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Sunday, August 5, 2007

Miles says....

The Creators say
August 5th, 2007 at 5:21 am
Hey Everyone,

I’m coming to you as a fan, not a “Creator.” The reason lonelygirl15 exists is because I’m really just a fan like all of you. Star Wars prequel? I was in line for tickets… and I thought it sucked. Firefly? I’ve seen every episode and I watched Serenity in theaters… twice. Don’t even get me started on Buffy because I can talk for hours.

I’m in London right now running KateModern, but I wanted to spend Friday watching the 12 in 12 on LG15.com and sharing the experience with all of you. I know most of your names by heart and I’ve read most of your posts on the site so I feel like you are all part of my family. We have a few servers running the website now, but unfortunately a combination of massive traffic and a DoS attack crippled us. We are taking steps now to prevent this from happening in the future. I hope you like the new site design!

Regardless, the 12 in 12 was the most singularly amazing event I’ve ever witnessed… as a fan. The hybrid of pre-shot footage, real-world live events, online interactivity, and real-time videos uploaded each hour created something… transcendent. Thankfully we were able to watch the videos on MySpace and follow the interactivity on lg15today and in IRC (yes, that comment on lg15today from “Miles” was from me). How cool was the live webcam showing Nikki B in Santa Monica!?!? Wow! What an amazing medium for storytelling. The internet is so cool! You should thank Amanda for running ALL the interactivity during the 12 in 12. She is one of the hardest working individuals I have ever met.

Bree is like my daughter. I named her lonelygirl15. I watched her post her “First Blog.” I read to her and taught her to love science; Richard Feynman and Jared Diamond sit on my bookshelf. I bought her P. Monkey as a gift so she would have something to play with. I taught her how to “make lemonade when life gives you lemons,” and I wouldn’t let her go to parties with Daniel. I loved her and cared for her and I wanted nothing more than for her to be happy. Unfortunately, I couldn’t protect her forever.

Bree is dead. Bree is dead!?!?!?! How could Bree die!?!?!?

Trust me that I have been depressed all weekend. I cried when Bree died. In fact, I’m tearing up right now writing this. I put off having her character die for months and months and months because I loved Bree and I couldn’t imagine lonelygirl15 without her. There is no one on this planet that cares more about Bree than I do. I wrote her words, filmed her actions, and stared at her freeze-frame smile every day for hours and hours as I edited the videos.

Bree was so sweet and innocent. She taught us about her special world and invited us into her life. She made us smile. She made us laugh. Now, she has made us sad. Unfortunately, Bree’s life became increasingly difficult. The Order changed her. They stifled her happiness and ruined her innocence. The Order chased her for months, and there was only so much that Daniel and Jonas could do to protect her. Bree, like so many pure and fragile things, could not survive in this harsh reality that we must face every day.

Life moves forward. We must move forward. The Order is everywhere, and if Bree’s death taught us anything, it is that we cannot allow this tragedy to happen again. The Order must be stopped.

As a fan, I’m frustrated. Why did Bree die to protect Daniel and Jonas and then ask them to help other girls like her? Why should they help? Bree manipulated Jonas. She teased Daniel. What about Sarah and Taylor? Don’t they care about Daniel and Jonas?

Our characters have some very serious decisions to make. Do they listen to Bree or do they follow their own paths? Do they fight the Order or simply throw down their swords?

As a fan I can’t wait to see what happens next. As a Creator I have a huge responsibility to all of you and to the fan inside of me. I hope you’ll join us in the fight against the Order…



  1. Miles, there are times I wanted to throw a brick at my PC and times when I've wanted to hug it during Bree's story.

    Yes I'm angry she's dead, and yes if Bree was going to die then I wanted her to go out raging against the dieing of the light, not unconscious on an operating table. However I do see that Bree's death was necessary for the story to progress, and I look forward to the ride.

  2. I do have to say, that was very sweet of miles!

  3. It is nice of Miles to come out from behind the curtain in this way and express sympathy with what fans experience.

    What bothers me right now in thinking about the finale are the creative choices made in the last three or four of the 12 in 12 videos, particularly 10 in 12 (Bree's death) and 12 in 12 (Bree's swansong). Two opportunities for Jessica Rose, as Bree, to perform on video were missed.

    In 10 in 12, we should have SEEN Bree prove she is not brainwashed and was being heroic by taking some action to undermine the Order while choosing to sacrifice herself. What we saw was ambiguous and confusing at the time, and logically odd in retrospect. Daniel and Spencer stayed with Jonas and Taylor knowing the deadline to save Bree was passing, and Jonas did not even say "Go save Bree." ? The Shadows looked amateurish - like trick-or-treaters, etc. The whole premise of the serum started to make no sense - like a sudden injection at the last moment was going to make Bree trait negative and the Order would just throw up their hands. And why did the Order need or want to take so much blood from Bree that she would die anyway? Wouldn't it make more sense to take a little at a time and keep her alive for future transfusions? Too many jarring elements and logic gaps to ignore for me to stay immersed in the story.

    And in 12 in 12, we should have SEEN Bree on video saying her goodbyes - rather than just a voice recording. Jessica Rose did a great job with Bree's audio farewell, but she deserved the chance to finish her story the way she started, just Bree talking to the camera.

    Speculation is that this decision was based on contracts, agents, or other such behind-the-scenes B.S. we fans don't really care about.

    But however this happened, failing to give Bree the chance to perform on camera during the finale cheated the audience and cheated the story and character. It was good, but not good enough.

    That's how I feel right now.

  4. qthec- You took the words right out of my mouth this is what angered me the most, in closing I just wasnt impressed with the finale I feel cheated.

  5. Forget Bree's death. Who was the idiot who thought having those guys wear capes was a good idea?

  6. And not just capes. Capes that look like they were from the $2 bin at the Halloween store.

  7. I agree that there were some... creative missteps as the finale tripped and fell to a close, but what is still good about the show was on display throughout at least the first 6 vids.

    I think what makes me look forward to season 2 more than anything is the genuine acting chemistry between Yousef & Jackson. One of the common problems with the show have been actions/decisions by the characters that seemed illogical, and therein lies the birth of plotholes. On the upside, something like the distractions of the foosball or golf episodes were completely natural. That relationship is now the base that the show has to be built on.

    I think Miles & The Creators might hope it to be possible to, say, run Buffy with Spike, Willow, & Xander as the main characters. I say to the them - do everything you can to keep Yousef & Jackson on the show; if that means involving them in the creative process more, like Jackson directing the golf vid, then include them. They ARE Daniel & Jonas, and they're are the ones that'll save your show.

  8. Well, Miles, you made me cry in a public library. Thanks.

    I didn't like how Bree went out. I would've been fine with a sappy death, like Daniel racing to her bedside, and her whispering, "Goodbye..."

    I sobbed during Bree's voicemail message. My dog ran under the table and whimpered-- he hates the cound of people crying. Anyway, I thought that was a nice thing, just showing Bree wasn't brainwashed.

    I really hope this isn't a ploy to have TAAG join with KateModern. I would stop watching, as would a lot of other fans.


  9. One real bright spot during the finale were the cameos... Jerry (Voyboy), Greg as the watcher getting clocked with the fire extinguisher by Nikki B. (Alli Danziger is great.)

    A smart move would be to bring Nikki B. into the main story as a regular - she's much more entertaining than Sarah or Taylor... while seeking out a stronger female lead.

    Ignore the mixed tone of the finale and return the series to campy fun where halloween capes, time-outs in the middle of a car chase to endorse products, and Nikki B. reporting on the scene (and sometimes sticking a foot out to trip the bad guys) are regular elements.

    But the characters have to take everything seriously for that kind of humor to work - think of old Star Trek episodes with giant glowing meatball aliens, the Captain's over-the-top speeches and romantic scenes with every female alien, and dry banter between the Mr. Spock and Bones.

    There was an article on this blog where someone said the way to view Lonelygirl15 is not as reality, but as a comedy. That might really be a good idea, if commited to and explored intelligently, comedic in the midst of adventure. (and no, not troll dolls, and not boring monotonic Hymn of One videos). Spencer could be very good with better writing and the right tone - naturally funny like Daniel and Jonas can be together.

    Well, that's enough randomness.

    Maybe what is really needed is a step in the production process to take a critical look at each video before release - with a checklist of guidelines in hand... based on the good and bad elements from the past. Tone, logic, humor, plot movement, performances, etc. ... maybe get a handful of regulars to preview this stuff before putting it out. Take the time to fix before general release. Well, schedules are tough, but quality might be worth it.

  10. THANK YOU SO MUCH! This really makes me feel a lot better about everything. It's the direction the show had to take, and... Although I'm sad--especially about not having Bree be seen in the last video--I'm still looking forward to the series.

    And yes, Nikki B is love. :)

  11. I totatly get what you guys did with the season 1 finale.

    And I understand why Bree -had- to die. We did not want Bree to die, but rarely do we wish loved ones to die (well we may wish it, but not seriously. ha).

    Thanks for the post.

  12. Bree did not "have" to die. Bree could die, and the show could still work, but there were plenty of reasons why it didn't and these have already been stated repeatedly by a host of articulate commenters. But as for Bree’s death being somehow necessary for the show to continue? It simply wasn't. Bree was the eponymous character of lonegirl15. She was lonelygirl15, literally and in spirit. It was never about the Order. This was a show that emphasized character over plot, though the program peaked when those two elements were at their strongest.

    QtheC stated this above and it rings true for me: “Speculation is that this decision was based on contracts, agents, or other such behind-the-scenes B.S. we fans don't really care about.” Yeah, I speculate that. Who doesn’t? Rose needed an out, I understand that, and they killed her character off. That’s the only logical reason it was “necessary” for the show to go in this direction. Lonelygirl15 was about Bree, and about the rescue and salvation of that character. Not every series needs a happy ending, but lonelgirl15 certainly did. It needed some relief, some payoff, some happiness. It’s why everyone feels cheated. All we did was invest our time and energy and emotions into this character and then everything failed. Think about that. Everything done to save Bree was ultimately meaningless. In hindsight, everything was pointless. We all failed and now we’re told to move on. It had to be this was guys!

    And so it did. It had to come to an end. I don’t fault to Creator’s on much of this because what could they do? They couldn’t make Jessica stay onboard. Where they failed can be found in the writing, but they couldn’t keep Bree alive because Jessica Rose isn’t a robot. She’s a person, with a career, and she can’t be blamed for pursuing that. Nor can the Creators for wanting to continue this franchise. Most of the problems are rooted in business and money, and the artistic integrity sacrificed hasn’t gone unnoticed by many. It’s easy to point fingers, but this is a situation where that can’t be done very fairly. It ended badly, nonetheless, and everyone has a right to feel upset about that. It’s obvious much of plot was being made-up or changed along the way, when the storyline should have been finished before they started filming. This is what professional shows, like, say, Lost, do. That way they can manage time and contracts and tell the story the right way, the way it was meant to be told.

    I enjoyed Miles’ words for the most part. One thing that has been great about lonelygirl15 is that, for better or worse, these guys do care about their creation. And I think they sincerely want to please their fans. It’s not hard to imagine why. Nonetheless, I do take issue with his statements here: “As a fan, I’m frustrated. Why did Bree die to protect Daniel and Jonas and then ask them to help other girls like her? Why should they help? Bree manipulated Jonas. She teased Daniel. What about Sarah and Taylor? Don’t they care about Daniel and Jonas?” Hey, yeah, I’m frustrated too! Why did she ask them to do that when it didn’t make any sense? Why did you make her do that? We’ll never know, since you killed her off, but are we supposed be content in knowing Bree’s final request was bananas? That’s our reward for all of this?

    Most stories follow similar structures, because there just aren’t that many versions that resonate with and satisfy the human imagination. You need to be satisfied; otherwise there would be no draw, no attraction. We never got that here and therefore it’s impossible to truly feel closure. It hurts me to come down like this because I think that lonelygirl15 was by and large a wonderful thing and I loved being a part of it, of looking forward to it, of immersing myself in it, but there was just no payoff. For anything.

    This has become considerably redundant, so to end this with a crude but accurate analogy: I feel like lonelygirl15 blueballed me.

  13. http://www.spiegel.de/netzwelt/web/0,1518,498341,00.html

    The German new site Spiegel online titled its article about the 12 in 12: "The oafish death of lonelygirl15"


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