What is MMM?
Well, I’m here, tell me about MMM Commentaries
MMM Commentaries is a small group of enthusiasts from Brisbane, Australia who record alternate, fan-made commentaries for our favourite films and tv. Our main interest is in science fiction, so we have concentrated so far on Doctor Who, Star Trek and Star Wars.
How did this all come about?
We had always been passionate about what we saw, and often got together for discussions on stuff we had seen. After a while we thought it would be great to record our comments. We wondered why nobody else had thought about doing this.
Haven’t I seen this idea somewhere else?
Well, yeah, you have. In the time it took us to talk about it and actually do it, activity on this particular idea seemed to be gaining momentum. We originally did a handful of commentaries back in 2002 and 2003, but none again until October 2005. Now that podcasting has really taken off, the time seemed right to get back into it. We are now taking advantage of the benefits of podcasting and offer not only our commentaries but a podcast on scifi tv and film.
There are also some other sites out there doing their own commentaries. Check out the Sharecrow website for a comphrehensive list of all of them (including ours!).
Your commentaries are mp3s, why don’t you call them podcasts as well?
Many alternate commentary teams do indeed release their commentary tracks as episodes, or shows. But we here at MMM like to keep the distinction between our regular podcast show and our commentaries. We believe our commentary tracks are less topical (as in talking about current new items) than our podcasts, so dating them or even number them seems redundant.
Err, yeah, that’s all well and good, but what’s the point?
Some have questioned why we both doing the alternate commentaries. Many have expressed bemusement about why anyone would want to hear from someone who has no connection with the film. They would prefer to listen to a director, or producer, or even one of the stars.
We do commentaries because they are fun. Not because we want to make buckets of money (quite the opposite in fact once you add up hardware costs, hosting costs and other sundries). And certainly not because we think our opinions are more important than the ones on the DVD.
To our way of thinking if you don’t like listening to alternate commentaries then you don’t like participating in email discussions, newsgroup threads, online chats, or even water cooler talk with your work-mates about the film you saw last night. Because to us alternate commentaries, newsgroups, emails, gossip and discussion are the same thing. We just record ours and put it up on the web.
Home brew commentaries such as ours can range from mockery of a particular film or subject through to engaging discussions on the technical aspects. We like to think MMM Commentaries has something for everyone – those that want a laugh, and those that want to learn a bit more about the film.
One thing we promise never to do is talk about our vision for the film. So that’s a bonus already.
So who is taking part in the MMM Commentaries?
The people involved are:
How do you record the Commentary Podcasts?
Back in the dim dark days of 2002/2003 we used two microphones attached to a small mixing desk with the output being sent to a VHS tape. Since there were three commentators we had to share the mics between us. From this tape recording we recorded it to .wav format on the computer and then produce the MP3 file from it.
But 2005 has brought about a technologically leap in our equipment – we now have our own professional microphones connected to a professional mixing desk which connect to a laptop computer recording the .wav file. From there we do a small amount of post-production and put it up on the web in mp3 format.