Oh yeah, I’d say that’s a separate thing from over-produced, at least to me. The complaints I commonly saw were about the big set, the band, and losing the “small time” feel of the older episodes. I think performers being a little stiff and feeling like they need to strictly adhere to the script is a legit complaint, and like you said something that they seemed like they were well on track to improve on year after year.
My guess is that they had a very tight shooting schedule which would have also kept the pressure high. Would also explain why they had to hide jump cuts with random bubbles when they didn’t have a single take that was good enough for the final cut. (I’m still not TOTALLY sure why they don’t shoot more coverage for MST… but I guess that would change the vibe a bit if they did, so hey whatev.)
We’re on the same page, my friend. And I dig the bands, both the SOL House Band and the Bone Symphony *.
I’ll be honest that I was initially lukewarm to Waverly and Growler, but I enjoyed them a ton in the second season. Having GPC bring them in via the bucket and letting them throw in extra quips was pure gold. They gave me some of the biggest laughs in Killer Fish.
* Not this Bone Symphony, which was a one-EP band I liked back in the day. I mean the Moon 13 Bonehead Band.
Well, they are all Hollywood elites now. They’re used to being on sets with caviar snails. They turn their noses up at mere raisins. Raisins? Bro, I can afford the whole grape now. Get out of here with that poor people slop before the paparazzi see it. I have an image to protect!
This is literally my only concern. It’s not about the writing, the cast, or the movie selections. I have faith in all of that.
It’s literally just the green screen. And to be fair, I believe Max and Kinga were on green screen for parts of season 11 and 12 as well, so it could work.
It’s all about the lighting and compositing to make this seem as seamless as possible.
If they can pull this off where it’s not distracting, then I will be THRILLED- I WANT this to succeed and this could be the path forward for future seasons.
That’s said, all of Turkey Day looked terrible to me because it looked so artificial, so flat. As was mentioned, even the desk lacked any depth to it as it’s just an image on canvas.
When the green screen fails it looks like someone in front of a picture, with no depth or space (the weather person on your local news).
I worked around VFX artists long enough to know that good green screen work can happen, but it is an art.
I sincerely hope in a future update @Ivan or @Lesley might give us a glimpse at a some composited footage (it can be silent as to not ruin and gags!) to alleviate concerns.
And if season 13 IS going to look like this year’s Turkey Day, I think that’s more the reason to start letting people see this is what the visual palette has to look like given the budget/Covid constraints. Let people check their expectations.
Agreed, it’s my only concern as well. I have complete faith in the writing and cast, and the movie lineup is hot stuff.
I’ve done some green screen work myself, both professionally (not on a high level, just to be clear) and recreationally, and yes it can be done but like you said, it is an art. In the Netflix seasons I got the impression that they didn’t shoot the green screen footage at a high enough frame rate, so the natural motion blur (usually something that helps make content look more “cinematic”) made the composting distractingly bad. In big budget movies, they’ll end up painting frame by frame to help alleviate those kinds of pains, which has got to be an absolutely miserable job.
I do want to gently moderate expectations a bit here.
At the time of the Kickstarter, we did not actually expect we’d be able to shoot on a stage with a crew AT ALL, both due to covid and financial limitations. The Kickstarter videos set forth a plan in which folks would be filming from home and we would be working to composite folks together, and maybe occasionally we would get a couple people to shoot together in the same space at the same time, but that would have been the exception and not the rule.
We are, of course, DELIGHTED to have worked things out to have everybody filming together on set, even if the set is a green screen. That’s a huge bonus compared to what we thought we would be able to do. I don’t mention this to suggest y’all’s feelings or concerns are not valid – they absolutely are reasonable things to worry about! – but just to provide context for where we started and where we’ve wound up.
Ooh, yes, this is an interesting thought. Maybe if they really lean into it – shoot it on analog 3/4" video again, VFX by Video Toaster, where people/objects periodically get truncated against the screen and we end up with those fuzzy rough edges to the overlaid video. So crazy it just might work!