Did anyone watch the Mermaids show on Animal Planet over the weekend? The series consisted of a documentary and a “live” interview with one of the scientists from the original documentary. The show’s hype caused people to question the legitimacy of mermaids. The reaction on the internet prompted a response from the government stating that there are no such things as mermaids. The show had everything you needed to create a movement…until you watched the show. The live actors were terrible and the footage was something you would see on the ScFy channel. The show couldn’t deliver on the hype it created on the web.
The failure of the show to deliver on its promise made me wonder…
When will we get another ‘War of The Worlds’?
For those who never heard the story, Orson Wells and his staff adapted the book War of The Worlds for radio. The broadcast caused a national panic. People really believe aliens were attacking the United States. Wells took the most popular medium at the time and flipped it to make the impossible seem real. The way information travels across the internet, it would be easy for a company or group of people to follow in Wells’s footsteps. Creating fake websites and giving blogs false information would be a way to generate buzz. Putting video footage on sites like YouTube from “random users” could help get people talking about the subject. Finally, creating actual tie-ins with a large news outlet like CNN would give the show the credibility it needed.
The Mermaids show might have failed to create the same response as WOTW, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t possible. If you were given the funds and resources to create the next War of The Worlds how would you do it? What would be your subject? And do you think we will ever see what Orson Wells was able to accomplish again in the internet age?