Thursday, 17 January 2008

Fossilised mobile content at The Gym

In a surprisingly savvy move (has Michael Grade actually started expanding his imagination past the ad breaks?) ITV have announced a new multi-platform comedy series, The Gym, to start this Monday.

With the frankly unfathomable mind of Boosh compatriot Rich Fulcher at the controls there’s definite potential for this to be special. According to Media Guardian, the show is set in a Gym and will feature such Fulcherish inventions as Eduardo The Warrior Cleaner and a buff personal trainer called…Gee. Also on board is Watson & Oliver/Plus One’s Ingrid Oliver.

The show will be downloadable on mobiles, with an online version available a week after. Whether it’ll get a proper telly showing is unclear, but we all know TV is a dead medium (regardless of what the BBC say) so it doesn’t matter really. (UPDATE According to BBCi it will indeed be on TV, dead medium or not) It’s a bold move by the channel, whose comedy output tends to be a bit piss poor and everyman (although we have great hopes for ITV2’s Laura, Ben and Him), and whose grasp of next generation Webbyness has not really stretched past scamming school girls out of SMS cash, oh and Hot Desk. Frankly it’s hard to trust a channel whose media player doesn’t work on Macs, in a time when the BBC iPlayer is kicking ass so much.

It’s also worth mentioning that mobile led video content has never really taken off, although that might be because it’s often not very good, as the Red Dwarf ‘Mobisodes’ (The Gym is apparently a ‘Mobicon’) have shown. Still, Rich Fulcher’s anarcho-silliness is a good indication that something special might, just might, happen here.

Of course baring in mind Fulcher’s occasional tendancy to misfire and the fact that, well, this is ITV after all, it might not be all that.

It’s an interesting move though.

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