Sunday, December 31, 2017

2007 to 2017

Last  year, for the new  year, I wrote about the year 2006, 10 years prior, and how it was a vital year for J-Dubb's Theatre. I had just started this blog in October of 2005. After having some fun, those first couple months, the blog slowly began to slide into becoming one of those blogs that is abandoned and forgotten, shortly after having started. It was in 2006, that J-Dubb's Theatre got it's second wind, which would propel it to the next stage.

While 2006 was important to the longevity of the blog, 2007 was even more important, as this was the year that J-Dubb's Theatre took on its best known form. In February of that year, I began posting videos to YouTube, as an extension of this blog. In the ensuing years, the J-Dubb's Theatre YouTube channel became dominant over the blog, and videos became primary over blog posts. In 2005 -2007, J-Dubb's Theatre was a blog. In 2007, it became a blog with videos. After that, it gradually evolved to being a YouTube channel with a blog, and after several years running, the blog itself would cease... for the most part (with a few exceptions, such as this blog post). 

Over the last ten years, my videos have had many viewers, and I've made friends and associates through YouTube. Most people who have heard of J-Dubb's Theatre, think of videos. Most of them don't even know that there ever was a blog, and those few who did read this old blog, still associate J-Dubb's Theatre with YouTube videos, rather than the blog from which those videos began. Having the word "Theatre" in the name makes sense for a video production entity, but when I named this blog "J-Dubb's Theatre", I had no idea that I would be making videos, and that the blog's namesake would carry over to those videos. I came up with that name as a spin on the name "Masterpiece Theatre". 

In 2007, the "YouTube Community" became a prominent topic for J-Dubb's Theatre, as well as memes and general Web stuff. 

 Scene from the first major YouTuber collab video, "LisaNova Does YouTube", uploaded July 10, 2007

The pipe, which I had in the blog's title banner image, became a prop which I included in every video. Later on, I would introduce each video by removing the pipe from my mouth, and saying, "J-Dubb Here". 

 Also, the J-Dubb's Theatre tune was developed in 2007. When I first began uploading videos, I used background music from a site called "Freeplay Music". I began to regard a song called "Shopping Spree" as the "J-Dubb's Theatre theme".  I then composed a tune based off of Shopping Spree, for a series called "The Network". This series started, that Summer, with a series of videos which involved me interacting with the YouTube world. This series was one of the most memorable parts of 2007.

LisaNova uploaded a collab video called "LisaNova Does YouTube", which involved YouTuber, LisaNova, kidnapping several other prominent YouTubers. I remember, when I watched her video, how cool it was to me, to see all these familiar faces from YouTube in a video together. This was a first for the fledgling YouTube. I started daydreaming about myself being in that video, having my pipe and saying that recognizable line, "J-Dubb here". Then, the naysayer voice in my head reminded me that nobody would actually recognize that line, or know who I was, because I wasn't famous like these guys. 

So, I came up with the idea to do a response video, placing myself behind the scenes of "LisaNova Does YouTube", where nobody knows who I am. I would then wonder around, crossing paths with YouTubers who don't know who I am. I was going to call this video "J-Dubb Who?" I got the idea to buy a ski mask, and play the "Insult Alien", a YouTube troll from the old days. At this time, I was watching the Lonelygirl15 series, which involved a group of fictional Vloggers, trying to evade a secret society called "the Order". So I decided, at the end of the video" I would get kidnapped by the Order, and my next videos would detail my escape.

It didn't quite work out this way. For one, I couldn't find a ski mask in July. For another, my video idea was just too long, so I cut the premise down to being just a spin-off of LisaNova does YouTube, and eschew the involvement of other YouTubers who weren't in the video. I changed the name to "J-Dubb Does LisaNova Does YouTube".  I did, however, include an Easter Egg after the credits, which led to the following video, in which I get abducted by The Order. 

The Lonelygirl15 series had a whole community of people who did their own spinoff videos, so I decided to do my own. This video, filmed as a collection of surveillance camera footage, detailed my capture by, and escape from, The Order. I posted the video to my blog, under the pretense that The Order had hacked my blog and posted it. I then posted a series in which "the resistance" had taken control of my blog, and were updating the viewer on the search efforts for me. 

My next few videos were originally intended to detail my efforts to evade The Order, but, I decided I didn't want J-Dubb's Theatre to become a Lonelygirl15 fanfic channel, so I took things in a different direction. I came up with an idea to introduce a new antagonist. I had watched videos talking about YouTube as the new competition to the television Networks, as well as discussing the "New Media" as a mutual participant enterprise, as opposed to traditional media, which involves the viewer as a passive entity. I liked this idea. The Networks had cancelled shows like "Firefly" and "Farscape" while in their prime, and left "John Doe" on a cliffhanger forever. In new media, it's the creator who decides what to air, and not some network. I liked the idea of YouTube as the champion over the television networks.

My new antagonist was a secret society who was a rival to The Order, known as "The Network", in that they controlled society by owning and controlling the television Networks. The Network exercised power and control which The Order wished to take. My continuation, called "The Network", which I split into two parts, began with my being pursued by "The Order", followed by the mysterious disappearance of my pursuers. I am rescued by the Insult Alien, whom I had originally intended to be a part of J-Dubb Does LisaNova Does YouTube. As the Insult Alien begins to disappear, he explains that The Network is causing YouTubers to disappear. He is then replaced by The Cuddle Alien. 

After I return home, I go to YouTube to find that YouTubers are disappearing and being replaced... including myself. As I disappear, I find myself in an ethereal plane confronted by a being known as "The Executive" (later revealed to be named Belphegore) who looks like my friend, Jon. (In a later installment of the series, it is revealed that Belphegore merely took on the image of Jon, clearing up the confusion as to why one of the disappearing YouTubers, also played by Jon, looked like Belphegore.) The Executive was having trouble getting me to disappear, due to what The Order had done to me, and I end up defeating him... for the time being.

Originally, I considered J-Dubb Does LisaNova Does YouTube, Unsecure Transmission, and The Network, to be a series involving my adventures in YouTube land. After continuing the Network, later on, I decided that LisaNova Does YouTube was irrelevant to The Network Series. 

For The Network, I composed two tunes based on Shopping Spree. When I finally returned home, and sat in the familiar chair from my older videos, a piccolo  version of the tune plays. Later on, when I pick up the J-Dubb's Theatre pipe, and place it in my mouth, a mute trumpet version of the tune plays over a "hero shot" of myself. After The Network, I began to intro my videos more and more frequently with those two versions of that tune, until they became the standard intro for my videos. I stopped using Shopping Spree after 2008, for licensing reasons, but the tune I created from it has become synonymous with J-Dubb's Theatre. In fact, people associate the tune with the pipe.

So, 2007 was an important year for J-Dubb's Theatre. In that year, J-Dubb's Theatre took on the form by which it would be known. Just like Nintendo, a card game company, deciding to make video games, and Hasbro, a hardware company, deciding to make toys, In 2007, J-Dubb's Theatre, a blog, began producing YouTube videos.

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