Reviews*

VGHS: S02E06

This is the final episode we needed, but probably didn’t deserve. I think it is too early to be showing character independence from one another, while I see that doing so allows the series to flesh out into the third season. Which is how I’m viewing this season by the way – a preface to the third season. And it’s not in that, “season two is before season three so of course it’s a preface,” but more of the order of the storytelling goes season one, season three, and oh, here’s what happened in-between. I’m not dismissing this season, but...

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VGHS: S02E05

I’m in a bit of a pickle. An inner being, psychological conflict. Let’s go through this episode, and see myself tear apart! YES! It’s the episode that has Rocket Jump and YouTube comments up in a stir – drama! I’ve added some screen shots below, but it really amazes me in what the audience wants compared to what we have been given in the past. Fabramaster, a YouTube commenter said, “I remember when vghs had vidio games nit soap operah drama [sic]”. Right on Fabramaster, right on. I remember a time when storylines were gripping, making me want to return....

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VGHS: S02E04

I’m starting to find the opening scenes of VGHS to be very stilted. I understand there is a need to get the major plot line for that episode out as soon as possible, but it is really lacking the engagement. Somewhere between the gun fights and action, to the attempt of storytelling interest in the characters are lacking. And I’ve spoken about this before. It really falls into the notion of “I’m not really sure where this series is heading”. There is a continual lack of need to root for a character, a need for me to return each episode...

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VGHS: S02E03

When VGHS does something right they do it darn good. This is one of those brilliant pieces of the series that makes you go, “this is worth television air time.” And that’s not some cop out flattery line, that’s a genuine really good storytelling. Which you should be able to tell – even in the description below the video – that this is one of the few episodes with minimal high frame rate scenes. What we are tending to see more often than not in western community films, web series, and television shows is the good guy always wins. Even...

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VGHS: S02E02

I wasn’t completely blown away with this episode. It was part way between good and meh. Not that I don’t like, or haven’t liked anything in VGHS so far but I finished this episode feeling like nothing happened, and oddly hungry. We’re beginning to see Mary Matrix’s (played by Cynthia Watros) side as coach, but it’s nothing more than any parent coaching their kid’s soccer team. She’s supposed to be good, amazing, an actual FPS freak. Yet I’m feeling quite underwhelmed by her character. There’s nothing to show me that she’s going to be as good as Ace from season...

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VGHS: S02E01

We’re back – well they’re back and this season is bigger, longer, and better than ever before. It’s been great to count down the anticipation of such a high production valued web series and see where things are one year on. So returning into a newly imagined world, we find our three main characters Brian (played by Josh Blaylock), Ted (played by Jimmy Wong), and Ki (played by Ellary Porterfield) in a new world playing together like we would in normal day to day life. Going on quests, while tlaking about your day and plans. It’s a breath of fresh...

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SYNC: Episode Twelve

Wow. Simply wow. You will not be disappointed with this series. Recommended to watch this episode two times over, and then in a start-to-end episode one to twelve. I’m not going to lie, this ending is a little confusing if you’re not familiar with singularity, and the theories behind its existence (if any). But in a nut shell, the programme that released the singularity in episode three has infiltrated every electrical equipment in the world. It knows everything, and anything it needs to. What is nice is the costume runs by Charlie (played by Tanner Thomason) as he speaks to...

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SYNC: Episode Eleven

This feels like a very quick episode. It nicely sets up the finale, as well as quashing some theories of how the series would end. There are some great lines, and visuals to go with this episode and cannot really fault it on anything – not that I’m looking. However, there are a few that I would like to raise that maybe someone can clear up. Firstly the elevator scene. I’m not sure if there are shots missing, or that I’m confused to why Carolin had to push for the alarm. Not in the sense of why but if the...

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SYNC: Episode Ten

Episode nine and ten seem to be back-to-back specials of a more intricate storyline than “save the world before sunset” as you’ll see in episode ten. We pick up directly from the end of episode nine, and follow Charlie (played by Tanner Thomason) and girlfriend/fiancée-to-be Reese (played by Lauren Plaxco) walking the streets looking for their perfect house. It is sweet, and nice to see more human elements to Charlie before the inevitable battle. They are talking about their children, and family that will live happily in the “house with a tyre swing” among other previously discussed cute, lovey-dovey propositions....

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SYNC: Episode Nine

A little comedy, seriousness, and love. The perfect formula to a mini story within a larger arc of the series. It is becoming somewhat difficult to keep track of the story time compared to real life time, where you’re expecting to be two weeks in the story rather than still three weeks ago, and only 24 hours into the future of the character’s world. But I think this is still something that needs to be addressed in the aspect of web series rather than SYNC’s making. Walking into the SYNC HQ and the guards all battered and bruised is a...

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SYNC: Episode Eight

Continuing the story is hard when you’re on the other side of the world, and the viewer knows everything has to take place in America. So there is no surprise with the fact an extraction team come and save Charlie (played by Tanner Thomason) and Yoshi (played by Krista Marie Yu) from the middle of nowhere in China. However, the more important parts of the series are seemingly occurring in the shorter sections of the episodes. For the first 30 seconds of the episodes we see the empty shells roaming around and even being disarmed by US soldiers. These sections...

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SYNC: Episode Seven

I’m not particularly a fan of this episode. It seems all too stilted, underdeveloped, and somewhat not in “sync” (yeah sorry about that) with the other episodes. The singularity has spread – we get that – and the rogue virus agent Charlie shells are roaming, assumably terrorising or controlling the mainland while people scavenge for safety. But something is off putting, making the episode distant from the others, and appearing like a “filler” while the story is being finished. The first quarter of the episode we are with Charlie (played by Tanner Thomason) and Yoshi (played by Krista Marie Yu)...

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SYNC: Episode Six

How on earth would you get from America to Hong Kong when you are a government asset, a “rogue” agent, have no money, passport, or clothes that are covered in blood? If you thought “clever scripting, and a tad of movie magic” then boy put on some new underwear ’cause you are right! Right, so leaving off last episode Charlie is on his way to Asia, to scout out one girl out of two billion people. Yeah I know right, pretty ambitious! But it sort of came to mind, how the hell is he going to travel across the globe...

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VGHS: Season One Roundup

Episode: One Two Three Four Five Six Seven Eight Nine So this round up/mixed content/thoughts on VGHS, and is going to explain some of the indirect links to YouTube. So take it in and understand the brilliance (or demise) of their creative work. To begin, the YouTube channel freddiew which I first stumbled upon from their Chrono Trigger video when viewing a Video Copilot post a couple of years ago. Ever since, I have seen all their videos, grown with them, and learnt a hell of a lot of film knowledge from just viewing. There’s more to that, but in...

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SYNC: Episode Five

I like this episode quite a bit. It reflects quite a bit of the “make use of what you have” and “secret government locations” that are quite rarely pulled off effectively, and efficiently. Pulling up to a dingy, two-man armed entrance is our beloved Charlie Cooper (played by Tanner Thomason). It somewhat looks like a restaurant, or lane way entrance of something out of their earlier episodes in Tokyo. It is simply perfect. It holds everything that a stereotypical government top secret agency should be. Especially the secret password to enter the building. Okay, so I’m not a complete fan...

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VGHS: Episode Nine

The final episode for the season. Wow – it really sums up that initial feeling for the viewing. It begins with your “big event” and the magical setup that is precise from professionals that have done it too many times before. There are two nicely preformed speeches in this episode, and a return for Ace (played Zackary Levi), while Dean Calhoun continues to be that all too funny character. I really think by now, that the creators seriously are playing for the “reverse effect” of traditional Hollywood cinema, by introducing something so cliche only to have a character (who reflects...

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VGHS: Episode Eight

This week has been crazy for me. I have been sitting here for the last week thinking to myself, “where the hell are we going to go now one episode out from the season finale?” It’s been hectic, imagining what it would be like, and if it could be pulled off, and would there be a time jump, AHHHHHHHH! But it’s all okay. This episode was just right to make me not worry about a season unraveling itself into distaste. Let’s forge forward! Wowzers, that is one fancy recap of last episode. Comical, detached, and somewhat fitting to the entire...

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VGHS: Episode Seven

If I wasn’t such a fan of 80s synth pop, and episode four, this would definitely be my favourite episode. It has a thing for everyone, be it action, adventure (set up), romance, and comedy. But not only that, it has some of the best scripting out of then entire season so far. Okay, okay, I know I probably splurge those words every episode, but this is seriously concrete, drafted content, and each shot is meticulously planned with everything. so shall we begin breaking down the episode? They are really playing off the format of their series. I remember a...

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VGHS: Episode Six

Some drama. Some remorse. Some “I don’t care anymore”. Some wow factor. That’s about it for this review I think. Okay, maybe not but this has the most impact, turning point, amazing affect on the audience at the end than any of the episodes so far. So we start of with a PS2 cover with DXM – tacky yet humorous – and the note of gratitude by Brian. Enter Ted and Ki, and a quiche and the scene goes out the window – literally. So I felt that Ted and Ki, though really great characters and there to aid Brian,...

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SYNC: Episode Four

Now this is a script that knows its editing, and that’s all testament to Sam and Niko’s (and Clint) time on YouTube as well as global films. Or maybe it’s just that Dr. John Wyatt (played by Jai Koutrae) has the best PR representative team that he can regurgitate the same respond over two interviews.. Who knows? What’s important to know is that Dr. Wyatt is unclear to be good or bad officially, despite his appearance to scream evil guy – that is until he enters the car and he initiates some plan in Hong Kong. This is when I...

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VGHS: Episode Five

What feels like the shortest episode yet, is the most intriguing as it removes itself from Brian’s world and places the focus on both Ted and Law. Each episode we delve into adds that extra layer of content to make this a firmly planted series, but this particularly was nice to see external characters grow, while still ultimately influencing Brian’s world. To begin, Ted is that kid we all want to be, and that child to the parent that they fear. With the explicit explanation that Ted faces the same world as the short film Overdrift (below), it is nice...

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VGHS: Episode Four

Everything about this episode is perfect. The story is great, the performances are second to none in value, while the overall feel is inviting. Be warned though, if you are into the series because of the guns, action, and adventure you may be disappointed as this focuses on dancing, neon lights, romance, and coconut. I said in the first review I am fond of opening title sequences because they teach you all about the film/television show without having to tell you explicitly what’s going to happen. The original title sequence is gaming related, 3D animated, and is something you are...

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VGHS: Episode Three

Another week, another lure you into a disliking of the opening scene. Yeah they did it again with the high school production value content, that makes me cringe with fear that each time it won’t be reversed into a play on itself. But it was (phew!) and quite nicely too. Waking up from dreams have always been a scape goat manoeuvre, but in this instance I felt that it was necessary to the cause. Whenever I see cats come out of character’s mouths – this was a first – it needs to be returned to reality, or needs to be...

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VGHS: Episode Two

A slow start to this episode, with stereotypical openings of what feels like high school productions. It’s very text book, with “show your environment” because as it portrays, is a no lose situation. But to open with such a stock standard script really questions if all that budget did go into the title sequence, and not really developing the characters. That is until we move into Dean Ernie Calhoun’s (played by Harley Morenstein) office, where you only get the vibe that the directors are playing, again, off that “fix the awkward moments in film by making it ridiculous”. Now I’m...

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SYNC: Episode Three

Very dark, slightly confusing, yet overly brilliant. This is an episode I recommend watching a couple of times over. Not solely to recognise who is in it, and their importance, but to actually understand what is going on. This is not to discredit the creators, but it is very minimal with the dialogue, and really requires a proper engagement with the audience (as a film in cinema would) because online holds too many distractions. We meet a new, near all Asian, cast that doesn’t distract from the S.Y.N.C. operation, or Charlie’s role as the protagonist. Yoshi (played by Krista Marie...

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VGHS: Episode One

I judge films, as any other film goer does too. The first thing you do when a film finishes if you go with some friends is ask, “what did you think?” It’s seriously a tough question to answer. Firstly, you were just immersed into the world of the characters, only to follow them wholeheartedly or not, and then place judgement of what should happen in your eyes. Secondly, you actually have to try an remember everything that has happened in the film itself, and regurgitate a constructed argument for feeling a certain way about the film. Gosh that is difficult,...

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SYNC: Episode Two

I’m a sucker for romantic comedies. I really am. And I also love tightly scripted films. If you love both those things like me, then this episode of Sync is for you. There are never really any visual content that leaves you breathless for the entire duration – at least not in our time where digital creation is in the hands of anybody. So to have this episode do that to me is just… magical. There isn’t really anything that’s “wrong”, or to my disliking other than if you aren’t into those genres then you may not like this. It...

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SYNC: Episode One

Shall we begin? How the heck are these two guys (Sam and Niko) not getting funded, publicised, and worshipped? This is one of the most tightly scripted pilot episodes for a web series I have seen, and reminds me quite fondly of Stanley Kubrick’s The Killing in terms of no room for error. It begins with what seems like a passed out body in the passenger seat, and it’s reveal is executed quite well to set up the remainder of the series. Shells seem to be the “disposable body” that these agents can use to extract information, and then switch...

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