HOW IT WORKS: Engaged couples vying to be selected will submit video through MySpace Video, and MySpace users will pick key details such as the gown and wedding location. Many of the choices will be kept secret from the couple, but all will be revealed in the finale's live ceremony. MySpace will build a community around "Married," with links to characters' MySpace pages, video blogs and an online voting mechanism.
THE AD ANGLE: Web series are typically low-budget affairs, but MySpace and Endemol said they'd be spending a bit more on "Married." Just about every aspect of the show is ripe for sponsor integrations. However, said Jason Kirk, MySpace VP of video and entertainment, "The important thing for us is to find deep and authentic integrations."
THE BIG PICTURE: With built-in audience interaction and ready-made sponsorship opportunities, reality shows would seem to be a natural on the web. So it's a bit of a surprise so few have been made. Part of the issue is cost: Since reality shows must unfold over time, it's hard to compress the production expense by, say, shooting several episodes in one day.
Key to "Married's" success will be how much promotion MySpace puts behind it. An earlier MySpace series, "Roommates," for example, started strong, with about 500,000 views on the first two episodes before dropping off considerably. "I think you have to know what your expectations are for a web series," he said. "If they think they're going to compete with 'American Idol,' that's not what we're trying to do."