Most of them are totally missing it.
It could possibly be the most important shift in entertainment culture to occur in generations, and they don’t even see it.
For the latest bombshell example, feast your eyes upon the Hazbin Hotel trailer, the first episode of an independently produced adult-geared cartoon which premieres on Youtube this Monday, October 28th.
If that didn’t blow your socks off, check for a pulse.
The pilot episode, also known as “That’s Entertainment”, is the first episode of the first season of Hazbin Hotel, and will mark the series’ premiere.
SERIES SYNOPSIS: Hazbin Hotel is the story of Charlie, the princess of Hell, as she pursues her seemingly impossible goal of rehabilitating demons to peacefully reduce overpopulation in her kingdom. Yes, Hell suffers from overpopulation and Heaven solves the problem by routinely exterminating demons yearly. Charlie, who has grown up in Hell, wants to find an alternate solution to the mass slaughter. She opens the hotel in hopes that patients will be “checking out” and going into Heaven. While most of Hell mocks her goal, her devoted partner Vaggie, and their first test subject, adult film-star Angel Dust, stick by her side. She opens the Happy Hotel which aims at teaching demons and sinners to become better people. There is substantial resistance though, and Charlie and her friends must work together to keep the hotel running. When a powerful entity known as the “Radio Demon” reaches out to Charlie to assist in her endeavors, her crazy dream is given a chance to become a reality.
This series is high-end, gorgeous, 2-D animation, with verve, pointy teeth, and an actual honest-to-God original idea from an authentic independent creator, Vivienne Medrano. Meanwhile most ‘authoritative’ nerd-culture news sites are busy salivating over trivia from the 946th upcoming Marvel re-heat. Or dishing about interminable Batman, Ninja Turtles, and Star Wars déjà vu. Some of these franchises are older than air conditioning, yet creatively bankrupt corporations endlessly yank their corpses from the grave, twerking in a focus-group-tested parody of their original charm.
That suits corporations just fine- if they can slap blinders on consumers and fill the trough with leftovers forever, hey! Cashflow is God! Join the feeding line now or you’re a bigot. Geek-culture tastemakers are only too happy to cheerlead the slurping, as Monopoly Mouse buries them in a hell of amnesia and funko-pops.
But savvy audiences can see clearly. While creativity suffocates in the corporate slush pond, sharp operators have stepped into the new frontier: The crowdfunding market.
What sets Hazbin Hotel apart from corporate cartoons is not just Hazbin’s superior quality, and not simply the unique style, the heartfelt characters, the brilliantly executed hand-drawn animation. It was born in freedom. This project was crowdfunded by the creator. Anyone harboring a spark of personal creativity seeks refuge in the crowdfunding market. It’s become the home of the original, the strange, the never-before-seen, the transgressive and sincere.
Comics have been the first colonizers in this Wild-West economy. While frustrated fans shriek about the eternally cycling travesty of mainstream comics, proactive readers continue to discover new gems glittering in the cloaked wilderness. And with Hazbin Hotel, the lid is about to be blown wide open on masterful animation, exceeding most mainstream productions.
October 28th will be a landmark in the history of entertainment culture- and you have a front row seat. (Thanks to being a Bleeding Fool reader!)
Where does it go from here? Will consumers slavishly empty their treasure into the latest corporation-backed indentured streaming service? Or will the crowdfunding market grow? A place of meritocracy, a place where excellence- and your judgement of it- determines which art ascends?
Meritocracy. There’s a word that takes the ‘Mickey’ out of some people.
While most journalists remain fixated on the boring, guttering red-giant of corporate remake culture, the crowdfunding market bursts with the intensity of the new.
Welcome to the show. And be sure to catch Hazbin Hotel’s October 28th premiere, and congratulate the mastermind Vivienne Medrano on her unparalleled achievement. She’s more than an animator- she’s a pioneer.
Disclosure: David Lillie is the owner of Vivid Publishing, which signed Vivienne’s earlier comic project ‘Zoophobia.’