No one is more aware of the need to diversify than those laid off during the "economic crisis" (read: recession) or those working in media. Even television conglomerates have embraced computers and cell phones as new mediums for their new media. Now ideas and concepts that are thoroughly developed, but too risky to throw network money at, don't have to be tossed. They can be created for an even smaller screen.
One stellar example of a show that wouldn't have worked in a standard 22- or 47-minute formats, but whose three- to eight-minute episodes have more zing, more humor and better acting than many of the sitcoms now on air is NBC's Ctrl.
Created last year, Ctrl was the first stand-alone Web series launched by any major television network. Tony Hale (Arrested Development) stars as Stuart Grundy, an office schlub who spills Nestea on his keyboard (product placement anyone?) causing it to mysteriously work in real life exactly as it does on his computer screen. Ctrl-Z undoes his last move--he hurls a coffee cup to the floor, leaving a mess of porcelain shards and spilled coffee. He clicks Ctrl-Z and poof! No more shards, the coffee cup is whole again.
Ctrl-V copies and pastes; several versions of Grundy are suddenly wandering around the office. Ctrl-Y will undo an action as if it never happened, which proves "be careful what you ask for." When Grundy uses Ctrl-Y to undo saying something that got him fired, it also undoes the moment that he finally tells co-worker Elizabeth (Emy Coligado) his true feelings for her.
Steve Howey (Reba) is brilliant as Grundy's narcissistic, entitled boss Ben Piller. A scene in which Grundy uses the volume-down key to silence Piller's yelling is laugh-out-loud funny.