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|Slogan||"If it's crap, we'll tell you."|
|Type of site||Film and video game review, podcasts|
|Created by||Korey Coleman|
|Slogan||"If it's crap, we'll tell you."|
|Type of site||Film and video game review, podcasts|
|Created by||Korey Coleman|
Spill.com is an award-winning movie and video game review, discussion and news website. It is the continuation of the 9 year old Austin, Texas based Public-access television cable TV show called The Reel Deal. There are four main film critic contributors to the website, collectively known as the Spill Crew, including Korey Coleman, Chris Cox, Martin Thomas and Tony Guerrero. Under aliases, with the exception of Korey, they review movies as animated versions of themselves or in uncut audio reviews, maintaining their persona in weekly podcasts. The website is owned by Hollywood.com, under R&S Investments. Stylistically, the site strives to maintain a "down-to-earth vibe." As of November 2012, Spill.com has over 46,000 registered members.
The Reel Deal is the precursor to Spill.com. The show began in Austin as a live, call-in format cable access television program, from the same local channel where Alex Jones of Infowars and Matt Dillahunty of the Atheist Experience also emerged, developing a strong fan base locally. The show featured a cast of rotating members discussing and reviewing movies, along with other topics. Spliced in between these discussions were skits that parodied popular movies and current topics. The show ended after Korey decided that,"As much fun as it was, I didn't want to spend another 10 years doing an access show."
Korey tried experimenting with short animated versions of movie reviews, which were uploaded onto Youtube. It was then discovered by Dave McCarthy, an executive at MIVA Inc., a marketing corporation. Mr. McCarthy and MIVA offered to finance Korey, aiding him in starting the website in 2007. MIVA owned the website, handling the marketing, design and logistics of the site, leaving Korey and the other members of Spill.com in charge of creating content. While the creative team has grown and expanded over the years, Coleman is still involved in the animation process. The site, as of 2009, was bought by Hollywood.com, owned by R&S Investments. In 2009 and 2012, Spill received the People's Choice Podcast Award for Best Film/Movie Podcast.
There are four main film critics on Spill.com. With the exception of Korey Coleman, they use aliases on the site due to legal issues. Critics include Korey Coleman, founder of the site and main host; Chris Cox as Cyrus, previously part of The Reel Deal; Martin Thomas as Leon, part of The Reel Deal and defunct Behind The Screens; and Film.com and Tony Guerrero as The Co-Host 3000, also part of The Reel Deal. Guerrero (as Co-Host) appears in animation as a floating spherical robot, rather than a caricature of himself. Reviews usually include two or more of the critics, though some include Korey on his own. Co-Host previously rarely appeared in ensemble reviews, but in 2009 and 2010 began to take a more active role on the site as former reviewer "Carlyle" (Ain't It Cool News writer Christopher Robert Cargill) left the site to pursue his writing career. Co-Host is now a regular on ensemble reviews.
Each Spill crew member gives their own rating, so it is not uncommon for there to be more than one rating stated for a film. At the end of each review, the critics give their ratings. A cumulative score is then posted on the site itself. The rating system is based on means of seeing the movie, from most to least expensive and engrossing, except the highest and lowest ratings. Each film is judged on its own merits, taking into account a multitude of factors including but not limited to its perceived audience, the time of year it is released, its marketing campaign, etc. Ratings are conveyed (in the videos reviews only) by showing a picture of the reviewer and their rating written underneath and a sound similar to a cash register (with a few exceptions, detailed below). To date, Co-Host does not have a rating card due to the current redesign the site and characters are undergoing. However, in recent reviews his rating is listed, but the newer reviews do not have pictures of the critic above the rating. Commonly assumed to be a standard 5-star system, the Spill.com rating system is actually loosely based on a sliding 0-10 star system, with a variety of names and incremental levels, such as "Matinée" or "High Matinée". They are as follows:
Better Than Sex!: The Spill Crew usually withholds this rating, only awarding it to a movie that they find flawless or exceptionally outstanding. It is the least given rating, in essence scoring the film an 11/10 or a "better than perfect." When a Spill reviewer gives this rating, a sound clip of a cheering audience plays.
Examples: Cloverfield, The Dark Knight, District 9, The Artist The Cabin in the Woods, and The Avengers.
Full Price!!: The film is very enjoyable, above average quality. Films which receive this rating are recommended and definitely worth paying the full price at a theater to see (night time, popcorn & drink). The crew finds these films excellent, but not necessarily flawless.
Examples: How to Train Your Dragon, Toy Story 3, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2, The Avengers, and The Dark Knight Rises.
Matinée!: The film is still entertaining enough to warrant a theater viewing, but flawed enough that one should pay the lower matinée price for it. It is a "mid-level" rating, and the Spill reviewers often modify the review depending on the specific flaws or strengths of the film — e.g. "High Matinée", "Low Matinée" or "Christopher Nolan Matinée" (invented when Korey gave The Dark Knight Rises a Matinée rating and is the highest the score goes before becoming a Full Price).
Examples: Watchmen, Iron Man 2, Predators, The Muppets, Scream 4, Sinister and Snow White and the Huntsman.
Rental: The film is worth seeing on some level, but not worth the cost of admission at a theater or seeing during the initial theatrical run. Like the "Matinée!" rating, "Rental" can be modified by the individual reviewer - e.g. "High Rental" or "Low Rental."
Examples: Punisher: War Zone, Friday the 13th, Clash of the Titans, Valentine's Day Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen and Twilight: Eclipse.
Some Ole Bullshit!: The film has little redeeming value, regardless of its audience. Unlike all ratings above it, "Some Ole Bullshit" recommends against watching the film at any price. Until Spill.com introduced the "Fuck You" rating, "Some Ole Bullshit!" was their lowest rating.
Examples: Knowing, Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen, Robin Hood, and Twilight: Breaking Dawn and the The Sitter.
Fuck You!: The "Fuck You!" rating is given to movies that the Spill crew find offensive, either due to low quality or distasteful material. Unlike "Some Ole Bullshit," it is actively enthusiastic against the film. "Fuck You!" was not part of the original rating system - it was invented for 2008's Disaster Movie when Korey felt the movie required an extra low rating and invented the "Fuck You!" rating on the spot. The "Fuck You!" rating has a distinct graphic from the other reviews in which Korey gives the middle finger (regardless of which reviewer gave the rating). A sound clip similar to the theme from Psycho then plays. The rating is also known as "Fuck This Movie!!" Movies must make the Spill Crew genuinely angry to obtain this rating. Notably, Spill's review of Vampires Suck consists entirely of Korey saying, "Fuck you" and displaying the accompanying rating. As of December 21, 2010, Little Fockers became the first film to receive a collective rating of "Fuck you!" from the Spill Crew, however the reviews were aggregated as "Some Ole Bullshit!"
Examples: Disaster Movie, The Last Airbender, Gulliver's Travels, Texas Chainsaw 3D, Little Fockers, Zookeeper, A Thousand Words, Here Comes the Boom, Movie 43, and Identity Thief. Inappropriate Comedy was deemed to be even worse than a Fuck You! Films such as Daddy Day Camp, Southland Tales, Meet the Spartans and The Love Guru were only given a "Some Ole Bullshit!" because it was the lowest rating at the time.
In addition to unedited movie review and discussion segments, the website also releases five weekly podcasts and one unscheduled podcast. All podcasts are conducted fairly casually, and the hosts occasionally get drunk over the course of the show.
A Couple of Cold Ones: Abbreviated as 'ACOCO', is currently hosted by Korey and Leon with rare guest appearances. It is Spill's oldest podcast, debuting in January 2008, and it focuses mainly on film. Originally, it was hosted by Korey and Carlyle, though Leon was added as a third host in November 2010. In June 2011, Carlyle left the show, essentially the last remaining part of his involvement in the site as a whole, to pursue opportunities as a novelist and screenwriter, leaving Korey and Leon as the sole hosts. Korey originally had planned for Leon to replace him, but later changed his mind. This proved fortuitous, as mere months later Carlyle decided to retire from the show. Segments include discussion on weekly box office rankings, "The Top Five," followed by free form discussion and a segment on e-mails and tweets submitted by members of the site. "The Top Five" is done in a countdown format, with Leon announcing each number before Korey reveals the film in that slot, followed by brief discussion of the film. It is usually recorded on Sunday nights and released on Mondays. In August 2011, the crew began using Prince Paul's "Flattery" as the shows theme song.
Remote Viewing: A weekly podcast that reviews the latest in video home releases. Expanding upon Cyrus' written reviews and taking the place of the defunct Blu Tuesday podcast, "Remote Viewing" features site critic Cyrus, writer Brian Salisbury and "tech guru" Luke Mullen as they review and comment on recent DVD and Blu-ray releases, both from a critical and technical standpoint. The show began in a monthly format, but due to fan enthusiasm and the numerous films covered in any given episode it was later expanded to be weekly. The show also features an ongoing contest in which the hosts will announce keywords during the podcast. When those keywords appear somewhere on the site (typically in one of the comment sections), fans can write in and win a copy of a recently reviewed film. It is typically released on Tuesdays.
The Loading Bar: A weekly video game podcast hosted by the site's video game editor and animator, Professor Jeff, and co-hosted by a group of gamers including Korey, Kevin J. Baird of Video Game News Radio, international friend of the site Nick Hodges, and Jason Murphy, formerly of the LEOG podcast. The hosts struggled for the first few weeks to solidify a format and title, eventually landing on "Let's Play This". However, due to Co-host 3000 and fans complaints that it was too similar to "Let's Do This", a call was put out to the fans to come up with a new name. After a lengthy suggestion period, the name "The Loading Bar" was chosen, both for its reference to the aggravating loading times most gamers are familiar with, and for its alcoholic connotations "loaded" and "bar". The show often features community members as "fan experts" on video game titles, and it is the only other podcast on the site that has accompanying video reviews as well. Unlike the film reviews, which are created in a cartoon style, the video game reviews are created in a pixel art style, similar to a 16-bit console game. In addition to audio reviews of the latest games, The Loading Bar also releases a twice a month "Email and BS Show" in which they answer questions from the fans. Also, most weekdays The Loading Bar posts "Happy Hour" videos, which are video playthroughs of the first hour of a current or classic video game.
Let’s Do This!!!: Abbreviated as 'LDT', features Korey and Co-Host, with occasional guest appearances. In late 2011 the cast expanded to include Billy "Uncle Popcorn" Brooks. Brooks was a regular for all of 2012 until his leave in March 2013. The podcast is a spinoff of A Couple of Cold Ones. The show does not have a fixed topic, although it often deals with film, internet videos, current political events, celebrity gossip, black issues, personal anecdotes and humor. The purpose of the show is to "talk bullshit," and it is defined by a stream of consciousness style. The podcast has numerous running gags and recurring elements including the show's mascot, Goatsey. An imaginary bipedal goat, Goatsey helps lead to the intro, in which the crew shouts the show name and plays "Get to the Choppa" by Austrian Death Machine. The latter part of the show includes "Fuck Yo Thoughts," the show's e-mail section, a reference to a quotation by Don "Reverend X" Vincent, one of the show's running gags. Traditionally, this is the longest of the Spill podcasts, with no set length. It sometimes runs approximately three or even four hours. Because of these long running times, "Let's Do This" is often split into two segments, with Part 1 released on Wednesdays and Part 2 on Thursdays.
The Untitled Billy & Korey Show: is the most recent podcast added to the site. It is a spin-off of Let's Do This. After Billy's departure from Lets Do This in March 2013, due to fan backlash and other conflicts, Billy and Korey began their own show. Alongside the two is former frequent Lets Do This guest Alan C. Hall. Alan appears in the background providing more calm and subtle talk, in opposition to Korey and Billy's more rambuncious and joking nature. The show's style is similar to that of LDT, but runs on more fan driven discussion. The show's topics come from the Spill.com fan base and are chosen the day before. While originally the two had left the name of the podcast up to the fans, they soon got frustrated with the ethnocentric and race-driven title suggestions, after specifically asking the fans to refrain from racial or stereotypical titles. The show's theme song is "I'm Black Y'all" from the film CB4. The show is uploaded every Thursday.
The League of Extremely Ordinary Gentlemen: Abbreviated as 'LEOG', is a podcast started by Cyrus and Leon. It has an ensemble cast, led by Cyrus and Leon, featuring a rotating cast of "LEOG Members": Beau, Grant, Kayla, Randy, Harris, Cat, John Rubio, Nakato, Johnny Neil, Joe Parsons and fellow Spill employees: animator Peter ("Fungusmonkey") Sorensen, and writer Brian Salisbury. LEOG Members Emeritus include: Jason, Greg, Jason F ("Fish"), Allison, and Kristen. It is the only podcast to regularly feature guest stars. The guests are numerous and include people in various creative industries as well as other people from the website. A wide range of topics on geek culture are discussed, such as comic books, science fiction & fantasy, movies, and TV shows. The podcast's name is derived from Alan Moore's The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. The show is split into volumes and subdivided among them into stand-alone issues. The show, like Let's Do This!, has a tendency towards recurring jokes and self-referential humor which usually last a few months at a time. It is also the only podcast that seems to be subject to any level of editing. Each episode is concluded by a collective cry of "Long live the League!" It generally runs a little under three hours, but can vary in length. It is typically released on Fridays. On April 5th ,2013, Cyrus and Leon announced that LEOG would be coming to a end due to dwindling popularity, and not a executive decisions coming from Hollywood.com and Korey. They've suggested that a new podcast will be created with Leon and Cyrus hosting it, however, the entirety of the other members of the league will not be frequent hosts.
The Spill Call-in Show: A recurring live podcast in which Korey takes calls from members of the community and answers their questions. The show is always posted with a chatroom where listeners themselves can interact and comment on the live show as well. The recording of the audio portion of the show is sometimes posted later in the week as its own podcast so even those who missed the live show can listen to it. The show has no set release dates, and it typically runs an hour to an hour and a half, but its length varies significantly. The January 28th episode went on for 2 1/2 hours, a full hour past when the show was supposed to end; this resulted in a (quite humorous) abrupt ending, in which the hosting website, Blog Talk Radio, cut off the show at the 2 1/2 hour mark. Previous shows included a live-animated video feed that accompanied the audio, but the current show is audio only. The show is broadcast live on the website, typically on Saturday afternoons.
Blu Tuesday was a podcast in which Korey and Carlyle discussed the new Blu-ray and DVDs being released in the coming week. The show began with a parody of Elvis Presley's Blue Christmas, sung a cappella by Korey. The name is a pun on Blu-ray Discs and was selected after a fan contest to choose the title. It was recorded over Skype directly after ACOCO, and released a day later, on Tuesdays. Its running time was usually 30 to 45 minutes long. After weeks of falling ratings, fan complaints about content and length, and a conflict of interest with their weekly written Blu-ray and DVD reviews, Korey and Carlyle announced that Blu Tuesday had been cancelled.
Shootin' The Shit was a podcast in which all of the Spill crew talked about some random news. It has not been done in years, but was never officially cancelled.
Spill Dot Con is the annual spill convention that began in 2008, a weekend long event that takes place over many venues with activities that range from live music acts (in 2010 rapper Del the Funky Homosapien performed), to live art shows. The convention also features panels, both featuring guests and the Spill crew. While Spill Dot Con offers large number of events and panels, the convention is a lot more laid-back and "down to earth" than most conventions of this size. The convention noticeably grows larger every year, with 2012 being the largest gathering in the convention's history.
The laid-back nature means that Spill Dot Con is mainly a get-together and fan appreciation party for Spill.com community members that takes place in Austin, Texas where the site is based. The members get a chance to hang out with the Spill Crew during special shows and parties and mingle with their fellow fans. Spill community members also submit fan films to "the first annual Spill.com Film Festival" (a running gag in which every year is the "first annual" year), and compete in a competition. The films are screened for the audience, typically at the Alamo Drafthouse in downtown Austin. The winning films from the 2010 and 2011 festivals were both submitted by Spill member Stephan, with his entries "Goatsey Come Home" and "Spill Noir," and the most recent festival was won by The Projectionist with his entry "The Book of Korey."