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Snakes on a Plane and Late Night Television August 23, 2006

Posted by earthlingconcerned in Snakes On A Plane, The Colbert Report, Web 2.0.

Samuel L. Jackson was interviewed on the Daily Show last week and made another appearance on the show during a Samantha Bee interview on Monday. This makes perfect sense considering the movie was going to be the next big thing. Thanks to the blog-o-sphere and amateur videos on Youtube, Snakes On A Plane was to show the world that internet readers and contributors are a force to be reckoned with. Web 2.0 and its users are here to stay! The Colbert Report, along with the rest of the late night shows have also made several references to the film, adding to the hysteria. So if this was going to be such a big release, why did it barely take the #1 spot with a meager $13,806,311 over its opening weekend? It could have to do with the fact that the internet hype market is still just a niche market and wide spread acceptance or knowledge of the hype was never achieved. Or that a good plot is really more important than good hype. Or maybe the money it made isn’t meager at all, that if it wasn’t for the hype, it would have gone straight to video and marked the beginning of the end for Mr. Jackson in Hollywood. Who knows, even Jebus wouldn’t have the answers to those questions.

The primary reason for this post is to point out something else I’ve noticed about the hype. It all begins with the internet. The only reason so much time and effort has been given to Snakes on a Plan by shows like the Daily Show and the Colbert Report is because they get most of their information from the same places the average web user does. While the writers of the show browse through the news for something interesting or funny for the afternoon taping, they stumble upon the same blips of randomness that the rest of us do. They’re not the ones making the news, or for the most part, even sending people out to find the news (like one would hope traditional reporters do). Because of their research methods, the writers begin to notice something big is happening with Snakes On A Plane. All the Blogs and message boards are talking about it. Fan made videos are all over the place. Call it the reverse Colbert Effect (I’m losing myself in an ongoing loop of confusion here but won’t attempt to resolve it) if you want, but the internet does indeed deliver the stories to the show. Only recently has it gone the other way (ie. Colbert Bridge, Wikiality, etc.) I guess this transparency of information exchange from one medium to another rely on each another quite nicely.

Writing about this doesn’t really say much either way. If not for the internet, other news sources would have been used I’m sure. These are comedy shows I’m speaking about after all. But funny is good. Funny is popular (the most popular article I’ve written so far is on the Colbert Effect). I suppose all I’m saying is that the film debuted with lower than expected numbers because everything has to be taken into perspective. It may appear that Web2.0 users and Colbert Report/Daily Show viewers speak for the masses (if you yourself are lost in the hype), but apparently they only speak for $13,806,311 of movie receipts worth. It’s similar to when George W. Bush was re-elected. Half of the country would never have imagined a re-election, but there it was. Everything in perspective. Everyone is always part of something bigger than an election, or a fan base, or a website. Sometimes, it’s just easy to get lost in your own reality and, um, Snakes on a mutha fuckin’ Plane!



1. will doherty - September 16, 2006

Forgive me, my ignorance on this topic is obvios. I am unsure of the moral of the snakes on a plane artical however i couldn’t agree more that we all do have quite a tendency to be lost in our own reality.

2. 6th Generation wiiPod announced! Sony PS3 Manufacturing plant explodes (Video on Youtube)! « Earthling Concerned - September 18, 2006

[…] So what does this all mean? . There’s also the idea that the fanboy has ongoing illusions of grandeur. Wii might crash and burn when people remember that Playstation 2 was good not only for the graphics, but because the games were in fact fun to play. Remember, it’s possible to have your cake and eat it too. The recent Wii hype seems to suggest you can’t have it both ways. Similarly like what everyone who thought so much of the “Snakes on a Plane” hype only to see the movie bomb at the box office. I also have a feeling the trends mentioned in this article will increase in the coming months. Partially because release dates are nearing and so and such, but also because the community is growing. Just like the peoples of any given country have a similar culture, so too will future Diggers. You’ll find more Wii and Ipod talk on Digg then you ever would on Slashdot in its long and storied past. But if you really hate Microsoft and love Linux, Slashdot may be your cup of tea. So what am I doing on Digg in the first place? To be honest, I’m looking forward to Wii just as much as you are. Sometimes I just like writing. I hear that’s what makes people cool. […]

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