The Austin Television Experience hit a speed bump Friday when a panel on adapting works failed to find a thesis or purpose of discussion.
Whether it be a beloved relationship (About a Boy), a true story , a town with a very specific tone (Fargo), or a tale with a pre-determined ending (Bates Motel), a reimagined story looks to balance the previously told one with an innovative new viewpoint that makes it worth revisiting. Creators and writers of some of television’s greatest adaptations discuss what drew them to the source material, the rewards and challenges of not starting from scratch, and how to please an established fan base while welcoming a new one.
This…was a challenge. First off, Jason Katims was late to the panel. Rumors were circulating that he wasn’t going to show at all (flight problems), so Andy Daly from Review was brought in to fill out the panel. As a result, there were three panelists (four, once Katims arrived) that did not really have much overlap in terms of types of shows or the topic at hand. Daly brought some levity to the panel, comparing his show to the Australian version (which is apparently much darker than the US version), but…
…Jason Katims was a mess. Each question he was asked resulted in a long rambling answer, punctuated with “y’knows” and various other stammers. Unfortunately, since moderator Alan Sepinwall seemed to have planned to showcase Katims, he kept returning to the producer with his questions. I measured one of the exchanges—three minutes and ten seconds, with 29 “y’knows.” As with most excessive verbal filler words, it became contagious on the panel. The Q&A session ended early, as the audience seemed to grow weary of the aimlessness of the panel. I hope the other panels featuring these participants will be better.