Here’s an excerpt from the first of my recently reborn In Defence of the Reboot columns at Nerdly, in which I wax lyrical about the art of the spin-off:
Let’s keep it in the television family for now. Sitcoms were probably the first to truly capitalise on the spin-off dollar – and I mean capitalise in the most literal term. Happy Days spawned no fewer than five(!) other shows – Joanie Loves Chachi, Laverne and Shirley and Mork and Mindy among them – and was itself kind of a spin-off from Love, American Style. Cheers spawned the incredibly successful and well- loved Frasier, which actually ran an equal number of seasons to its predecessor, and made everyone involved rather a lot of money. I’m not saying that’s an indicator of quality by any means, but we all love Frasier, right?
I could go on, but the list really is staggering.
You can read the rest here if you like.
I intend on making the column a weekly affair, assuming there’s proof that anyone actually reads the damn thing, and intend to keep it up a good while longer than the last time I attempted it (I think I got as far as #6 – let’s just call it a miniseries). It might take a few attempts to get an authorial groove going, however, as I’m still trying to figure out the best approach for making one-sided discussions of pop culture ephemera in any way entertaining, so you’ll forgive me if I waffle on a bit.
Mind you, if you’re reading this then you’re probably used to that sort of thing by now.
But then why should I have a column at all when I’ve got this? Surely there’s even more free reign on my own personal blog than an entertainment news site? Well, less than you’d think – at least on Nerdly, which is why I enjoy writing for it so much – and it’s the self-imposed limitations to working on something for another site that are most appealing, as they force me to get to the point, i.e. actually have a point, and practice the kind of writing that can be easily digested by a wider audience than I usually get.
I mean, writing on here is always practice…in the same sense that taking a casual bike ride with no destination counts as training for the Tour de France. There’s just not the same sense of discipline as when you’re meant to be being judged by everyone else. But yeah, hopefully it won’t suck and you’ll enjoy reading (and commenting on – hint hint -) it.
On a related note, this post marks the first five days in a row I’ve written a post since March, which is both surprising and a little depressing. I’m not asking for a parade or anything – though it wouldn’t be totally uncalled for – and don’t anybody actually get used to this malarkey lest you jinx it, but it seems pretty safe to say that I’ve gotten over my recent slump for the time being.
Um, yeah. Hooray?