'Odd Jobs' – If Craigslist Had a Web Series

By 02/16/2009
'Odd Jobs' – If Craigslist Had a Web Series

Odd Jobs - the web seriesWith many internet series seeking inspiration from the developing social networks and relationships that can happen online through gaming, dating and video blogging, Odd Job Nation takes a slightly different approach using the expanding online job posting and job search network as the basis for both a service and a web series, aptly titled Odd Jobs.

While on first look, this might seem an uneasy mix of job search services, news links and video comedy, viewing episode one of Odd Jobs the web series, solidifies the concept of Odd Job Nation as a clever idea in capable hands. Jeremy Redleaf is the main force driving the content; he is writer, director, actor and producer with a capable team of actors, design and web support behind him out of the New York based operation, Brackets Creative.


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Odd Job Nation is an irreverent entertaining site where employers and potential employees can go and either post a listing for an odd job, read economic, business or employment related articles on another part of the site, create a profile to offer job service or even be featured on the home page under “Hire This Guy/Gal” with “a picture and list of skills with the video presumably to provide an episodic dose of comic relief for job seekers and workers in these tough times.

Jeremy RedleafIt’s entire hook is that the job hunting, business deals and employment on this site are not dry or boring, but accessible and comic. Indeed if Craigslist had a series, Odd Jobs would be it. Ashley Albert and Redleaf are executive producers on the series from a concept by Ashley, produced by Colin Hornett which stars Redleaf, Devin Ratray, Alexandra Daddario, Frank Simms, Johnny Pruitt, Perry Silver, Chris Knowings, and Anna Garner with a great supporting cast. Brackets Creative has made a site that offers satirical tips and job advice like “Joe’s Fruguality Tips,” (frugality seems to be misspelled on the site I don’t know if that’s part of the joke and several listings throughout that go to 404 page not found.)

Also, there is a find a “Find A Job” section linked to Craigslist broken out by state that will hopefully grow in usefulness as the audience and employers find out about the site as a means of browsing Craigslist rather than simply going to Craigslist.

The Odd Job Nation producers use their filmmaking skills to wrap it in an entertaining video package and the start of a buggy web design which hopefully will improve in amount of working pages and content. Note, on some of the pages the site seems unfinished for example the Odd Jobs web series only has the cast & crew button appearing to work.

There is one episode up so far which lacks a good description on the OddJobNation.com site, but further investigation finds a summary on YouTube which reads, “Nate is a neurotic, recently laid-off investment banker. Joe is his unemployed, morally questionable, hustler roommate. Unable to find gainful employment (or pay for his impending wedding), Nate secretly tags along on Joe’s work-for-hire Craigslist adventures. Each episode finds the unlikely pair doing an outlandish job for ridiculous people in an absurd attempt to earn a random buck.”

With only one video up so far, it will be interesting how the talented Redleaf and his team sustain interest, funding and quality while balancing with signups for their “We’ll Find You Work” section and job offerings from legit businesses.

I can’t tell from the interface on the “Articles” page where all the feeds are coming from (they seem New York heavy in content), or how frequently they are to be updated. But, the ones there now are relevant to the narrative thrust of the site and one can hope they will continue to provide a source of good information and return and repeat viewers seeking new content from them. Strangely, the Community selection was not clickable from any of the pages I was on and I can only assume it’s in the works although a page indicating under construction in this is the case would have saved having to get at it from several pages and checking to make sure my browser was still active.

Odd Job NationThe Recession Channel is curated by Nell Plumfeld and contains inspirational speeches and scenes from films and other user generated content to get you motivated or keep your hope up as you work through hard times. I don’t know about varying quality of content or the clearances for the film clips for use on their site, but they are often well chosen for job-related content and hopefully one doesn’t see the inspiration of the channel pulled down due to intellectual property concerns.

The first episode is an embedded video on YouTube which if you click on it takes you to the Bracket Creative YouTube channel, the channel is a mixed bag of widely differing quality and if Bracket is wanting to attract and keep real job seekers and real employers and businesses, they might want to think about keeping Odd Job Nation video and content away from this channel which includes titles like “Crapper,” “Door Number Two Trailer” and “Glide Gingivitis Rap” all videos that would probably give businesses pause for thought before associating with the otherwise good idea of the Odd Job Nation site. I would just do an “Odd Job Nation episodes only” channel on YouTube and leave the Bracket Creative to another channel that is away from the real business related services if you want clients to understand the video nature of the site.

Get that division of Odd Jobs and Brackets content clean and the site navigation all fixed and you’ll have something interesting with potential to catch on.

[Ed. Note: Update from creator Jerem Redleaf, who let us know that the site officially launches this Friday, and we scooped his own annoucement. That means in all fairness, that much of our technical review of the site itself is probably premature. The Odd Job Nation has several updates since this originally ran.]

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