- Watch Stranger Things, season 1 and season 2 (it’ll be a re-watch for season 1 because I honestly didn’t get it)
I don’t know how or why I avoided watching this next season for as long as I did, but for whatever reason – it was wrong. This show is so mind-bendingly odd and thought provoking. This won’t be a spoiler post rather a relating to artistic flare and inspiration post.
Sometimes I feel that shows based in a time period are (often) badly done and extremely over the top, not well thought out and (again, often) flat out annoyingly stereotypical. This show, while it does operate in stereotypes, often uses them as a support mechanism vs as a crutch. It’s focus remains on the plot of the show (which, I have to admit I still don’t understand 100%) and doesn’t get caught up on the semantics of the 1980s. Sure there is giant hair, good music, and overall geeky trends (e.g. Ghostbusters) but there isn’t any dependency on those decade traits for storytelling (excluding the Halloween episode in Season 2 – but this was an advantageous use to this seasons plot so I will exclude it generally from all that’s said).
Some shows are dependent on the time period they’re based on – this has been a major sticking point of pain for me. I don’t know why authors insist on these dependencies – does it make them less of a writer? No, I don’t feel that way at all. I just worry they maybe sold out to sell stages (encourages job development, personal investment, etc), engage a broader audience (which is a good thing), and possibly even just for pure enjoyment. Does that make it right? wrong?
Who’s to say?
I’d like to take this opportunity to insist and repeat that these are just my opinions on both the television series and decade-focused shows. I will emphasize that these instances are rare nowadays and some publishers now allow performances to change the decade to make it more appealing to their audiences. Does this make it right? wrong? I have no idea – maybe it’s not important, but these are things that can hang up directors (or maybe just me).
It’s important to have a clear understanding of the rules surrounding a production and an even clearer point of view of how you’ll bring it to life. Would I love to bring Pride and Prejudice into the 21st century? Yes! Probably a bit too excitedly but it’s a dream, okay? Only if I ever go into television. How would I make it different? I won’t say – wait and be surprised? Most likely I’ll take it to my grave or post about it in a year when I’ve forgotten about this post. It’s been done but it can always be done differently and from a new perspective. I guess maybe this is the root why I don’t like period pieces – I like timeless clothes, books, scripts, movies, friendships, etc.
Things that are everlasting. Except(!) pine trees – yuck! Those things can change style any time they’re ready to because I am ready (winter blues). Back on track: timeless pieces. This is only a personal preference and should not weigh on any decisions you do or do not make if you end up directing, producing, or acting within a show. And trust me, the irony is not lost on me when I recently posted how much I’d love to do a show like Momma Mia! which is pure 70s and 80s music. The theme is timeless!
‘Til next time.