VGHS Season 3 from Production Studio Rocket Jump premiered this week online. Yup. Online.
VGHS (Video Game High School) is described by Rocket Jump as “an action/comedy web series about best friends, first loves, and landing that perfect head shot.” It almost reminds me a little bit of Hunger Games in a sense that it’s almost a parallel reality. In the Hunger Games, everything in the Capitol is very different. Weird outfits and strange people. In VGHS, e-sports are the biggest thing, even bigger then the FIFA World Cup. So it definitely has some uniqueness to it.
I got introduced to VGHS when it was airing it’s second season, and I just binge watched to get caught up and finish. It captivated me because it was very different but yet still very entertaining. The story line was familiar, but at the same time very different. Guy likes Girl, Girl is dating the jock, etc etc. Very familiar but they did it so differently that it felt fresh every episode.
When Season 3 came out it definitely lived up to the story. I was a little disappointed that they didn’t do more episodes and explore more opportunities to build the arc to the final episode but nonetheless it was still a great season and the series finale was probably one of the best series finales I’ve ever watched, except for one thing but I’ll let you watch that to figure it out. 😉
What impressed me the most about the series as a whole is how well it was done. From the story writing, to the camera work, effects, it was all done well. I thought I was watching a movie made by Marvel or Disney. It was done that well. The fact that it was produced for online distribution only is what boggled my mind the most. A show like this you would expect to be airing on TV, though the story is something that the major networks I doubt would ever pick up and that’s what I feel the problem is with TV these days.
TV is the best that it’s ever been. We have some really great TV shows airing right now. To name a few some of my favourites being: Agents of SHIELD, The Blacklist, The Flash, Arrow, and many more. The thing about TV is you can tell a story over 12-24 episodes with those episodes being 20-50 minutes long. To average that out you can get 500-1000 minutes of content per season. One movie gets you 120-220 minutes of content to watch (typically). Even if a movie does a trilogy you’re still looking at something thats quite less, time-wise, then what TV has to offer. So the fact that we can tell these stories over a pro-longed period of time allows for writers to tell stories they would never be able to tell in a 2 hour film.
Unfortunately TV is a business and networks need to find shows that are going to bring them in a lot of money. Which is why we often see good shows get cancelled to soon, or get no support. Let’s take Revolution for example. This show I thought had a lot of potential. Season 1 was great, Season 2, well just flat out sucked. Probably because they cut the budget down and resources because they didn’t feel it was worth it and then eventually it got cancelled. It’s unfortunate because the story line was very unique and had something different to offer then the 30 cop or federal investigation shows we have airing right now.
Shows like VGHS I feel have a hard time making it into the real world of TV because networks look at it and say it’s not going to bring in enough money. But what is enough. 5 million vs 25 million? 5 million is still a lot…I’d take that…
So that’s why we find people turning to the online world of websites like YouTube, Vimeo and more. Because they are able to produce what they want with no restrictions (except for money). There’s no one telling you how to do it, or changing your story, except you. Which is why I feel these shows are able to excel in the online world because content creators have full control over their content. For VGHS it worked. They have over 7 million subscribers on their YouTube channel. Season 3 is on Google Play and is on it’s way to iTunes or you can watch for free every week on YouTube. It’s incredibly popular because they took an idea that they had and rolled with it and put it out there for the world to see and it went viral.
We need more shows like VGHS. I love TV. I really do, but I feel that we are limited by the networks making the decisions of what does and doesn’t air. If it’s not making enough money it’s going to get cut, regardless if it’s a great show or not. Which is truly unfortunate. I believe that the world of internet TV shows is going to start to become a lot bigger. Netflix and Hulu are already producing their own tv shows for online distribution. Yahoo picked up Community and is going to continue it online as well, and how many shows are already airing on YouTube created by independent content creators?
Online entertainment has already exploded with people turning to YouTube for their daily dose of videos, it’s only a matter of time before the internet becomes the major breeding ground for all the new tv shows. The thing about major networks is that they are controlled by the Cable Companies who make it incredibly hard to watch TV the way we want to. Requiring subscriptions to this or to that, only able to watch the latest episode, theres no backlog of episodes. Watching TV on networks is incredibly hard, and it shouldn’t be. We should have the freedom to watch what we want, when we want, not when the cable companies say its ok. But because it’s a business, we may never see that until the internet cripples the cable market. Oh well.
VGHS Season 3 Episode 1 is available for streaming now with new episodes every monday. You can also pay $14.99 and get access to all the episodes right now via Google Play, Vimeo and soon iTunes.