This Web Series Wednesday, we’re focusing on online shows that somehow grapple with the question of how young adults deal with their lives. From trans men in Brooklyn to recent college grads in California, these shows focus on the kinds of growing pains that come post-adolescence (okay, and we’ve thrown in another educational series that won’t not help with those queries, too).
As always, if you have a web series you love, created yourself, or at least caused you to laugh, send us an email at email@example.com/members.
Trans people in general are underrepresented in the media, but can you even think of a time when you saw a trans man represented on TV or an online series? “Brothers” provides a welcome addition on a topic marked by a digital (and otherwise) dearth. Exploring the everyday lives of trans men in Brooklyn, the series highlights issues that cisgender people would be hardpressed to consider without such a show. With one episode only, “Brothers” is in the midst of a crowd-funding campaign on Indiegogo, which you can contribute to here.
“Big fans” of VSauce and ASAPscience, the creators of “Life Noggin,” Ian Dokie and Patrick Graziosi (the voice of the channel), simply want to make education fun. They’ve succeeded in doing so with an interactive element, inviting viewers to engage with the thoughts expounded in each episode in the comments section on YouTube. Though it joins plenty of educational offerings on YouTube (especially similar to the animated “Kurzgesagt”), its animation and style is distinct, pixelated with good humor and giving off a bit of a DIY feel. “Life Noggin” is affiliated with TestTube, which is in turn a part of Discovery Digital Networks.
“Master Date” masters the tone of internet dating for arguably the worst candidates to find love, or even a decent human interactions, online: heterosexual women. Between the deluge of messages that read only “sup sexy ;)” at the most harmless level and the pseudo encouragement of friends who already have lovers, digital dating for women who like men is comically depressing in a way that this Covert Bacon series manages to capture with apparent ease. Of course, the show deals with a very narrow sect of the population of online daters (SWF), but it’s funny and honest therein.
A finalist in the 2013 New York Television Festival’s Comedy Central Short Pilot Competition, “Almost 30” follows a couple of near-30 best friends, one of whom has some serious anxiety about approaching his landmark birthday. Marked by some extremely likeable protagonists, dry humor, and the classically clueless but affable best friend type, this show will not fail to make you laugh. Complete with a roommate audition in episode two that includes a quiz question about “Back to the Future,” “Almost 30” won my heart even before the reveal of roommate number three’s secret night job…
This stoner girl comedy outlines life after college in a way that goes beyond cliché because it’s so…trippy? The best part about it is how the friends in the episode relate to one another. Their interactions seem pretty genuine for a scripted show — it’s easy to make best friend repertoire appear stiff on camera. Brought to you by tiny, “4/20 friendly” YouTube channel Graceful Films, “Fuck You, Mark Zuckerberg” also voices frustrations surrounding social media, suggesting that sometimes it feels better not to know what all your acquaintances are doing.