Another bi-channel work

On March 11, 2005 by Christy

After finding TNT’s efforts to include Net-based content alongside TV programs I’ve just stumbled across a TV and iPod marriage. SCIFI.com offers viewers the ability to watch Battlestar Gallatica and listen to the executive producer comment with the use of podcasting. With these audio files you have to pause the commentary during a break. Just like the TNT trivia content the idea of having another channel that offers meta-data or extra-diegetic information seems like a distraction, and a bit extreme. I have to try it though. I must say that I find the idea of bi-channel navigation the most interesting form of multi-channel or cross-media storytelling so far. Perhaps because it is how my own creative work is skewed but I also think that the two can permit an intimacy with the overall work.

Other extra content is an episode available for download with deleted scenes (a DVD aesthetic perhaps?). On the subject of mixed aesthetics: I was shown at a seminar the cool scenes the Battlestar series has for those with digital television. In a scene, which I saw a few weeks ago here, there is a space battle. Those with digital TV have the option of playing a game at the same time: a split screen opens and on one side is the linear episode and on the other is your view from the cockpit. As you fly through the scene explosions that are seen in the episode are seen in the game version (it looks exactly the same). I thought this was sooo well designed. It was interesting to watch the episode knowing that it works with a parallel game element. It was self-sufficient as it was which is important. This is an example of the mix of narrative and game poetics that I believe cross-media works play with.