Blood Over Water is a mystery thriller television miniseries originally scheduled for release on the Ferris Access Channel for the spring season of 2010. It was created by television major and football player Chris Wilson and TV major student Cassie Tilne; and it was produced and co-wrote by Angelina McClane and David Stiefel. It formerly went by other working titles; such as Bogged, Mountain of Cabal and The Twin Conspiracy. On Thanksgiving Day, November 22nd of 2012 around 2:00 AM EST, it was successfully converted to red-cyan anaglyph 3D; and was also edited into a single film. A later 2013 re-release was made for 3D as an optional feature in multiple formats.
Blood is thicker than water. But by how much?
Twin brothers, Mark and Aaron, are very close. Mark works for a local Sleet Mountain bottling facility. But when he turns up missing, Aaron will stop at nothing to uncover the truth. But the truth...might kill him.
|Blood Over Water—Plot|
Twin bothers Aaron and Mark arrange to get up early to go fishing. When Mark does not answer the phone, Aaron investigates. He finds the house ransacked, and wonders who's behind all the violence. There is no sign of Mark anywhere, but Aaron finds a mysterious envelope that may have clues. He makes several phone calls around town, and ultimately grows frustrated when the police say they know nothing.
Aaron confides to his friend Chris that something isn't right. He goes to a lab to investigate the confidential folder on his own, only to discover a business card made out to a "George Lawence." He decides the only way to get answers is to call George's number and pretend to be Mark. George, believing Aaron is Mark, arranges a meeting.
George and Kyle meanwhile set an ambush for Aaron, still believing he is Mark. Under that false impression, they reveal their entire plan to scam money while saving Sleet Mountain millions of dollars on waste disposal. They soon argue with each other over who gets to shoot Mark between the eyes; and Aaron uses the opportunity to escape. Once a safe distance away, he decides to collect pond water evidence and have it tested. His friend Monica reluctantly volunteers to test the water before Aaron takes his story to the media. Just as they get their desired results, an armed Chris shows up with Kyle to betray them.
Terrified, Aaron calls on Chris to remember the good times he, Mark, and Aaron used to have with each other. As Chris ponders his issues of loyalty, George and Kyle drive Aaron and Monica to a dump site near Mark's body. They finally exit the car, but Chris fake-shoots both while actually knocking them out. He feels torn by grief, so he betrays George and Kyle by turning the gun on them. He leaves a note for Aaron to find Mark's body, and then flees in the SUV that George and Kyle arrived in.
Aaron follows Chris' note down to where Mark's body is located. As he looks over the body, he vows to avenge his brother's memory. Flashbacks reveal Chris, George, and Kyle's roles in both the water dumping conspiracy and cover-up of Mark's murder. They also reveal how Ashley and Chris managed to trick Mark into opening his door, leading to Chris strangling Mark. In the present, the boss of Sleet Mountain calls Chris and demands his return. Chris refuses, hanging up and fleeing the state. Credits reveal that Sleet Mountain ends up indicted for fraud, and faces being shut down. Chris is revealed to be still-at-large, and wanted on multiple counts of murder.
Cast and charactersEdit
- Zach Foster as Aaron and Mark Stefflin: Aaron is a usually laid-back romantic. He has a strong bond of family loyalty to his twin brother and is a close friend of Chris. Aaron is more adept at survival than his brother. His friendship with Monica, is never explained.
- Mark, a stuffy office worker, remains shrouded in mystery. When frightened, Mark prefers to remain calm, making him Aaron's foil.
- Also, Zach plays Clyde Spendelworth: A cold-blooded and rotten-to-the-core CEO of Sleet Mountain, he's seen only from behind. In spite sharing the same actor with Mark and Aaron, Clyde is not related to the brothers.
- Chris Wilson as Chris Kennal: (Usually) calm, rational, and calculating. He is understood as being very close friends, almost like a brother, to Mark and Aaron. He is greedy when it comes to money, as well as cowardly. He is willing to resort to deception, fraud, and even murder to get his hands on a little extra cash. However, he likes to believe that he can have it all: close friends and family on one hand while living in greed and villainy on the other.
- Cassie Tilne as Monica Shelly: A dutiful, kind, but very timid woman who is very much in love with life and with her family. It is unknown just what kind of relationship she and Aaron have with each other.
- Kyle Mayer as Kyle Tugrass: Considerably more on-edge with the overall assignment of murdering defectors than his supervisor George. No less, when he gets flustered and angry, he demonstrates varying forms of cruelty. He also provides the straight foil to George's more comical and cartoonish gestures, and has a fairly level temperament even about murder, while George tries his hardest to live it up.
- David Stiefel as George Lawence: A man who is always spying on other conspirators, ruthlessly hunting down targets, or tempting new members into the conspiracy. George is Clyde's sadistic handyman. He likes to use exaggerated gestures, colorful language, and enjoys being the man who pulls the trigger.
- Angelina McClane as Ashley Phillips: Very passive, and effective at faking a charming persona. Little else is known about her; save for the fact that she shows very little emotion when Mark is killed.
The Practicum Class in which this mini-series was created consisted of two different production teams. The Wednesday night class agreed to produce Blood Over Water, while the Thursday afternoon team ventured off into making several short pieces that were only thematically linked.
The Dozerfleet founder himself was named the official producer and audio engineer for the show, as well as fulfilling the role of being one of two backup editors. Along with this position came the responsibilities of also being the art director, marketing consultant, and more. Angelina McClane was named official script supervisor, and Chris the official director. Zach was the chief production assistant, affectionately dubbed the group's "gofer." Kyle became the show's main video editor, and Cassie the primary camera operator and second backup editor. Those not directly within the creative sub-department of the show would also end up working numerous odd jobs in addition to their primaries.
Towards the end of production, Cassie was nearly promoted to primary editor when she was revealed to be more talented with Final Cut Pro than anyone else in the class. Chris took over as main producer when his leadership proved to be more readily acknowledged by Zach and Kyle. As time went by, only the position of art director remained entirely consistent. All other positions amongst crew rotated as needed.
In the end, there was no one single producer, director, writer, or any other position but art director. The original intention behind Nathan wanting fixed roles was to familiarize the group with how a more high-budget show would operate. For purposes of this project, the notion of fixed roles was ultimately deemed too inflexible by the crew.
Main article: Development of Blood Over Water
Blood Over Water began its life in early September of 2009, as a planning and strategy meeting amongst members of the Wednesday evening TV Practicum class of Ferris State Fall '09. Numerous ideas were thrown around, including the already well-thought-out Mackley's Wardrobe. This project was ultimately ruled against, and replaced with Cassie's ideas for Kozerlen. Torn between whether to use Ice Mountain as the villain directly or give it an alias, the production team decided they'd stick to Ice Mountain for class, and that Dozerfleet Studios could dub in an alias if necessary for later cable release.
The story changed from a married couple being separated to a twin bother going missing, which allowed for Zach to play as two different character foils of himself. Still without a project title, BoW initially adopted for itself a working title of The Twin Conspiracy. This was immediately replaced with Mountain of Cabal. The title would again be changed to Bogged, before the final title was agreed upon.
The series went through a variety of hotly-debated episode titles, but the crew ultimately decided not to have exact episode titles. Instead, BoW has numeric "parts," akin to a typical miniseries. Zach's characters were originally formulated as merely "Twin A" (Alive) and "Twin M" (Missing.) Their names were then changed to Mike and Alvin Monaco, and the current versions of Mark and Aaron exist only through heated negotiation.
Other characters and crew names became matters of debate during production, such as Cassie wishing to be referred to with the last name of "Tilne" in fear of her real last name being revealed. Her character's last name became Shelly, with little to no objection. Chris and Kyle decided to use their real last names for production, instead of the renames of Kyle Tugrass, and Chris Kennal. Angelina's character, Ashley Phillips, was the result of her objections to the "ghetto"-sounding Sheila Shones. The character of George Lawence was easily created, with only the spelling and pronunciation of his last name being an issue. Other issues with production centered mostly around missing tapes and faulty audio equipment.
Reception and editingEdit
Part 1 was first shown in class on Wednesday, September 30th of 2009. It was met with almost immediate disapproval from Nathan. This led to a rush to finish Part 2 before its deadline on October 21st and to edit Part 1 for a deadline not long after. Part 2 was met with only mild criticism; but was otherwise praised for being "leaps and bounds superior." Part 1 was remade twice, once by Cassie and once by David. The latter version began Part 1 with introductory text, along with making extensive use of music from the GMP album Freak. The track "Dark Affairs" was used extensively for when Aaron arrives at Mark's apartment. However, one dissolve error on Final Cut resulted in a "ghost" effect that terrified viewing audiences.
The group decided that they didn't want to take the risk of Part 1 looking like a ghost story, so they eventually chose Cassie's version, which didn't have any accidental effects. Another reason for Cassie being preferred is that she was able to exploit a lot of stock footage, since both her external hard drive and Kyle's were formatted for Mac OS X's HFS+ format. The other version had to be made using only stock footage that could be stored on a FAT32 volume.
Part 3 was then published on November 4th, and regarded as being "considerably better than either of the other two." This was topped only by Part 4 on November 18th being declared "very hard to improve on." Part 5, released on December 2nd, didn't fare so well. Nathan declared that it "just didn't feel right." Reasons included everything from the grave mound not being visible on screen long enough to Chris "seeming too cold-blooded to be believed." Debate raged over how to make Chris more sympathetic, but it was decided in the end to only minimally improve on this angle. A few scenes, such as the flashback to Mark rummaging through a cabinet for the "Confidential" folder, were cut short to avoid having the audience sit on the scene too long.
Chris was, in the original script, supposed to shoot Mark right between the eyes. This was altered to Mark being strangled, as that seemed easier to depict and didn't require mounds of fake blood to be used. Even so, the strangulation scene was said to carry on for too long, as well as the angle from which Chris' line was delivered being declared "sat on for too long." Cuts were ordered for that scene before Part 5 was considered a finished project.
In spite numerous clean-up efforts, the project received mixed reviews. Most Ferris students watching it rated it positive or average, while YouTube viewers had a negative reaction to watching the miniseries.
The original release was to be in 480i. However, it was converted to 480p when the videos were first sent to YouTube. Upon completion of the 3D version, the miniseries-turned-film was available for view in these sizes: 1080p, 720p, 480p, 360p, and 240p.
Main article: Blood Over Water (novel)
On April 1st of 2013, a remake was officially added to the catalog of Blood Over Water as a novel. For purposes of Cataclysmic Gerosha continuity, the remake's events are canon. The miniseries became a guideline for what the novel's contents should be. The miniseries' exact events are deemed absolute canon to Classic and Comprehensive Gerosha. The novel is written in such a way as to both . It is also possible to have the entire series re-worked in novelization format, to create more realistic environments for the events to take place in.
Main article: Production bloopers in Blood Over Water
The remake was desired for many things, chief among them to remove plot holes in the video. These often were in the form of revealing background details that betray the narrative. On July 26th of 2013, The Dozerfleet Blog began a post exploring how the CinemaSins channel at YouTube would go about creating a video of "Everything Wrong With Blood Over Water." Most of it took jabs at the script and dialog, pointing out the insincerity or irony of characters' lines.
Internet and DVDEdit
Much discussion went on in class about how far the episodes were going to go, as well as where they'd be broadcast (and promoted.) A decision of votes resulted in the show being allowed on Ferris Cable only if heavy disclaimers were edited in to avoid a defamation lawsuit by Ice Mountain of Stanwood. On the same conditions, YouTube distribution by Dozerfleet Studios was deemed acceptable. As of February of 2010, Ice Mountain has been given an in-universe dub as "Sleet Mountain."
Due to being part of the greater Dozerfleet Web Network, DozerfleetWiki has permission to write about (and promote) this mini-series. However, the class as a whole initially decided against letting anyone involved submit an article about the show to TVTropes. In 2013, after everyone outside the Dozerfleet Network had long-since moved on, the TVTropes article was finally created. On February 9th of 2010, Part 1 was uploaded to YouTube. This was followed by Part 2 on February 12th, Part 3 on February 13th, Part 4 on the 14th and Part 5 on the 15th. A re-tinkering, complete with closed captions, was completed on March 17th of 2013.
Around 9:00 PM EST on Wednesday, November 14th of 2012, the mini-series was removed from YouTube. The entire Dozerfleet Channel went down in protest of Google considering paying more money to gay employees, a blatant act of employment discrimination that claimed to excuse itself simply because the sole beneficiaries were gay. Google joined a list of the most Crookedism-agenda-friendly companies on the planet, along with UPS. As another part of the protest, the Dozerfleet Channel began looking for other video hosting services. When one suited to its needs could not be found, there was a reluctant return to YouTube.
3D film versionEdit
It was decided that many of the original videos would not be restored. Instead, Blood Over Water was re-edited into a single film, and made 3D. On Thursday, November 22nd of 2012, this plan reached fruition around 2:00 AM EST. It became the first item to be released from Ivan's Vault. Other videos were soon planned for release, albeit with considerable modifications made. A few other videos were marked for possible permanent residence in the Ivan's Vault, based on both copyright issues and popularity during their initial runs. On March 14th of 2013, a re-release was scheduled that would use YouTube's conversion algorithm to achieve 3D. This version fixed some lighting, contrast, and audio issues in the September 2012 release.
At 11:31 AM EDT on March 23rd, 2010, TDMP director Fred Wyman called the Dozerfleet founder's cellphone to alert him that Blood Over Water had, in fact, been approved for broadcast. Last-minute changes were made to the approved-for-broadcast version, which most of the crew didn't want to be associated with. Therefore, fictional last names for characters were reinserted. Only the Dozerfleet founder and classmate Angelina McClane kept their real last names in the end credits. Chris' character last name of Kennal was used, and his actor last name was changed to "Willis." Zach's last name was changed from Foster to "Finster" and Kyle's from Mayer to "Manor." A data disc was prepared shortly thereafter, since that was the format in use by Ferris Cable operator Steve Cox.
In the end, the show was unable to meet its deadline for broadcast due to crew demands, and was pulled. However, the entire mini-series is still available for free viewing on YouTube.
Most of the miniseries' music consisted of short pieces from the FREAK, which featured clips pre-licensed for use by the Ferris State TDMP program. Blood Over Water has as its closing credits theme the tune " " off of the GMP album Adrenaline Rush, as written by .album
- Who's Who
- Beyond the Campus
- Kozerlen, which was rejected in favor of this series
- Mackley's Wardrobe, which was also rejected in favor of this series
- Timeline of events in the Gerosha universe
- Timeline of events in Comprehensive Gerosha
- Blood Over Water (novel)
- Ferris TDMP program home page.
- Blood Over Water 2013 Re-release with optional 3D, noise-filtered audio, some color fixes, and captions on YouTube
- Blooper reel with optional 3D, on YouTube
- Blood Over Water article at All the Tropes
- Blood Over Water photo album at DeviantArt
|Blood Over Water|
|Continuity||Miniseries: Dozerfleet at Ferris State era | Novel: Cataclysmic Gerosha • Crossover Universe|
|Characters||Aaron Stefflin • Mark Stefflin • Meredith Celestine • Wanda Celestine • Vance Lingolin • Bob Lusital • Monica Shelly • Chris Kennal • Clyde Spendelworth • George Lawence • Kyle Tugrass • Ashley Phillips • Navyrope|
|Miniseries actors||Zach Foster • Cassie Tilne • Chris Wilson • David Stiefel • Kyle Mayer • Angelina McClane|
|Locations||Big Rapids • Sleet Mountain • Ferris State University|
|Development||Miniseries behind-the-scenes • Miniseries development complications|
|Related media||Mackley's Wardrobe • Kozerlen|