Bryan Singer's H+

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Old 09 September 2012   #1
Bryan Singer's H+

A new Scifi series by Bryan Singer, about people in the future being implanted with Augmented Reality brain-electronics, published in the form of free-to-view Youtube web episodes:

https://www.youtube.com/user/HplusD...s?feature=watch

There are 14 free-to-view episodes online at the moment. Its pretty interesting stuff for Scifi/Cyberpunk lovers.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #2
Large parts of the plot setup remind me of the Tai Yong Medical Implant plot from "Deus Ex: Human Revolution".

Bryan Singer doing a good job here. I'm a bit let-down it isn't as futuristic (which kind of waters down the Utopic vision of being always online). But I understand live-action Web Series can't exactly build the massive sets and futuristic props and costumes required for that.

Still looks good. Made me click Episode 2 after seeing Episode 1.

Note to Sound Design:
Why does the protester in Geneva, Switzerland have an American accent? :P
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Old 09 September 2012   #3
Wink Inside joke

Originally Posted by CGIPadawan: Large parts of the plot setup remind me of the Tai Yong Medical Implant plot from "Deus Ex: Human Revolution".

Bryan Singer doing a good job here. I'm a bit let-down it isn't as futuristic (which kind of waters down the Utopic vision of being always online). But I understand live-action Web Series can't exactly build the massive sets and futuristic props and costumes required for that.

Still looks good. Made me click Episode 2 after seeing Episode 1.

Note to Sound Design:
Why does the protester in Geneva, Switzerland have an American accent? :P


Maybe an inside joke that a lot of unrest / government change are sponsored by certain parties? eg: Bay of Pigs, or Shah of Iran
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1953_I...p_d%27%C3%A9tat

Maybe I read too much into things. Dunno. Will view the clip later. I hope the answer relevant, though. I'm sure you can find some grain of truth somewhere...

And this kind of things are close to my heart for certain reason...

http://thestar.com.my/news/story.as...8571&sec=nation
 
Old 09 September 2012   #4
Very sweet find, seems like I have something to do tonight.
Man I wish this stuff would come to realization in my lifetime :P

Though this reminds me a bit of Accel world. But I guess this sort of thing is kind of an obvious idea.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #5
Originally Posted by Tamagoo: Very sweet find, seems like I have something to do tonight.


I watched the first 12 episodes (out of 14).

I like it a lot so far. No big name actors in it, but the narrative flows quite nicely.

I wonder how many episodes they'll do in total.

Unfortunately, the total view numbers for H+ on Youtube are pretty low. Under 200,000 per episode.

I hope they go on, and don't cancel the show because of that...
 
Old 09 September 2012   #6
It's a big experiment because H+ is being launched as its own channel. It's not on Machinima.com, and it's not on a WB-backed channel.

It's a WB produced show but online it's being made to swim on its own.

I'm surprised the WB went with this strat though. It's a big ask to build a channel on only one program. (See how tough that sentence in bold sounds?)

It could be a test for a WB Online Channel.... but they want a pilot-program first to see what it "feels" like I guess before going full blast.

WB does have experience with various formats both online and in short forms. They had a pretty good experience with "Mortal Kombat Legends" with established online distributor Machinima.com and they know that a block of shorts is effective with "DC Nation" on Cartoon Network.

What they don't know in either case is what the parameters are like building an online channel from scratch. Which could be what "H+" is for. If this is true, that's a lot to entrust to Bryan Singer. But then again he's a pretty good director.
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Old 09 September 2012   #7
Unfortunately, H+ as a whole is a "fail" in terms of viewer popularity at the moment.

While Episode 1 has a decent 593,000 views, that figure falls with each episode, and falls to about 20,000 by the time you are at Episode 14.

I watched the whole series. I found it quite well done in a "Lost meets Cybernetics" kind of way. I'll be watching the next episodes they put online.

I hope that H+ gets more views & popularity with time.

If it succeeds, more networks may try a similar route...
 
Old 09 September 2012   #8
The whole thing looks a lot like "soft-commit" to me.

WB wasn't exactly marketing it hard on conventional channels. So it's probably just to see "how it works on its own".

If this was the intent, no one at Warner will be surprised by the drop offs and they may even be doing this to meter how long a "season" online should be in order to make sense.

If they think for example that a series with name actors at the same per-episode length should probably only have 10 or 11 episodes and not push the 14 episodes H+ was doing. Plus, maybe how those numbers would be changed if they ran an ad on one of the conventional TV networks... etc etc.

If they look at the number of subscribers and the frequency of views... how many shows can they put in a block/YT channel so that all the shows have viewer share.... etc etc.

Lots to learn from looking at the Analytics of "H+".
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Old 09 September 2012   #9
Watched all 14 episodes. So far I feel like I've only watched 30 minutes of one full tv episode, and honestly, it's no better than other futuristic shows that last only one season(Flashforward, Eve, etc). If they want to tell a story through 3 minute episodes, they need to find a better way of telling it so it actually feels like web episodes rather than a tv episode cut into little tiny pieces. Just feels like their whole approach is wrong..

Would be interesting to see where they go from here.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #10
Originally Posted by sonn: Watched all 14 episodes. So far I feel like I've only watched 30 minutes of one full tv episode, and honestly, it's no better than other futuristic shows that last only one season(Flashforward, Eve, etc). If they want to tell a story through 3 minute episodes, they need to find a better way of telling it so it actually feels like web episodes rather than a tv episode cut into little tiny pieces. Just feels like their whole approach is wrong..

Would be interesting to see where they go from here.


That's an issue illustrated to comedic effect by Conan O'Brien's "60" series
But seriously now... I think it does point to a question of "What stories/situations can you feasibly talk about in the short format?"

Based on your feedback the sentiment would be: "A global catastrophe involving neural implants is a story too big to be told in bits of 3 minutes each."
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Old 09 September 2012   #11
Feels like a normal television episode chopped up into many episodes of a few minutes each. Probably not the best way to do a web series. The premise is interesting, but the pacing of a web series needs to be faster.

I wonder why they didn't just do it as a TV series. The premise has the same kind of mystery/hook as any J.J. Abrams series.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #12
Originally Posted by Lunatique: I wonder why they didn't just do it as a TV series. The premise has the same kind of mystery/hook as any J.J. Abrams series.


I don't know for sure, but my Sixth Sense tells me that the people forking out the hard cash for this "web experiment" must have placed a "It will continue if it proves to be popular" Clause in the production contract.

In other words:

- We'll let you film 45 mins or 14 episodes worth of webisodes

- We'll let you put those webisodes online for free

- If those webisodes get a view count of, say, 2,500,000 per episode, then the series continues

- If not, we pull the plug on the experiment before too much cash has been wasted


Its going to be interesting to see how long "H+" goes on for.

Tomorrow is Wednesday, so, hopefully, episode 15 should go online...

I've found the series quite watchable so far. I hope that they can continue it.
 
Old 09 September 2012   #13
On a full screen the show looks very very small. There are absolutely no expensive special fx and the sets are very simple. I find the acting and writing very good indeed. Casting seems very well done and viewing this with a normal youtube player or on a mobile it looks damn good. Also the incessant camera shake is easier to take with a small viewing size. I like the concept but my mind began to wander after 3 episodes.

Great initiative. This will catch on.
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Old 09 September 2012   #14
I think the question now though is if the concept is "too big" for the short film format.

OR

Do you have to format each short episode differently (rather than just cutting up a regular episode into smaller sizes) in order to tell this story better.

For example, should the plot be written so that an important milestone is reached every 5 minutes across episodes and should there be an orderly switching when following other characters?

Because I'm not sure you can afford to have episodes where "nothing happens" in this format.
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Old 09 September 2012   #15
Originally Posted by CGIPadawan: I think the question now though is if the concept is "too big" for the short film format.

OR

Do you have to format each short episode differently (rather than just cutting up a regular episode into smaller sizes) in order to tell this story better.

For example, should the plot be written so that an important milestone is reached every 5 minutes across episodes and should there be an orderly switching when following other characters?

Because I'm not sure you can afford to have episodes where "nothing happens" in this format.


The Guild or Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog are web series done right, where the moment-to-moment plot progression is more interesting and unfolds in a way that is the perfect bite-size for a web audience. A web series needs to have each short episode contain a strong sense of dramatic structure, complete with a compelling conflict unique to that episode, and with a satisfying payoff (plot or emotional).

In comparison, H+ is more like a traditional TV show, and they simply timed each scene to be the length of each web episode, but the actual pacing and structure is really just one long TV episode. This is bad because it makes the pacing too drawn out, and when you keep seeing the same damn scene playing out over multiple episodes, it loses momentum.

The premise itself isn't really suitable for a web series (IMO). Grand conspiracy plots are much more suited for traditional television's dramatic structure.
 
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