This week on #WebSeriesWednesday I watched one of the most acclaimed web series in ‘Blood & Bone China.’ What can we learn from the show, besides the fact that vampires can be awkward, obviously? Click to find out!
It is pretty clear from the start as to why Blood And Bone China is held in high regard. The show starts with an elaborate intro that is maybe the coolest one I have seen since ‘The League of Steam.’ From there the audience is treated to a slew of sweet locations from old churches to castles.
I should have taken note of the different locations used. Old English towns fill in for 19th century England city life, castles serve as the homes of aristocrats and an old factory building sets the stage for the climax of the show. In fact there are new locations nearly every episode.
The cinematography is just begging to be praised. While not every shot is beautiful or perfectly composed Blood And Bone China consistently has some just gut-wrenchingly beautiful shots that make me jealous.
The costuming deserves mention as well. Very few series can match this level of detail and the feel of authenticity. It appeared to help the actors ease into their roles and create those awkward – I’m a vampire but you don’t know it, even if you feel like something is up – moments far more naturally.
These factors make Blood And Bone China one of the most ambitious web productions to date. There is just a ton of sheer technical skill on display – to the point that the show feels like it belongs on cable television. I could easily envision this show as a SciFi channel movie of the month, although that might sell it short.
All that said, the show is a one chance, all out, do or die style effort to make it big. I do not know the budget but with all that ‘mise en scene’ I know it was not cheap. Looking back at past #WebSerisWednesday’s most shows have limited their productions in obvious ways – with just a couple of exceptions.
The shows that didn’t limit their productions in obvious ways were all backed by some pre-existing revenue stream, audience or business/government funding/credit. In other words a massive amount of work building up to this level of production.
This week I posted a link to Freddie Wong’s blog on the cost of his series ‘Videogame High School’ – over $600,000, all of which was funded beforehand independently and through kickstarter. They have already made all of that back. Of course Freddie already has an audience of almost 4 million subscribers on youtube. At this point for him it has become self sustaining.
The point is Freddie did not start out shooting half million dollar productions, he was making silly youtube videos of himself and a lot of explosions.
I do not know if we will see a season 2 of Blood And Bone China (and I would watch it if it existed) because this level of production is so prohibitive and judging from creator Chris Stone’s comments I would not expect one.
This is too bad because the show has done a good job building up a small audience of fans who would like to see more but who aren’t numerous enough to pay for it. I doubt they would be excited about seeing a watered down, no-budget sequel.
Building up an audience is a slow process, so start today – but do not feel like you have to live up to this level of production value to do it. Part of the fun for a lot of fans is watching creators grow and improve along the way.
You can watch all twelve episodes of Chris Stone Film’s Blood And Bone China on their website http://bloodandbonechina.com where you can also find the dvd on sale!