Development Deal: <i>Angry Birds</i>

If there’s one thing that a quick look at the current state of television and movies will tell you, it’s that there’s not much need for original ideas when there’s so much out there ready and waiting to be adapted, updated or just outright ripped off. That’s why we’ve decided to help in that process with a series which offers up some of the things we’d like to see being brought to big screen or small. This week’s suggestion? Angry Birds.

What Is It?

What, have you been living under a rock or several? It's Angry Birds, a mobile device game in which you catapult the eponymous birds into numerous structures apparently built by evil green pigs in order to rescue the eggs that they've kidnapped. Why do the birds need to be catapulted into the structures instead of flying there? Why have the green pigs built the structures (And, let's be honest, how have they done it)?Why have they kidnapped the eggs? Nobody seems to know, although we can at least wonder if the egg thing is some kind of "Bacon and Eggs" pun. But none of that matters, because Angry Birds is one of the most infuriatingly addictive games ever created, and within minutes, the lack of logic will become so much less important than the desperate need to knock down every single structure possible and wipe that annoying smirk off the faces of every single one of those green pig monsters, damn their eyes.

What Could It Be?

Now, there are reportedly already plans to spin the Angry Birds off into all manner of other media, including cookbooks, cartoons and soft toys, so the idea of "Hey, let's put these things on television!" isn't exactly original. But what really got me thinking about the TV potential of the Birds was what else is going on right now… and specifically, today.

Earlier on this week, I found myself thinking "Why doesn't television make as much out of Easter as it does Christmas?" There are, of course, cultural reasons to take into account - Easter is, in general, a much smaller thing culturally than Christmas, in part because there are less gifts to give (or be bought, if you want to be cynical) and because, let's face it, a bunny is no Santa Claus when it comes to merchandising opportunities. Nonetheless, the lack of annual Easter Specials on television seemed to me to be an opportunity rather than an oversight, which made me wonder "What could be the Peanuts of Easter?"

I think you can see where I'm going with this. After all, can anyone really disagree with the math Easter = Eggs = Angry Birds…?

Admittedly, there's a risk that an annual Angry Birds Easter Special could backfire: Can the Birds survive having a narrative thrust onto them, never mind a seasonal narrative? Would it be offensive to have rocks rolling from caves as a structural collapse as a visual pun? Is there potential tragedy in a storyline that sees the Birds rescue the eggs, only to discover that they were, in fact, chocolate easter eggs and their true offspring remain kidnapped? Well, okay, maybe that last one is a definite yes, which could be a problem. But still! Just as Peanuts broke onto television with a seasonal special episode, so could the Angry Birds, and providing a recurring story for the characters could help the brand break out of the mobile game ghetto and into something with more mainstream appeal just as creators Rovio want. Yes, things could go horribly wrong… but just think what could go right. Clearly, this is an idea whose time has come (literally).

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