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Week #3 The Differentiator

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Blank Verse: A Midsummer Night's Dream

Will Shakespeare & the greatest writers in history are failing out of Bankside University.

Vancouver, BC
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Week #3 The Differentiator Blank Verse: A Midsummer Night's Dream

Nothing is original anymore, but at least Shakespeare stole it first!

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Top Comment

Dennis's Photo
Dennis O. 2  posted 3 years ago

Happy St Crispin's Day!!!
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; for he today that sheds his blood with me shall be my brother. Be ne'er so vile, this day shall gentle his condition; and gentlemen in England now abed shall think themselves a curs'd they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks that fought with us upon St Crispin's day.

Optional images

'Original' Characters

'Original' Characters

Our Will Shakespeare lives in a world populated by the greatest creative minds of the past 500 years. He will consistently be challenged and inspired by the world around him to create new works. We will also get to imagine what famous playwrights Ben Jonson, Thomas Kyd and Chis Marlowe might have been like in today's world. We can find new voices in the established work that these artists created and inspire a whole generation of individuals to appreciate classic literature in a new way.

Photo: Emma Middleton as Ben Jonson and Matt Reznek as Thomas Kyd from Blank Verse Act 4 scene 2.
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'Original' Music

'Original' Music

One of the great things about having so many famous historical artists featured in Will Shakespeare's world, is that we have a ton of material to adapt into a modern context. In Blank Verse and the Spin-off series Ben's Vlog we updated many of Shakespeare and Jonson's poetry and lyrics into new, modern pieces. Audiences can appreciate the original text while still being able to relate to a catchy new melody created just for the show.

Photo: Nathanael Vass as Henry Wriothesley and Emma Middleton as Benjamina Jonson performing "Though I am Young and Cannot Tell" Ben Jonson's Vlog Episode #1.
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Behind the Scenes

Behind the Scenes

Thank you to our wonderful on screen talent for Mission #3. Which role did you think Geneviève Bolduc best captured in her performances, the Jock or the Geek? Personally we think both sides are awesome- but you should be warned her Roller Derby game face is a force to be reckoned with!
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Shakespeare's Inspiration?

Shakespeare's Inspiration?

In Blank Verse we will find original, creative ways to incorporate the famous plots and characters that Shakespeare wrote into a modern context. Where will his inspiration come from? What ways can we include his famous characters into his life? Shakespeare wrote about a lot of weird stuff, and we are really looking forward to finding humorous ways to incorporate these events in the show.

Photo: Nathan Cottell as The Fool and Lady as Gloucester the Seeing Eye Dog - Photo exhibit created as part of our extended world for Blank Verse.
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Shakespeare Stole it First

Shakespeare Stole it First

William Shakespeare knew that all great ideas originate from great inspiration! Most of his plays are either based on historical events or on previously created work OR in the case of his most highly regarded tragedy, Hamlet, both! Shakespeare's job was to sell theatre tickets, so he had to appeal to the people! He took old, boring stories and made them sexy and fun for his modern audience. So just like Shakespeare we are going to take some awesome history and some amazing plays and adapt them into a freaking hilarious season of television.
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Comments (80)

  • Erica's Photo
    Erica J. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Good luck guys! This video is fantastic and I’ve really enjoyed all the stuff you’ve made. Hope to see you in the final round. You really deserve it…more than some others out there.

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  • Marie's Photo
    Marie R. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I would love to see this show on tv! There is a long and glorious tradition of adapting the Bard's work. Blank Verse would be a great addition.

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  • Dawson Neufeld's Photo
    Dawson Neufeld N. 0  posted 3 years ago

    sweet take on this play! nothin like it. i really appreciate what you're doing here. youve got serious game and i have become a big admirer. you deserve to win this contest. you are definitely welcome to entertain me any time of the year. keep it up and be the people youve always wanted to be.

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  • Jesse's Photo
    Jesse P. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Love the idea of you guys bringing us Shakespeare on a comedy series! Makes me think of Slings and Arrows! I would really like to see some more of what you can do to balance education with humor in telling the bards tales while at the same time making us laugh with the characters

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  • Satheesan's Photo
    Satheesan N. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Very unique and interesting. I can see it being a great series. Shakespeare can be overwhelming, but what you guys are doing can make it fun and educational. Good Luck

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  • Kristen's Photo
    Kristen s. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Nice!

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  • Gayle's Photo
    Gayle A. 0  posted 3 years ago

    If nothing is original anymore how are you guys original??? Are you original because you said nothing is original? I think there could be something funny in that idea!! Shakespeare knew how to make some jokes in his time, and I think you guys could make some funny jokes about Shakespeare!!!

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  • Bertha's Photo
    Bertha W. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Great job guys and gals.Love your outfits really fit the title.Would love to see more.Good luck in top 15 .Keep up the great work.Cheers.

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  • Freddie's Photo
    Freddie A. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Oh yes! The Sailor Moon costume was nostalgic ! I love the concept and the title really hooked me as a fellow Shakespearean! Awesome presentation and approach as the voting process comes to end! You guys will definitely be turning some heads in the future!

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  • John's Photo
    John S. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I've gotta say, it was the Sailor Moon costume that won me over. That being said though, this video seemed a little too aggressive in trying to get it's message across. Nancy M, just like myself, is entitled to her opinion (albeit it was a lame one), but still. You know?

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  • Janice's Photo
    Janice T. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Pretty original idea and good presentation. I love the comment re Nancy M and her low rating (guessing it's from week one or two)! Original.

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  • Jeff's Photo
    Jeff G. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Some funny stuff here with some good actors. Would be interested in seeing a bit more to see where it goes. Good luck on making it to the top 15.

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  • Sherman's Photo
    Sherman D. 0  posted 3 years ago

    This isn't my favorite concept but all you guys are very talented. I really can't get into anything to do with Shakespeare even with a modern twist, Sorry! Midsummer is one of my favorite though.

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  • Pete's Photo
    Pete G. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I think it is great that you have this opportunity and I wish you the best of luck as you go along. I appreciate the effort you have put forth so far.

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  • Paul's Photo
    Paul S. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I hear there will be rain today. And then the thieves jump from the tree and scream, LET IT COME DOWN and Banquo gets a knife in the neck. Or something like that. I made a movie out of that in grade 10 and never looked back. love this project...

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  • Eric's Photo
    Eric S. 1  posted 3 years ago

    i think you've got lots of poential to be the XKCD of TV - jokes that are funny to literature nerds for one reason, and funny to us....regular folk for another reason.

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  • Simon's Photo
    Simon R. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Pretty bold to go after Shakespeare, but it seems to be going well so far! Interested to see how this show will develop. Keep on pushin'.

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  • Eire's Photo
    Eire M. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I love the concept for this project, super funny and creative idea! Good luck in the top 15 voting, I'm exited to see what unfolds!

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  • Will's Photo
    Will C. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I love Shakespeare which is why I came to your video. It looks promising but a lot of the jokes fell flat for me. But I love the premise for sure.

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  • Kyle's Photo
    Kyle C. 0  posted 3 years ago

    The concept behind this sounds really cool and its actually something that I would like to see and check out, interesting idea for sure becasue I like William Shakespeare and all his plays Comedy of Errors Taming of the Shrew etcetera etcetera

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  • Franca's Photo
    Franca H. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I love the nerdy appeal happening here, I would recommend some kind of audio soundtrack to back up your videos because sometimes the jokes fell flat just because it was so silent...

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  • Bernie's Photo
    Bernie M. 0  posted 3 years ago

    It is my understanding that fans will decide how the teams move forward in this competition and I am not sure how that will work.

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  • Amanda's Photo
    Amanda S. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I really enjoyed this video as a fellow Shakespeare lover! The writing is very witty and I can't wait to see more. Good luck guys!

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  • Connor's Photo
    Connor W. 0  posted 3 years ago

    definitely enjoy the premise and it definitely has a lot of potential for comedy. i think it can be interesting to see where a pilot to the series might take the audience. good work guys.

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  • Jeremy's Photo
    Jeremy K. 0  posted 3 years ago

    It's shows like these that make me wish I'd paid attention in English class so I could appreciate the Bard's work better, especially in a modern satire such as this. This has potential!

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  • Curtis's Photo
    Curtis W. 0  posted 3 years ago

    As a fan of Shakespeare I can definitely see the potential within this project, and I possibly think it can inspire some people of younger generations to approach Shakespeare outside of an English Language Arts class.

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  • Jessica's Photo
    Jessica D. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I love the pie joke. If done well the Shakespeare twist could really be interesting. Just have to push it further, lessen the geek and up the clever Shakespeare and I think you guys would be solid. Keep it up.

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  • Jack's Photo
    Jack S. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I love Shakespeare! This Project is very original (though nothing in the world is original ;)) and I would love to see where this crazy modern telling of the classic works goes!

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  • Sam's Photo
    Sam B. 0  posted 3 years ago

    This is pretty cool and I'm excited to see where this goes!! Cannot wait to see more from this project

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  • Griffin's Photo
    Griffin C. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I'm loving the content you guys are putting forward in this video, and Congrats on making it to the Top 55. There is so much talent to appreciate here in acting, filming and writing. Best wishes to all involved!

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  • Alexandra's Photo
    Alexandra M. 0  posted 3 years ago

    You know whos boring? Fuckin THOR.....LMFAO. Well done with this one. I really like your concept, there are SO many possibilities for a show like this :)

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  • Michael's Photo
    Michael W. 0  posted 3 years ago

    prithee! taketh this forrad to ye nexteth level

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  • Earl's Photo
    Earl S. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Every English teacher's favourite pitch! I love when you call out Nancy M and eat all that pie.

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  • Shannon's Photo
    Shannon N. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Like button

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  • Elinor's Photo
    Elinor B. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Seems very sweet! At first I thought it was more teen drama than comedy show but that's what made it stand out a little in my head, what can you do to make it more comedic? Interesting idea though, way to shake(speare) it up.

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  • Kara's Photo
    Kara G. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I like you concept and this was my favorite video of yours yet! Best of luck in Top 50!

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    Freda's Photo
    Freda J. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Very good production. Deserves to be in top ten.

  • Mary's Photo
    Mary J. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Well done. Except when the commentator swore in the stairwell. He needs to be more relaxed and comfortable with profanity if he is going to use it. He seemed to twitch a little. Everything else was a "go" for me. Fresh, crisp, and engaging. Keep it coming.

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  • Julie's Photo
    Julie B. 1  posted 3 years ago

    This is such a fresh "new" idea ! I see a lot of great energy and talent here. This concept will give you a lot of material to work with and it will be interesting to see how you use it. Great work, keep us interested!

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  • Brian's Photo
    Brian b. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Watching your Differentiator made me want to go back and check out your first mission video. I think your “everything is old and boring… so we have to make it new again” idea, and your delivery, has lots of room to sustain interest and stay creative over a series. Good luck!

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  • Daniel's Photo
    Daniel H. 0  posted 3 years ago

    billy

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  • Leah's Photo
    Leah H. 0  posted 3 years ago

    fun stuff

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  • Rachel's Photo
    Rachel D. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I love this webseries. It would be great seeing more from these guys. I think it would especially be interesting seeing them tackle a comedy this time around.

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  • Cat's Photo
    Cat M. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Love the shout out to Nancy M! I think you've got a lot of material to work with here and could really flesh out some great characters. Haven't watched the web series but I will check it out. I was wondering how you managed to pull off such a slick video for week 1!

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  • Dennis's Photo
    Dennis O. 2  posted 3 years ago

    Happy St Crispin's Day!!!
    We few, we happy few, we band of brothers; for he today that sheds his blood with me shall be my brother. Be ne'er so vile, this day shall gentle his condition; and gentlemen in England now abed shall think themselves a curs'd they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks that fought with us upon St Crispin's day.

    Login to post comments
    Karl's Photo
    Karl S. 0  posted 3 years ago

    this concept for a show intrigues me

  • Todd's Photo
    Todd M. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Interesting different style from your week 1 Mission (which your differentiator just made me go back and watch) so bravo! Looks like an interesting concept and you seem to have a great cast from your Mission 1 video that would make this an interesting show. Might have a little feel of a drama like 'my so called life' or the like but if it has enough humour throughout would likely be really watchable.

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  • Forman's Photo
    Forman H. 0  posted 3 years ago

    This vid wasn't quite up to the first two, but I'm still a fan

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  • Eric's Photo
    Eric L. 0  posted 3 years ago

    "Shakespeare stole first" is doing a better job of getting the comedy across than the first video, but I have a minor beef... what do you mean that Thor is "old and boring"? Thor just became a woman, and anyone trying to say they're "a little nerdy" should know that.

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    Amanda's Photo
    Amanda K. 1  posted 3 years ago

    Oh Totally!! What they are doing with comic is taking something old and boring (Norse Mythology about a boring god) and making it super cool and modern!! We want to do the same thing (because yes the new Thor is super wicked)

  • Barrie's Photo
    Barrie W. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Revisiting Shakespeare is always worth a go in my mind. I look forward to seeing how much actual Shakespeare text is used in episodes.

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  • Jessica's Photo
    Jessica R. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I'm digging the concept for this show. Admittedly, I am not a huge Shakespeare fan. However, I am finding your modernization and portrayal of the characters to be funny and intriguing, and even without being a Shakespeare buff I would be interested in watching more of this. The idea of recreating historical characters and seeing how they might react in a modern day setting has so much potential!

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  • Mary's Photo
    Mary K. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Loved the Sailor costume and Game of Thrones thrown in there.

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  • Abigael's Photo
    Abigael B. 0  posted 3 years ago

    The biggest strength in the webseries was the interaction between all of the characters and how each of them evolve and created new relations. I feel like this is the part that was missing in Ben Jonson's vlog.I would like very much to see all of the characters again.

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  • Joseph's Photo
    Joseph R. 0  posted 3 years ago

    "Too nerdy for Nancy M." That cracked me up. :)

    I like the concept, but I'm curious as to how you could flesh this out over several seasons. I'm looking forward to seeing more to give some insight as to the long term development.

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  • Sara's Photo
    Sara K. 1  posted 3 years ago

    I have been a huge fan of the webseries from the beginning and can't wait to see where this show and crew end up. The sophisticated humor mixed with the outright jokes cater to a variety of audiences.

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  • Natalie's Photo
    Natalie J. 1  posted 3 years ago

    Love it!!!

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  • Ashley's Photo
    Ashley W. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Love this video, love this project, hope to see it advance.

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  • Spencer's Photo
    Spencer L. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Really like the idea for this project. Looking forward to seeing more content in the next couple of weeks!

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  • kirk's Photo
    kirk l. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I love this idea. I have high hopes for this show turning out like a live action Clone High but with Shakespearean characters working out their modern day angst. I'm sure Willy would be proud (or mortified, especially at the idea of women acting rather than men in dresses, or, for instance, at being referred to as 'Willy') and would lend his quill to this project. Good luck!

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  • Miles's Photo
    Miles C. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Looks like a great show for people who really dig Shakespeare. Very topical... for people who really dig Shakespeare. Shakespeare wrote a lot of stuff, so there won't be any problem coming up with ideas for episodes. Shakespeare got the writer's block out of the way for you!

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  • Anton's Photo
    Anton G. 0  posted 3 years ago

    i dig it, i actually want to see more shakespeare in this. way more. it's an interesting concept with many possibilities.

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  • Genevieve's Photo
    Genevieve B. 1  posted 3 years ago

    Every mission is great. What great lines: "fuck Thor!" "JOCK!" Stylistically interesting, narratively compelling, keep up the great work! Also, sweet rotoscope.

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  • David's Photo
    David C. 1  posted 3 years ago

    Just noticed the "ROMEO FUCKED JULIET" shirt. Amazing.

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  • Sarah's Photo
    Sarah S. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Good stuff

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  • Ella's Photo
    Ella M. 0  posted 3 years ago

    you guys are cool!

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  • diane's Photo
    diane n. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Blank Verse is very original for this ComedyCoup competition. It is very Shakespearean. It reminds me of the days, way back when, in one of my literature courses, and we were given a series of pictures, or part of a movie with volume down, and had to fill in the script. I loved doing that, it was so interesting how the others students filled in theirs. That is the suspense right now, how will BVMidsummer fill in the Blank Verse???

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  • Lily's Photo
    Lily Z. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Hahaha! I love the Nancy M tribute. Good to see you have a sense of humour :D (Also love the concept!) Break a leg :D

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  • Shandi's Photo
    Shandi S. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Another point that could speak to how different Blank Verse will be from other projects is the range of Shakespeare's work itself. There's pretty awesome diversity of tone, form, and characters within Shakespeare, which gives Blank Verse great material with which to differentiate. Some might think a Shakespeare themed TV series is about one thing, so it's a good idea to show your limitlessness.

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    Ryan's Photo
    Ryan C. 2  posted 3 years ago

    Thank you! I'm so excited that you picked up on that; I'm not the copy editor on the team, so I'm not sure if we've mentioned it properly, but in our webseries each "act" (4-episode arc) was inspired by one of Shakespeare's plays presented in chronological order. We hope to continue this, with Midsummer's obviously, but also if we are able to create additional content within this property, we have big plans for integrating the thematic content from each play in sequence as well as details drawn from history. I'm personally excited to reach the Hamlet episode...

  • Christina's Photo
    Christina O. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I think I understand your concept better from your second and third video, but your first was a bit confusing. I read your synopsis and what I understood from it was that a group of friends follow a dead friend into the woods for enlightenment. I don't quite get how this links up to the rest of your videos. It would have been a good idea to make that a bit more clear since it's what is supposed to explain the concept really. Good luck with the competition though!

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  • Justin's Photo
    Justin L. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Haha! That was some funny stuff. Fuck Thor! Followed and faved. - Shirts

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  • Sue's Photo
    Sue D. 0  posted 3 years ago

    Excellent intertwining of the concept differentiators and its characters. This further cements and clarifies the overall idea of what you are planning to do with this sitcom. Kudos to you for using this opportunity to weave in a comeback to the poster who thought you were too nerdy!

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  • Garner's Photo
    Garner H. 0  posted 3 years ago

    That's some serious "Game of Thrones" shit. And how! Wil invented the gorefest political thriller. He was Game of Thrones, House of Cards, and MacBeth was the original Walter White. Rock on!

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  • Johanna's Photo
    Johanna D. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I was kind of lost after mission 1 but definitely love mission 2 and 3! I did study English Lit and read a bunch of Shakespeare but have forgotten most of it. As long as you guys keep it accessible to those of us who've forgotten everything we learned in school, I'm in!! Have I hit 100 characters yet? I feel like I'm back in school with word limits and everything. Too bad I can't triple space this shit! Time to use some pretentious words...what was it again, imbroglio? Spelled it wrong but eventually found it: "a misunderstanding, disagreement, etc., of a complicated or bitter nature, as between persons or nations."

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  • Keith's Photo
    Keith R. 0  posted 3 years ago

    It's not realistic for the fans to be commited to viewing all of the videos and be required to make 100 character essays on their comments to get a chance to vote. Most of us just don't have that kind of time! I hate Shakespeare but only because Its so hard to recite. Good work folks

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  • Darcy's Photo
    Darcy R. 1  posted 3 years ago

    Okay, so now I find out that comments need to be 100 + characters to earn votes. Really, CBC, can you make it just a liiiiiiiitle more complicated? We're already making housecalls, walking people through how the frig to navigate this website. And while I'm at it, what's up with the "Pro's Pick" stuff anyway? I think this competition was to be decided AFTER Oct 26. Fans are just gonna pick the top stuff identified by the Pros and the stuff that appears at the top of the page each day. This fan system just perpetuates itself so those projects that trend early will just stay at the top. There, earned my votes.

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  • Darcy's Photo
    Darcy R. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I like nerds. I like Shakespeare. I like pie.

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  • Camden's Photo
    Camden F. 1  posted 3 years ago

    I thoroughly am enjoying all of these videos. As a Shakespeare fan myself, I can see myself watching this! Also, I love that you called someone out in your video. Definitely made me giggle.

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  • Jeremy's Photo
    Jeremy L. 1  posted 3 years ago

    Great video, loved how you used an actual comment from the comments section. Oh I better watch what I say. Making shakespeare cool again?? Maybe

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  • David's Photo
    David C. 1  posted 3 years ago

    I want this show like a geek wants Darth Grapes.

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  • Sarah Thomas's Photo
    Sarah Thomas M. 1  posted 3 years ago

    love nerds!

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  • Alix's Photo
    Alix C. 1  posted 3 years ago

    Amen! #shakespeareiscool

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  • Lauren's Photo
    Lauren M. 2  posted 3 years ago

    Fourteen, huh? And so that's not including Titus' ridiculous number of sons he brings back dead at the beginning of the play (I suppose they die off stage). I like the geek approach. In Shakespeare's own, brilliant words from Henry IV Part 1, it is "more goodly" that you make a few clever jokes than sink to slapstick humor.

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    Josianne's Photo
    Josianne a. 0  posted 3 years ago

    I've never been a real Shakespeare fan ... some people are, and those are you fan!
    Good luck!

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