So, thanks to Stuart Ashen for telling me to ignore the perceived wisdom about keeping YouTube videos under ten minutes.
Righty then. It's a Mr Biffo's Found Footage special this week on the Digitiser2000 Friday Letters Page. Let's stop faffing and get on with the "waffing".
If you would like to appear here, or you've something you'd like me to give some attention to in our occasional Plug Zone, please send your kind and sweaty emails early to this place here: firstname.lastname@example.org
I see you didn’t use my Game Of Thrones joke in your Found Footage. Seems there’s no problem offending Christians but when it comes to Games Of Thrones followers you suddenly aren’t so brave. Or it might be because I am only sending it now. Here it is...
John Snow: What did the scout master say when his car horn was fixed?
Dragon: Beep repaired! (Be Prepared)
John Snow: Ha ha ha ha.
Apart from that I really enjoyed Found Footage. Well done.
I watched FF last night and thought it was fantastic. The 1990's retro future vibe is brilliant.
Its definitely on the right side of weird - weird because its weird, not weird to be wacky.
Personal highlights were: Visit Scotland, robots can't feel love (but they must - otherwise why would you need to tell them they can't?), and the bloke not being able to see the letters by the joke machine.
Keep up the good work - its not safe, its not mainstream, its just pure.... well, Mr Biffo I guess.
Well, Saturday was quite a lovely do wasn't it? Here are some reminiscences that nobody else will care about but will maybe I don't know encourage them to come to the next one whereever it is if it happens (which will be Manchester and yes it will OR ELSE):
- Your daughter trying to politely ask me to wait outside because you were setting up while looking mildly terrified because let's be honest just look at me and she's about a quarter of my size, before I was ATTACKED PHYSICALLY by your better half and dragged into the sweaty darkness.
- I met some other people and kind of wandered off while they were talking to me, which I'm still guilty about and sorry for, even though I've already said so to them as well.
- Everyone knowing everyone else because you'd all been messing around in a bunker and I didn't know anyone really but that was OK because everyone was nice and I spoke to a lot of people I didn't even know from Twitter but mostly do now and even some I did know.
- When Ashens shouted out he was there from the back I looked back and could have sworn he was sat next to Mentski, who appears in a lot of his videos momentarily, but no, I was just imagining it. I wanted to meet both Ashens AND Mentski, but this short and uninteresting story about my delusions meant I could say something other than "oh hello" but still had no other things to really say, so after I'd said that I awkwardly ran off.
- The episodes shown were lovely.
- The Q&As were lovely.
- The finale is looking awesome, I can't believe how good it looks. Seriously, if you've not seen it yet, you're in for a treat. If you have seen it yet, then you probably can't wait for it to be finished-finished like me.
- Our shared moment of joy and the awkward embarrassment afterwards.
I don't really have anything to ask, other than to cross fingers that Episode 2's response is as good, if not better, than episode 1. IT'S HAPPENING!!!!!!!!!!!!!
P.S. Cuckles the Puckold
Somehow it made an already incredible evening even more perfect. But hey, you - I actually like this nice Mr PSB even more. Thank you.
Thank you. Not just for the entertainment, but for bringing together a lovely group of people. Both online and at the Found Footage premiere, everyone* has been kind to each other, inclusive, respectful.
I've not seen any (maliciously) snarky comments or any cross words. It really feels to me like a community. A community of weirdos brought together by a love of goujons, poo, and unusual adventures.
*Yes, even MrPSB. Even after Thursday's conversation.
Let's hope it doesn't all go wrrrrrooooooong!
I had many questions about Found Footage. Most of the sensible ones you answered in your article.
Let us pass judgement... I liked it! I remain curious about how many businesses Goujon John has running and how many of them are related to Goujons (which makes me wonder if Goujon John's Celebrity Ghostel is still canon), and the Funtron 8 made me want to look up Biffovision just to compare the future model. Just hearing the word Funtron made me think of "sheriff's hair and poo".
I heard a lot of people loved the eating hair song, but that was a tad too gross for me. Different Strokes and all that. Also, I think I now understand the Liver and Onion Shirts from Enhance Your Tarp.
The Tea Prancer confuses and bewilders me with his hypnotic movements and enchanting way of saying "TEEEEAAAAA???" I am convinced that Animation Maestro Mr. Weebl is singing "Everybody loves Tea Prancer!"
And as for the robot PSA.... I was worried for Mr. Paul Ganon's safety for a little bit, if I am to be honest.
Finally, I cannot forget Puckles the Cuckold. I took his advice (which may have not been my strongest move) and drew my dreams, which I enclosed, under the hopes that everyone else writing in has done the same.
In conclusion, That was certainly an experience. Good Job, Well Done and all that. I'm off to find my nearest Goujon Provider.
El Greenio Screenio
Yay, at last it is here. Firstly, I’m annoyed that you are making us wait for the next episodes by releasing them on a weekly basis, but I forgive you because it was so good.
I loved the Tea Prancer and Hair Eater especially. I rewatched the episode trying to work out the influences, so it was good to read your article on it to see if I was right on any. I was *smugface*
Will there be a home release? I’ve tried getting people to watch it, but if I hard DVD or Blu Ray I could make them mwuhahahahahhaaha. Do you see?
Anyway, is it Sunday yet?
Sod, Destiny 2 review, I don’t need that, give me more found footage!
Lots of love,
And - yes - thanks for everyone being patient about Digi being a bit light on content. I've re-edited this Sunday's ep from the version the premiere attendees saw last Saturday, and I'm now working on the subsequent episodes (which is more work than anticipated at this point, as my old laptop is still at the menders). And we're trying to find time to sort out more finale screenings and merchandise in time for Christmas and that as well.
So. Yes. Sorry, everyone, if Digi continues to be less stuffed than usual for the next few weeks. Hopefully Found Footage will make up for it.
I have to say I liked the first proper episode of the Found Footage, but then again I've had a generally positive reaction to it because of the family situation regarding my father (as you know from a previous letter).
But also with the family issues you've had during the making of Found Footage, near enough the same time, did make this Kickstarter a bit more personal.
I loved the Games Master throw back with the Goujultation Zone, the Tea Prancer, Visit Scotland and the Funtron 8 were spectacular. The whole thing was stupendous - that it just seemed to click with my warped sense of humour.
Also it was fun seeing guru Larry as the Covfefe Ghoul (sorry for any other cameos I didn't recognise)
I don't know why the Tea Prancer scene right at the end seems to get me really emotional... it could just be some weird thing on my part, or it could be that being told to prepare for the worst regarding my father around that time didn't help.
But seriously Mr B, I am proud to have backed this, because the original Digitiser on Teletext, Digitiser2000 and your Found Footage has kept me going through a lot of rough times over the years and I'm just glad to have been a part of this in my own way.
Also I think the rest of your fans would agree - this is better than any spec work.
P.S. Mr. B would it be possible to get this on a bluray, I wouldn't mind adding the extra coppers, goujons, dream drawings or TEEEEAAAAAAA! towards it. If not it doesn't matter
On Monday, you expressed regret that Found Footage was very white and male.
Which seems unfair, mainly because white and male suggests a papier-mâché ball of indolence and the Daily Mail. Also, it undervalues the extras and those behind the scenes, perpetuating a stardom-or-nothing culture. Well, more infamy-or-nothing, considering the amount of lubricant involved.
That aside, white and male, fair observation. Why a problem?
I'd understand if you had been spending public funds, rather than your own money. Not entirely your own, but everyone who backed the Kickstarter was invited to join in the filming. Which at Drakelow, was my kind of diversity. A bunch of strangers, who got along splendidly because we were all there to have fun making something stupid. Protected characteristics? No survey necessary.
Anyway, white is a vague, catch-all identity, often for projected fears. Like black was. Is. Perhaps you meant Found Footage is too white-British - except for pallid viewers in Scotland - but how many families in Britain have been exclusively British since, I dunno, the late 1970s?
Less ambiguously, Found Footage is a bit for boys. Though, subverting masculine norms with nips, lower lumps, and tea capers. Still more Show to Your Daddy than Watch with Mother, but not enough to stop girls from getting involved. Generally, on the fringe, but Digitiser is the fringe.
Digitiser gets letters from misfits with mild to severe social anxiety. It helps them understand the need to ignore certain voices that say "you shouldn't like that". Is it now hearing whispers that the Goons, Goodies, and Pythons were real bad-ists playing buffoons, subtle Boris Johnsons? I wouldn't be surprised, considering how much critical analysis is applying fashionable prejudice.
Be proud of Found Footage as it turned out, because as far as I can tell, you sent more than enough invitations to join in. Inspire imitators to make their own culture-specific oddities, spawning more little clubs that any idiot can join.
Then, when the money rolls in (SUBS: PLEASE CHECK), you can play more of a comedy-curating role, if you've had enough self-indulgence. Or, just kill the Tea Prancer again and replace him with Bunty.
First off, congrats on the launch of Found Footage.
It's really something quite special: of the few Kickstarters I've contributed to, it's easily the one I've had most enjoyment from (and it's barely even started).
Your openness about the development process has also been great: I feel involved, even though I've done nothing but like Tweets about it. Looking forward to more behind the scenes articles.
As far as fan theories go... I've deliberately avoided reading any, the better to figure it out myself. Obviously Goujon John has something to do with all this.
Could his Goujon business have been so successful that he used the proceeds to found Xennoxx? They must be linked somehow. And that guy in the operating theatre that everyone applauds... He looks vaguely similar to the robot in the ROBOTS REMEMBER sketch.
The influences from Alien in what I've seen of the Finale are obvious... Is there a Michael Weyland - build robots in your own image - thing going on there? Maybe not.
Really looking forward to the rest of it, especially the Finale.
I'm surprised nobody who was at the premiere has mentioned any of the little Easter eggs that were in the background of the finale. Maybe you need to pause it...
On Sunday night I plugged my laptop into the TV, filled my favourite Tea Prancer mug with a delicious steaming beverage and settled down to watch the latest instalment of Found Footage - Dream Drawings.
Eighteen minutes and thirty-nine seconds later I was equal parts tickled and traumatised, which I assume was the desired outcome. The show keeps getting better and better, and I'm not surprised that already more than eight thousand people have viewed it at the time of writing.
I'm so glad you resisted the urge to cater to casual YouTube viewers with a ten minute limit and indulged yourself (and us) with a longer running time; I think this kind of madness is all the more satisfying when you can wallow in it.
I certainly didn't feel it was too long even if you had expressed some concerns that there had been a slightly more muted reaction to some scenes than you would have liked. I can only speak for myself, but I find laughing non-stop at hysterical nuttiness can be tiring - sometimes you just need to catch your breath. It doesn't mean you don't think it's funny!
Anyway, my favourite parts:
*Scottish Rob Halford. I know it's a GamesMaster homage, but it reminded me a bit of Star Test too. Remember that?
*Tea Prancer. Even though you'd kindly shared an earlier version of this through Kickstarter, this grander take with a live action character was hilarious. Chris Coltrane was superb!
*Goujon John. I appreciate any worries about overuse of a particular character, running it into the ground like a lazy catchphrase, but I never, ever get tired of him. He's so good, I can't understand why he hasn't already had a great comedy/acting career prior to Found Footage. Brilliant discovery.
*"Observe my nozzles." No further elaboration necessary.
Can't wait for the next episode!
P.S. Have you thought about sharing the latest episode with Terry Gilliam yet? He's on social media, and I think with all the Gilliamesque animation and handmade, retro/futuristic aesthetic coursing through the show he might recognise a kindred spirit.
We're over 10,000 views this morning, and that's through word-of-mouth alone, it seems. In a way, that helps to keep it feeling like an underground thing. Which is nice. The momentum seems to be building, so I've no complaints, but... if I'm going to make more - with a proper budget - we might have to find a way to give it a bigger kick up the cracksie.
Well, what an absolute treat it was to get a sneak peak of the Found Footage Finale at your premiere on Saturday.
Even though the general appearance of Digitiser fans looked like the source material for a "Guess Who? - Nerd Edition", it was a superbly enjoyable evening (I jest of course, and I do include myself in that description, obviously.)
I'm sad I couldn't stay for drinks and a meet and greet after - I had an early start for work next morning and had to head home after the showing.
I'm glad I've had a small contribution to this as it has been good fun following your progress and I think you have gone beyond what my expectations were, both in the scope of the Found Footage series, and the sheer scale of the Finale, which was amazing.
Watching the episodes on a big screen with a group of like-minded people was a great experience. I might even be tempted to travel if you were to repeat it elsewhere.
A much deserved well done to you, sir!
I'm looking forward to the remaining episodes.
One question that I wasn't brave enough to ask on the evening: Given everything you have learnt from shooting the Finale and everything else so far, is there anything you would do differently if you were to do it again? (Apart from not liquid damage your laptop and then drop it and break it again a few months later).
I think... I would have to look at getting someone else to handle the budget. I've no idea how much the show has cost, but I've spent a massive amount of my own money on it. Probably as much again as we raised - which I couldn't really afford.
To give you some idea of my terrible handling of money... my mortgage bounced three times this year, due to unexpected Found Footage expenses (overrunning on the filming at the tunnels for example, which had all sorts of knock-on costs) - which has never happened to me before.
That would have to be the main concern if I do it again; getting someone to deal with the budget, and - somehow - raising more money so that I'm not left so painfully out of pocket. It has been worth it though. Sod money.
Oh, and as for Found Footage being for us nerds... this Sunday's ep has a big, big, big nerd moment right in the middle.
All I can say is that "Eat your snack, don't look back. Yeah. Yeah..." has been rolling around my brain since Sunday, ffs....
It's been an exciting week! I've mostly spent it with my newborn daughter on my right arm whilst spamming people about Found Footage on Twitter with my left hand - truly the stuff paternity leave was made for.
It's great though isn't it; the excitement, the poo every where, the gurgling smiles, the snacks coming from stiff shiny nipple holes.
(And the baby is lovely too!)
Seriously though, well done on the series, proud to be a small part of it and feel like we're in it together. Crowdfunding at its best.
If you end up doing a screening/party in Manchester also, I will try to be there with bells (and probably milky sick) on. And the GameFace lads would probably pop down too.
Yours, with an uncharacteristically upbeat letter,
But hey - you're a new dad! You know what that's like...
Found Footage is great, I love it
Top two moments:
1. Goujaltation Zone
2. The line 'I want to eat your hair while we're still young'
Will this email make it to 'print'? It's 22:30! Please find eclosed an exclusive beihind the scenes snap showing the workings of one of the special effects from Found Footage.
So no doubt this Friday Letters page will be all about praise for Found Footage, which it truly deserves. I just want to add my appreciation for you bringing it from your mind into the world.
So I want to say a big thank you from the bottom of my heart; I've always wanted something like FF in my life, and you've delivered exactly that. It means a lot to have something that feels more tailored to my tastes, and while crowdfunding has been around for a while, I've never felt the benefits of it personally until now, with FF and Consolevania - the only two shows I've contributed financially to.
Speaking of which, that cameo by Ryan McLeod was a lovely surprise! Can't wait for the next episode!
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