It’s hard to remember a time before The Guild, the little web show that could, brain-child of Felicia Day. Nowadays it’s taken as a given that Felicia was extremely influential in the flourishing and legitimizing of online content (certainly shows like The Lizzie Bennet Diaries would never have existed, and even Dr. Horrible’s Online Blog probably owes its existence to Day and The Guild (Joss Whedon is on record saying that The Guild gave him the idea to take his ideas to the internet). I watch a large amount of content on the web now, a lot of it on Felicia’s YouTube Channel Geek & Sundry (which was purchased by Legendary Pictures last summer). Watching ‘TV’ from my phone as I wake up in the morning, pulling up the newest episode of Tabletop on the YouTube app on my Bluray player while I eat my dinner . . . these things all had their start here, with The Guild.
Which also happens to be a delightful piece of comedic storytelling. Even without all that other stuff that’s come after, The Guild remains a story about a bunch of antisocial gaming nerds coming together and being hilarious, written by an actress who was sick of getting pigeonholed as the quirky girl by traditional casting agents. The main thing she conveys in this book, and with her whole success story actually, is that she wanted to see herself and people like her represented on film, so she created something for herself. That it was successful is a huge testament not only to her talent and commitment, but also to the people who worked with her to bring The Guild to life.
This is billed as the official companion to The Guild, but it’s really more of an oral history. Felicia writes the introduction, but the rest is transcripted interviews with crew, cast members, and production staff. I liked the content that was there, but I was honestly looking for a bit more behind the scenes insight than we got. I think the oral history format actually works to the books’ detriment, in that some of the stories were a bit long-winded and not as interesting as others. It was also copyedited pretty sloppily.
Still, there was some really fascinating stuff in here and behind the scenes tidbits (I particularly enjoy the stories about how they got all the celeb cameos, especially in season five when the guildies went to a con). It was a bit unfair that they all kept mentioning a possible season seven. I’m pretty sure that’s not going to happen, but when they all kept mentioning it, it only made me want it more.
If any of you internet denizens have somehow still not seen The Guild, it’s on Netflix, and you don’t have to be a gamer to enjoy it. You might have to be a nerd, though. So nerds, you have no excuses! I shall be starting my own rewatch immediately.