Do you ever wonder what it’s like to be a struggling actor in LA? Calls back for roles are few and far-between, waiting tables has long since become a major drag and getting cast in low-grade porn an ever more enticing option? Well, in case you’re really curious there are about three hundred seventy four web serials that you can watch to get a vague idea of what it’s like.
I know LA is a big place and it’s spread out and you have to drive a car everywhere, but don’t any young aspiring subjects of Us Weekly cover stories ever talk to each other? Variations on the “tale of a young actor” has quickly gone from minor nuisance to rapidly-spreading invasive specie, and Workshop appears to be the latest subspecie of net-kudzu to be cataloged by us webotanists.
So before I go any further, a note to any budding screenwriter/actors with a “novel” idea about the trials and tribulations of showbiz: Please Stop. I don’t care how cleverly you’ve twisted the premise of Entourage (which is a stupid show to begin with) or how your main character has to keep his/her superhero status a secret during auditions or, in the case of Workshop, how tedious and pointless it is to attend workshops.
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Now that I’ve vented, here’s the scoop on what Workshop is about. Nate Golon and Kimberly Legg have created a series that, ostensibly, seeks to document what goes on behind the scenes of the otherwise glamorous world of young Hollywood. But judging by the premiere episode – the first of 13 – the exact same things happen that do in anybody else’s life. Presented are the parts of what a reality television would cut out because they’re boring despite being the actual “reality.”
I assume that Nate and Kimberly, being actors, find humor in these episodes, and maybe if you’ve attended workshops you do, too. Unfortunately, I can’t relate. That’s not always a bad thing. Niche-y shows like All’s Faire and The Guild play to their Renfaire and WoW audiences while still providing enough entertainment for those outside the subculture.
All the jokes in Workshop I either didn’t get or were too predictable to be funny. This isn’t an absurdist or surreal production, nor is it parodic or satirical. It’s actually much more like a soap opera than the comedic series it claims to be.
Fortunately for the cast and creators, they all seem to get decent gigs around town (including a lot of soap opera work), so somebody is recognizing potential acting talent. That’s great for them and I suggest they continue to work that angle because from this brief introduction, there’s not much going for this show. Then again, given what passes for quality television, a vapid “comedy” may take them straight to the bank.
Check it out at WorkshopTheSeries.com.