The Writing Majors is a web series that tells the story of Emily, a shy and anxious poet who receives a camera for Christmas and decides to capture her college experience along with her roommates, Jane and Oscar. The series aired from December 2014 to May 2015 and it consists of 23 episodes, each one being roughly 5-6 minutes long.
NOTE: This review is spoiler-free
It doesn’t matter whether you have ever attended University. If you have ever been in a group of friends, odds are that you thought about recording your moments together so that, one day when you are older, you can go back to those times in the form of videos. In a way, watching The Writing Majors is like watching actual footage of a group of friends hanging out.
Even though it can be a bit confusing at first, the series soon narrows down its characters to the main trio (photo above) and the story only gets better from there. In case you are still confused about some of the side characters, the series also makes an extra effort in introducing everyone in a few special videos, from their names to what they do. Fun fact: the characters are based on some of the most beloved classic authors, so if you are a fan of classic literature, you will definitely catch some quotes and references! As per the cast, every single actor does a wonderful job at portraying these characters in a natural and genuine way.
The way in which it’s shot also helps a lot when it comes to making the series more realistic. Many web series focus on the common vlog formula in which a character talks to a webcam, and they rarely ever move the camera, let alone take it outside. Even though Writing Majors also follows that formula for its most personal and emotional videos, the camera often changes places. Sometimes it’s static and sometimes the characters take it outside (like a forest or even a dance club!), making the whole experience much more dynamic and realistic. Audiovisually speaking, there are some technical aspects that could be fixed like the audio volume, but aside from that, the video composition and overall quality are really good.
Story-wise, this series is funny, it’s witty, it’s relatable and more thought-provoking that you might expect. In fact, Writing Majors shines at its brightest when it gets personal. The authors were not afraid to touch on topics like social anxiety (and how it is perceived by others), fear of never finding love or homophobia. The reason why it works so well is because the characters are brutally honest about how they feel. They are not afraid to speak about the insecurities that often come with being a young adult trying to pursue their dreams. If there is one thing that could be said against Writing Majors is that we don’t really see that much from their life as students. Even if filming in an actual class was not possible, it would have been nice to have them talk more about their courses, exams and other student-related problems. It’s something that they did touch on early in the series, but that is later dropped as soon as the characters start facing other extracurricular projects. It’s forgiven, though: exams will pass, but the lesson you learn along the way about hope, friendship and empowerment are the ones that remain.