Web TV series

Find the newest and most daring web-only TV shows
 
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01.On air, online

ONLINE_WebSeries_Lead

The popular animated prime-time series The Simpsons is still on the box, almost 25 years after it first aired. While TV on the internet may still be some way from replicating this kind of longevity, internet-only TV series are now being streamed to audiences who can tune in anywhere with an internet connection.

TV on the internet is about a decade old, but there’s now a growing range of shows available for viewers young and old, and catering to all interests and purposes from entertainment to education.

Some shows are created independently through a variety of sources of funding, while others are supported through advertising and sponsorships, or made with the support of studios or production companies. They even have their own awards, The Streamys, which recognise the best shows online each year.

What is web TV?

Web TV is a platform for creating shows and screening them directly to viewers. Web TV shows are broadcast on the net, and most won’t end up on TV at all.

To create a new series, a production company develops an idea for a show and then finds funding, sometimes from a studio or the web TV platform itself, to write and film the show and then make it available online.

A computer is the most obvious device on which to watch a web series, but some platforms also have apps for watching on a smartphone, tablet or games console. You can log on to YouTube, for example, and find the web series channel for platforms such as Blip and Crackle.

Web TV sites
blip.tv is a web TV platform that launched in 2005 and screens to more than 10.5 million viewers each month. It’s supported by advertising, so you can expect to see ads playing at the start of a show. Programs include animations, dramas and comedies, and lifestyle programs like cooking shows, programs on technology and gadgets, news and politics, interviews and how-tos. Blip videos can be viewed through the site or on YouTube, and they’re available on iTunes and on TVs that are compatible with Google TV. There are iOS and Android apps, as well as Xbox Live.

Web Series: Blip


crackle.com has original series such as Chosen, The Bannen Way and Jerry Seinfeld's Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee. There are also series that have already screened on TV such as The Shield. Content can be streamed directly to internet-connected televisions, games consoles and some DVD players, and there are iOS, Android and Windows Phone apps for watching content on internet-connected devices. Web Series Crackle
Sites with a smaller catalogue of shows include Yahoo! TV, which has some full episodes of TV shows from the US, though not all will be available due to geographic restrictions, or geo-blocking. The College Humor site has youth-oriented comedy shows such as Hardly Working, while MSN video on bing.com has news clips and snippets from TV series. Web SeriesYahoo

YouTube is home to many web series (and plenty of other videos). You can find shows either through the web series channels on the site, such as blip.tv (see opposite), or by finding a series you want to view (such as The Guild) and subscribing to it.

Web Series Youtube

Viewster has shows that have already screened on TV, such as Black Books, Shameless, Doc Martin and Skins. It can be watched on TVs and internet-connected devices. Viewster also has Android and iOS apps for tablets and smartphones.

Web Series Viewster

CHOICE picks

One person’s TV is another person’s trash, but here we suggest some popular web series and where to watch them to help get you started. The Webby awards for internet innovation are another good place to start, with this year's winners now listed on their website.

  • Dragon Age: Redemption is based on the game of the same name.
  • Dr Horrible’s Singalong Blog is a tragicomic musical mini-series about a super-villain, his nemesis, and their shared love interest, starring How I Met Your Mother's Neil Patrick Harris and Nathan Fillion from Castle.
  • The Guild is a comedy about a group of online gamers.
  • Space Janitors is a science-fiction comedy about life aboard an evil space station.

Want to find a series?

If you’re keen to find new web series but aren't sure where to start, there are a few useful websites. You may be amazed at the variety of content on offer. To keep up with new series in production and where you can find new shows, the TubeFilter site is a one-stop shop for web series viewers.

ONLINE_WebSeries_TVcom

  • tv.com lists shows alphabetically or by category to watch on that site. You won't be able to watch all shows because of geographic restrictions. Some have been rated by registered tv.com users, which can help you find popular series.
  • Check dailydot.com to find new series.
  • The Web Series Channel has a guide about shows and information. And like tv.com/web, some shows have been rated by registered tv.com users.
  • Wikipedia has an alphabetical listing of shows and links to a Wiki page to find out more about the series.

 

 
 

 

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