Gen Y and the early Millennials are the last group of people who will remember broadcast ubiquity and an advertisers’ ability to rent a captive audience. They’re also the last who remember the internet as a collection of websites. They’re very key to the future budgets of Film and TV because of this history and adaptability.
First, some background: the internet’s most recent evolution was described by Wired Magazine’s editor-in-chief Chris Anderson in his provocative article “The web is dead, long live the internet” as the rise of apps, offering smoothed-off portals to the mountains of data out there on the internet. Custom tools, good for no other purpose but as the app intends.
I’ve been writing a lot about multidimensional (multi-screen) storytelling in film and television. The goal is to use the New Media forces that some perceive as a threat to the industry, and instead, use these things to our advantage.
First, how does one properly use New Media at all? It’s obvious that the internet is more nimble than an older industry like Television or Film. So start by looking at the shifting ways smart websites make money. Can these lessons be applied to television? Yes, some.
Around 2003, after Democrats were walloped in the midterms, and the established liberal advocacy organizations in D.C. proved unable to register any victories against President Bush, the Professional Left was desperate. So desperate that many Dems and lots of orgs actually hired a bunch of bloggers and technology geeks to try something new – anything new. I was one of those strategy kids. I always brought my background in theatre/film to the table, stressing the need for a coherent story with respect to “the battle of narratives” element of politics. However much I stressed story stuff like identify the bad guy, or choose conflict, our essential challenge was to figure out how to use the nascent internet to do good, and do it well, in D.C.
Obama’s first term is nearly over. I’ve been bookmarking certain news as “Obama Derangement Syndrome” for four years. The paranoid delusional psychosis was funny for a while, and then the 2010 midterms happened. That’s when several rodeo clowns got into office and raised an amazing amount of money by peddling garbage. It was much more frightening than I anticipated.
Here’s a small sampling of the unhinged fever dreams of the radicals.
They have said:
Obama is Kenyan
Obama is Marxist
Obama is an enemy of humanity
Obama is Fascist
Obama is an oligarch
Obama is Socialist
Obama wants to kill grandma
Obama wants death panels
Obama wants to build his own liberal army
Obama is like Hitler
Obama is like Stalin
Obama’s mother was a whore
Obama is like Goebbels
Obama is like Mengele
Obama is like Lenin
Obama is entirely dependent on teleprompters
Obama throws like a girl
Obama has no birth certificate
Obama is part of the Black Mafia
Obama is a racist
Obama drinks the wrong beer
Obama will tax your favorite beer
Obama eats arugula and fake food
Obama wants nationalized banks
Obama wants a nationalized auto industry forever
Obama is a Communist
Obama hired Van Jones because Jones is also a Communist
Obama wants to indoctrinate school children into Socialism
Obama is a terrorist because Gaddafi called him his son
Obama is like Kim Jong Il
Obama is brainwashing school children into singing his praises
Obama should be overthrown in a coup
Obama has mean, uncivil allies
Obama wants schools to perform secret abortion field trips
Obama wants to force people to get sex-change operations
Obama wants sex clinics in schools
Obama is weak internationally and can’t drive a hard bargain
Obama is bully internationally who blows the Olympics because he’s not respected
Obama is weak internationally when he shows his hand rather than attack Iran
Obama is like a rapist
Obama supports NAMBLA
Obama is worshipped internationally because “the world” is stupid
Obama won’t bomb the Taliban so he bombs the moon
Obama is dithering about the war in Afghanistan
Obama’s HHS is a pedophile training children to be perverts
Obama needs the GOP’s permission to accept the Nobel Peace Prize
Obama is juvenile for saying FoxNews not a real news network
Obama is daring the terrorists to attack us again
Obama wants the DHS to make Tea Partiers wear torture devices on flights
Obama wants to give the USA back to Native Americans
Obama job numbers are doctored in a plot by the Bureau of Labor Statistics
Obama is breaking campaign finance law when it doesn’t accept illegal donations
Obama’s good poll numbers are a conspiracy by everyone
Obama is covering up Benghazi
Obama is an emperor
Obama is acting like a King
Obama is a dictator
Obama is a tyrant
Obama wants Americans to die of Ebola
Obama is an anti-Semite
Obama wants doctors to report your guns
Obama wants to open concentration camps
Obama Concentration Camps will be all run by gay people
Obama wants to invade Texas and impose martial law
Obama wants forcibly depopulate the Earth
Obama wants to convert American woman under Sharia Law
Obama wants gays to rule the world
Obama is covering up the faked moon landings
Obama wants a single North American currency
Obama is lying about how Global warming is a false flag operation by the government
Obama and fluoride is out to control your mind
Obama controls the weather to scare us about Global Warming
Obama wants to to outlaw Christmas cookies and sprinkled doughnuts
Obama murdered Justice Antonin Scalia.
He won a Peabody. His winning “Super PAC” segments embody some of my favorite rules – both from writing and improv:
He says his responsibility is to the story.
Whenever possible, discover the story along with the audience.
Find the complications, break through them with logic and humor.
Own the character, even when you wink in an aside.
The truth is funnier than fiction.
If you ask me, the Legal Dept. at Comedy Central deserves this award as much as Colbert and his writers. Greenlighting that bit took guts.