The Streamy awards are this Sunday. One of the things that makes award shows so much fun is trying to figure out who will win, and then screaming at the voters when they make the wrong decision. Since we like a little drama around here, I thought I would mention a few of my picks and see if anyone agrees or disagrees with me. Rather than examine every single category, because frankly that would be boring, we are going to focus on a few of the major ones.
Best Comedy Web series: Far and away the category with the most potential nominees – seems like every third web series is about a group of ‘friends’ who have wacky fun in an LA apartment – not surprisingly, it is also one of the most competitive ones. For the best comedy winner I was looking for a series that was constantly funny, took a few risks, and ultimately made me want to re-watch the episodes. I chose Legend of Neil. I think having a short season, helps the series, it never seems to drag, nor is it boring. Also, the series was not afraid to gamble; although, on could argue that the musical episode wasn’t much of a risk. After all, who doesn’t like the idea of a horny, singing demi-fey? However, I have a feeling that this year’s winner will be the same as last year’s winner, The Guild.
Best Drama Web series: In the best drama winner, primarily, I was looking for interesting characters that grew over the course of the series. How a character rises or falls in response to the dramatic circumstances he faces is, for me, what makes a good drama. For the best drama web series, I picked OzGirl, which should come as a complete and utter shock. In contrast, to my pick for best comedy, OzGirl really benefited from not only the series length (22 episodes) but the shoot length (6 months). At the end of the series the characters are very different than they were at the beginning. As for who I think will win, probably The Bannen Way.
Best New Series: Personally, I think this is one of the categories that will change next year. Considering that there are only a handful of series that actually make a second season, this category seems redundant. Therefore, to make this category a little more useful, I have decided to use it as a way to recognize series, which were new and unfinished prior to the eligibility deadline. For that reason, the best new web series pick is The Bannen Way. Bannen only had three episodes out prior to the deadline, so judging it against series that had completed their dramatic arc really was not feasible. For all we knew, Neil Bannen might have gotten a sock puppet sidekick in episode four, which would have been awesome, but not terribly dramatic. Nevertheless, those three episodes showed great promise and deserve recognition, and I have a feeling the Academy will agree with me.
Best Companion Web series: A companion web series is one that ties into an existing production, usually a television show. This is the one change that most people were clamoring for after last year’s Streamys, because many felt that these series with larger budgets and access to the writers, sets, or actors of major productions had a substantial advantage. In a companion series I was looking for two things, how well it integrated with the parent project and how well it worked as a stand alone web series. For those reasons I picked Harper’s Globe, which did a decent job of integrating the story of it’s parent series, while doing an excellent job as a stand alone web series. Also, to be honest, this year’s nominees with the exception of Harper’s Globe were no where near the quality of last year’s group and most likely would not have been nominated but for this category. If I had to guess which series the Academy will honor, I would go with Dexter: Final Cuts, based solely on name recognition.
Best Experimental Web series: To be honest I have no idea what this category means. Are not all web series experimental to some degree? We have yet to define a traditional web series; in fact, we have yet to create a comprehensive definition for web series. So for criteria, I simply went with the one I liked the most, which if I had to guess is what most of the Academy members did anyway. Therefore, my choice for Best Experimental web series is Auto-tune the News. One has to admit, it is not like most web series, in fact some might even argue that it isn’t a web series depending upon how one defines web series. Nevertheless, whatever else it may or may not be, it is fun to watch. Also, since I have no basis for deciding one way or the other, I’ll just assume the Academy will agree with me.
Stay tuned for part two where we will look at the individual achievement awards.