Stating on their Dailymotion page the sketch comedy team behind Boy Drama Productions puts forward a firm statement of intent. “Some people dream of making stupid internet videos. We actually make them” is the punchy tagline we get, and for lack of much more info, that’s mostly what we have to go on for Boy Drama, led by Cait Raft and Khalehla Rixon. Raft, who also writes a very weird blog, and Rixon, who writes for an online magazine called Greasy, have crated a bit of a buzz, as one of their sketches has gone viral, gathering a pretty tasty 200,000+ views. This year they became part of the new Dailymotion ‘Motionmaker’ platform recently covered by Kurt, giving them greater visibility and more revenue potential. So, you may be asking, are this new sketch group deserving of their new fame? Are these comedians with real staying power, or another flash-in-the-pan viral hit doomed to be forgotten with the next funny cat video?
Well, it’s hard to say really.
Now I hear your cries, readers. Don’t go all limp on us Gabriel, you plead, we need your incredibly well-informed and handsome opinions to guide us! Never fear I’m not saying “yes and no” here. It’s more complicated than that.
For a start, let’s look at production values. I know these aren’t the things that make or break a show, but they certainly make a difference. And Boy Drama have been a little inconsistent in this area. Some videos, like “I Walk on Hot Coals” or ”Crop Your Face out of Sexts” obviously have had a great deal of work put into them; they are HD quality, well lit, with a number of performers and flashy editing. On the other hand, their brief series parodying ‘enhanced reality’ shows “Kate, Kait and Klehla” isn’t as polished, the shots aren’t as well-placed, the editing isn’t as clever. I’m only left wondering why that might be. Why would a production company, ostensibly able to produce high-quality looking sketches simply settle. It may just be a case of getting better equipment or funding as they go along, but “Kate, Kait and Klehla” was made after their “I Walk on Hot Coals” video, so I’m frankly a little confused, and distracted by the varying quality.
Usually I wouldn’t take so much time to focus on the production values of any show, but in this case, the confusion I feel above is mirrored in what I feel about the comedy itself. In a couple of their 9 videos to date, Boy Drama really seem to know what they’re doing. The surreal “Health and Also Fitness” video is very well done. It’s creepy, manic and mad in all the right ways. The self-hating drive to diet and become skinny turns into a painfully funny nightmare – it’s clever and silly all at once. Yet, and I’m sorry to keep coming back to it, “Kate, Kait and Klahla” doesn’t match up at all, it’s silly, yes, but in a bad way.
It’s unfocused and very sloppy looking, like something you’d expect to see by 14 year olds. Like they didn’t want to put too much effort into it. I’m sure they in fact did put a lot of effort into it. Anyone who’s tried to make a film knows that even doing a short bit of filming is hard and very tedious at times. The problem is that it doesn’t end up looking like it wasn’t just thrown together. Again, “Crop Your Face Out of Sexts” is funny, well made, and clever, with a real attention to detail in parodying PSAs and campaign videos, but “Depressa” is sophomoric in comparison, it’s fairly funny in parodying hippyish ‘quirkyness’, but misses it’s mark somewhat in reeling off into distracting randomness.
It’s not always the most satisfying thing to report, but Boy Drama Productions have some very good material here, dark, silly and manic, but they are hamstrung by their own lack of focus. Their statement of intent said that they make stupid internet videos, and that is exactly what they do. And as with every stupid internet video, sometimes it will be gold and sometimes it will just be a bit too random for it’s own good. So by all means check out Boy Drama, but don’t rely on them to be consistent. However, if they do start to focus their energies into making top quality comedy every time, we could be looking at a lot more than a flash-in-the-pan viral success.