Monday, April 20, 2015

TWIT: The 10th Anniversary episode


Yesterday was the 10th Anniversary of the first episode of This Week in Tech, TWIT's cornerstone podcast.

Ten years ago a half dozen lost souls from the former Tech TV sat around a table slamming beers and musing on the sad state of technology broadcasting. While bemoaning their poor treatment at the hands of corporate media they suddenly found purpose.

The rest as they say, is history...

Which may be apropos to the current state of the network.  Yesterday's episode (506) seemed as it Laporte was preoccupied with the glory days of TWIT's more humble past (aka: cottage days.)

Surrounded by a cadre of "original" TWIT cast members including Patrick Norton, Robert Heron, John C.. Dvorak and others, it was a stark representation of the few remaining TechTV alumnus that still hold any regard for Laporte or TWIT.

I take such a dire tack because mixed in with well wishes from TechTV alumnus (who managed to steer clear of TWIT employment) and TechTV show clips were stills of long departed TWIT hosts. Interestingly, if their names happened to be anything resembling Merritt, Lane or Brushwood they were barely acknowledged and nowhere to be found during the broadcast.  Were the prerecorded accolades of the likes of Morgan Webb and Chris Pirillo  (who've never worked on TWIT) more relevant to TWIT's history than Tom Merritt or Bryan Brushwood?  

Were they even asked?

Perhaps most telling was the on camera chatter before the episode began with Laporte ruminating over past TWIT group photos.  It seemed he could remember every name in every photo except for one,  Erik Lanigan.  I won't belabor that observation other than to say it was a display of bad taste.

Although presented as a celebration of TWIT's longevity the negative pall that hangs over TWIT was undeniable with Laporte spouting self deprecation that bordered on gallows humor at times.  Perhaps that's why the broadcast seemed to conveniently omit the events of TWIT after 2011.

It's clear that the intention was to focus on the "glory days" of TWIT none of which take place in the present.  The constant TechTV clips were soon followed by the announcement of a new show starting on May 2nd, "The New Screen Savers" complete with a campy TechTV-esque show opener.

With G4 now defunct and parent NBC Universal caring little about the former TechTV intellectual property rights it seems it would be the ideal time to resurrect the dead.  To that end it appears Laporte's plan is to reach into the past to try to secure a future for TWIT.

The New Screen Savers will feature rotating co-hosts consisting of current TWIT staff and co-hosts like Patrick Norton, Megan Morrone and Mike Elgan.

Hindsight truly offers superb vision and on reviewing the episode (offered below) it seems Laporte believes he can stop the hemorrhaging by throwing former fans a bone that will obscure their collective memory of the past 4 years.

Unfortunately, bones are all that's left of TWIT but watch for yourself and draw your own conclusions.  The entire episode is offered with commercials edited out and much of the shows Pre and Post chatter from the RAW feed.