My Favorite Bit: Josh Crute talks about WEBCAMELOT
Josh Crute is joining us today to talk about his new web series WebCamelot, created in collaboration with David Rice and Matthew Barnette. Here’s the show’s description.
In a recent discovery that rocked the historical community, archaeologists uncovered an ancient hard drive filled with video blogs dating from the reign of ARTHUR PENDRAGON, KING OF CAMELOT.
Hardworking interns have edited these vlogs together to create a behind-the-scenes account of life during that time. Looks like we’re going to have to rewrite the history books… or at least, the interns will.
WebCamelot is a rambunctious independent comedy web seriesthat gives modern viewers a glimpse of life in Camelot, exclusively through the webcams of its citizens.
What’s Josh’s favorite bit?
Mixing the mythic and the mundane has always been funny to me.
There’s a favorite scene of mine in Terry Gilliam’s Jabberwocky where King Bruno holds a tournament to find a suitable champion to slay the Jabberwock. Unfortunately, mortal combat is…well…mortal, and the lists become so encrusted with the blood of jousting knights that they decide to find a less lethal elimination process. So they do the only sensible thing.
They play hide and seek for it.
I grew up on stories of heroes and dragons, kings and knights. As a kid, I made helmets out of trash cans and forged swords out of tree branches. The only Steinbeck I’ve ever attempted is The Acts of King Arthur and his Noble Knights. If asked, I could probably act out the entire The Fellowship of the Ring movie for you.
What tickles me about putting a medieval person on a webcam, is that it divorces my brain from the distant, archaic, romantic lens that I tend to view the Middle Ages through. When viewed through the lens of a video blog, the era transforms into something that’s arguably more valuable: a place that’s personal, contemporary, and comical. In a word:relatable.
Even in King Arthur’s fabled day, I would imagine that most men and women were not out gallivanting after the Grail. Like many of us, they probably spent the majority of their time at home, facing the perils and adventures of everyday life with the rest of their community.
As isolated and personal as a blog may seem, the internet blogosphere of today is as much a community of people as any medieval kingdom. They have individual voices yet similar desires: to speak and be heard, to listen and to learn, to create. And though they hail from the farthest corners of the world, the internet provides a shared space, a kingdom, a community for them to interact with one another.
The most exciting part of writing WebCamelot for me was discovering these voices. Who in Camelot would be online? And why? By smashing two existing worlds together (medieval Europe and the internet blogosphere), we created a third, yet uncharted, world for us to explore. Our quest took us to every hovel and abbey of the kingdom (at least, the ones with WiFi in them). We were looking for characters who were (1) funny, of course! (2) could turn a medieval archetype on its head, (3) and most importantly, had a reason for blogging.
We found a damsel in a tower, logging on because she was so freaking bored with being grounded and had no other creative outlet. We peeked under a bridge to discover a pedantic troll, blogging art reviews because he felt that someone with taste needed to speak up. We stumbled upon a priest in a confessional booth, hosting the hottest gossip blog in town. One by one, we discovered their channels, and, more importantly, we found the voices behind them.
And that’s my favorite bit about the show. It isn’t the story of a king, a hero, or really any single person. It’s a collage. A motley. A modern day, splatter paint Canterbury Tales bursting with people, events, tales, issues, jokes, locations, and tones.
In short, it’s the story of a community.
Josh Crute was once a little kid with a big imagination. Now he’s got a movie camera! Josh graduated with a B.A. in English from Samford University before receiving his M.F.A. in Film Production from Florida State University. In 2012, his short film “Knights of the Playground” was a Blue Ribbon Finalist in the Children’s Entertainment Category of the Student Emmys. He currently lives in Los Angeles, CA.