Unique web series provide alternative to traditional TVPosted on September 11, 2013 | by Valerie Nelson
Over the past year, the Internet has shown itself to be one of the best sources of TV entertainment, an assertion proven especially true with the nine Emmy nominations for Netflix’s “House of Cards.” But beyond paid services like Netflix and Hulu Plus, other online sources will offer some intriguing new shows to entertain viewers this fall.
“Emma Approved,” a modern day take on Jane Austen’s “Emma,” is set to premiere on YouTube this fall, depicting Emma as a career-driven woman in her mid-20s. The workplace comedy will focus on Emma and her co-worker Alex, as Emma promotes herself as a life coach in the vein of Martha Stewart or Oprah Winfrey. The series was created by Hank Green and Bernie Su, the same team behind the Emmy-award winning web series “The Lizzie Bennet Diaries.” Expect the same fun trans-media elements of “LBD,” with characters tweeting each other and creating blogs.
“GLOSS: A Digital Series,” to air on YouTube, can be described as a fashion thriller. The narrative will follow Max Luna, a style blogger who delves into the dark side of the world of fashion after a supermodel’s mysterious death. The series will take advantage of its platform with the adventures being spread throughout the Internet, on social networks like Twitter and Tumblr. While most web series are comedic, “GLOSS” promises to be suspenseful and sleek.
“L.A. Girls” is a simply named series that imagines what the main characters of HBO’s “Girls” would be like in Los Angeles. The show, which premiered on YouTube last month, differs from the many parodies scattered online in that it doesn’t set out to insult the original series. Rather, there’s a sense of respectfulness as it uses the characters for inspiration. It can be enjoyed by fans of “Girls,” or even by those who haven’t seen a single episode. Either way, the performances and writing are sharp and compelling.
“Ghost Ghirls” is one of several series premiering on Yahoo this fall. Featuring Jack Black as a producer, this comedy is already receiving major buzz. The series will follow two friends who work as paranormal investigators. The “ghirls” are ditzy and oblivious, traits that are played up for laughs, though the series also promises some supernatural scares in its 12 episode season. “Ghost Ghirls” will also feature celebrity guest stars like Molly Shannon and Dave Grohl. The plot seems scattered, but it’s worth checking out just because of the notable star power behind it.
The Internet has a long way to go before it can replace broadcast television and networks like HBO and Showtime, but with these series, it’s certainly taking a major step in that direction.
A version of this article appeared in the Wednesday, Sep. 11 print edition. Valerie Nelson is The Highlighter Editor. Email her at email@example.com.