Do you know how many minutes Veronica Mars (Kristen Bell) was onscreen this past season? How about the average amount of times someone said Lorelai’s name on Gilmore Girls? Do you care how many times someone takes a drink when watching your favourite show? Do you wince at the thought of your favourite characters cursing, not because cursing bothers you at all, but because you’re worried about losing points in your very own fantasy sports type competition?
I am please to admit that I’ve answered yes to all of the above questions. And I have one completely addictive game and website to thank!
Three years ago, I was browsing news stories and picture galleries over at www.zap2it.com, taking time to read the column of my personal hero, Amy Amatangelo (aka TV Gal), when I noticed the banner advertisements flashing before my eyes. While normally there’s a half-naked man or woman or one of those “shoot the monkey with a banana and win a laptop” ads, this day was different. I instead saw an advert for Fantasy Teevee.
It was right around that time that I had also tried my hand at participating in Fantasy Football, through a pool someone set up at work. I knew little to nothing about football. I knew that the Eagles are my hometown team, and that we, at the time, were ridiculously lucky to have Terrell Owens (what a difference three years and a really crappy attitude make). I also knew that Tom Brady was amazingly attractive and that’s as far as my knowledge went. I got to thinking, “what if there was a fantasy type game that let me use MY vast wasteland of knowledge?” It was a lucky day when I accidentally stumbled upon www.fantasyteevee.com and since then, my life has been completely different. I started out as an active participant, and quickly offered my help in scoring the shows; now I share in the day-to-day processes of the completely addictive game!
“What is Fantasy Teevee?”
Like Fantasy Football aficionados who watch hours of football footage to make sure that the yardage and touchdowns are all counted, we watch TV shows and report back on various important categories to rack up the points. In Fantasy Teevee, we count minutes that characters are on screen. The more time on screen, the higher the points at the end of the episode. On Veronica Mars, you’re safe to assume that you’ll get a huge amount of points any time Veronica enters the scene, because it is her show. Other characters on the same show, like Logan and Wallace, may not score well every week, but they have their moments. We also make sure to note how many times characters’ names are mentioned. Each first name counts as 1 point, and each first/last name combination counts as 2 points. Insider tip – Bones is notorious for over-using first names (Booth, Bones – they constantly refer to each other directly and score HUGE points for names). Another category we follow – the onscreen kisses shared by various characters. Sometimes heavy make-out sessions get a bit hard to follow, but some episodes can score huge in this area – One Tree Hill is a HUGE scorer when it comes to kisses, because everyone’s hooking up with someone on that show! We FTV-ers also track how many times people take a drink of something on screen.
The only negative points that we track? Every time that your favourite characters curse, we subtract points, so you want to be careful about picking those characters that are notorious for getting angry and going on tirades!
Another special category we count – a lot of the shows that we cover have what we call “quirks,” where something happens week in and week out, and you can bet that they’ll score big. Every time the Janitor appears on screen on Scrubs? You score points. Every time you see a surgical mask on Grey’s Anatomy? You score points. Each time you see the hours missing on Without a Trace? Points, Points, Points! Quirks can sometimes be huge for a show!
“What is your role at Fantasy Teevee?”
Like in Fantasy Football, where they have the football experts handicapping the games, and telling you who to vote for, or who to draft for your team, we at Fantasy Teevee handicap each show week to week. Every week, we write up little “what’s coming on your favourite shows” descriptions, called spins, in which we tell you how to “draft” your characters and quirks. I am what they call The Spinmaster (applause, cheering, etc.). I am the person in charge of making sure that all of those spins are updated week-to-week. 40-50 episode descriptions, every Sunday, and I’m the person making sure the spins are updated! As a completely obsessed fan of the site, and person who has a share in the daily goings on of the site, I find myself counting drinks, minutes, kisses, names, etc., every time I am watching ANYTHING. It has taken over my normal TV viewing and I couldn’t be happier!
“How do I sign up?”
Sign ups are going to begin for the new season of Fantasy Teevee in the next 3-4 weeks. Just go to www.fantasyteevee.com and read all the rules, and some more detailed descriptions of how to sign up. The more the merrier!
“Can I be a part of Fantasy Teevee, too?”
We’re always looking for volunteers that want to help us watch countless hours of TV! Contact the webmasters at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information!
What do you think about Fantasy Teevee? Are you already a participant? Are you excited beyond belief for the new season, and the new shows we’re going bring to the scene this year? Let me know at email@example.com.
And now….My Take on The Emmys 2006.…
Ryan Seacrest is the devil. They should put someone like Kristen Veitch on the carpet. Sure, she’s not always right with the spoilers that she offers, but say what you will, the TV stars KNOW her, and enjoy speaking to her, at least as far as I’ve seen. She’d be a much better interviewer, because she has a much more friendly relationship with most of the people.
Conan O’Brien was hilarious. I think he did an excellent job, and watching him next year, if he’s asked back, would be great.
The Bob Newhart gag was hilarious to me. He is so spot on with his comedy. It’s just a delight to see.
I love that 24, my Kiefer, and The Office won.
I am appalled that Blythe Danner, Megan Mullally, and Alan Alda won. Not because they’re not great actors in their own right, but Jean Smart, Jaime Pressly, and Gregory Itzin deserved those awards!
I loved that Tony Shalhoub won – Monk is near and dear to me!
Stephen Colbert cracks me up.
So glad Mariska won. She looked amazing for having a child only 8 weeks ago. Completely full of life, and just beautiful.
I have to take a minute to confess that I was a mess of tears during Dick Clark’s speech. He is such a legend, to see him stumble, I just felt so sad.
My favourite acceptance speech? Greg Garcia (of Yes, Dear fame). He was hilarious.
My least favourite acceptance speech? Blythe Danner, because I’ll be honest, I think she was trying to seem flustered, and wasn’t actually so. Call it what you will, maybe bitterness because she shouldn’t have won, but I wasn’t not impressed with her quasi-shocked demeanor.
My favourite Charlie’s Angel? Hands down Jaclyn Smith – she looked AMAZING. Kate Jackson and Farrah Fawcett looked like they went to Dr. 90210 together for a 2-for-1 discount, but Jaclyn Smith was flawless without looking plastic. Amazing.
Okay, enough Emmy talk until this time next year!
In Other News…
Rescue Me season finale is on tonight (10PM F/X). Even if you’re only a part-time fan, you CANNOT miss this finale. It is shocking, and a bit brutal, and really worth having lived through this entire slightly uneven season.
Bones season premiere is on Wednesday night! (8PM Fox) I really hope that the addition of Cam doesn’t destroy the Bones/Booth relay that I love so incredibly much!!! I will be tuning in obsessively.
MTV VMA’s are live Thursday night! I’m actually really excited to see some of the live performances, namely Christina Aguilera and Justin Timberlake.
That’s it for this week – bring it back here next week, as we discuss the season premiere of Nip/Tuck (I really do believe that this season is back on track), and I handicap the Celebrity Duets singers (I fully believe that it’s going to be my newest guilty pleasure/sick obsession).