Tuesday, 10 April 2007

[ 10. The Scrubs Podcast | iTunes ]

[ The Scrubs Podcast www.nbc.com/Scrubs/commentary ]

Scrubs is an American sitcom set in teaching hospital Sacred Heart Hospital, created by Bill Laurence and starring Zach Braff, Sarah Chalke and John McGinley. Each episode is around 23 minutes long, plus advert breaks making a half-hour show. Scrubs is shot with a single camera setup and is strange in terms of the fact that it doesn’t use a laughter track, although in a few episodes the directors have themed the premise of the episode, and sometimes changing the setup of the show, eg. one episode was featured in the style of a traditional sitcom in front of a live audience, and other few were in the style of musicals, featuring multiple camera setups. The podcast is available on iTunes and directly from the NBC website with near instant distribution, enabling a wide reach from the internet, and globalised distribution and proliferation due to the global broadcasting of the Scrubs series.

[ In Detail ]
The podcast is narrowcasted at all Scrubs fans, and generally people who are interested in Scrubs and the production techniques involved behind the scenes. In essence it is replacing possibly an article, and possibly replaces, though does not derive from or outdate a special feature on a DVD. The podcast is set to run alongside the TV episodes, intended to be listened to in parallel, and the commentators, usually the directors and the actors, eg. Sarah Chalke [ Sarah Chalke ] or John McGinley [ John McGinley ] comment on the scenes and jokes as they progress on the episode and say how it was shot or what they thought, allowing a non-linear, interactive and personalised viewing experience. Most of the podcasts are of the main characters’ favourite episode, or just episodes that are out of the norm. The main reason why these podcasts are popular is because firstly that they are easy to use and obtain and can be used at the same time as the TV show, giving a well-illustrated set of accounts by the commentators as they can directly refer to the actions on the screen. It also allows the fans to get closer to the show and the production process, making them feel integrated. It is unstructured and completely improvised. These are possible because of good quality recording equipment and high-speed broadband. Due to the proliferation of TVs and internet enabled computers/portable media devices in the home, watching the episode and listening to the podcast at the same time is made easy and flexible.
The Scrubs podcast is a good example of nearly all of the key terms, from quality to reach to convenience and portability.
[ The Charlie Brown Christmas Special parodied by the Scrubs cast ]

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