The Rise of Nice; The Evolving Role of the Graphic Novel; What’s a Scoober?

Here’s an executive summary of the Emerging Culture Composite Index v.1.4. To read the full version (and subscribe to future editions), just click here.


Big Idea

Nice, Nice baby.

Nice. It used to be how you described a guy who finished last, but now “nice” is having a bit of a comeback. This time last year Charlie Sheen, Lindsay Lohan and Donald Trump were in the spotlight, but now their egomania and bluster seem old and tired. They’ve been replaced by new stars on the cultural landscape like Zooey Deschanel, the impossibly adorable star of FOX’s hit freshman show, New GIrl, as well as this little music video with the equally nice Joseph Gordon-Levitt, which rang up more than 8 million views.  But it’s not just on TV. The latest issue of Monocle magazine focuses on charm as the new buzzword for businesses, brands and nations in 2012 and beyond. The Harvard Business Review, in its latest issue (left), tackles a similar issue, looking at the value of happiness.


This Week’s Emerging Culture Composite Index

Decision Time For Show Runners
You really have two options now if you are creating content for “television.” (Quick digression, what do we call programming now? You can’t call them TV shows when they are watched from computers, laptops, tablets and mobile phones.) You can either create content that people must watch live (reality contests, awards shows, sports, politics, news), or create the type of programming that people are willing to DVR or watch via Hulu
The Power of the Graphic Novel
There was a time when a graphic novel was just a comic book putting on airs. That all changed with Batman: The Dark Knigth Returns, and The Watchmen which elevated the genre into the realm of the novel (The Watchmen was named one of the 100 Greatest novels of the 20th century by TIME magazine)…

Sh*t People Watch
If you’ve watched a video in the last week, it was probably one of the growing entrants in the “sh*t [blank] say” genre. While the variations are many, the lessons are consistent..

Next on ESPN, Ultimate Frisbee?
Well, maybe not on ESPN, but two interesting projects on Kickstarter caught my eye this week…

And for those wondering what the ‘scoober’ referred to in the subject line means, it’s a type of throw used in ultimate. Here’s an instructional video of how it’s done.

And while we’re on the topic of Kickstarter, check out Y&R New York’s Kickstarter page. Every week we’re backing a project that we think exudes innovation, creativity or in some way reflects or exemplifies culture.