5 web series you should stream now
Posted April 11, 2016
INTERWEBS — Sometimes the amount of streaming television can seem overwhelming. Between Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu and individual network site, it can seem like too much. So why not take a break from the traditional shows, and check out what exists on YouTube?
These web series offer short episodes, some with unique perspectives on familiar stories and sometimes with a completely original premise. The filmmakers and actors behind them are no less professional than the ones you see on TV. You might just find yourself inspired to create a web series of your own.
A modern adaptation of Jane Austen’s “Emma,” which puts Emma at the head of a party planning company with Mr. Knightley as her trusty business partner, this show is bubblegum sweet. True to character, Emma is a little hard to like. She’s snooty and superior, but eventually charms the audience and everyone around her.
Bonus: The transmedia for the show runs deep — there are separate character channels, Twitter accounts and the like. So if you want to fangirl (or boy), you can really go for it.
The brainchild of YouTube filmmaker Yulin Kuang, the simple story is about two actors who keep finding themselves kissing (in the rain). Playing opposite each other so often causes them to examine their feelings IRL and watching them on that journey is a delight.
Bonus: If you think the lead actors playing actors are cute together in the series, you’ll be happy to hear they are dating offscreen too.
Using a really interesting technique of reaction shots and voiceover/inner-monologue, “Hipsterhood” takes you deep into the world of Silver Lake where nobody thinks they’re a hipster, but thinks everyone else is. Watch two of them dance around their feelings, trying to stay cool.
Bonus: If you’re familiar with LA culture at all, this will be extra funny.
Shakespeare has been adapted over and over, but this is one of the best. Setting “Much Ado About Nothing” in the world of high school students in New Zealand makes the characters feel real and the drama super relatable. It’s also perfectly cast — especially Beatrice and Hero. And Benedick and Claudio. Okay, everyone is perfect.
Bonus: The same characters are present in the sequel: "Lovely Little Losers."
Created by queen geek Felicia Day, it’s the story of a bunch of weirdie introverts who find each other through online gaming. Their adventures take them offline to cons and into each other’s personal lives. Each character is hilarious on their own. Together, they’re a guild of purely fun nerdy entertainment.
Bonus: Day also wrote a comic book as a companion to the story.
Amanda is a writer and pop culture fanatic who studied journalism at BYU. She has written for a candy store, a U.S. senator, an art museum, Entertainment Weekly magazine, a beauty company, local news and musicians. Find her on Twitter @amandataylor88