BITS 2020: Our Review of ‘A Series of Web Bites – Web Series’

Posted in BITS 2020, What's Streaming? by - November 05, 2020
BITS 2020: Our Review of ‘A Series of Web Bites – Web Series’

One of the things that festivals have to do to shake things up is to show visual mediums outside of feature films. This year’s BITS Festival had a whole program of web series and music videos to do just that. I felt a certain reluctance about writing about such formats just because of how difficult it is, but I’ll try.

There’s not much in Eric Falardeau’s The Forest, a music video he animated for the band SerVant. SerVant plays a garage rock song about a guy running through, well, a forest, a place where anyone’s chances of survival are slim. I like most old school animation styles especially ones dealing with water, but better examples can express shadow AND detail.

Chelsea Jade McEvoy’s Palludis is much better. The production value here is cheap but it’s enough to give a sense of disbelief. There’s even something inviting about the neon colors McEvoy uses to fill the sets. What helps that disbelief is the banter between Myfanwy (Sydney Powers) and Taryn (Zoe Fraser). They’re romantic partners who are running a doomed spaceship. I know if they survive or not, but y’all should find out if they do too.

Denver Jackson’s Esluna: The First Monolith is one of the exceptions to the rule. I have no idea what’s going on here but that confusion seems irrelevant to my enjoyment. Maeve (Grace Chan) is an animation character looking for monoliths? Anyway, as you can see from earlier, old animation can go 50/50, and Jackson effectively uses his style to evoke a sense of wonder.

Lastly, Paul Tanter’s Age of the Living Dead is an 18 part series juggling three post-Americas. But the central portion of the former Union is a No Man’s Land. There, a human (Everett Moss) rescues a woman who turns out to be a vampire’s daughter (Nicola Posener). I get it, all monsters are allegories, but this feels too close to home for anyone to enjoy it.

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While Paolo Kagaoan is not taking long walks in shrubbed areas, he occasionally watch movies and write about them. His credentials are as follows: he has a double major in English and Art History. This means that, for example, he will gush at the art direction in the Amityville house and will want to live there, which is a terrible idea because that house has ghosts. Follow him @paolokagaoan on Instagram but not while you're working.
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