Web Series Review: In Transit

Maddy Butler co-creator of a comedy web series In Transit contacted me in October because she thought I might enjoy the show and I’ve finally gotten around to viewing and reviewing it. In Transit is a comedy about four friends in their twenties dealing with life. One guy is about to get married and is upset his fiances’ father has asked him to sign a pre-nup, one guy has decided to quit his office job and pursue acting full-time, another is having financial and relationship problems, the fourth seems to get through life on his charm, good looks, and ability to hold down a decent paying job. In the vein of Seinfeld and Friends it’s the Time When Nothing Happens. No exciting crime drama, no crazy cooks raining down in 70’s technicolor, the most that happens is the groom-to-be and his best man must deal with wedding planners, caterers, and choosing flower arrangements.

Behind the scenes photo used with permission.

Behind the scenes photo used with permission.

This is probably one of the best casted web series I’ve been asked to review. The relationships seem genuine and the cast has the ability to act with nuance and subtleties which often get lost in the production of web series. I liked that the music background was subtle and fit the over all atmosphere of In Transit. Just the fact that there were background noises of other basketball players in the ball court scene showed the attention to detail that the producers of In Transit gave to the series. I’ve seen several web series where sound production gets lost in favor of an epic story line and in reality all I can do when I sit there watching the episode is wonder why there wasn’t more attention to detail and I loose interest in the story line. While there was one party scene that I thought should have had better background music (when a cup getting set down on a counter is the loudest thing in the room, it is noticeable), overall I was impressed with the acting and production of In Transit.

 I enjoy shows like In Transit where the major drama is based on relationships and not action sequences. Shows with real human interaction tend to be funnier and I can emotionally invest in the characters because the ins and outs of relationships are something I relate to. In my improv class we recently played a game called, The Day Nothing Happened. Each scene was set in an office, at a row of cubicles, and the three actors improved their lines, memorized them, and they had to be about nothing. For example, in my scene I sat between Pat and Julia. Julia answered the phone, spoke to a client, and asked for a paper clip. I said I was too busy playing a computer game and Pat said, “Here you go,” as he handed the paper clip over to her. The Day Nothing Happened. Then our teacher gave us relationships. Pat and Julia were having an affair, I was in love with Pat and hated Julia with a passion. Immediately the dynamics of the situation changed, the words became charged, The Day Nothing Happened was the day I physically came between Pat and Julia as he tried to hand over a paper clip. It was hilarious.

In Transit has that same vibe, especially once the relationships are established and things got more emotionally charged, it became far more interesting. I would have been happier if this had happened faster in the series, but by the end of the third episode I was hooked. As the actors become uncomfortable, angry, or frustrated I started laughing. It’s funny to watch someone struggle with life, because we’ve all been there and done that and understand what is happening and now we can laugh about it. There are a couple of women in the show, but their characters are fairly one dimensional until the fifth episode. Mainly the focus is on the four guys and especially the groom-to-be, who was my favorite character. I giggled through much of the fifth and sixth episode, I wont spoil it for you,  but there where some really funny scenes. Poor Caesar. ::giggles::

Lasting less than ten minutes each, it takes no time at all to view the entire series. I enjoyed this quirky comedy where nothing really happens as four guys try to figure out life and relationships. Each episode gets progressively better as the relationships change, heat up, expand,  and the story line takes on coherence with subtle shifts. At a time when nothing is happening, everything matters.

Read another review here and a question and answer session with Ms. Butler here.

The first episode is below. Watch the rest of the episodes here. [There is one drug use scene, adult themes, and occasional language.]

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