Meet the Mayfarers

Episode 2: “Dad’s New Girlfriend”

Last updated on October 6th, 2012.
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Meet the Mayfarers Episode 1

Last updated on September 30th, 2012.
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“Meet the Mayfarers” 2020 Productions Trailer

Last updated on September 30th, 2012.
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The Mayfarers are Back

Well, sort of.

I’m excited to announce that the entire run of Mayfarers will return to the web with 20/20 Productions.

All 73 episodes of the show will be released every week for a year.

I’m excited for this new partnership, which will continue the life of the series and introduce the show to a new base of people.

“Meet the Mayfarers” has been one of the most fun and rewarding filming experiences I’ve ever done. I’m pleased to see that the last episode was not “The End” – and it is simply “The Beginning” of a new run of the show.

Episode 1 launches today. You can check out 20/20 Productions here:

Last updated on September 25th, 2012.
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Mayfarers Endings

Five years ago I had an idea for a web show. A show that could span a year, and be updated every single week. It was going back to my roots, a comedy sitcom show with the major goal to have fun.

Four and a half years ago we started shooting, and almost three years ago we launched the show. It has been a wild ride that surpassed all of my expectations. I’ve leaned a lot, as a writer, director, producer, and performer. I’ve made deep lasting friendships, both due to the creation of the show, and meeting people in the web series world. And most of all, I’ve had fun. I rediscovered my joy of storytelling, and filmming. In many ways “Meet the Mayfarers” saved me from a path of cynicism and creative comprimise that I was heading down. It set me on the right path to do what I wanted to do creativly, and I haven’t looked back.

I wanted to do something big and unique for the final episode. With so many characters and so many potential endings, I decided to do a true “Choose Your Own Adventure” with many possible endings as to how the show could end. In this way not only was I able to give every character their due, but each ending could have a different tone, just like our many different episodes.

The show wouldn’t be where it is without the cast and crew. I want to thank everyone who has been a part of the show. This has been a marathon that was well worth taking.

Thanks for your support, and we’ll see you on the next show!

Todd

 

 

Last updated on May 30th, 2012.
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The Beginning of the End

 

Today we launch the beginning of our final season. Hard to believe that it’s been over four years since we started shooting. This family lasted together far more than their original year.

To help celebrate the launch we’re releasing the first two episodes of the new season.

Given that we’re launching today I thought it made sense to explore where we’ve been, before we see where we’re going.

I wanted to explain the different seasons of “Meet the Mayfarers” – and how they came about.

Season 1: Season 1 of the Show is perhaps the most “Traditional” of the seasons. I wanted to create a show that had a new episode every week for a year. And while we didn’t get a whole year’s worth, we got pretty close. I wanted an ensemble story where the characters were all forced together. The story would continue week by week. I also wanted the ability to focus on different characters, if some actors weren’t available. Lastly, the show for the most part took place in “The real world” – that is – yes, there is crazy situations and sex, – but it could mostly be true.

 

When we shot the first halfof the season, I decided to do two things. The first was to create Bonus or Holiday episodes. Much like cartoon shows, I wanted these stand alone episodes to be outside the continuity of the show – to have the freedom to explore any bizarre idea or situation. And this lead to the Halloween episode, the Bunny Chronicles, and of course “A Very Mayfarers Christmas.”

The other thing was I wanted the freedom to take the story anywhere. The whole reason I started the show was born from a frustration with the challenges of feature filmmaking. Doing a webseries was freedom incarnate. So I thought – “Well, why not create a few episodes with Nick and his agent and his struggles on the penguin show?” If I felt like zigging, or zagging, I could do so. And that freedom was infectious. It was the epitome of what I wanted to do on the web.

Season 2: In season 2 I decided to do three things. One was to bring back the reoccurring new characters, such as Randolf, (my favorite character) and continue the tension and plotlines from season one – including the dastardly Isobel plot in “A Very Mayfarers Wedding.” The second thing was instead of season long story arcs, I wanted to do “mini-arcs” – so stories lasted three or five episodes.

And third – I wanted to really embrace the bizarre. Instead of having the “Crazy world” only be in Bonus episodes I decided to put them into the main storyline. This lead to the plot of Claire’s Invisible Friend, as well as the visit by Magnus the Knight, and the Adventures of the Cowboy Prostitute. I thought – Heck, we’re on the web, let’s embrace the bizarre, and let’s have fun!

The season ended with a cliffhanger – with Nick and Clarie discovering they are adopted.

For a long time I thought of ending the show there. That was the intention. And in fact we took a good year off of shooting.

But then a funny thing happened.

The show was being watched. A LOT.

I shot the show as a creative outline from creative frustration, and so it came as a pleasant surprise to see us featured quite a lot, and to have a growing fan base. Not only were people enjoying the show – but the strategy of releasing one episode a week for a year worked!

I immediately went back into brainstorming and production mode to capitalize on this. The only challenge was – it takes a long time to write, produce, and edit these shows. I wish that we hadn’t waited so long. But in doing so – I was able to go back and explore these characters I love so much.

Season 3: This is the bizarre season. The crazy season. The “Let’s not only jump the shark, let’s have the shark for dinner!!” season. I wanted to fully embrace every crazy, wild, odd idea. It lead to the family hiring an male actor to play Claire, to Mort trying to kill Nick, and to a crossover saga with an animal dressing mafia in Hollywood.

Since we now had so many episodes, I thought it best to focus on shorter, one shot episodes. Instead of the season long stories, or even mini-stories, these were either one offs, or two parters. And they were for the most part, self contained. Sure, we concluded Barb’s storyline, but I wanted each episode to stand alone.

Funny how the editing process works – we shot most of season 3 after season 4.

Because of the crazy nature of the show – some of these episode, particularly “The New Claire Chronicles” are, in my option, the funniest.

Season 4: I knew the show couldn’t last forever, and so I wanted to go back to the beginning for the end.

I felt I had explored every direction I wanted to explore. The bizarre, the tangential, and the crazy. I wanted to go back to the roots of the show. I wanted to end where we started. And so Season 4 is a full season’s story arc. It takes place in “The real world” – or, as much as the “real world” as the Mayfarers allows. I wanted to take everything I learned from all the seasons and put them into one final show.

Even so – there are difference. I feel like with this coming season, I finally struck a balance between all the different tones of the show. So, while it feels like Season 1 – you’ll see the influence of the previous seasons woven together as well. In many ways this season is where the show has been heading all along, and we just discovered it along the way.

I wanted to end the show how I wanted a show to end. I hate getting invested in shows and not feeling some kind of satisfaction in the end. To that point, I wanted to bring back as many of the characters as I could – to tie up many loose plotlines, and to try to think outside the box in the most organic way to end the show – and also hopefully the most unique.

I am really proud of this season. We’ve been working on the show for so long that now I can’t imagine a time where the show didn’t exist. I couldn’t have done it without all the cast and crew over the years. I watch the show and it seems like yesterday we shot it. I can’t believe that many of the players are now scattered across the country, doing their own projects, and most of all, that Candace is no longer with us. There are still times in the editing room where I want to shoot her an email, and let her know the progress of the show. I wish she could have seen the rest of the show.

And so – here we are. Two and half years after we first launched the show.

The final Season of “Meet the Mayfarers!”

I hope you enjoy.

 

Last updated on March 21st, 2012. Tags: , , ,
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Mayfarers Return One Last Time

And now, after far longer than I ever thought – the Mayfarers are ready to go for one final launch.

Tomorrow we’re starting to release new Mayfarers material, from now until early summer.

Here’s how the schedule breaks down:

Starting tomorrow – we’re launching the Blooper Reel for “Mayfarers Go Hollywood.” In honor of the “Vampire Zombie Werewolf’” cast being nominated “Best Guest Appearance” by Indie Intertube -we’re here to show the fun and antics of what went on “Behind the Scenes” during the making of those episodes.

Next week will see the final Sketches that we shot years ago. Some “Star Wars” inspired fun as we were playing around during the shooting of the second season.

The week after we’ll have one final Bonus Episode. The kind where “Nothing takes place in the real world.” And for this bunch, that’s saying something.

Finally, on March 21st – we’ll be starting the launch of our official final season. I’ll be blogging more about this final season and the making of it in weeks to come.

For now, join us for one last adventure with the show.

Thanks for all of your support!

The Future of the Mayfarers

This week we’re releasing the conclusion of “The Mort Chronicles.” The show will take a small hiatus for a month before we release the Season 3 Finale.

This summer the show will take a small break for the first part of the sunny months. Then, in mid-summer, somewhere around the show’s two year anniversary of being online – we’ll launch Season 4 –  our biggest season yet – and also – the Final Season of “Meet the Mayfarers.”

Originally I had intended to release one episode a year for the whole year. However, somewhere near the end of the editing process, I decided to merge episodes together, which worked creatively, but lessened the overall amount of episodes, thus causing the need for a break.

But it won’t be a totally Mayfarerless start to the summer. We’ll also have a few remaining sketches from our vault, ready to unleash onto the world.

I hope you’ve enjoyed the zaniness of Season 3. This season has been a big, broad, fun, sugery, candy like season, small bite sized stories pushing the “Reality” of the story about as far as we could go. The next season ties everything together – with one full, feature length story that will answer all the questions of the family.

Thanks so much for your support and viewership throughout the years. I hope you enjoy this week’s episode – and look forward to the new season to come!

Last updated on May 24th, 2011. Tags: , , , ,
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We Can’t Do It Alone

Making Media and telling stories – in any format – is difficult. Every step is a struggle. From writing, to casting, filming, selling. It’s all tough. And the amount of ways that it doesn’t work is enormous. To even to make a good project is difficult. And then marketing is a totally different animal. More difficult than ever in this cluttered space – and changing every day.

And that’s why we need to collaborate.

Over the past few days I’ve been in the company of some truly talented people. Between LA Web Fest and the Celebrate the Web event – I’m constantly inspired by the creators in the Web Series space. These are people who take their creativity and run with it – creating excellent results.

And yet – despite their inspiring shows, there’s a part of me standing at these events, drink in hand, thinking that all these people are climbing their own individual mountain. Every single one is working hard and struggling to climb their own mountain in this biz. And that’s just too tough.

There has to be a way to collaborate. There has to be a way where we can all take this collective talent and creativity and use it to help us all do what we do on a bigger scale. If we don’t collaborate, we die.

This is the genesis behind the “Mayfarers Go Hollywood” episodes.

Years ago – when I was looking at the media space and started to see that the web was the answer, I stumbled across “Life From the Inside.” I’d spent years in the indie film world. And while there were many talented people in that world, the successful ones were doing projects that were so far from the type of material I wanted to do. (Slow paced arty movie about homeless heroin war vets all discussing the “Serious issue of the day.”)

When I discovered “Life From the Inside” and other similar shows, such as “Goodnight Burbank” “Break a Leg” “the ‘Burg” and “We Need Girlfriends” it opened my eyes. Yes! Finally! Here are people sharing their creativity and stories, and finding an audience. And doing it in a witty way. I made a decision at that moment to stop going into a world I didn’t fit and embrace a world that I felt comfortable in.

Look at LFTI – a witty show, with smart writing, and fast paced dialogue. This is what I like to watch – not because I “have to” to study the market, but because I want to.

When the Life from the Inside Youtube account subscribed to my Mayfarers Youtube account, months before I launched, I thought it was cool. When I went out for coffee with the creators of the show in LA and I saw how incredibly nice they are, I thought – what a fascinating interconnected world we live in – when I found myself six months later filming a sitcom story with them I thought – I absolutely love this space.

That’s what Mayfarers Go Hollywood is. It’s reaching out to collaborate. It’s working with people I admire to do something that can hopefully help us all. (It’s also about goofy situations involving orgies, animal mascots and Papua New Guinea, but that’s another story.)

And that’s what we – as a Web New Media community –  need to do more of. We need to get together to figure this out. To do something greater than the sum of our own parts.

Who’s with me?

Meet the Mayfarers Returns

The Mayfarers are back  - finally back. Not just sketches, or bloopers, or small one offs – but the whole show. Starting today – and every Wednesday for the rest of the year they’ll be a new episode released.

Some of them will be small stories, some of them will be an entire season story arc, some will be epic adventures in Hollywood,  - some will be goofy, some will be…well, they’ll all be pretty goofy.

The early part of Season 3 will be smaller stories about individual characters, while the final part of the season will be one 16 episode story arc, involving the return of almost all the characters – and leading to a surprising conclusion to the series – revealing who will finally get Porter Mayfarer’s money.

I want to thank everyone who has watched over the years. Being involved in this show has been so fun, and fulfilling.

I hope you join us this year as we embark on our final year of Mayfarers fun.

Last updated on March 2nd, 2011. Tags: , , ,
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Mayfarers Trailer

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