TV And Film Still Don't Know How To Depict Texting (Or The Internet)

BBC's Sherlock does a pretty top-notch job of portraying text messages, but as Tony Zhou points out in the latest installment of Every Frame a Painting, cinematic representations of the digital world – including texting and the Internet – remain, for the most part, inefficient, ineffective, and uninspired.


The good news, says Zhou, is that the state of technological representation in TV and film leaves plenty of room for innovation. The bad news is that the road to innovation is likely paved with keyboard-flailing computer hackers and goofy VR sex.

[Every Frame A Painting]



Sherlock was my introduction to the "texts on screen" format too, and I agree it's an excellent innovation there. I hadn't realized there were so many other films and shows that did it too. (I think Her did it once or twice.)

Come to think of it, it's kind of a resurrection of silent-film intertitles, since texting is a silent form of communication. So, yeah, it's new, but it's also a version of something much older.

(But why did the video use the Green Hornet theme to accompany the discussion of anime? I don't see the connection.)