RIP Ransom - whatever that was! Also: New Joss Whedon! And a surprise Weird Al reference!

Always Be Watching is curated by Dan Barrett who remains master of his domain.

CBS drama Ransom has been cancelled after three seasons. Not a bad run for a show nobody knew existed.

Source: Variety


Hulu is rolling out a ‘yadda yadda’ feature for Seinfeld on its streaming service, which allows users to watch episodes at random.

Hulu's Seinfeld shuffle button, which makes more sense for a sitcom like the Jerry Seinfeld classic than for a heavily serialized show like The Handmaid's Tale, takes some of the work out of that decision-making process. Netflix has also considered offering such a feature and in April tested a button with some users that would allow them to play a random episode of TV. 

One of the great innovations that Seinfeld brought to the American sitcom was the introduction of serialised threads that ran through seasons, complete with references and jokes that built off previous episodes.

Source: The Hollywood Reporter


Joss Whedon’s new HBO TV show The Nevers has started filming.


Stranger Things 3 debuted on Netflix and it has a fun soundtrack. Radio Times has a guide to the complete soundtrack, along with a Spotify playlist. My favourite musical inclusion is the very clever addition of Weird Al’s My Bologna being played by the nerdy teacher/head of the AV Club.

Source: Radio Times


Execs from Netflix, Amazon, and Apple have appeared in the UK over the past ten days to present their plans to the House of Lords, detailing all of the UK production it has planned.

Despite each of the big companies each detailing significant investment in programming from the UK, a question lingers…

Others, however, are wary about the SVODs interest in the UK market. Colin Callender, the former HBO exec who now runs Chimerica and The White Princessproducer Playground Entertainment, said that the SVOD services are not interested in making British programming. “The SVODs are interested in using British talent to make American programming and, if the public service broadcast sector is diminished in whatever way, a whole slew of British programming will vanish with it.”

And that’s a fair point - these shows are being made for a global market and not necessarily the UK. Are these productions also exporting British values and perspectives, or are these shows that have had all of their cultural specificity removed in order to play globally?

An important question that needs to start being considered around the globe is how individual countries will maintain a cultural strength of voice as mainstream entertainment becomes homogenised for the purposes of going global. It’s not enough to force global companies to make local content - actual local content needs to continue to be produced.

Source: Deadline


And finally…

Did you really think there would just be one Seinfeld story in the newsletter today? July 5, 1989 was the date that The Seinfeld Chronicles, the first episode of the show, went to air in the US. Today marks 30 years since the show began.

Obviously, there’s a few articles on Seinfeld floating around today. Here are four that are a bit off the beaten track:

  • Magnolia Bakery releases a Black & White cookie. Look to the cookie!!! Source: Bakemag

  • These are the states with the most (and fewest) Seinfeld fans. Source: Cheatsheet

  • After 30 Years, We Still Owe Elaine From 'Seinfeld' So Much. Source: Marie Claire

  • Celebrating New York Seinfeld locations with writers from the show. Source: Complex