Too Much TV: Your TV Talking Points For Monday, September 26th 2022
Here's everything you need to know about the world of television for Monday, September 26th, 2022.
Today's newsletter is much later than normal. I was having problems posting the newsletter and I am not sure if the issue was with me or with Substack.
But I wanted to get one out if I could, since a sizable percentage of you seem to read it late at night or first thing in the morning.
I AM A BIT PERPLEXED BY TUDUM
As you likely know (especially if you were unfortunate enough to be signed up for breaking news emails at one of the trades), Netflix held its Tudum event over the weekend. It's a virtual fan event, which this year spanned four events in different places across the globe. There are interviews with fan favorites, lots of new trailers and release dates and it is essentially one big, slick infomercial for Netflix.
The event is livestreamed on YouTube. but I will admit that I am surprised Netflix didn't also stream the event inside the app. When I mentioned this online, I received a few possible answers, but none that seemed any more likely than the others.
One reason might be that Netflix wants to lean into its social media engagement and that is certainly a smart idea. But I don't think there's a lot of overlap between subscribers who will watch the live stream on YouTube and those who would watch it inside the app. In fact, having it livestreamed inside the app would likely lead to increased engagement with the app. Which is almost always a positive for subscriber retention.
Several people suggested that it could be that Netflix lacks the infrastructure to live stream something inside the current app. I was under the impression that Netflix had built out that technology, in part because at one point it was considering making a bid for rights to Indian cricket. But when I checked with a few of my sources at Netflix today, the only confirmation I could get on background was along the lines of "well, I've heard we can do it." Which is vague enough to be useless for my purposes.
If Netflix doesn't haven't had the capability to live stream at this point, it should be considered technology malpractice. But if it can do it, then why not test it with a lower-risk event such as Tudum?
While Netflix didn't livestream it inside the app, the streamer did add archived and edited versions of the livestream inside the app. Although after checking my profile and those of my family, I didn't see the streams mentioned anywhere. So while the four events are available for streaming (unlike last year's event), the only way you would know it was available seems to be that you have to actively look for it.
IT MIGHT SUPRISE SOME PEOPLE THAT ENTERTAINMENT AND MEDIA INDUSTRY REPORTING IS ALSO JOURNALISM
I was looking over the winners list for 2022 Online Journalism Awards and it is an impressive list of reporters and news organizations. But I couldn't help noticing that while there are a wide range of categories of journalism - ranging from breaking news and science reporting to newsletters and sports - there isn't one for entertainment or media reporting. They don't even award one on the default "culture" category, which sometimes gets used when contests don't want to seem too crass and lowbrow.
I'll be the first to admit that a lot of what passes for entertainment industry journalism is pretty vapid and disposable. But there are also some really excellent journalists working in this niche of journalism and I wish the Online News Organization (which runs the awards) would create a category to recognize their work.
SPEAKING OF ONLINE JOURNALISM AND NEWSLETTERS
After a lengthy delay, CNN’s “Reliable Sources” newsletter is back, albeit with a new look and no Brian Stelter. In his reintroduction, Oliver Darcy revealed the newsletter would be pared back to a shorter version, published Monday-Thursday. It will also come out earlier in the evening.
Based on tonight’s email, there are a lot more links I’ve already seen other places, a lot less political coverage and an inordinate amount of references to Darcy having reached out (mostly unsuccessfully) for comment.
ONE POSSIBLE VERSION OF THE TOP 100 TV SHOWS OF ALL-TIME
TV Guide used to regularly trot out out some list like this every time they needed to goose up interest in their publication. And while I don't think Rolling Stone is quite in that dire of a situation in 2022, it's list of "100 Greatest TV Shows Of All-Time" is as flawed as any of these lists tend to be. The list relies too much on shows produced since the 1990s, it's extremely U.S.-centric and you could make a list of 100 shows left off this list that should have also been included. I loathe these lists, along with their evil holiday spin-offs, the "Top Ten TV Shows Of The Year."
It's one thing to list 100 worthwhile TV shows. But ranking them 1-100 is just high-level trolling.
DEEP FAKE ELVIS AND DEEP FAKE BOB ROSS MAY BE COMING TO AN AD-SUPPORTED CHANNEL NEAR YOU
This Indiewire interview with Cinedigm CEO Chris McGurk has a lot of interesting stuff in it, including this pretty frightening take on an idea he's been pursuing for several of the company's AVOD channels:
McGurk also has a big idea to plant a flag in the originals game. “On our Bob Ross Channel and on our Elvis Channel, we’re considering deepfake Bob Ross and deepfake Elvis,” he said. “Bob Ross died in 1992; we have his library. It’s an enormously successful channel. It’s probably our most successful channel. Imagine if we could have Deepfake Bob Ross with A.I. creating new painting and new episodes. A.I. dubbed into 10 different languages overseas.”
McGurk said he is in preliminary talks with representatives for the Presley and Ross brands. No one’s talking about new Elvis movies at this point, but the deepfake technology could be used to create digital presenters and channel interstitials.
It’d be “cheap” to pull off, McGurk said, and “there’s a good chance” that Authentic Brands, the brand-management company that controls Elvis’ copyright, will agree. “There are so many deepfake Elvises out there, why not control their own?”
I can think of a bunch of reasons why he shouldn't do it. But I have this sinking suspicion that this idea is on its way.
TWEET (S) OF THE DAY
ODDS AND SODS
* The truth about The Great British Bake-Off, written by someone who appeared on an early season.
* CNN just called Minneapolis the "Mini Apple." In 2022.
* Hannah Gadsby has signed to do a third comedy special for Netflix, along with a comedy special featuring “under-represented comedy voices.”
WHAT'S NEW FOR MONDAY:
Here's a quick rundown of all the new stuff premiering today on TV and streaming:
A Trip To Infinity (Netflix)
Chefs Vs. Wild Series Premiere (Hulu)
Halloween Cookie Challenge (Food)
My Little Pony: Make Your Mark (Netflix)
Panhandle Series Premiere (Spectrum)
POV: Delikado (PBS)
Click Here to see the list of all of the upcoming premiere dates for the next few months.
SEE YOU TUESDAY!
If you have any feedback, send it along to Rick@AllYourScreens.com and follow me on Twitter @aysrick.