What’s your favourite Storyworld?
I’ve been writing an E-Course about Storyworld building so they are really on my mind – all possible shapes, sizes and flavours.
Here are the most memorable Storyworlds from my pop culture diet of 44 years…
(You will notice that there’s not an ARG in sight! Why do you think that is?)
Top 5 Storyworlds
The Beatles – their entire career to me is a Storyworld. I was thinking about this and trying to work out why. A good friend of mine recalled that when he was growing up he thought the Beatles was a country. That really confirmed my own suspicions. It’s not the fact that they were multimedia as much as they had a lot of intrigue. Whereas Elvis, even though his career was similar, was not a Storyworld.
2000AD – I always found the crossover between different stories and characters to be very exciting. In fact lots of comics; Marvel, Beano, Dandy used these techniques to great effect but 2000AD positively encouraged it and I always found it massively compelling. Memorable character, story, writer and universe crossovers were; Judge Dredd: “The Cursed Earth”, “Rogue Trooper and Mercy Heights” & the fan defined “Smithiverse”.
Wikipedia covers this in detail here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2000_AD_crossovers
Star Wars – I don’t need to say much about this storyworld except these 3 words…. FOUR BILLION DOLLARS!
The Matrix – not my favourite film or storyworld but worthy of mention. The Matrix kick started the whole idea of Storyworlds and Transmedia. I think it was down to timing as much as by design. It was the first time the audience had the back channel of the internet to obsess and discuss on, making everything ‘to the power of 1000’. The main reason this is discussed at length by every aspiring Transmedia Producer is because the films had numerous offshoots (Anime, Books, Comics, Games etc) that interlinked in a narratively cool and smart way. I can’t argue with that!
Springfield – The Simpsons Storyworld is my favourite. I don’t believe this was ever designed in a Transmedia way – it seems organic – based on comics and cartoon story logic. (Bendy and surreal). However, it expands out in a proper Transmedia way and has rules. Like when they do ‘3 stories in 1’ the characters are allowed to be very different to their normal selves. Also, when going backwards and forwards in time the characters are aware of themselves in other time zones. It’s great that it’s geographic place and the characters continue to develop over time.
Come on now, what’s your favourite Storyworld and why?