official ATX TV Festival logo for 2020 virtual fest

ATX TV Festival… from the Couch Recap

Even with the COVID-19 pandemic, the ATX TV Festival still found a way to celebrate, all while social distancing. This year the festival had to take on a very different approach, but was still great nonetheless. I’m glad I got to experience ATX TV … from the Couch!

ATX TV Festival hosts their 2020 festival on YouTube live due to COVID-19’s social distancing restrictions. The virtual festival lasted from June 5-7. The co-founders of the ATX TV Festival, Caitlin McFarland and Emily Gipson, hosted the live online festival while social distancing at home on their couch.

Festival Summary

Caitlin McFarland and Emily Gipson
Caitlin McFarland and Emily Gipson / Photo via Page Six

At first I really didn’t know what to expect from a virtual festival. But I was pleasantly surprised. The ATX TV Festival did a great job hosting everything online. They created a home theater type vibe with the festival. They encouraged you to get cozy on your couch, take breaks to grab some snacks, and make signature cocktails to drink along with the hosts. I thought the festival did everything they possibly could to make sure the audience had a great time, regardless of having to stay home. 

There were hardly any technical issues, aside from the occasional Zoom pauses. I actually found that an ‘at home’ festival like this offered certain things a regular festival couldn’t. Getting to watch such famous celebrities talk in such an intimate place as their own home created a very down to earth experience. I highly recommend all the geeky girls out there to check this festival out.

I was also impressed with the festival’s recurring conversations on the recent issues of the Black Lives Matter movement. McFarland and Gipson encouraged viewers to donate at least nine dollars that went to non-profit organizations working with the Black Lives Matter movement such as Color of Change and Direct Relief. Many other celebrities who appeared during the livestream also discussed the importance of the recent protests supporting the Black Lives Matter movement. 

Panels

The Mandalorian

The Mandalorian
“The Mandalorian” / Photo credit: Lucasfilm

I was so excited to find out the ATX TV Festival had a panel on The Mandalorian! The series is in the Star Wars universe, taking place five years after The Return of the Jedi and 25 years before The Force Awakens. The panel included:

Getting to hear the cast and crew talk about the creation behind the series was really interesting. They talked about what it was like using baby Yoda on set, character choices, and how they kept the original Star Wars feel by using certain cameras.

Nancy Drew

Nancy Drew
“Nancy Drew” / Photo credit: The CW Network

I hadn’t heard much about this show before, but it definitely piqued my interest after watching this panel. The cast and crew discussed the twists that were made when adapting the original Nancy Drew into television.  To find out more about the panel, check out my Nancy Drew panel recap

I May Destroy You

I May Destroy You
“I May Destroy You” / Photo via Digital Spy

I love, love, loved this panel! Michaela Coel, who you may recognize from the show Chewing Gum, talks about her new drama-comedy series, I May Destroy You. I was already a fan of Coel before this panel, and now I love her even more. In Chewing Gum, Coel brilliantly plays a hilarious loveable character. But during this panel, I got to see a new side of her that continued to impress me. Coel bravely opens up about her experience with sexual abuse and how it inspired her to tackle these issues in her new show. She both created and starred in I May Destroy You, which premiered Sunday, June 7, and I can’t wait to check it out!

Little Fires Everywhere

Little Fires Everywhere
“Little Fires Everywhere” / Photo credit: Hulu

This TV series is based on a book that I’ve had on my reading list for a while. I’ve heard so many great things about it and didn’t even know it became a TV series, so I knew I had to check out this panel. Little Fires Everywhere tells the story of two very different families living in Ohio suburbia, tackling themes of class, race, and motherhood. 

The cast and crew talked a lot about the racial issues depicted in the show, and it’s relation to the issues in real life. They even brought up real life situations they’ve experienced that exemplifies just how much racism black people face. I can’t stress enough how important it is to listen to black people when they discuss their struggles of living in a systemic racist country. After hearing about the important issues this show expresses, I’ll make sure to give it a watch and encourage others to do the same. 

Check out some of these shows and tweet us @geekgalsco to let us know what you think!

Read more of Sara’s articles.

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Featured image credit: ATX TV Festival

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