Home Forums Circularity RANDY OLSON: SESSION 6: “The ABT in Entertainment” — Overall thoughts

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      Randy Olson


      Today we had a minor breakthrough in how to get the most out of the Chat Window. From here on, let’s have the general guidelines be these: During my presentation, everyone should focus on posting QUESTIONS that I will answer (most of them) either in the Q&A or here. Then during the ABT Build session you should switch more to COMMENTS to help the person presenting.

      Here’s a few answers to questions.



      Tim Watkins:
      “Lost” was aggravating because it didn’t follow the archplot form. But it was wildly popular and engaging, yes?

      Yes, the numbers don’t lie. I never got into it, but I know it was a huge hit and even television milestone.

      As you say, it wasn’t archplot overall, but on the smaller scale it was endless ABT arcs. And think about how strongly it drew on the central power of narrative — contradiction. Everything defied expectation — “we would expect them to see this, BUT …”

      Michelle Collier:
      Game of Thrones has multiple protagonists but is wildly popular. Do you have any thoeries as to why this series doesn’t fit the sinlge protagonist prescription?

      GoT is “episodic” television, which means the story goes on, but episodes are packed with ABT “arcs” at all scales. And then, as you saw, the entire series eventually worked to it’s final THEREFORE.

      BUT … if you HAD to say, how would you answer, in the end, the question of, “Who’s story is it?” I think I know the answer, even though I didn’t watch all of it.

      Aline Zimerman:
      How do you explain the success of TV shows with multiple protagonists, like FRIENDS?

      Once again, TV tends to be episodic. Most episodes on sitcoms tend to have 3 story arcs. For each one, you can almost always answer the question of, “Who’s story is it?” Right? Think through your favorite episodes and see if you can answer that.



      Tanya Wilkins:
      Would it be possible to share those guidelines from NY Times?

      FROM DEAN: https://www.amazon.com/York-Times-Manual-Style-Usage/dp/081296389X



      Evelyn Wight:
      What year was this Michelle Wolf event?

      Here’s the link, but be forewarned, it’s not for delicate ears. She opens with, “Like a porn star says when she’s about to have sex with Trump, let’s get this over with.”

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