I had the pleasure of joining Netflix at Stories Bookshop + Storytelling Lab in Brooklyn for the unveiling of Netflix’s interactive storytelling with Puss in Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale and Buddy Thunderstruck: The Maybe Pile. It was amazing. Both the venue and these fantastic new shows blew me and my family’s minds!!! Collectively. It was blown.
Just think back to when you were a kid (yes, it is possible…try your best) to when you could read those really cool books and decide where the story was going to go next. Remember. You were readying along and then you came to a virtual fork in the road. If you want Joe to eat the apple, then turn to page 73. If you want Joe to make applesauce, turn to page 82. That doesn’t sound like an awesome option, but what the hey, it was great to have it at least. Seriously, I used to love those types of books.
Fast forward to the entertainment glory days of Netflix in 2017, and these books are coming back, in spirit, just a whole lot cooler. With Netflix Interactive TV, you choose what happens next and it’s awesome since it pushes the boundaries of storytelling and the way you engage with it.
Netflix has done extensive research and talked to lots of kids and parents, collecting qualitative data to better understand if this is something viewers will like. The children’s programming space was a natural place for Netflix to start since kids are eager to “play” with their favorite characters and already inclined to tap, touch and swipe at screens. They also talk to their screens, as though the characters can hear them. Now, that conversation can be two-way. It’s really about finding the right stories – and storytellers – that can tell these complex narratives and bring them to life in a compelling way.
Check out the Official Interactive Storytelling trailer HERE to see what I mean!!!