Remember Beached Az? That one joke online animated series from back when you could build an entire career around a single meme? It’s back!
As the tenth anniversary of Beached Az loomed up, they decided to do another series. But this world is very different, and they could expect no more than a 24 hour giggle which would vanish into the storm of content. Not only that, Green acknowledges that the world does not really need another 10 episodes of an extended joke about accents.
Well, that’s something at least.
This has been a while coming; the date originally announced for the gala 10th anniversary return was March this year. Presumably the original team of Anthony MacFarlane, Jarod Green and Nick Boshier had other things on the go – they’ve all done well for themselves off the back of Beached Az, though their involvement in comedy projects has waned over the years. But wait no longer!
Well, a little longer: October 1 is now the new launch date.
Showing off the media skills that made Beached Az such a hit the first time around – come on, you didn’t think their comedy skills had anything to do with it – this relaunch isn’t just a simple reboot. Okay, yes it is, but with extra bits bolted on:
Gluing all the bits together took 18 months, because it now has three different dimensions. The Tenn(ish) anniversary series has the usual daft jokes, improved by the use of an international animator but still rooted in the same naive style. As Green says, ‘The animation is still quick to do but we spend a lot of time getting the script and the story right. We are now miked properly and it is a really nice pipeline in that respect.’
But there’s more!
Beside that is a short documentary series, in which the seagull interviews serious players in the climate change movement.
Don’t order yet!
The project also has a mobile game called Bleached Az, developed in partnership with Chaos Theory Games. It will be available for free, supported by ad revenue, 20% of which is spent on funding Carbon Neutral to plant trees. Green has a sweet statistical connection – he claims that 16 grams of carbon will be removed from the atmosphere every time someone plays.
Okay, that’s it.
Whether they’ll be able to recapture the old magic is the real question, and it’s a big one. Nostalgia is a hell of a drug, but the online environment is largely built around moving forward – you don’t see Star Wars Kid or All Your Base Are Belong To Us making comebacks.
A decade ago the Beached Az guys managed to get the ABC on board in a solid bit of cross-promotion and unit shifting, but while the ABC is still struggling today to come up with content (or Content) that cuts through online, they’re nowhere to be seen for this revival. But as Green says:
‘We understand the world of Facebook and Youtube. We are using content to build community and repurpose visual content… all good brands have opinions and a voice and a social purpose.’
It’ll be interesting to see if any of that brand management jargon applies to creating good comedy.