Web Series Wednesday: See Dead People
Feel like seeing dead people? This week’s web series selection will provide you with plenty, from green goo à la “Ghostbusters” to a graveyard caretaker’s undead childhood best friend…and a few paranormal incarnations in between. It’s not difficult to makes spoofs of this genre, and the following series do it well. Either that, or they manage to take the genre seriously to the point of success.
We’re looking for some music-focused web series to showcase next week, so if you watch any good ones, let us know by emailng [email protected].
Getting off to an overblown creepy start, the premise for “Bennington Gothique” is still a classically intriguing one. A newly orphaned girl is told that she was adopted, having been found abandoned near an all girls’ boarding school…which she promptly decides to attend. Everything about the place is sinister, especially the pervasive background music. Throw in the classic issue of boys entering the realm of a women’s school, and you’ve got even more sinister drama to witness as this plotline deliberately unfolds.
Genuinely a laugh-out-loud series, “Deadbeat” puts a unique spin on the gift/plague of being able to communicate with the dead. Focusing on a slacker psychic and an attractive faux-medium, this Hulu original series frames ghosts as amicable if disgruntled spirits just waiting to pass on…with a little help. Each episode is well written, and you can’t find any fault with the casting. Tyler Labine plays the perfect low-ambition medium.
This upbeat web series follows a steam punk version of Ghostbusters. The sound is a little off in some episodes, but it’s mostly worth watching for the costumes and “ghost-catching” equipment (and the whimsical, low budget special effects), so the sound’s not a deal breaker. The episodes have a vintage look to them, and the set design is elaborately amazing in true, steam punk fashion. Here’s a sort of introductory video to the “League of S.T.E.A.M.”:
A parody of all things paranormal, this long-form web series from Geek & Sundry (each episode is about the length of a network TV spot) features a ghost-hunting team that calls themselves PIT for Paranormal Investigation Team. It consists of a tech expert, an “occult specialist,” a couple of other guys, and the team’s leader’s little sister, who can see dead people. All of the male characters in these series are a lot creepier than any of the “spirits,” but the show itself is very polished, the female characters are cool, and the cinematography is well done.
This web series is from UCB Comedy, so you know it’s going to be funny. In “Gary Saves the Graveyard,” Gary, a lonely, newly appointed graveyard caretaker (janitor, really, as a cop in episode one points out), finds out that the inhabitants of the cemetery become especially animated at night. One of them is his childhood best who died as a teenager, who explains to him that he’s basically a “camp counselor” for dead people. The dead people aren’t zombies; they’re just kind of nice and stir crazy, which is really a breath of fresh air when it comes to entertainment starring the undead.