So, I’ve watched the first two episodes of season 13 and I have to say the production quality seems to be a lot lower than previous seasons. The intro song with Tom floating around and any scene with Forrester and Max just look like they’re in front of a green screen rather that the miniature model mixed with live action. Also, the hallway when they have movie sign, they replaced the footage they had with what looks like prints on posterboard of those models.
I get they changed the intro song so they would have to remake that. But in the case of the hallway, they already had that footage, why wouldn’t they keep using it?
I know this season was backed by Kickstarter, but so was season 12. It’s my understanding that Netflix didn’t come into the very end, and they just handled distribution. So, I don’t think it’s a money issue.
This isn’t to say I’m not enjoying the new season. So far, the writing feels better than the Netflix seasons. I’m just wondering about what seems like some odd choices.
If this has been brought up and/or addressed and I just missed it, please link me
Some of this was addressed in the live stream Q&A.
I’m paraphrasing here, but Netflix wouldn’t let them use any of the footage from those seasons, so they had to redo the doorway sequence. And they made the choice to do it more in line with the look of the rest of the season.
And yes, there is a lot of green screen. The filming was done during Covid, and at one point thought it would have to all be done remotely. The use of green screen instead of physical sets/props was due to having less space and having fewer people on set during the pandemic.
I agree, the theme doesn’t flow very well. Even the pacing feels like it slows down WAY too much. All the earlier theme songs were fun to look at and fast paced, but the new one is slow, minimal, and not fun to look at. You could dance to the earlier themes, but you can only sit through this one.
They definitely should have used sets. Sets allow more dynamic camera angles which brings variety and variety is good. With a fixed camera I feel like I’m only an observer, I can’t go anywhere. With physical sets and more angles I feel like I’m a part of it, or invested in it. They need to let Cambot move, it’s not nice to confine him to one place. Set our boi free!
It all needs a lot of work, lol. And hopefully in another season the constraints won’t be as taxing. What makes me happy for now is that the intro has visually improved a fair bit, as has the lighting on the Mads and something about the flat-matic(?) door sequence, though I’m not sure what. It looked utterly brutal to me before.
I don’t hate the theme, but when COVID filming is over they should not have Felicia singing so much of it in what is still a fairly stationary place. They’ve tried to spruce it up by adding (I think) moving stuff on the jetscreens, but it’s gonna take more over time.
13 episodes, 12 shorts, Intermission ads, Turkey day bumpers, Gizmoplex promos. All on a budget of about $4.4 million (assuming a third went to Kickstarter and handling backer rewards). They had props, costumes, cameras, lighting, make-up. All of the actors live in different states across the country. They’re paying for studio space and craft services every day.
They had two teams of writers going all summer long, a team of editors still working, AND a live show to produce.
It took me a minute to enjoy the new look, but then my husband pointed out that this is the “low budget” look of today. Remember the spray painted items on the back of Joel and Mike’s SoL, the bots put together out of junk laying around, the cobbled together inventions? That was 30 years ago. As soon as I saw it, and HOW the new doors were done, I liked it.
This was more or less Joel’s spin on it. He called it returning the show to its original DIY feel.
Yes, they’re limited by covid safety. And they don’t have the budget of Netflix. The season 11 Kickstarter proved that there was enough fan interest for Netflix to fund the rest of production and handle distribution. This time, they’re on their own and they not only have to make the episodes they have to build out the website and the apps and pay for distribution. So… They’ll embrace that and make the best of what they’ve got.
Doing so much by green screen is limiting. But it also brings the show back to its roots. Just doing it all with by playing around with the cheap and easy tools available and making silly fun with it. And it gives them more flexibility. They can show more things. And they can film people where they are without having to pay to fly them across the country.
Joel showed the doorway sequence cards in one of the live streams. I think the end of the first episode? And they’re beautiful pieces of handcrafted art with clever little sliding features. Yes, the doors are basically 2D art painted on cardboard, but the show’s logo was painted on a leftover styrofoam ball.
Think of it like Roger Rabbit. We’ve got live action silliness happening in front of a cartoon background just so we can make fun of movies and have some laughs.
I’m actually kind of impressed with how well they’ve done this season. The SOL just looks like the SOL to me, I barely think about green screening while I’m watching. The theater just looks like the theater. I’m a little more used to Moon 1 by now, and it’s cool to see different sights out the back window as it rotates. We don’t have to switch cameras for external shots, it’s right there in the background.
I’m not a fan of the new theme, but it has nothing to do with Baron. The music just doesn’t seem catchy, it’s like they pushed it down too low so as not to step on the vocals but it has a weak toy-instrument sound to it. Hard to explain, exactly, I’m not particularly musically-minded. Needs to be punchier, all that really comes through is “do DEE doo dee do” and some strumming.
I think the greenscreen in the SOL looks fine but I still think the Max/Kinga scenes look weird. They addressed the lighting some but they still seem too red-faced and just kinda dark… And the focus on them looks a little soft to me? Like maybe they digitally zoomed them a bit and it softened the look?
The Pearl/Cynthia segments, I wish they’d done a bit more with their table/counter and I’m not a fan of the wigs.
Everything else has been fine for me (except the audio levels).