‘Super Knocked Up’ is the story of a super villain who gets knocked up by a superhero – awkward! The show sets up an interesting universe, but does it give its audience enough?
’Super Knocked Up’ is done in classic webisode style – brief clips, generally one scene, three to five minutes long, with some supplemental videos built in. There is also a comic book.
This is the first series I’ve seen noticeably divided into ‘seasons’ where a season represents one single production period rather than a story arc. There are only 5 episodes in the season so the show does not get too far into the story. In fact the story is very much a set up of the world these characters live in with some hints as to what is ahead.
The show just wrapped season 2, which will premiere in February, and I expect to see it take us further into the story, revealing more of the universe and without concluding the plot. This should keep the universe open for whatever stories series creator Jeff Burns has in mind.
This is good because the universe these characters live in was easily the best part of the show. The dynamic between Jessica James and her super villain cohorts provided all of the drama and many of the best laughs.
I loved seeing the mundane details of these characters lives. The way they text each other their evil plans, the way they still live with their mom, the way they are all so friendly, the way they have sex with their masks on…
Surprisingly the relationship between Jessica and her super hero nemesis-turned-lover did not deliver on the same level. The show’s premise seems like it has a ton of material available to mine, which we will hopefully see in the coming installments of the series.
The bar stuff and the Sinister Society episode was my favorite because we got a glimpse of what was going on in the world – I think that was also when we first see the reporter, who is one of the other best parts of the show. I think that the limited time in the season, roughly 25 minutes, keeps the show from giving us more of that and that is unfortunate.
This is where I think this style of production can fall a little short. I am starting to really come around on the idea that more is always better in web series. Despite the fact that the comic version delves further into the story the series itself deserves more time, but time represents money.
For a series like Super Knocked Up, which clearly strives to make every scene as technically professional as possible, it’s going to be a challenge to produce more and more content at this level. Twenty minutes is enough time to give us a taste but I am starting to prefer series that worry less about getting those twenty minutes perfect and just giving us the whole meal – even if the shrimp still has its head on.
Web series face a real challenge engaging viewers in their universe with limited screen time – and I do not think anyone has figured out the secret formula solving this problem yet. ‘Super Knocked Up’ creates a fun and intriguing universe that I would love to see developed further. Season one and its 5 episodes are a good start, but I will need to see more before I can make an official verdict on the show.
February is just around the corner, so we should all get the chance to see the story develop further. Right now season one is available for viewing on their web site http://superknockedup.com so steer your browser on over!