Category: TV

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

New York Times explores how TV will change with streaming:

In TV, narrative has always been an outgrowth of the delivery mechanism. Why are there cliffhangers? So you’ll tune in next week. Why are shows a half-hour or an hour long? Because real-time viewing required predictable schedules. Why do episodes have a multiple-act structure? To leave room for the commercials.

 

This Magic Moment

Directors Guild of America:

Eight years after it aired, the finale of The Sopranos continues to be hotly debated. David Chase explains how he created the excruciating tension of the last scene. What he won’t say is what happened at the end.

The sounds of The Wire

Kottke:

You don’t typically think of The Wire as a show that used audio to great effect, but you’d be wrong. From the show’s use of music only ambient to the scene (e.g. a car radio playing), the season-end montages, and the background soundtracks that accompanied certain characters or situations, The Wire’s use of music and sound was quite calculated and effective. At Reddit, a sound editor who worked on the show shared her experiences.

The Loving Trap

I’m actually a big fan of Adam Curtis but this affectionate spoof is just too good not to mention.

Adam Curtis believes that 200,000 Guardian readers watching BBC2 can change the world.  But this was a fantasy.  In fact, he had created the television equivalent of a drunken late-night wikipedia binge with pretension for narrative coherence.

I think we’ve all been there, haven’t we?

This is what The Wire looks like in HD

The Verge:

Fans of The Wire have been eagerly waiting to see how the beloved show has made the transition from 4:3 standard definition to its new widescreen, HD versions. Leading up to its premiere this past Friday, HBO has kept its HD remasters of The Wire entirely under wraps — but now we can see just what the show looks like in HD. And, frankly, the results are quite good.

Unlike The Simpsons, this is no half-assed scan-and-pan job that merely stretches or crops the original 4:3 frame to fill your widescreen TV. Since the show was originally shot on 35mm film, the editors had extra footage to work with to bring the remastered version to life. That means we now have a “true” widescreen version of The Wire to enjoy. However, it’s important to note that this is absolutely not the definitive version — merely an alternative. As showrunner David Simon describes it, “while this new version of The Wire is not, in some specific ways, the film we first made, it has sufficient merit to exist as an alternate version.”

Simon explains on his blog that HBO worked extensively on its own to complete the necessary work for the HD transfer. Its work included painting out crew and gear, as well as performing additional CGI to mask “mistakes” that are only visible at higher resolutions, and the company planned to release the new version this fall with essentially no input from Simon or the show’s other creators. After he and others behind the show expressed their desire to be involved, however, HBO halted its planned fall released and “allowed us to engage in detail,” writes Simon.

Every episode of ‘The Sopranos,’ ranked

deathandtaxes:

2014 marks the 15th anniversary of the premiere of “The Sopranos.”

Earlier this month HBO finally released the complete series on Blu-ray. “The Sopranos” laid the groundwork for the new golden age of television we live in today. It told a story on the small screen that was greater than most films, and that achievement will be studied 100 years from today. Keep in mind that this is a TV show made by humans. It’s not perfect. But “The Sopranos,” “The Wire,” and “Mad Men” are the greatest shows ever made and even their worst episodes are better than 99% of everything else that’s on television. So let’s take a look at the show that changed tv and the episodes that made it so transformational.