Felicia Day’s web series, The Guild, has finally made the transition from low-budget indie production to a full-fledged TV-quality sitcom; or so it would seem when watching the 97 minutes that comprise the 12 episodes that make up The Guild: Season 6 DVD release. The quality of the final product is surprisingly topnotch given the reality of the relatively short amount of time and amount of money Knights of Good Productions had to work with. It helps that for this season Felicia has created her own Geek and Sundry Channel, allowing her some additional staff and a few more resources, but the work should be considered inspirational for anyone looking to produce their own indie web series.
Last season our eclectic cast of online-gaming misfits ventured from behind their monitors and went to a game convention. Picking up on those events Codex (Felicia Day) has secured her dream job working for Floyd Petrovski (Ted Michaels), the creator of the online game that she and her guild love so much. The entire season comprises her first few days at the job and all the hilarity that ensues when several of her Guildies make a surprise visit to the office. While most of the story revolves around events at the dysfunctional office environment there is a nice subplot dealing with Clara (Robin Thorsen) and Bladezz (Vincent Caso) who is crashing at her place for the day. Vork (Jeff Lewis) continues to explore his romantic interest with TV idol Madeleine Twain (Erin Gray) while simultaneously getting banned from the game and organizes a protest occupation.
While Codex tries to keep Floyd focused on releasing the new game expansion, Tink (Amy Okuda) and Zaboo (Sandeep Parikh) swipe Codex’s server code and sneak into the beta. While previous seasons have given us glimpses into the virtual game world, this season makes ample use of green screen effects and numerous costumed extras to recreate an undersea bar with a new virtual love interest for Zaboo.
The script is tight and polished to perfection, and the 12 episodes stream together as a seamless movie. If it weren’t for Codex doing her intro diaries you’d never know the breaks. As the series (and Felicia) has grown more famous they have been able to dramatically improve upon sets and even manage to get a few surprise cameos, so keep an eye out. Chris Preksta directs this season and brings a fresh vision to the series including an elaborate Steadycam shot in the first episode that you would never expect from a web series.
The overall DVD quality is excellent with great colors and a sharp image. The menus are easy to navigate and have great still photography of the stars. Sound quality is still Dolby Stereo but that’s all you really need. I loved the new animated opening and remixed theme song. What really makes this DVD an attractive offering – especially since you can watch all the episodes for free – are the bonus features.
Starting off we have a cast commentary for all 12 episodes that is delightfully entertaining and a bit educational; especially if you want to know how to make your own web series. Moving on, we have a 46-minute Production Diary covering all 16 days of principal photography, and 37 minutes of Behind the Scenes features for all 12 episodes. Then we have the “I’m the One That’s Cool” Music Video soon to become the new nerd anthem, and finally a 6-minute gag reel where we see the cast flubbing their lines.
The Guild: Season 6 is by far my favorite season in the entire series. I hate to equate quality with the amount of money thrown into the project, because I really love the charm of those first seasons where the show was nothing more than clips of people talking into their computers, but this marks a major shift in tone and quality for The Guild, and I can easily see this becoming a full-on TV series. It certainly comes with its own built-in and very dedicated fan base. Keep the seasons coming Felicia. We love you!