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Will streaming from stage to screen make comedy FMCG?

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Will streaming from stage to screen make comedy FMCG?

2022-01-14 10:52:44Source: Wen Wei Po

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There are “Super Comedian”, “Happy Comedian”, “Happy Drama Club” and “Talk Show” as the foreshadowing, and the audience’s acceptance and expectations for streaming comedy are full. In this context, although the sketch comedy featured in the first season of “The Annual Comedy Contest” (hereinafter referred to as “Comedy Contest”) is short in length, it has made thousands of audiences move with its explosive dramatic power and has become a recent streaming media Another phenomenal work on the platform, “screen comedy” has matured as a comedy “sub-genre”.

The question is: How will the “screen comedy” that has been causing a boom in theatrical performances that emphasize complete structure and on-site space reconstruct the relationship between audience and performance? How will it feed back or subvert stage comedy?

The concept evolution of “screen comedy” to “stage comedy”

One word “new” is enough to cover all the aesthetic spirit of “Comedy Contest”. The subject matter, technique, and format, you can’t use the old, narrow comic framework to define those works at all – there are still many media reports calling them sketches, and this is a concept that Ma Dong rejected with one vote when planning. The core reason for launching the update at all levels lies in the presentation terminal of the drama. In other words, the audience’s viewing channel has been transformed from a theater where they are sitting at risk to an electronic screen with almost one hand. In order to cater to the public’s existing habits of swiping mobile phones and videos, “screen comedy”, a comedy “sub-genre” that relies on contemporary audio-visual and network technology, is undoubtedly revolutionary from the conceptual evolution of traditional “stage comedy”. Its main characteristics are reflected in two aspects:

The first is the formation of comedy elements, which is inseparable from the assistance and reinforcement of image symbols. The most direct application is the insertion of the imitation Matrix VCR clip in “Transparent Man”, which implies the comprehensive invasion of big data; and the modeling presentation under the small scene is the unique advantage of the screen image, which covers but not limited to clothing. , makeup, props, actors’ micro-expressions and micro-motions, etc. For example, in the “Object Play” “Goodbye Ground”, the image capture of various mini-sized dolls and page-turning books is particularly clear in the close-up shots. This focused and magnified image presentation is very important for electronic Screens, especially mobile devices, can please audiences by helping them understand the story. Another example is in “Boiled “Three Knots” in the “Liu Guanzhang” series, the “beautiful” makeup and two-dimensional expressions of the three people are often presented on a full screen without any hesitation. joke. Another example is “Where Has Time Gone?”, through the focus of the camera, the exaggerated shapes of the front and rear characters are highlighted in the close-up.

At the same time, colorful “flower characters”, emoticons, video special effects, split-screen upgrades and other editing techniques also constitute a series of indispensable comedy elements. Various image symbols representing sweating, heart breaking, and hilarious laughter, with corresponding sound effects, frequently appear in comments or interactive sessions. “High-speed Rail Warrior 2021” boldly draws on the interface of video games to support this overhead imagination. When Sailor Moon fights with various uncivilized behaviors in the carriage, the virtual health bar above will also be reduced. This setting The establishment of , for viewers with a little video game experience, there will be no problems. And in the dance stage at the end of “Mr. Please Come Out of the Mountain”, a photo frame with blackened corners was used for visual effects, so as to separate this extremely fantasy comedy part into chapters, which is really impressive. It is hard to imagine that these plays can be presented offline with the same sensual and comedic effect.

In addition to the above-mentioned comedy elements assisted by images and representational, and examining the internalized elements of “screen comedy”, such as the text setting, logic advancement, performance rhythm, etc., it is not difficult to find that it also undergoes a transformation of its overall structure in response to the attributes of streaming media. , another feature is that the coherence of the stage performance is replaced by the coherence of the image montage. In other words, the formation of the drama rhythm must be re-arranged in the switching of shots, and contemporary online audiences rely on their rich movie viewing experience to experience streaming media through video narrative, especially the short video narrative rules derived from daily training. comedy. Undoubtedly, this kind of premise is a huge limitation for comedy creation, which is why “Comedy Contest” tactfully chose sketch comedy as the base production type. It provides a short-play mode that seizes a certain point and repeatedly dismantles, constantly upgrades, and constantly reverses. The form and structure just coincide with the short video. Therefore, almost every “screen comedy” in “Comedy Contest” gathers condensed and condensed plots, dense and dense bridges within a limited time. , The audience shouted and shouted, and the atmosphere burst into climaxes. The intuitive feeling was only refreshing and fast, creating an overall rhythm that seemed to stand at the intersection of comedy and short video tracks.

Comedy “fast-moving”: what streaming audiences gain

The compression and scheduling under the montage inevitably make it difficult for those who are used to the theater to match the stage space and time in their experience. It is a comedy variety show with popcorn after all. Undoubtedly, streaming media + variety show + comedy, the three have achieved success together, and have shaped the operation model of double victory in word of mouth and market. On the one hand, the audience has the ability to substitute for a whole set of streaming media comedy variety show frameworks such as promotion fights, leading laughing comments, and nurturing talent shows; on the other hand, the industry also has the ability to regard certain comedy categories as fast food. The awareness and determination of product operation.

One thing that is worth affirming is that in order to create a comedy fast-moving market, whether it is “Talk Show Conference” or “Comedy Contest”, all programs have actively used the information transmission function of new media. Comedy type explanation, forming an effective output of aesthetic knowledge. Under the leadership of the teaching team, it is believed that a group of previously unfamiliar dramas, such as sketches, comics, and object dramas, have been understood and mastered by the public in a very short period of time. Therefore, for the audience, besides being fed by laughter, it is also a process of receiving art education.

But when the audience successfully jumps into the box and enjoys the joy, they cannot forget some questions worth continuing to think about——

The first question is: Will Generation Z, who has been fed by short videos for a long time and started to recognize comedy from streaming variety shows, take it for granted that comedy and even stage art should be like this? Everything is “stalked”, fast consumption, and it’s over with a smile? Just like for sketch comedy, Ma Dong hit the nail on the head: as soon as the first three sentences came out, he already knew the general direction of the follow-up. So one day, maybe soon, audiences will get tired of popcorn laughter, and how will they change it up? This returns to the fundamental problem of comedy texts: either do not aim at directly “rough” “stalks”, and create “advanced” comedies that talk about form and content and have lasting vitality, but this seems to be directly related to the attributes of streaming comedy. Go in the opposite direction; then simply go to the other end – the world‘s martial arts, only fast is not broken, do not seek classics, but only seek new products in different ways every day. Therefore, you can see that diverse and heterogeneous elements such as talent, magic, mime, musicals, and puppets have poured in and violently collided, trying to mix, and hot and fresh styles are constantly being released, trying to create new states and form new recognitions. Know. If things go on like this, can the aesthetic patience and discernment of contemporary audiences for comedy only stay at the involuntary rightward sliding of the finger on the video progress bar?

Secondly, do the audiences cultivated in this way no longer buy tickets to enter the theater, but just recharge and renew their membership? This not only points to a cultural consumption behavior, but also points to a relationship between viewing and performing in the development of dramatic art. “Screen Drama” provides a novel, nesting doll-like viewing structure: the stage in the studio itself is a double frame structure, facing the live audience; the stage forms another structure with the video audience across the screen , and this heavy structure can only derive the virtual viewing relationship represented by the barrage. When the countless overlapping “haha” and the new internet language cross the screen, some viewers resonate on the same screen, but the performers cannot receive immediate feedback. For traditional comedy spaces, the performance status is adjusted through viewer feedback. The stage art is nothing less than a great shortcoming. In the past few days, the concept of “metaverse” is poised to be launched, and it is ubiquitous. I don’t know whether in the future “meta theater”, the relationship between viewing and performance can be detoured and return to the path of dynamic feedback under the framework of coexistence of virtual avatars.

Finally, it must be admitted that the streaming media industry has become an important platform for the survival and development of almost all popular arts such as drama, film and television, and music. At the moment of reshaping the “big picture” of the industry, the subtype of “screen comedy” is undoubtedly a supplement, or even a propellant, for the overall development of the industry. Then one question that remains to be answered in time is: the talk show has broken through and become the pioneer of online feedback and offline, so who else can be the latecomers?

(Hua Hui, the author is an associate professor at the School of Media and Communication, Shanghai Jiao Tong University)


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