Crazy Ex-Girlfriend: Representing

Debuting in 2015, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend has been captivation audiences with its representation of women, people of color, and those with mental illness. This musical comedy is told from mostly a female point of view, with most of its characters being racially diverse or mentally ill.

Told from primarily Rebecca Bunch’s perspective, it gives a humanizing nature to what people refer to as a “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.” All of the women in the show behave naturally, openly discussing subjects such as mensuration, abortion, and sex. It seems strange to say “this show humanizes women,” but this is the only show I’ve seen where the women behave like women do 100% of the time, unlike most tv shows when they just attempt to pass the Bechdel test. There’s even a song in the second episode of season 3 that satirizes how women get together every once in a while to complain about men, and although what they is inconsistent and untrue, it’s a bonding ritual. With a great line like “Why do men never listen and only think about themselves, as opposed to women who always listen and never think about themselves?” one can’t help but laugh.

As I stated before, the cast of this show is racially diverse. It features a hispanic woman in a relationship with a Philippino man, with a next door neighbor that’s half black, and those are just the main characters. There’s even a character named “White Josh” because he’s “white and looks a little bit like Josh,” who is Philipino. His name is also Josh. Every character in the show fits perfectly in their role and their cultures are shown as completely normal, like in real life. In one episode, Rebecca goes to Josh’s mother’s house for Thanksgiving and says how she’s never felt more accepted in her life by a family, as her parents were always cold to her growing up. In another episode in season 3, Heather is asked by her boss to attend a seminar for “Home Base,” a bar chain she works at. They requested a more racially diverse pick of representatives, so her boss attempts to ask in the most politically correct way possible what her ethnicity is. He ended up sweating so much from stress he wound up almost passing out before Heather stated, “My mom is white, my dad is black. Put your shirt back on.”

Image Source: http://www.playbill.com/article/rachel-bloom-will-bring-crazy-ex-girlfriend-to-radio-city-music-hall

The show is based somewhat on the creator, Rachel Bloom’s, real life experiences dating a guy living in Southern California. She, like the character she plays, has anxiety, depression, and OCD. The show was originally going to be for Showtime, thus the show constantly pushing the envelope for what can be discussed on a major network rather than a more private one. After casting various broadway stars and a few character actors as it’s main cast, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend was ready to begin production.

Crazy Ex-Girlfriend is a critical darling. It’s rumored to have the lowest ratings in major television network (ABC, CBS, CW, NBC, Fox) in history to keep getting renewed. The last two seasons have a 100% on Rotten Tomatoes (with season 1 getting a respectable 96%) but has the ratings of a tv show on the brink of being cancelled. Crazy Ex-Girlfriend has won multiple Emmy’s when it comes to the musical numbers, and appears to be what’s keeping it afloat. The final season is currently airing and I cannot wait until later this month to see how they wrap up such a great show.

Image Source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crazy_Ex-Girlfriend

Sources Used:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crazy_Ex-Girlfriend

Percy Jackson: Flop of the Olympians

Percy Jackson and the Olympians was a popular series commonly read by elementary school students. Five books of wondrous adventure through the protagonist Percy Jackson, the demigod son of Poseidon. A popular young adult series from when I was in elementary school, you were almost considered an outcast if you hadn’t read them. It was the Harry Potter series of the 2000’s. Before I left elementary school, a movie had come out of the first book in the series, The Lightning Thief. Because these were the books that made me enjoy reading, I was pumped. Unfortunately, the finished product was very, eh.

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Coming out in 2010, we as a society were still in the middle of Harry Potter films coming out and making a ton of money at the box office. So of course, this lighthearted children’s’ adventure had a more adult take on it. The protagonists were aged up from twelve to seventeen, which already changes the personalities of the main character a lot. Instead of being sarcastic pre-teens, the main characters are bland and brooding young adults that seem misplaced in their environment and aren’t at all amazed by their surroundings.

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As far as going along with the characters, the supporting cast of mythical creatures was absolutely phenomenal. Characters such as Medusa and Persephone were played by Uma Thurman and Rosario Dawson respectively were executed flawlessly. Though their characters in the books weren’t very developed rather than complaining about how they got where they were, the actresses brought their A-game and were arguably the best parts of the disaster.

The ratings for this film are all at bout 50% on popular review websites. This is because they got about half the things right about the series. The plot moves a long much like the books did, but the filmmakers sucked the magic right out of it. One of the most iconic recurring elements of the book series is the cutthroat version of capture the flag. There’s magic stuff going on everywhere, tornadoes, water flooding, etc, and instead its just capture the flag with with swords. Not even magical swords.

The movie was a box office success and spawned a sequel, The Sea of Monsters, to similar reviews. Word quickly got around that it was just as mediocre as the first and killed the franchise. Hopefully one day it can be rebooted into something worthy of its source material.

RA Outline

For my Research Article, I am working on the topic of book adaptations because I want to find out more about adapting them into a television series over a movie is beneficial in order to help my reader understand better if taking the time to adapt a book into a longer television series over a two hour movie is beneficial to both audiences and creators.

I decided to do my outline with an infographic because I’m a visual learner and it’s easier for me to plan out that way. In my introduction, I’m going over quickly what I want to discuss in the research article and the topics will be expanded upon later. In the first part of the body of the article, I’ll be comparing how film production differs from television production. In the second part, I’ll be discussing how which medium being chosen to produce an adaptation affects the creators and the audience. In my conclusion, I’ll summarize my findings and make a statement on what has been found.

Disney Live Action-Remakes: Why?

The first live-action remake of a Disney film came out in 1996. It was a remake of the beloved 101 Dalmatians and was released to mixed reviews but was a commercial success. It even spawned a sequel that performed decently, but was torn apart by critics. This managed to cause a pause on Disney turning their animates classics into live-action money makers, but started again in 2010 with the release of Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland. While that movie grossed over a billion dollars when it was extraordinarily different from it’s source material, Disney started making films that barely had any differences from the original and started making bank.

https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/d/d6/Beauty_and_the_Beast_2017_poster.jpg

The most recent example of Disney taking advantage of is Beauty and the Beast. An almost line for line remake of the animated classic made over 1.25 billion dollars for the same movie. They added in some new songs and subplots but they didn’t add to the original story and weren’t memorable. Disney has done nothing but benefit from remaking their classics so there is zero risk factor. It almost sets the standard too high for other production companies that making remakes of popular films is zero risk but has in fact cause major box office bombs.

I am interested to see how long it will take before people no longer want to see the same movie in theres that they can find online for way less and better quality. If they’re making billions of dollars I don’t see any reason for for them to stop.

References:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Disney_live-action_remakes_of_animated_films

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beauty_and_the_Beast_(2017_film)

Precis

For my Research Article, I am working on the topic of book adaptations because I want to find out more about adapting them into a television series over a movie is beneficial in order to help my reader understand better if taking the time to adapt a book into a longer television series over a two hour movie is beneficial to both audiences and creators.

I have choses to use MLA format for this project as it is one of the most widely used formats in todays media-driven world.

https://cdn.vox-cdn.com/thumbor/ZC3xYMfXo-wGD2Bl2OaCkBeR-0M=/0x0:5760×3840/920×0/filters:focal(0x0:5760×3840):format(webp):no_upscale()/cdn.vox-cdn.com/uploads/chorus_asset/file/7805197/ASOUE_101_Unit_0249_R.jpg

Katz, Brandon. “Why Neil Patrick Harris Is ‘Gobsmacked’ by ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’.” Observer, Observer, 12 Feb. 2018, observer.com/2018/02/neil-patrick-harris-talks-serious-unfortunate-events-season-2-netflix-budget/.

In the article “Why Neil Patrick Harris Is ‘Gobsmacked’ by ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’” (2018), Brandon Katz discusses with Neil Patrick Harris, the star of A Series of Unfortunate Events, about the production value of the show and how greatly that improves the quality of it. Katz supports his claims by having Neil Patrick Harris go into detail about the amount of built sets the show relies on rather than CGI. His purpose was to get a deeper insight on how much money was going into the quality of the program in order to claim if it’s worth the production costs based on the experience it is providing. He appears to writing to the audience of a general Netflix or streaming service audience due to his vocabulary, as he assumes the reader has a general knowledge of how Netflix works.

Leadbeater, Alex. “Is Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events Better Than The Movie?” Screen Rant, Screen Rant, 19 Jan. 2017, screenrant.com/series-unfortunate-events-movie-vs-tv/.

In the article “Is Netflix’s A Series of Unfortunate Events Better Than The Movie?” (2017), Alex Leadbeater compares the quality and cost of the television series adaptation and film adaptation of A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket. Leadbeater supports his claim by breaking down different aspects of the show and film and comparing the aspects such as formats and portrayal of characters separately rather than making one major claim of one being superior to the other. His purpose is for us as the audience to come up with our own opinions on the two adaptations so that we can either agree with his or spark a larger argument to perpetuate buss about the story. He has somewhat of a formal tone, as though he was writing this for a grade in an English class and wanted to impress probably his boss but also avid film analyzers

Martin, Emmie. “Here’s How Much It Costs HBO to Produce One Episode of ‘Game of Thrones’.” CNBC, CNBC, 6 Aug. 2017, www.cnbc.com/2017/08/04/it-costs-millions-to-produce-one-episode-of-hbos-game-of-thrones.html.

In the article “Here’s How Much It Costs HBO to Produce One Episode of ‘Game of Thrones’.” (2017), Emmie Martin asserts Game of Thrones getting a 4 million dollar budget boost per episode is absolutely worth the quality of the show in how much of a difference it adds to the marketing of the show’s value. Martin supports her claims by discussing the amount of attention the show gains over every season and is deserving of the boost with all of the ad revenue that it’s conjuring. Her purpose is to generate buzz around the latest season of Game of Thrones so that the viewers are hyped up about the budget boost for more action. Her voice in the article in young, as to be read by avid younger fans of the fantasy series, meeting the 18-49 age demographic of the show.

Shamsian, Jacob. “A Side-by-Side Comparison of the Movie and TV Versions of ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’ Reveals One Huge Difference.” INSIDER, INSIDER, 25 Jan. 2017, www.thisisinsider.com/a-series-of-unfortunate-events-movie-tv-comparison-2017-1.

In the article “A Side-by-Side Comparison of the Movie and TV Versions of ‘A Series of Unfortunate Events’ Reveals One Huge Difference.”(2017), Jacob Shamsian asserts that the second adaptation of A Series of Unfortunate Events is significantly more racially diverse than the film adaptation from 2004. Shamsian supports his claim by bringing up side by side evidence of roles that were portrayed by white actors in the first film are now played by people of color in the television series. His purpose is to bring awareness to casting racially diverse casts based on talent in order to show that not all characters need to be the same color as who portrayed them first. He appears to write shorter sentences and uses side-by-side comparison imagery to get his point across, which accommodates the present day audience of visual learners.

Tiffany, Kaitlyn. “How Netflix Made A Series of Unfortunate Events, Its First Great TV for Families.” The Verge, The Verge, 13 Jan. 2017, www.theverge.com/2017/1/13/14266208/netflix-a-series-of-unfortunate-events-interview-daniel-handler.

In the article “How Netflix Made A Series of Unfortunate Events, Its First Great TV for Families.” (2017), Kaitlyn Tiffany argues why watching so many episodes of television in a row isn’t annoying, even when they’re about an hour long each. Tiffany supports her claim by discussing how we like to have the option to stop after each episode yet choose not to and keep binge watching. Her purpose is make people more aware of their watching habits so that we as active watchers can curb our habits while still watching what we want to watch. She writes like a millennial and is probably writing for millennial, as we and gen z are the ones that are most commonly choosing to watch eight hours of television over two hours of a movie.