Screengrab via All Over It/Vimeo

Why ‘All Over It’ sucks and why that’s a problem for the webseries genre

And now a cynical repackaging of something that wasn't very good to begin with.

Mar 1, 2020, 10:31 am*

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Tom Harrington

What is All Over It supposed to be? If you can be bothered to watch the first three episodes of this webseries you’ll be struck by a couple of puzzling things: A pacing strangely at odds with its troubling lack of humor—moments build to comic opportunities where you are continually left short-handed—and a discombobulated narrative arc that flies in the face of most accepted dramatic wisdom. In other words, it tells no story and it isn’t funny.

The answer won’t be found within this tedious disaster, but instead in the knowledge that the series was originally filmed as an (unsurprisingly rejected) 22-minute pilot. All Over It isn’t actually the webseries it purports to be, rather a cynical repackaging of something that wasn’t very good to begin with. But whereas at least it may have made sense before, now it has been hacked apart in a crude way akin to the cleaver-heavy foreign school of butchery that is entirely disinterested in the physical contours of the animal. Chop. Chop. Chop. Chop. Done. Fine for roast duck, derisory here.

What’s the problem though, you may say, it’s just some free fluff floating around the Internet, right? If you don’t want to watch unfunny, truncated segments of a show about creatives trying to reconcile their art with fiscal realities then it’s no problem to switch off, surely? And you’d be right, this isn’t difficult to turn off.

But this is the sort of thing that will grate anyone who has attempted to make a webseries, who has actually put thought into what would work within the format and crafted their ideas within the parameters of the medium. The re-purposing of All Over It is an insulting move, one that could only ever happen in a young, developing scene, perhaps not yet protective enough of itself to separate the opportunistic from the artistic.

None of this is any fault of the cast members, mind you, who work hard with what they’re given, creating characters meant for a different sort of program than we are presented. But there a certain sadness in hearing H. Ron Benjamin’s voice, which should be familiar from Archer‘s eponymous super-spy, hacking over banal lines alien to his familiar Adam Reed-penned zingers

Instead blame rests with the creators of All Over It, the sort of people who call themselves “MTV alums” probably in the hope that some lazy journalist would copy-and-paste it, giving a nonsensical term some sort of validation. It is one thing to make a sub-standard program but quite another to fail to understand that there is more to a webseries than just length.

Screengrab via All Over It/YouTube

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*First Published: Feb 10, 2015, 11:20 pm