'Legion of Extraordinary Dancers': Why This Internet TV Show Matters

The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers—a television series broadcast on the Internet streaming video site Hulu—has a lot going for it: beautiful cinematography, impressive dancing, and a cast that includes an actor on the hit show Glee.


What's it missing? Piano-playing cats, Beyonce wannabes, and other staples of viral video hits. But these deficiencies are what make the show a "game-changer," according to Mashable:

Why should you care about The LXD? The new web series is broadcast exclusively on Hulu and is a mix of Heroes, comic books and dance—essentially, it's good vs. evil set in the real world with "dance specialties" like break dancing, the robot, or contemporary serving as super powers. The show is difficult to describe because it breaks boundaries in genre, format and platform. It is, however, a game-changer in the way that web series—and the arts—are presented online. Oh yeah, and it's stunning.

This isn't the first time the arts have been shown online, but The LXD marks a shift in how a series can be conceived for an online space. It also provides a new way of viewing the arts outside of exhibition free-for-alls like America/Britain's Got Talent, So You Think You Can Dance and American Idol.

...

Viral videos usually consist of two-minute "FAILs" or kittens eating watermelons. The LXD is a new kind of viral. On Hulu, a platform familiar with half-hour shows or longer, the 10-minute LXD epics are considered easily digestible, short-form virals. Despite fan requests for longer videos, the plan is to keep them short and sweet. The Internet thrives on high-value, sharable snippets. The LXD has successfully entered that niche while expanding the time restriction normally associated with those videos.


Mashable offers a comprehensive guide to the show, including an overview of its origins and a glimpse at what's next.

Read the full story at Mashable.

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Eleanor Barkhorn is a former senior editor at The Atlantic.

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