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Laurel Brown
Staff Writer, BuddyTV
Thursday, June 30, 2011

It's not just independent web series out there.

For as long as the technological limitations of the Internet have allowed it, there have been web series tied directly to existing television shows. These TV-connected web series enhance the viewers' experience, highlight background characters and capitalize on audience attention.

While web series tied to television have been around since the 1990s (the earliest was Homicide: Second Shift, connected to Homicide: Life on the Street, in 1997), they have gotten increasingly popular over the past few years.

The following web series are only a few of those revolving around your favorite TV shows.

Teen Wolf: Search for a Cure
You can never have too much Teen Wolf.

MTV's new series (very loosely based on the '80s film starring Michael J. Fox) is midway through its first season. So obviously it's time for an Internet companion series!

The web series is called Search for a Cure and features the stars of Teen Wolf, Tyler Posey (Scott) and Dylan O'Brien (Stiles) as they look for a way out of Scott's lycanthropic issues. Providing some assistance in this is an Internet-located professor type, Dr. Fenris (played by Tyler Posey's father, John Posey). Will he have the cure?

Probably not, since Scott being a werewolf is pretty much the basis for the show.

Further installments of Search for a Cure (six in total) will be available at AT&T's Facebook page and at MTV.com.

Office Hours
If you love Community, then you shouldn't miss the Dean Pelton-centered web series, Office Hours. If you don't love Community... Well, in that case, taste probably isn't your thing anyway.

Much like in Community itself, we only see the Dean for a couple of minutes at a time. But that's OK. A little Dean Pelton goes a long way.

Ghostfacers
The inept, fame-hungry adventurers known as the Ghostfacers first appeared on Supernatural. While their time on the TV show was fleeting, characters that good couldn't just disappear.

And that's why we have the Internet.

Now, we can enjoy the adventures of Ed, Harry and their team as they hunt down the worst of the ghostly world, unencumbered by the interference of Sam and Dean Winchester (the "douchnozzles").

"If you're dead, you'd better stay dead. Because if not, we're going to kill you!"

Subtle Sexuality and More
The Office likes its webisodes.

Over the past several seasons of the sitcom, short videos focusing on some of the lesser-known officemates have appeared online. Among the most recent are those focusing on the "part-time band," Subtle Sexuality.

These particular videos feature Office characters played by Mindy Kaling, Ed Helms, B.J. Novak, Ellie Kemper and Brian Baumgartner.

TV offices really do have the most fun.

Have you seen other TV shows with attached web series? Which are your favorites? Do you think that web series enhance the shows, or are they just distractions?


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