MTV might be putting the music back into Music Television.
The cable channel that put music videos on the pop-culture map only to ultimately replace them with reality TV shows is now producing a new series in which music vids take center stage, reports New York Magazine.
The series, titled ‘Supervideo,’ is shaping up as a showcase for glossy, expensively produced videos for various recording artists that will feature appearances by big-name stars. For example: Anna Kendrick, Oscar-nominated for her role in George Clooney’s ‘Up in the Air,’ stars in a video for LCD Soundsystem’s ‘Pow Pow.’ (Watch it here.)
The New York story credits Kashy Khaledi, the 33-year-old publisher of Mean Magazine, with coming up with the idea. Khaledi declares that the time is right for music videos to make a comeback due in part to the success of Lady Gaga’s videos on YouTube. “It says a lot,” he said of Gaga’s viral success. “It says that there’s a certain nostalgia, that there’s a sort of excitement for the music video again.” Well, maybe. Does anyone out there miss music videos?
There was no word on when or where MTV would air this new ‘Supervideo’ series, though it doesn’t necessarily have to be earmarked for MTV’s primary channel. It could always go to MTV2 and/or turn up on-line.
There’s certainly no sign yet that MTV is ready to jettison its lineup of iconic reality shows, anchored these days by ‘Jersey Shore’ and ‘Teen Mom.’ Complain all you want about MTV shedding its music-video identity over the years, but from a business standpoint, the network has for many years been hugely successful with its unscripted series – from ‘The Real World’ and ‘The Osbournes’ to ‘Laguna Beach’ and ‘The Hills,’ with many, many others in between.
Still, there are many people who will never forgive MTV for dropping music videos. And, as some of them point out in comments posted in the Vulture story, the video banner has been well taken up by the Internet, particularly the aforementioned YouTube, plus dozens of other sites where music videos are readily available.
The question is: Is it too late for MTV to try and make its way back into the music-video arena? Or should MTV continue to stake its future on reality shows? After all, the whole world is talking about ‘Jersey Shore.’ Can you really say the same about LCD Soundsystem?