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Exclusive: The Outs Creator Dishes On Season 2 of Our Favorite Web Series

Exclusive: The Outs Creator Dishes On Season 2 of Our Favorite Web Series

Mitchell (Adam Goldman) in Season 2 of The Outs

Adam Goldman discusses reuniting The Outs cast, the future of LGBT storytelling, and his closet-full of cardigans.

We're so happy to welcome back The Outs, one of the early queer-slanted shows that proved web series can be just as beautifully made and resonant as traditional television. Season 1 was funded through Kickstarter, but Season 2 has picked up the support of Vimeo--which means even higher quality, budget, and a reasonable cost to view (just $15 for the season). We sat down to chat with professional cardigan-wearer Adam Goldman (aka The Out's writer, director, creator, and lead actor) to get all the details on the exciting new season.

Out: It's been a while since Season 1 of The Outs. You even made another show, Whatever This Is, in the meantime! What made you decide to return to it?

Adam Goldman: After the first season it felt like we put the show away. The story had been told and I was really happy with it and people seemed to like it. Endings are really important. It was never something that I was searching high and low to find an excuse to return to. But then we started talking to Vimeo and they wanted to work together. We sort of debated between doing another season of Whatever This Is or The Outs. They were a little more interested in The Outs, and then the more I thought about it I was like, Wouldn't it be nice to see these friends again? It felt appropriate.

I sense that time passed, while watching the new season. Of course, it feels like Season 2 of the show--it has the same characters--but it seems refreshed. These people have changed during our time apart. Can you give us a quick rundown of where everyone is in the show?

In a big way the show is about what happens after you get what you want. Is it everything you thought it was going to be? If you go back to the first season everyone has some version of what they want. Now Oona is a writer, Mitchell has a romantic life going on, some things between Paul and Jack start coming to fruition.

And your character, Mitchell, is still rocking the cardigan.

Yes, I bought so many cardigans for the show. The one magical thing I decided about the show is that Mitchell will never repeat a cardigan.

Do you just have a little part of your closet with all of Mitchell's cardigans?

Truly, my entire closet. It's ridiculous. I open it up sometimes and I'm like, This is silly. But then when I try to get rid of them I'm like, Nooooo! This is so late-fall! It will really work if it's 55 degrees out. So, I have a lot of cardigans.

Hey, I love me a good knit, too. Moving on...I feel the LGBT aspect of the show is taking a side-seat to a tale of young people in New York City. The point of view of the show really isn't driven by sexuality, but by human story. Can you relate to this perspective? Was it a motivating force at all when you approached Season 2?

I have had a lot of conversations with people lately about a queer sensibility or a queer perspective. I think it's pretty bound up in the bones of the show. So many of the characters are gay. It's important not to shy away from the fact that it's a gay show in the sense that it gives value to LGBT stories, but it's not intentional. It's about these characters living their lives. In your day-to-day life, if you observe it from a certain perspective, how much of it is about you being gay? So it isn't something that occupies a lot of thought in these characters' minds. Of course, that's reflective of me and how lucky I am living in a place like New York. I don't want to say it isn't a defining part of who I am--because it is--but it doesn't affect the problems I'm having at work or relationships that I'm having with certain people. It isn't the central moving force of my life.

What were some other shows you drew inspiration from?

Mad Men. With every show in television, I can kind of imagine what it's like to be in the writers' room. But with Mad Men--it really feels like it fell from space. The plot moves in interesting, bizarre ways. I love Game of Thrones and the books it's based on. I'm a big fan of the Good Wife. I keep going back to Weekend--

It's my favorite!

It really holds up. On one hand, it's a unique film and a uniquely moving project. On the other hand, what a shame that a movie we all talk about loving is five years old.

I wanted to chat about the technical aspects of this season. There are some shots that have really stuck with me, and I know it sounds so snooty saying things like that, but I really mean it.

We're really deliberate about how we make the show. So if something stuck with you, I want to know.

The last shot in the first episode when Jack is on Skype videochatting and then the camera pulls away, through the window, onto the street...I loved it. How'd you approach that idea? Did it come about spontaneously? Has it been rewarding to play with form?

It's always a collaboration with our director of photography, Jay Gillespie. We just have a good working relationship and we talk about everything beforehand. That shot was written in the script. We fiddled with the idea of a drone shot that pulled above the city, but it didn't work out. But I'm so happy with the end of that episode and I'm happy it stuck with you. I always want it to be clear that we're making choices. A lot of stuff, particularly with web work, people aren't making choices, they're just shooting it. I wanted to make sure that no element was out of place. And these shots also tie into emotionally what's happening in the story.

Where the camera is can be the most resonant part of a scene--like the camera is another voice in the dialogue. There seems to be a lot more silence in Season 2. You're making the characters sit in their scenes longer, and we get to see how their expressions change and how they exist in their reality without a line to deliver.

I think it's partly me as a director. I like those moments and I like the actors I work with. They can really fill a scene without me telling them how to live in that scene. We had more time to breathe and we didn't have any length limitations and that's how you learn about a character. It's the moments that are scripted and unscripted that put you into a world and make you feel like, Oh, that's a person that does a thing that I do. In our daily lives we're not always quipping and talking. Sometimes, we're just alone. We weren't like, Let's make this a really silent season, but it does help to build character.

Tell me about how people can watch Season 2 of The Outs.

We're releasing episodes once per week on Vimeo, like a traditional TV show. The whole season costs $15, which is basically the price of a movie in New York or a movie and a small popcorn anywhere else. Each episode is 30 minutes long, so it's like three hours. I think that's fair. We're at a point where people realize this stuff isn't free and that TV is expensive to make.

You certainly have a fan base that will gladly buy the show.

We're really grateful for our fans and people have been really supportive of paying for the show. But even for me, as a viewer, I want more work like this in the world. The way you make more work like this in the world is you pay for it, you support it, you tell your friends to watch it.

Support and watch The Outs on Vimeo, and check out the Season 2 trailer below.

The Outs Season Two from Adam Goldman on Vimeo.

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