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Episode 119


The Fall Lineup

Show Notes


10/01/2019 | 53 Minutes

...and we’re back! Ticked took a summer break from recording episodes to work behind the scenes. We’re used to summer breaks, it’s nothing new. Primetime television takes summer breaks. Your kids take summer break. In this laid-back stoppage time, we share updates and ticks around the fall media landscape.


  • Ben’s a warm-weather person and has more tick offs around Fall than ticks. Fall only prolongs the inevitable that winter cold is coming. 

  • Curtis finds it romantically poetic the way nature kills itself off with the most vivid display of color. 

  • Curtis uses Fall as a soft reminder of the goals he set at the beginning of the year. Season is changing, consistent changes breed more curiosity and innovation. 

  • We both hate the inconsistency in temperature - show up in the morning freezing cause you didn’t dress appropriately, warm up until noon, bake in the afternoon sun until 6, head home in the wind to crank up your heating system. 


  • Originality in the entertainment industry versus “Rinse and Repeat”

  • Media in general is struggling between money-making and media-making. It’s all about money right now. Is content KING, or are subscription paid services...KING? 

  • Netflix Original content is king, in our opinion. They also have a budget north of 10 Billion dollars. Apple announced they spent 1 billion dollars on original content...but they’re merely releasing 6 shows on Apple TV+. So, nice try.

  • We look at the strategies behind our own media consumption. Ben uses entertainment more as a chance to escape, to relax, and then to learn. Curtis uses entertainment primarily to learn, then to relax. And those benefits are sometimes independents, sometimes co-dependent. 

  • Does the media you consume provide an adequate return on investment? That’s a question we should all be asking. 

  • Original content represents risk from the production team. That’s remarkable. 


Curtis: [00:00:00] The way nature kills itself in is with the most Vivid display of color.  I went to a birthday party. I think the kid was turning like six and that's irrelevant. But 

[00:00:13] Ben: [00:00:13] you also six or was this last week? 

[00:00:16] Curtis: [00:00:16] You mean to tell me that a middle-aged man with an emotional complex running away with a single woman to join.


[00:00:23] The circus was invigorating to you


[00:00:29] Ben: [00:00:29] know, it was for Chi.


[00:00:38] you're listening to ticked a series that explores the motivations and frustrations of driven. Visuals.


[00:00:53] welcome everybody to a new episode of The Tick podcast. This has been 


[00:00:57] Curtis: [00:00:57] and Curtis 


[00:00:59] Ben: [00:00:59] and guys were back. It has been a little bit 


[00:01:04] Curtis: [00:01:04] nice summer break. 


[00:01:06] Ben: [00:01:06] It's been a little bit since we last did an episode for you guys. And so we wanted to do a stoppage time episode today. Catch you guys up to speed on some of the behind the scenes that we've been working on and then also talk about stuff going on in life right now specifically kind of the Fall media lineup.


[00:01:26] Mmm and some tips and took off around that that Curtis and I have and as we. The episode we only thought it'd be fitting to you know, talk about your favorite Prime Time drama on NBC just had its Premiere last week. This is us Modern Family. Grazin, I don't I mean that's all I watch the old Berg's the New Amsterdam maybe Blacklist.


[00:01:55] Curtis: [00:01:55] That's the only show but I always watch it in recap. It is literally the only show that I know is actually on TV. I'm really surprised out of here Grey's Anatomy is still on TV 


[00:02:05] Ben: [00:02:05] just made that up. I pulled that out of the top of my head. I'm like, 


[00:02:07] Curtis: [00:02:07] I don't know what the I read it up. I'm looking it up.


[00:02:10] Is that is Grey's Anatomy in that show? Yeah was terrible I'm season 1 


[00:02:15] Ben: [00:02:15] also it's worth noting on stoppage-time episodes It's Curtis and I as the hosts and we just kind of sit back and relax and we've got three different products in front of us so that we can kind of Google search anything as it pops up.


[00:02:30] Gosh as we think about it 


[00:02:31] Curtis: [00:02:31] Grey's Anatomy you deep in season 16 first episode aired on 926 so last. 


[00:02:39] Ben: [00:02:39] Okay, Grey's Anatomy is still going and see is looking 


[00:02:44] Curtis: [00:02:44] it up. What 


[00:02:45] Ben: [00:02:45] else? No, so Justin Walker. This is looking that up like just like all of your favorite primetime dramas have their summer break and then they come back with the fall lineup.


[00:02:56] That's kind of what we did with ticked. 


[00:02:58] Curtis: [00:02:58] Yeah. I mean we weren't sitting in a trailer we did completely overhaul and rebuild the website and you can check it out. Let us 


[00:03:06] Ben: [00:03:06] know what you think. I can out-trick We would love all of the feedback shoot us an email if something doesn't work for you, you know.


[00:03:17] So this is kind of funny. I've gotten into the sitcom Silicon Valley right now and they did Curtis is gave me a look. I love it. They talked about the importance of beta testing because they're building an app. They're building kind of a software right and they want to do beta testing. And right now I would say the Tech podcast website is in kind of a beta testing area.


[00:03:36] It is 


[00:03:37] Curtis: [00:03:37] what you say. Yeah. Yeah, we're stretching and growing we're adding content. We want it to be an engaging experience. We want people to be able to find us and. I mean you guys are doing a great job sharing with your friends or listener base continues to go up and we're grateful for all the work that you're doing.


[00:03:53] But we really don't feel like you should lift this elephant alone. Yeah, we want to we want to contribute to how and when people find us. Yeah NCIS. Oh, yes 924. 


[00:04:05] Ben: [00:04:05] Oh, yeah, so they're going 


[00:04:07] Curtis: [00:04:07] season 1700 from markable. Yeah. It is remarkable. #bring back 


[00:04:11] Ben: [00:04:11] 24 


[00:04:16] Curtis: [00:04:16] only so many days. Yes our had to die.


[00:04:19] Ben: [00:04:19] Eventually Jack Bauer had to had to end I was going to say. There was a pretty cool experience with one of my friends that was using the website. So she was going through looking at everything. We were an RSL game together. Well great and she's flipping through and she's on her phone. Right and I ran some tests on my phone while I was designing the website, but ultimately I designed it more on on desktop and then optimized for mobile sure.


[00:04:44] So she started scrolling up and down and the menu on mobile was acting kind of funny and she told me right then and there she's like, I don't really like. This menu is responding to my scrolling on the mobile side. And I looked up some settings with our publisher and I was like, oh, yeah, there's a ton of different settings that I can do with the way that the menu like animates in and out and the functionality of it on a mobile site.


[00:05:08] That's totally different from the desktop site. Mmm, and that whole thing came about because of a beta user and the feedback that we were getting 


[00:05:15] Curtis: [00:05:15] so. That's awesome. 


[00:05:17] Ben: [00:05:17] You want to miss your feedback? We'd love to hear about your experience as you visit their website 


[00:05:22] Curtis: [00:05:22] absolutely 


[00:05:23] Ben: [00:05:23] also at the website. We want to kind of make it more of a destination place.


[00:05:27] We want to start putting transcripts of the episodes in there because really we want to start publishing more and more content on there. We're going to have a page that is like stuff. We're currently reading. Music is currently listening to which like with Curtis and I could just be Matt Carney's latest album.


[00:05:44] Curtis: [00:05:44] Yeah, in fact that might be as just a sticking point stays at the top 


[00:05:48] Ben: [00:05:48] exactly. So we want to create more content and allow it to kind of be more of a I guess a journal of all the episodes that we've done 


[00:05:58] Curtis: [00:05:58] and if anybody is listening and you happen to be in Nashville. And you happen to know Matt.


[00:06:05] We'd love to have him on the show. Oh totally moving on. Yeah, so summer break or back to school all-weather 


[00:06:12] Ben: [00:06:12] fall weather. We're wearing hoodies 


[00:06:16] Curtis: [00:06:16] and shorts. Yep. 


[00:06:17] Ben: [00:06:17] It's that time of year right now. We're like you wake up and you're wearing like a fleece to walk to your car, right and then one o'clock the sun shining through your office window.


[00:06:30] And you are faking in that fleece. 


[00:06:32] Curtis: [00:06:32] I agree. I think this is actually a very nice spot to take a rest. I'm interested Ben in the things that tick you off about fall including this moment that you just described. Yeah, and the things that you love or that are driving forces for the weather in Fall.


[00:06:52] Ben: [00:06:52] Well, I definitely have more tick off surround fall than ticks. 


[00:06:55] Curtis: [00:06:55] Really. Yeah. 


[00:06:56] Ben: [00:06:56] Okay my little warm weather person. And so the spring in the summer is exciting like spring is like all summer is on its way right? I'm like Olaf in Frozen like I'm all about summer. So then this summer is here and I love the warmth being outside, you know, and people always say like, oh when it's hot outside, you can't cool down as effectively as you can warm up when it's cold sure and for me.


[00:07:29] Body, I'm able to cool down a lot faster than warm up. I hold onto cold so much longer. Like I I get cold and I'm called for a long long time till March. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah, and so fall is only prolonging the inevitable that. All winter. Yeah that went that is winter like fall is only this sad the sad farewell to Summer and the cold that is coming in Winter.


[00:08:02] That's that's what fall is but I do love the colors. 


[00:08:09] Curtis: [00:08:09] Okay now yeah a really short list. 


[00:08:13] Ben: [00:08:13] That's yeah, I 


[00:08:16] Curtis: [00:08:16] mean, 


[00:08:18] Ben: [00:08:18] you know and I saw on Instagram the other day someone posted a picture of a tree that was changing color and they said it's beautiful to see how nature adapts and changes and let's go of things in order to begin anew.


[00:08:34] Curtis: [00:08:34] Yeah, I think 


[00:08:35] I 


[00:08:35] Ben: [00:08:35] thought okay, I could maybe I could do that in my life. What were you going to say Curtis? 


[00:08:39] Curtis: [00:08:39] No, I think there's some poetic Romanticism in the idea that the way nature kills itself in is with the most Vivid display of color. Oh, yeah of the whole year, right and I think like people always say, you know, I want to go out with you know, sliding into home base or whatever skin my knees or if I show up with scar or whatever.


[00:09:00] There's a hundred different metaphors, but I. That reminder of there's more to do and there's less time to do it or like this is transitioning and we sort of set up and establish our goals and our Ambitions on an annual basis. And so this soft reminder that oh, yeah, everything's about to die and it's going to get really cold and I have to finish my to-do list, right?

[00:09:23] Let's yeah, it's a helpful reminder. I love that aspect of it. I don't know if I could ever prove this or if I could ever even find the. A data back it but the concept of I think consistent changes outside breed more curiosity and Innovation. So I think that having a full four seasons is really helpful for this idea of.


[00:09:50] Of concern consistently even creativity like just the general idea that having a change outside is really beneficial to that process to keep your mind working and moving on the things that like, I definitely sign up on everything on your hate list like yeah idea that I'm going to show up in shorts in the morning.

[00:10:12] I'm going to freeze until noon. I'm going to sweat until 6:00 to go home and try to rethink how I. You can we make it through tomorrow. It might be helping that's dang. 


[00:10:23] Ben: [00:10:23] But today just today that work we get in my car for lunch. All of us are cold. We jumped in the car when I say all of us probably just my boss and I heard we jump in the car and we're like it's the perfect temperature in here.


[00:10:36] Like there's just a little bit of warmth, you know, if I had to number it I would say. 77 just enough warmth in there that like my fingertips were able to start moving again because they were so cold having been in my office and then in at the end of the work day I jump in my car to come here to the studio to record and my car is scorching hot.


[00:11:04] It was so hot in there because the afternoon sun had just caused it to bake all day. 


[00:11:09] Curtis: [00:11:09] Yeah, I think. Erratic shift between the dynamic or the polar ends of the spectrum. So the the harsh fluctuations is hard with the weather, but I do I do think it's a catalyst for good things and the soft reminder that.


[00:11:33] I mean Nature's just saying look, this is all I've got see you next year. Yeah, I think that's a really cool 


[00:11:40] Ben: [00:11:40] but going out with a bang. Yes, all the beautiful color. 


[00:11:42] Curtis: [00:11:42] Yeah. I think that's an awesome an awesome reminder of. You don't want to leave anything on the field. That's a terrible sports metaphor that I don't fully understand.


[00:11:55] Thank you Vince Lombardi forgiving it. Yeah. Yeah. 


[00:11:58] Ben: [00:11:58] Also you may know Curtis you may not that. I have I'm trying to get into the habit of naming all of my playlists after band names. Have I told you about this? 


[00:12:09] Curtis: [00:12:09] Yes, I think I think the level and degree of enthusiasm that you place on this effort is remarkable.


[00:12:15] Yeah and exemplary to someone like but I'm ready take it away tell so 


[00:12:21] Ben: [00:12:21] as we enter fall I'm getting excited. Well fall and winter I'm getting excited about to playlists that I can now listen to okay for a limited run. One is called the early November. 


[00:12:34] Curtis: [00:12:34] Who they just released another album. Yeah, correct.


[00:12:37] Yeah, I did. I am surprised I know that but and 


[00:12:40] Ben: [00:12:40] and I'll be honest. I don't know if any of the early November songs will be on that playlist, but it is music that I can listen to in 


[00:12:47] Curtis: [00:12:47] between 


[00:12:48] Ben: [00:12:48] the first and the 10th. 


[00:12:50] Curtis: [00:12:50] November that's it like fuck. Yeah short 


[00:12:55] Ben: [00:12:55] and then my Christmas album The Decemberists.


[00:12:59] Curtis: [00:12:59] Hmm.


[00:13:03] Ben: [00:13:03] Yeah, and then New Year's comes and it's done and it's over so this brings up something and I might be searching for a segue, but I'm going to run with it Curtis. Okay, the names of my playlist, I would consider that to be pretty original. 


[00:13:16] Curtis: [00:13:16] I have never met anyone in my life. Not only is that an authentic representation?


[00:13:22] I think that you can truly claim originality in the way that you do that. 


[00:13:25] Ben: [00:13:25] Yeah. Yeah, and you talked about how in the fall there's this opportunity to look at your creative your Innovation that there's four seasons during the year and you can kind of. Look at ways to be to kind of renew your creativity or to close out on some projects and start innovating on new projects as the year turns and things like that.


[00:13:46] Yeah, so I want to get your take a little bit on the entertainment industry at Large. And for this discussion, I'm talking movies. I'm talking TV shows. I'm talking streaming services. I'm talking artists. Could we 


[00:14:03] Curtis: [00:14:03] summarize with anything artistic? Yeah consumable 


[00:14:07] Ben: [00:14:07] nature anything artistic of the that we consume.


[00:14:12] Yeah, so I think we're seeing a lot of rinse and repeat versus. Originality. Yeah, what are some of your thoughts on the rinse and repeat cycle that we're in versus originality and then I have a comment or an example for for when you're done. 


[00:14:28] Curtis: [00:14:28] Yeah, generally speaking. I think that most. Most media is rinse and repeat right now and 

[00:14:36] Ben: [00:14:36] I'm actually tell are movies.

[00:14:38] Curtis: [00:14:38] Yeah, especially in movies. I mean if I go to another Transformers film for the rest of my life, my son really likes Transformers actually right now, so we started bringing home 

[00:14:49] Ben: [00:14:49] and see Mount Michael Bay fan. 

[00:14:51] Curtis: [00:14:51] He's not a Michael Bay fan, but like the original like the 1980s early 90s cartoon. I never really got into it as a kid because I went to a birthday party.

[00:15:01] I think the kid was turning like six and that's irrelevant. But 

[00:15:06] Ben: [00:15:06] you also six or was this last week? 

[00:15:10] Curtis: [00:15:10] I don't know that that's a pertinent question. I 

[00:15:14] Ben: [00:15:14] think I went to a birthday party. The birthday boy was turning 6. 

[00:15:19] Curtis: [00:15:19] Yeah now so as a kid, he got a check. He got a Transformer and it was this T-Rex and you take it out of the box and none of us.

[00:15:28] None of us at the party. There's probably 9 or 10 kids at the. Over none of us could figure out how to transform it into the man like into the like humanoid character or part of the Bots and I put them down and I never picked it up again. I thought Transformers are just too difficult for me.

[00:15:44] Uh-huh. And so they've changed that though because my son who's two and a half going on three can now they make Transformers that are much simpler and I'm just so grateful for the generation of Engineers who suffered my same frustration and ended up in. Toys so that piece of it I think generally to get back to your question and not philosophically wander.

[00:16:10] I think I think media at large struggles from a money-making versus creative display Challenge and I understand the challenge and I think it's fair to say it exists. We all need to feed our families. I am consistently happy when Wes Anderson releases a film because what I know is that I will get style but I will not get a repeat in story Concepts and I'm sure I'm sure there are people who can who can fight me on that and I'm I would be grateful for the discussion, but I think generally there's a lot of repeats and I think this fall that has been transitioned even more so to the services.

[00:16:59] That are being offered right? Everyone is releasing a streaming service. And so I'm now you know when I was saving on my cable bill, I'm now right back where I cable bill would have been to actually afford the infrastructure let alone the let alone the content 

[00:17:18] Ben: [00:17:18] what streaming services are you running now?

[00:17:20] And what are you looking to invest in come in the fall which a lot of these streaming services are releasing in November? 

[00:17:29] Curtis: [00:17:29] Yeah, so I think right now I don't know how true it is to my Millennial Roots, but we don't have cable. We don't pay for cable. We don't on occasion. We will watch a show from somewhere, but we don't we don't pay for any any cable service.

[00:17:45] So we we have Amazon Prime which is kind of like a gimme because the Death Star is just, you know allows you access to its whatever deals it can cut. Yeah and. We pay for Netflix and right now that's it. Why don't that's as deep as the list goes. I think Netflix is creating incredible original content.

[00:18:10] There are doing a lot of both right? I mean at a annual budget of north of 10 billion, no cheesy. They sort of they can they can afford to that's right now right now they can afford to go after see all of the above. I don't know Apple announced Apple. B+ I love Apple respectfully. Like I'm not that impressed with what's forthcoming Hulu just doesn't have most of the show's I'm really surprised that they got Seinfeld and that would have been the only reason I would have paid for Hulu so I don't we don't really watch anything there.

[00:18:51] So that's it. That's that's my lineup of streaming. I don't pay for a streaming music service. So Spotify Apple music like I'm out. I don't I 

[00:19:01] Ben: [00:19:01] use doing well you can do free. Defying is to have ads which is fine. 

[00:19:06] Curtis: [00:19:06] No like I don't I don't own the app. 

[00:19:08] Ben: [00:19:08] OK 

[00:19:09] Curtis: [00:19:09] I have this. 

[00:19:10] Ben: [00:19:10] So are you still jamming to TLC's don't go chasing waterfalls.

[00:19:15] What was record collection? 

[00:19:17] Curtis: [00:19:17] I have mixed tapes. 

[00:19:18] Ben: [00:19:18] What happened? Okay, that's where I was going. Yeah, that's like mixed tapes from past. 

[00:19:26] Curtis: [00:19:26] No, I mean I created them. I 

[00:19:29] Ben: [00:19:29] I can you made a copy for her and one Anderson. I'm gonna make it. 

[00:19:34] Curtis: [00:19:34] No, I I have this subtle but strongly bitter argument about attribution to the Creator and I know that Spotify pays people sort of well and apple music pays the artist sort of well, but if I find content that I like one of the one of.

[00:19:55] The the tests that it goes through is if I listen to this enough that. That I will pay for it. Like that's as a token of appreciation for me to the artist. Yeah, and so I'll try to actually in most cases by the discs and then still burn them into a library because I think that as much of that as much of those funds as can go back to the artist.

[00:20:24] I think that's appropriate. Yeah. Yeah. And it's completely inefficient. So it's one of the few areas where I will gladly sit on a stool and do a little bit more work because good art is. It's really hard to turn down and when that gets washed in with every other song that was calculated to work at a hundred and twenty eight beats a minute and pick up your heart rate.

[00:20:51] And I don't like I just anything that's calculated to sell very rarely is impressive to me. Then we're like way down a rabbit hole. I'm curious as to what your what Your take on all of this is as well. 

[00:21:07] Ben: [00:21:07] Yeah. Well, I'm the complete opposite. 

[00:21:11] Curtis: [00:21:11] Okay, 

[00:21:13] Ben: [00:21:13] that's the that's the quick summary. I'm bought in man.

[00:21:16] I am I am the quintessential 30s single man with a great job and I have Netflix. I have Hulu I'm not going with the Disney plus 

[00:21:32] Curtis: [00:21:32] you're not going to do Disney 

[00:21:33] Ben: [00:21:33] block gonna do Disney Plus. And let me talk about this a little bit. So Disney plus is going to be what $13 a month and it's also including Hulu and ESPN.

[00:21:45] Curtis: [00:21:45] I believe that's part of it. Yeah. 

[00:21:47] Ben: [00:21:47] Yeah, so in my current apartment Xfinity. Is part of our package that I have to buy into 

[00:21:56] Curtis: [00:21:56] as like rent? 

[00:21:57] Ben: [00:21:57] Yes. Oh, there's like a media package. That's part of the the apartment cost. 

[00:22:02] Curtis: [00:22:02] Oh, well, 

[00:22:03] Ben: [00:22:03] okay, and so I have to have an Xfinity and it's very very basic but that gives me a login for ESPN on apps.

[00:22:10] That's fair. And so I'm using ESPN on my apps right on the phone on the iPad do 

[00:22:16] Curtis: [00:22:16] they broadcast RSL games 

[00:22:18] Ben: [00:22:18] not RSL games, but I've caught. 

[00:22:22] Curtis: [00:22:22] Like 

[00:22:22] Ben: [00:22:22] all catch like like US men's soccer games. I'll catch big time football games that kind of stuff. Okay a couple weeks ago. I wanted to catch the Utah State season opener.

[00:22:33] I'm a big Utah State fan in came out or yeah, but Utah state was playing against Wake Forest and it was on the. Coast Conference station, right and the only way to get it was through Apple TV, which I didn't have or you could add on live sports on Hulu 

[00:22:55] Curtis: [00:22:55] Okay. 

[00:22:56] Ben: [00:22:56] So I did my 7-Day free trial baby and I got access to that football game and I gotta say that the who live TV interface was 

[00:23:08] Curtis: [00:23:08] remarkable.

[00:23:09] I do think 

[00:23:10] Ben: [00:23:10] it put it put. Xfinity to shame 

[00:23:14] Curtis: [00:23:14] I think that's a fair assessment. I think fubo and Sling all of the interfaces are gorgeous way way better than that blue blocky Yellow Block crud that all the cable companies put I would tend to agree. Yeah. I think we're headed to a more perfect world.

[00:23:36] Ben: [00:23:36] Let's hope 

[00:23:37] Curtis: [00:23:37] of consumption 

[00:23:38] Ben: [00:23:38] of consumption but. But I digress a little bit also, so I've already got a great Hulu package, right? I get ESPN on my app because I've got this log in with Xfinity and also I don't I'm not interested in purchasing. Like for $13 a month what's currently out on Disney plus and I know that I'm going against the grain here.

[00:24:08] I have some dear friends that might really be upset with what I'm about to say, but like I don't need access to the high school musical series. That's fair, 

[00:24:17] Curtis: [00:24:17] right? I don't know that anybody 

[00:24:19] Ben: [00:24:19] Disney's no, well the world according to Jeff goal. Actually the world according to Jeff Goldblum would be pretty funny could be 

[00:24:26] Curtis: [00:24:26] could be.

[00:24:27] Ben: [00:24:27] Yeah, but like. So basically Disney Pixar Marvel Star Wars National Geographic. Oh and all 30 seasons of The Simpsons is all included on Disney plus and I don't I'm just not interested in owning any of that or being able to stream it at any time because everything is a rinse and repeat 

[00:24:49] Curtis: [00:24:49] meaning that it's repeat and content.

[00:24:52] Ben: [00:24:52] Yeah. Yeah, it's the same if she was our journey that we hear that that you know, it's the remake of Lady and the Tramp. It's the remake of The Lion King. Oh gosh, it's yeah 

[00:25:04] Curtis: [00:25:04] FernGully for I'm looking at you Avatar.

[00:25:10] Ben: [00:25:10] Pocahontas Fern before we started recording you had mentioned the streaming of The Sound of Music. 

[00:25:17] Curtis: [00:25:17] Oh, I think stuff like that is I'm with you. I think it's a little bit of a catch. I also think though that the sound of music is like a it's hard to get your hands on that anymore. And it's a very it's a it's a mile marker in film history.

[00:25:34] It's a very classic film. The story is valid even today. I think there are notes that could be taken from it. So I think this also those strikes at a route that I'm interested to see because there's a like you consume what is. Media consumption strategy, like how do you determine what you're going to watch?

[00:25:58] Because I think that's important in this. I mean I have a kid and I'm telling you the Incredibles on repeat for 6 hours. Like that's a thing is real it happens. And and in a lot of ways. I'm just so grateful that. And I'm a Pixar fan anyway, so it's probably unfair to use Pixar in this illustration.

[00:26:19] But I'm so grateful that Pixar exists because for the most part they've had a stint of repeats and extending the serial nature of some of their stories, but but there's a lot of original ideas on the table for Pixar. Yeah, and so for me having that entire library on tap is like kind of a cool Prospect.

[00:26:41] Yeah and and to my own strategy I would. Would likely just by the films but I'm tired of you know, VHS to DVD DVD to Blu-ray Blu-ray date K Blu-ray and I had that that purchase and Disney does a great job of you know, taking that money out of your pocket. Anyway. Anyway, I'm interested in your strategy of how you choose what to consume.

[00:27:05] Ben: [00:27:05] This is a great thing to bring up and it's probably the obvious thing that I just never. Saw in front of me bringing all this up, but depending on your station in life depending on the people in your family are those that you enjoy TV or media with greatly dictates where you spend your money.

[00:27:22] Curtis: [00:27:22] Right. So for you, it's people who you're with 

[00:27:26] Ben: [00:27:26] a lot of it is who I'm with so I have a text thread with some friends and we text back and forth of like did you check out this documentary on Netflix? You got to watch it and then let's talk about it. Mmm so Netflix. All right, I'm gonna break it down for you.

[00:27:42] I'm. Netflix represents things of the past or Netflix originals or things that are pretty proprietary to Netflix, right? Okay Hulu is my One Stop Shop for current TV shows that I missed the night before. 

[00:27:58] Curtis: [00:27:58] Okay, 

[00:27:59] Ben: [00:27:59] like the good place and. Um, this is us. This is us. 

[00:28:07] Curtis: [00:28:07] This has become a staple in your life.

[00:28:09] Yeah, who do you so to to the nature to the nature of your theory 

[00:28:14] Ben: [00:28:14] Henry? I'm revealing way too much information about myself. 

[00:28:17] Curtis: [00:28:17] Who-who do you watch This Is Us with 

[00:28:21] Ben: [00:28:21] sometimes friends sometimes with a Coke? Okay, 

[00:28:26] Curtis: [00:28:26] okay. 

[00:28:29] Ben: [00:28:29] All right, but but I have I have groups of friends that I text about the show I have group with some friends at work that we talked about it.

[00:28:37] I have other friends where we sit down on the on the tracks train to go to the RSL game. And it's did you watch this week's episode of This Is Us. 

[00:28:47] Curtis: [00:28:47] This is remarkable. Okay, continuing so this is 

[00:28:51] Ben: [00:28:51] us and this is remarkable. Yeah, um also like modern family right modern family is in the final season 11 Seasons running.

[00:29:01] This is their final farewell season and it's on Hulu. So if I don't catch it on Wednesday nights, I mean a posts to Hulu at like 3 a.m. Thursday morning, and I believe I'm able to watch it. The next day 

[00:29:14] Curtis: [00:29:14] is part of is part of the strategy as an escape. Do you go you go to Media as as a method of of Escape?

[00:29:25] Ben: [00:29:25] Yeah. It's a chance to decompress. So relax. 

[00:29:29] Curtis: [00:29:29] Yeah, so this is. 

[00:29:30] Ben: [00:29:30] This is also to feel inspiration like all the writing in this is incredible. Like I when I when I watch. Media right maybe listening to music as well. I guess could go for this. I I look into so many different aspects. I realize a lot of people could probably say that they that they look into all these different aspects of media, but I look at the writing.

[00:29:56] I look at the acting I look at the way the story reveals itself throughout the episode. I look at did I call the ending or not? All that stuff is really just captivating for me 

[00:30:11] Curtis: [00:30:11] a classroom. 

[00:30:12] Ben: [00:30:12] Yeah. Yeah, 

[00:30:13] Curtis: [00:30:13] so there is there is some aspect of it for you. That is a classroom. And is that who you're with again that that determines like if I'm going to a movie with?

[00:30:25] I'm I'm going to this will be an exercise that is as much academic as it is entertaining totally. Yeah. Hmm. What and just out of curiosity when you're watching. This is us with the coke. That's just pure escapism right this. Yeah. Okay, go ahead sir.  

[00:30:47] Ben: [00:30:47] to this point I was going to bring this up a little bit earlier when you were talking about Innovation and.

[00:30:54] And this idea of our we are what we consuming. Is it a rinse and repeat or is it an original content piece Ad Astra the movie starring Brad Pitt and Probably sounds you have not seen it. 

[00:31:06] Curtis: [00:31:06] I have not 

[00:31:07] Ben: [00:31:07] yet. I sought a week ago and I loved it. It's a thinker movie. I think a lot of people will say. Wow, it moved really slow and it wasn't for me.

[00:31:18] The musical composition complements this idea of thinking and the way that Brad Pitt's character evolves in his thinking throughout the show and it causes you as an audience member to also evolve in your thinking right? Okay, and the end with it being a thinker movie. In the end I sat there and I'm the kind of person that watches the credits and I'm sitting there just really thinking hard on on what this main character went through and it's kind of like a hero's journey of facing your shortcomings facing your fears facing whatever is uncomfortable and and being able to acknowledge that and then learn from.

[00:32:01] And I read several articles that argue we've been so saturated for the last five or six years with super hero hero Journeys and it's the same thing over and over and over again. And then you get movies like Interstellar or you get things like a rival or you get things like Ad Astra that promote this different perspective.

[00:32:26] I think of the hero's journey, and it was very refreshing for me. And then I read another article that talked about how Ad Astra examines man's relationship with a higher power and that blew my mind 

[00:32:40] Curtis: [00:32:40] and in a good way or like in an argument of I don't think it did that at all. 

[00:32:46] Ben: [00:32:46] In in the ladder. Yeah in the argumentative.

[00:32:48] I don't think it did that at all. I don't know if I agree with what the author here is saying, but I can see reasoning why and there are specific plot points that point the further kind of support his argument, but I could say oh you're reaching a little. Right, but it was it was so fun for me to get back from watching this movie and then to read several articles about it and learn more about how this is.

[00:33:17] Why the writer did this? This is what Brad Pitt was thinking when he did this this is there's a pivotal moment in the movie when he shifts from a robotic. 

[00:33:30] Curtis: [00:33:30] His serpent. 

[00:33:31] Ben: [00:33:31] Yeah, like his his past is more robotic. He's more closed off. He doesn't deal with his feelings and then his present is someone who acknowledges his feelings because he's he's learning to see his shortcomings and deal with them in his hero's journey and it happens in a very particular scene that is beautifully lit throughout the film.

[00:33:53] The use of white backgrounds is very prominent, and then they're able to project. Any kind of color they want on the background. So you'll the entire screen will be washed over with kind of this orange Hue and then during the one continuous shot it'll switch to red. It'll switch to yellow. And so there's like a there's like an independent filmmakers feel to this because not Everything feels like it was commercially produced.

[00:34:21] It feels like they really explore their own artistic Journey. But then there's also commercialism and it as well that was another reason why I really like this movie. I'm just kind of babbling here Curtis any thoughts. 

[00:34:34] Curtis: [00:34:34] Yeah. I think everything you've said is completely Redemptive to the idea that you consume media as an escape artist.

[00:34:41] Yeah, the it's not and I have nothing against that I have some dear friends and neighbors who go to the movie to escape and it doesn't really matter what the movie is in a lot of respects like if they have defined interests, but I sort of I don't know that Envy is the right word, but I enjoy that people can do that because I've come at this almost entirely as a classroom exercise since I was a small child.

[00:35:10] Child. Oh, yeah, I fully expect that the media I consume should be giving me something back like to the degree that in my early 20s. I sat down at one point and built a spreadsheet around if I watch one two hour movie a week. That consumes roughly four-and-a-half 24-hour days a year and I think men if I'm giving four and a half days of my time, which is full days, right?

[00:35:37] So it's like almost a week and a half two weeks of work when you start crunching the numbers like if I am going to systematically cash that much of my time, which is a currency. We don't get more of right we all have the same amount, but if I'm going to use that currency of time, Go consume. I really need it to provide me something in return.

[00:35:59] And so everything you've just described about Ad Astra. Those are like the moments. Those are the moments for me when the camera gets used as a tool box when light when light is. Paintbrush and to help personify and exemplify the story that's on on display and when I walk away and have the opportunity to think about this for weeks afterward, or I go back to the music because it's just enriching like maybe it's a true-to-life story or a near realistic sci-fi.

[00:36:32] Venture I just that's that's what I expect the media to provide a return on investment and so in in that respect I try to be I try to be much more conscientious about what I choose to watch now some of that has just been blown to crap as I have kids and like like there's just a necessity of like trying to find a way to.

[00:36:59] I just I don't sometimes there's just not a good way to help media as a tool media as a babysitter who that's dangerous who? Like it's a it's a valuable token. It's a great tool in your box of tools to help to help, you know, as much described to your kids the magic of the world as it is like no, no just sit here.

[00:37:27] I need to take this phone call and then we can continue to play or like as a diversion. It's as much a tool for diversion. Yeah, so I don't it's generally not Escape. Like I generally don't go into media with an escape which sort of in my mind, right? Soph a lot of serialized TV. Okay, like the half hour 45 minute drama is it's hard for me to consume unless the characters are really really compelling.

[00:37:58] Yeah. Which is why I go to The Blacklist and there's a hundred people that just went. Oh gosh, that's totally fine. I could I can take that argument all day as well. But I just love Raymond Reddington. So the last two seasons. The only thing I've watched is the finale because I just need to get a taste of Raymond Reddington and understand where they're gonna go from here.

[00:38:19] Yeah. But I think like like an Ad Astra on a rival even something as simple. Like what was that saving? Mr. Banks Disney didn't like I thought that movie was beautifully crafted. The music is Rich. The story is profound and. I think it's compelling when you have someone who's not a traditional antihero, but someone who has a terrible character flaw, but you feel empathy for them like through the process and and what that.

[00:38:53] What that drives in each of us to have to reflect on the world in which we live a little bit differently and maybe somebody takes away the concept that like this is teaching me about God or a higher power of okay, great. Not not what I walked away with but but very thought-provoking. In your own right or in its own right for you as well.

[00:39:16] Ben: [00:39:16] Yeah, what you're bringing up right now is interesting to me that that I can definitely resonate that I look at media as an escape artist. And if it turns into a classroom for me, it's like a double double 

[00:39:27] Curtis: [00:39:27] double win. 

[00:39:29] Ben: [00:39:29] Real help. Yeah double rainbow all the way. Yeah bingo. So so I have a basic need and then a higher need and if both of those if even one of those needs are met it is a win for me.

[00:39:44] It's a great use of my time. Mmm, and it's interesting. Your basic need is is my higher need. 

[00:39:51] Curtis: [00:39:51] Oh, that's an interesting take right there. So, mr. Taylor, so hold on, 

[00:39:55] Ben: [00:39:55] but then I also think that there is a bit of Escape. Just for you. 

[00:39:59] Curtis: [00:39:59] Oh, yeah, 

[00:40:00] Ben: [00:40:00] if it meets that first need 

[00:40:02] Curtis: [00:40:02] yes, if it's compelling than I'll invest on the like, okay.

[00:40:06] This was a fun ride. 

[00:40:07] Ben: [00:40:07] Yeah, like for me my two variables are independent of one another like it can be an escape artist or it can be a classroom experience other like either way or it's both is a win right for you. One of them Builds on the other one. I agree, which is interesting. 

[00:40:22] Curtis: [00:40:22] That's a fair assessment 

[00:40:23] Ben: [00:40:23] and I really want to know what other listeners are thinking right now.

[00:40:26] Are you an escape artist when you. Consume media. Are you going there for a classroom situation where you can learn something from what's going on on on screen? Maybe what else would there be 

[00:40:41] Curtis: [00:40:41] well, so that's it's an interesting point. It may it may point to the like I find just as much enjoyment in a really good book or a well produced podcast then.

[00:40:56] I don't necessarily need images. I'm fine taking the ride through a number of things. And so I just finished to that end. I just finished reading Malcolm gladwell's newest book talking to strangers. Mmm. If you find yourself in need of an audiobook ride from Heaven, I mean, it was awesome. Yeah, it's just a really good piece of art.

[00:41:15] I would definitely recommend listening to it. He stitches in anytime. He quote someone he stitches in the audio. And he's got like undertones of music through the whole book. So it's like 11 and a half hours of his podcast a really great ride, but 

[00:41:32] Ben: [00:41:32] production behind that was a massive undertaking.

[00:41:36] Curtis: [00:41:36] Yeah, it was remarkable and and he's labeling it as a first of its kind. It's the first time I've ever heard of an author or or an artist doing that but I find academically or intellectually stimulating in any regard. Card from from wherever I think there's a short stories even I think Pixar's shorts are the greatest thing ever.

[00:42:02] Yeah and the minute that Toy Story 4 opened without a Pixar short. I was out I checked out. I hate that film. I hate everything about that film. It's beautiful. It's beautiful. The the shots are incredible that the camera work in the light is phenomenal. I hate the story. Hey story. Hey, 

[00:42:22] Ben: [00:42:22] Toy Story 4 reinvigorated me in the series.

[00:42:26] Curtis: [00:42:26] You mean to tell me that a middle-aged man with an emotional complex running away with a single woman to join the circus was invigorating to you.

[00:42:39] Ben: [00:42:39] No, it was four 

[00:42:40] Curtis: [00:42:40] key a piece of trash reincarnated. 

[00:42:44] Ben: [00:42:44] Yeah with an existential crisis, 

[00:42:48] Curtis: [00:42:48] but I can I can totally look I think the way 

[00:42:52] Ben: [00:42:52] Key and Peele made an appearance right 

[00:42:54] Curtis: [00:42:54] those two those two completely. Oh, I think that I'm I'm fine with Key and Peele. I just don't think they were a good addition to that series anyway, so 

[00:43:04] Ben: [00:43:04] what caused you to just like just dismiss the entire movie?

[00:43:08] Curtis: [00:43:08] So like Pixar has 22 storytelling rules that they established when they establish the company. Wow will never do songs will never I'm telling you. I love I love I love what they did at that company and and it's just not true to more than half of those rules. That's like, okay like this is what the law of gravity looks like inside the building at Pixar and they just kind of threw that out and and I really do think you could.

[00:43:38] Could make a really cynical Twitter summary statement about how like Woody Woody gives up. His voice his voice is the most precious aspect of his character all the way through the film. It's the cause of all of his internal conflict to not be in the number one spot on Andy's bed to not be the leader to not it's in every film up to the fourth film.

[00:44:01] He shows up to some half-witted baby doll and hands it over like it's spare change in his pocket. And what does he get out of it? He doesn't there's no there is no intrinsic return on that investment the baby. All doesn't get what she needs and gets thrown in a bin and we're all okay and nobody has what he has lost his voice forever.

[00:44:22] Like I could do this all day. Yeah, I think about it way too much. Like I said, it's always a classroom and that doesn't necessarily mean that I'm trying to tear it apart at all times. But but I do expect something in return. Yeah. I feel let down. When a Creator pushes something that is or a group of creators pushes something that is obviously less than their best the Integrity the technical team at Pixar did remarkable the circus lights the I mean 

[00:44:55] Ben: [00:44:55] the whole teaching and my 

[00:44:57] Curtis: [00:44:57] gosh it was awesome and it was vibrant and the colors are rich and they've come so far 

[00:45:02] Ben: [00:45:02] and pine nut cleaners on Four Keys arms 

[00:45:05] Curtis: [00:45:05] the fur the fur on.

[00:45:07] I'm T and peels character and the way that it moved and the fluids and the like all of that was gorgeous and it was an empty shell who's an empty shell. Mmm. It did it did nothing for me emotionally. Yeah, and my son fell asleep. 

[00:45:23] Ben: [00:45:23] You can be you can be wowed by the technical aspects in the filmmaking aspects and I think you and I share that in common.

[00:45:30] Yeah the educational piece where for me I'm like, oh man, these technical aspects are awesome. I like the educational piece. And take a backseat for me. Yeah for you. It doesn't take it back seat. 

[00:45:41] Curtis: [00:45:41] Yeah. Yeah, that's that's fair. Yeah, that's good. That's fair. It really really has to build on it.

[00:45:47] And if the story's not there if the story is not compelling or rich or. I don't know like as much as I don't like, I mean, I'm a I just am not a really strong advocate for most Marvel films. I don't think you need to see a Marvel film more than once. Mmm and that to me is a like if there's no the Guardians of the Galaxy's was an exception.

[00:46:11] I think that that film was written incredibly it was incredibly witty. 

[00:46:15] Ben: [00:46:15] That's a fun time of the theater. Yeah, that is a fun time at the theater 

[00:46:19] Curtis: [00:46:19] and it's a moment when I'll take a ride and just. Grateful that the the ride was fun 

[00:46:25] Ben: [00:46:25] while it lasted is an escape for you. Yes. Yeah 

[00:46:29] Curtis: [00:46:29] because it's just so far out there that okay, so they broke all of their roles who cares like yeah, like it's a it's a fun ride.

[00:46:37] So there are moments of that but I think they're much more sparse in their Horizons for me than to your point. Then then your own consumption. Yeah, and most of the time it has to be an added an additional benefit one plus one. 

[00:46:52] Ben: [00:46:52] Yeah. Well to put an end cap maybe on this particular discussion Ad Astra for me and I hope for you.

[00:47:00] I think we should go together to see this it satisfied both the technical aspects for me. Like oh there's a commercial Studio behind this. So it's also got this amazing independent film festival feel to it with all things are doing the acting is there's a moment in one single shot. This shot is probably.

[00:47:22] Ford five minutes of duration and Brad Pitt goes through five or six different emotions and breaks down and sheds a single tear and to film for five or six minutes knowing that you have to cry at the end and and go from this spectrum of closed off. I don't want to talk about my past to I'm I'm beginning to learn about my past and I'm beginning to give Credence to that and then and then to break down.

[00:47:49] And have vulnerability about that afterwards like that shot happened and I was moved right so I think for you there is the technical aspect and I think there's the educational. And I'm hopeful that you agree with me. 

[00:48:05] Curtis: [00:48:05] I'm I 

[00:48:06] Ben: [00:48:06] don't know of any listener will agree with me. They can all disagree. I don't care sure.

[00:48:10] But I want Curtis. 

[00:48:12] Curtis: [00:48:12] I'm in to agree. I'm in and and for the record for the second half of this year. There were only two films that I saw like on the lineup that I've really been interested in Ad. Astra is one of them. Yeah. The second is Ford versus Ferrari. I think that story is fundamentally astounding it's really invigorating.

[00:48:31] Though some could make the argument the whole thing was driven on Pride. But but I love I love the dynamic combination of Matt Damon and Christian Bale. Yeah on screen together. I think that'll be a I'm excited for that 

[00:48:47] Ben: [00:48:47] how that's really I think I'm the most excited for those things that are completely original even if it's a total bomb, even if I go and I'm like, oh this this flopped but it represents a risk that someone took.

[00:49:01] Curtis: [00:49:01] Yeah, that's a good point. Like I walk away from every OK Go music video thinking wow. I can be a better person Yak in the strangest conceptual way. Like I just think someone dumping their whole heart and soul into a project like that and maybe that's why shorts are so remarkable as well because.

[00:49:23] If you're going to tell a story in six minutes, you have to do it perfectly 

[00:49:26] Ben: [00:49:26] it all. Yeah. 

[00:49:27] Curtis: [00:49:27] Yeah you have I mean that's every shot counts and I think I think having those kind of stakes on the line to this idea of just original like that's still all the stakes are on the line. They've cashed in a money bet they've cashed in a yeah, I like that.

[00:49:45] I like it when you can feel that somebody put some sweat and tears into it and maybe just a little blood. 

[00:49:54] Ben: [00:49:54] And as you're saying that I just I go back to This Is Us.  and I know I go there a lot but and I know that a lot like some people are like. Not enjoying the series as much because there's not been as much character growth, right but I say no, there's plotlines and storylines where they are taking risks and they answer in season for a question.

[00:50:23] They posed in season 2. 

[00:50:25] Curtis: [00:50:25] Mmm, 

[00:50:26] Ben: [00:50:26] they'll lay a scene in season 4 that's going to have like relevance and season six. Hmm and the Riders have this entire hierarchy already planned out and they just slowly put the pieces in place that's person. I love that. I love that and when I explain that to my friends, they always come back and say oh I need to pay more attention when I watch the show and I'm like exactly.

[00:50:54] Curtis: [00:50:54] So that's probably a takeaway. I don't know that you've sold me entirely. I can't commit to watch this as us yet. 

[00:51:00] Ben: [00:51:00] It's Sterling K Brown. That's all I gotta say. 

[00:51:02] Curtis: [00:51:02] That's fair. Yeah, but but my biggest takeaway from their their ads has always been or like their pre-roll stuff preseason roll stuff is it's always like I think they made this for middle-aged women.

[00:51:20] Ben: [00:51:20] and Ben.

[00:51:25] Curtis: [00:51:25] On that note. It's nothing personal. But every time every time I see an advertisement for that show, I just think I don't think I've never market like that's which is very limited. I don't have TV. So I'm not seeing a ton of I'm not getting a ton of exposure to the show, but I think I think I'll leave it with that.

[00:51:45] I mean we've kind of covered we have covered we've covered fall we've covered change we've covered. Risk, I think all of these are inspiring topics to the Native American week. 

[00:51:56] Ben: [00:51:56] We identified why we invest in media. Yes. We 

[00:52:02] Curtis: [00:52:02] went 

[00:52:02] Ben: [00:52:02] down soluble. We went down some story paths that you and I did not brainstorm ahead of this Episode 

[00:52:07] Curtis: [00:52:07] II think the riffing is helpful.

[00:52:10] Ben: [00:52:10] Yeah, absolutely 

[00:52:11] Curtis: [00:52:11] on that note we're back. It's 

[00:52:13] Ben: [00:52:13] that time of year when people return and we're sorry that we had to take some time away. But you know what we're back and we're excited for where we're going to go. Thanks everybody for listening. And stay ticked.

[00:52:29] Like all good podcasts. We have a website. You should check it out. You can rate and review the show on iTunes or anywhere else you listen to podcasts and if it's going to be less than 5 stars shoot us an email with your ideas on how we can make the show better. We'd also love to be your friend on social media and speaking of friends if you heard something that inspired you this week or just made you laugh share this episode with one.

[00:52:52] And after all the world needs a little more light have a great week and stay ticked.

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