The Torchwood Institute - A Doctor Who and Torchwood Blog

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Anime, Future of TV, and You-Know-Who

I saw two posts over on Boing Boing [by Cory Doctorow , Xeni Jardin] referencing an article in Fortune about how the Anime companies have embraced technology and fans to make money.

I suspect that this is the model that the BBC should look at when it comes to Doctor Who (and for that matter, Torchwood), circumventing the American cable networks that have to date passed on the new series of Doctor Who -- and while many of the current fans in the US are perhaps older than anime fans, the general target demographics of the new series could be very similar to the Anime demographic. The various fan-made telesnap reconstructions that have been made over the years, where 1960s era audio recordings are matched to old pictures, making episodes the black and white episodes that were deleted by the BBC more available, are in fact very, very similar to fansubs in a lot of ways.

Therefore, my advice to the BBC is this -- get the Region 1 DVD set of the 2005 series out as soon as possible; and go around the Sci-Fi channels or other networks....especially with at least two more new seasons of new Doctor Who, and one of Torchwood...

In fact, genre and niche television producers in general should look at how anime is marketed and sold -- and I think we're seeing some of that already when you get alternative endings for Veronica Mars ending up posted online, or the Children in Need special of Doctor Who posted on the BBC website for a week earlier this month.

Obviously, Doctor Who has been hugely succesful in the UK over the past year -- thankfully, perhaps so successful that the American market isn't as important as it might have been viewed in the 1990s. But still, right now Doctor Who is more like Robbie Williams or the music career of David Hasslehoff -- perhaps big in the UK, but unknown (or largely forgotten) in the US.


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