It’s ironic that Regal, in an effort to get people interested in going to movie theaters, would ask popular Vine actors to star in a branded miniseries called Date Night Fails that is premiering on the Internet. There’s more mess beyond the irony, since Regal turned to Vine, which has, itself, plateaued in terms of popularity, much like the movie theaters. So, even though this campaign is harmless, it’s also kind of sad.
Created by LA-based digital agency Something Massive, Date Night Fails stars Jason Nash as Vince, a clueless buffoon who has occasional funny moments stemming from his loud, overbearing, and sometimes annoying personality. That Look at Me approach to humor can get old very quickly, as it does here, even though there are only five two-minute episodes. Vine does have a turtle named Quentin Taraturtle for whatever that’s worth. Other well-known Viners such as KC James and Arielle Vandenberg appear in some of the clips, which all have to do with convincing you that going to the movies is better than watching movies at home. Intuitively, that makes sense, even if the reasons, themselves don’t. Like in “Loading,” repeated streaming problems interrupt Vince and a date from watching a movie on his TV, even though those kind of buffering issues don’t exist long-term and can be fixed easily. Or in “Making Concessions,” where homemade and store-bought snacks are supposed to make you want to go to a theater and buy $10 popcorn, even though the dynamic actually works in reverse.
See, harmless and kind of sad. There’s probably a way to execute this miniseries more effectively, maybe with shorts about not being able to see new titles on Netflix, dealing with frequent commercials on cable, and encountering loneliness at home versus enjoying the theater experience with a crowd of people who laugh, gasp, etc. But that’s not what Date Night Fails is, and any person who stops to think for two seconds will see right through these straw men.