L'Internet, TV

In for a Quarter –

in for a Life.

I have been excessively disturbed by what I see to be the flaws in Quarterlife and have been considering writing an open letter to the creators about what could be done to improve the show. I find myself composing this letter when I’m supposed to be working on other things.

It really bothers me. Its formulaic television representation of the people who are me – my friends – is nothing more than more of the same.

Why be so formally radical, why start your own Internet TV series and publicly speak out against network television, if you’re not going to have the content be innovative? Why write about the limitations of network TV if your show, network-free, is equally limited?

I do have a lot of faith in the producers as artists, but I’m not sure what a difference it would make my writing to them. I just think my hopes were very high for this. I was imagining what the show could be, not what it is.

For the moment, I’ve decided to watch at least one more episode before responding, and hope they develop it more.

L'Internet, TV

Having just

watched the first two episodes of Quarterlife, the Internet TV series from the producers of My So-Called Life, all I can say is that television on the Internet is still television.

But at least it’s replete with gratuitous women lounging around in their underwear.

“I don’t have to wear clothes around my own house if I don’t want to.”

I wonder if this is really what my generation seems like to other people. If so, we have an enormous image problem.

I have a lot of respect for the producers as producers, and I admire their wish to break free of the constraints of the medium. I just want them to break free of more of them.

Amina showed me Clark And Michael as an example of the medium working better.

Germany, L'Internet, theater

Blogging in Broadripple

I drove Caitlin to work at DK this morning, and am writing from the kitchen in Broadripple, a suburb of Indianapolis. It’s gorgeous outside – enormous trees covering all the streets with fall leaves, and tall houses that look like bricks and gingerbread and Little Midwestern Riding Hood.

I’m working on a personal statement for Middlebury about why I want to learn German this summer. When I was twenty-one, a group of German actors asked me to direct a play in Berlin, and I didn’t know the language. I was scrambling to finish a major I’d switched to late in my career, and decided (stupidly) that I didn’t have room to add the language classes. It’s time to learn it now, and to go back, as soon as I can.

I also just made a “Get Involved” page for the Convergence’s new PBwiki. (It’s under construction, but let me know what you think – indyconvergence.pbwiki.com)

I hate it when theaters, or other arts organizations, don’t have an obvious “Get Involved” link right there on their front page, telling you who to contact if you want to be part of their work. It may be that a lot of organizations in this country don’t actually want a flood of college students emailing them. But how are you supposed to get the next generation to come find you? What’s the continuity of the things you believe in?

Even the ones that do have “Get Involved” often just have a link for volunteers, and nothing about what actors and designers are supposed to do. I suppose they think if you can’t figure it out, can’t get your foot in the door, you don’t deserve to be part of the in-crowd. But speaking as someone who has “figured it out,” or part of it – I don’t think we gain anything by keeping the doors to our theatres more closed than they already are.


The Internet: Not Exclusively For Porn

Joy, a CD who I met when their office started handling OSF’s LA casting, just sent me something about a new Internet series they’re working, quarterlife. It premieres Nov. 12 on Myspace. Apparently it’s both a series and a social network. I’m less interested in another social network than in just more good, independent programming, but I’ll take it.

Here’s an article by one of the QL creators on why he’s no longer working for network TV. It’s fascinating.
“After 20 years and five series, including “thirtysomething” and “My So-Called Life,” my partner, Ed Zwick, and I have — for the time being at least — stopped producing television programs.”

L'Internet, music


At the Rose and Crown in Shallow Alto last night with Cliff and Heather. We consumed Chimay, which Heather referred to as “the champagne of beers,” and got into a heated discussion – or, rather, they did – about Beethoven, Bach, and Schumann. Apparently Schumann was sort of like the Dave Eggers of his time? He started a musical journal and was very involved in the criticism scene, but from the perspective of a working artist.

I was texting Zack the entire time with bad domain name names, removed from our conversation.

We are frustrated at not being able to take either transient.com or umbrage.com.