situation is dire here in the good ole USA as well. Pity the poor TV executives who are running “dangerously low” on beloved old media content to re-imagine, re-do, and de-fang. What will they do when they – shudder – run out?

An awful crisis is unfolding in the world of film and TV writing, a crisis that I learned about when I had coffee recently with a top British producer. We are reaching peak reboot. The number of out-of-copyright pop culture figures or mythic icons who can be reinvented and reimagined for a modern age, or sexed up in their original setting, is running dangerously low.

Sherlock has obviously been done. So has Merlin. King Arthur is being done again on the big screen. Dracula and Frankenstein are always being summoned from the grave, the cultural undead; and The Mummy’s being remade – again. read article