Monthly Archives: May 2013

Arrested Development, Netflix and Nolan walk into a bar named VOD for some binge-viewing and we all win

Arrested Development Season Four debuted over the weekend on Netflix, and, although we won’t see any kind of traditional ratings from Netflix, I can safely observe that it’s been a huge trending topic online and in traditional media. I was never a big fan of the show, but I watched the first three new episodes to see what all the fuss was about, and my opinion didn’t change. I admire the effort, but I just don’t find it very funny. The choppy structure and the omni-present narration become grating after a few minutes and I find myself itching to watch a complete scene. “Let a scene play out!” and “Shut up, Opie Cunningham!” may have been heard in my living room as I tried to keep up with what felt like a non-stop highlights reel. Maybe it’s just not my style of comedy; I happen to love Happy Endings, a sitcom that has now been canceled because I was apparently the only one who bothered watching it. Comedy is subjective, we know this. So I was planning to toss AD in the “Don’t Watch” bin with The Big Bang Theory.

But then I heard from a number of sources that the season really finds its groove around episode five or episode seven, depending on the source. In other words, the intricate story and character beats start to come together, pay off and the arc of the season is revealed — but you have to hang in there to really get it. In fact, the creators may have designed it this way intentionally, knowing that the Netflix platform allows for unlimited repeat viewings. Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Making Everyone Happy All At Once: Writing a Blockbuster

Note: This article originally appeared in Script Magazine here.

There’s a debate raging now about whether or not the actors who play the superheroes in hit franchises are worth as much as the brand. Would we accept Chris Pine as Tony Stark or is Robert Downey, Jr. the only actor who can pull off Iron Man? Mark Ruffalo was great as Bruce Banner in The Avengers, but did we pay to see the co-star of You Can Count on Me or did we pay to see THE HULK smash things in all his 3-D CGI glory? Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized