I tend to judge the age of webdocs in terms of whether they are from the BTB or ATB era (Before or After This Blog). Prison Valley scrapes it into BTB with an early 2010 release date, which in my view makes it a grandaddy of the webdoc form.
Prison Valley is an ARTE-produced interactive webdoc about Canon City, a prison town in Colorado, US. The viewer stays in a virtual motel room for the duration of their ‘visit’ to the town and returns there between trips to different sections of the town and prison. When I first encountered Prison Valley, I found it a bit frustrating as I seemed to get stuck moving in circles, returning over and over to the same pieces of content.
Others loved it though, and Prison Valley won a bunch of awards and is often cited as an eminent example of the form. I haven’t returned to it since my first shot but would be interested now to see how it stands up against current projects.
Instead of giving a re-review, though, I’d like to throw it open to others – if you’re checking it out for the first time, what do you think? Or if you loved it the first time around, how about revisiting it in light of more recent productions? Hit us up with your thoughts.
About this writer
Physicist and author Brian Greene, brings us a mind-blowing new exploration of space, time, and the very nature of reality.
Acclaimed filmmaker Ken Burns chronicles the worst man-made ecological disaster in American history.
A fresh perspective on the birth of civilisation in the Near and Middle East and its dynamic influence on the West.