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Watch Retro Sci-Fi Short Midnight Television

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A woman in a retro aerobics video

In a retro-futuristic, dystopian world that blends sophisticated AI with dial-up modems and VCRs, a lonely man despairs at having to meet his content-posting quota for the day. With nothing going on, he’s not inspired… and without enough “likes,” he’s not allowed to leave his house. Enter Midnight Television, offering hope… or is it just another algorithmic creation?

Sci-Fi Short Film “Midnight Television” | DUST

Written, directed, and edited by Gabe Michael, Midnight Television—which we discovered thanks to sci-fi YouTube channel Dust—“combines the nostalgia of 1980s, the days of emerging tech and internet of the 1990s, and the hollowing loneliness of the internet culture of today. Our hero, Asher, sits at the epicenter of all three batteling for future that was seemingly promised, but never came to be.”

To learn more about the film, which was originally planned as a feature, and how it was made (it’s short, but it still took two years to complete—thanks in no small part to covid), check out Michael’s supplemental YouTube video, which is titled “How to Make a NO BUDGET Award-Winning Sci-Fi Film.”

Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel, Star Wars, and Star Trek releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about the future of Doctor Who.

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