It’s cold outside, you don’t have cable, and you’re jonesing to watch something in bite-sized, easily-digestible bits.
Here are six Chicago-based web series to consider.
Keeping in mind its tagline, “…and you thought girls were dirty,” this web series about three thirtysomething gay guys certainly deliver on its raunchy premise with frank discussion about dating over thirty, the sexual proclivities of escorts, and Boystown after dark. The dialogue is sharp, the production is crisp, the sex is explicit, and the characters are kind of unlikeable, so if you’re looking for a Girls fix, this may be it. Created by Andrew Pemberton-Fowler in April 2014, the series is on its fifth episode. Watch it here.
The City Hates Us
Six struggling millennials in the entertainment industry navigate their burgeoning careers in this web series founded by Chicago native Sanicole Young. It’s definitely a drama, in the vein of Empire, minus Taraji P. Henson’s outrageous outfits. What makes the show stand out most though—apart from its gorgeous shots of Bronzeville, Pilsen, and other parts of the South Side, is its hip-hop laden soundtrack. The City Hates Us is on its second season. Watch it here.
Former Chicago residents Laura Zak and Caitlin Bergh, now L.A. transplants, created this comedic web series about a group of close-knit lesbians and the romantic entanglements created in part by their Internet addictions. Set and filmed in Andersonville, it’s got the lo-fi charms of Broad City and none of the L Word's melodrama. Its second season premieres on January 18. Watch it here.
McTucky Fried High
Filmmaker Robert Carnilius won a grant from the Chicago Digital Media Production Fund to finance this teen-oriented web series about a group of anthropomorphic food items in high school. Each episode tackles A Very Special Theme, such as sexting, bullying, and being queer. It’s a little didactic, but the animation is charming. The first episode debuts on January 26. Watch it here.
Two dudebros, Blake and Spencer, engage in a series of silly hijinks about town in this new web series (filmed in Edgewater) created by comedy duo Blake Dorris and Spencer Glenn Miller. They’ve only released a pilot as they work to figure out to fund the rest of the season. If you like what you see, check out their Indiegogo page.
You're So Talented
Written and created by actress Samantha Bailey, You’re So Talented tracks the trajectory of a twentysomething actress trying to make in the big city. Yes, it’s hardly an original premise for a web series, but judging by the well-made trailer, it looks like catnip for someone biding time before the next episodes of High Maintenance hit the Interwebs. Watch You’re So Talented here.