Back in July, we talked about a new hopeful web series premiering their first trailer around the San Diego Comic Con. Shelf Life, an R-rated Toy Story concept that promises to have action figures speak like no action figures before them, has been offering a vague "Late Summer 2011" release date for awhile now and is an example of one of the biggest problems with web series today: uncertainty. I'm not going to pretend to know why a series announces itself and then has such a hard time coming out with episodes. I do know that money is often a factor, as with all things. Still, you're ready enough to announce your show, everything seems imminent, and there's more delay? For what, I ask you, for what?
The Timing Of The Comic Con Announcement
I'm only guessing, but I think Comic Con might have arrived too early for the series, which was trying to build some steam based on the awareness the convention can create. Series co-creator Yuri Lowenthal, a huge name in voiceover for anime and a regular guest at the Con, basically had to announce the series around then. I mean, being tight-lipped would not have been an option, either.
So, unfortunately we've been left with an announcement, a vague release date, and no content. That's frustrating, and Lowenthal realizes that. So, he's offering the next best thing to actually releasing an episode. He's releasing a red-band trailer for the show.
Red Band Trailer For Web Series Shelf Life
A red-band trailer, if you're not aware, is one where you get to hear all the good cursing you can't hear in a green-band trailer, the kind you're used to when going to a movie theater (The following PREVIEW has been approved for ALL AUDIENCES). Red-bands got a bad rap for a while because of the shock value of hearing and seeing things you don't normally see in trailers combined with the accidental programming of those trailers on movies that weren't R-rated. They saw a little resurgence a few years ago, but for the aforementioned issues, they've pretty much been restricted to online viewing and get advertised on the theatrical preview.
So the release of a red band trailer means we will get to see how irreverent the Shelf Life series is claiming it is. The trailer that was released around Comic Con was fairly amusing, but certainly didn't let on to its dark side:
And here is a link to the red band trailer. I'll caution you, it's a bit rough, so if you're easily offended you may want to steer clear.
As frustrating as all of this is, at least we're getting updates from Lowenthal, his fellow actor/wife/producing partner Tara Platt, and others on Facebook and Twitter. Ah, the power of social media. So while we don't get an episode, we can still get some news now and again, and that's more than most web series in limbo give you. And getting a new trailer certainly helps the wait.