Valley of the Boom, a new six-part miniseries about the 1990’s Internet bubble that combines scripted fiction with real documentary-style interviews, is set to premiere on Sunday, January 13.
The first two parts of the miniseries will air January 13 at 9 p.m. ET/PT on the National Geographic channel, while parts 3 and 4 will air on January 20, and parts 5 and 6 on January 27. If you don’t have cable or can’t get to a TV, you can watch Valley of the Boom episodes live or on-demand on your computer, phone or streaming device via one of the following cable-free, live-TV streaming services:
National Geographic is one of 75-plus live channels included in the main Fubo bundle. You can sign up for a free 7-day trial right here, and you can then watch a live stream of the show on your computer via the FuboTV website, or on your phone (Android and iPhone supported), tablet, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast or other supported device via the FuboTV app.
If you can’t watch live, FuboTV comes with 30 hours of Cloud DVR (with the ability to upgrade to 500 hours), as well as a “72-Hour Lookback” feature, which allows you to watch episodes up to three days after they air even if you forgot to record them.
In addition to a Netflix-like on-demand streaming library, Hulu also offers a bundle of 50-plus live TV channels, including National Geographic. You can sign up for “Hulu with Live TV” right here, and you can then watch a live stream of the show on your computer via the Hulu website, or on your phone (Android and iPhone supported), tablet, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Echo Show or other streaming device via the Hulu app.
If you can’t watch live, “Hulu with Live TV” comes with both its extensive on-demand library (which has most shows available after they air) and 50 hours of Cloud DVR storage (with the ability to upgrade to “Enhanced Cloud DVR,” which gives you 200 hours of DVR space and the ability to fast forward through commercials).
The National Geographic Channel is included in the “Sling Blue” channel package. You can sign up for a free 7-day trial right here, and you can then watch the show live on your computer via the Sling TV website, or on your phone (Android and iPhone supported), tablet, Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Xbox One or other streaming device via the Sling TV app.
If you can’t watch live, you can get 50 hours of cloud DVR storage as an additional add-on.
‘Valley of the Boom’ Preview
There have been many shows, documentaries and other forms of media based on the dot-com boom and bust of the 1990’s, but none have ever told the story in way quite like Valley of the Boom, a six-part miniseries that was created, directed and executive produced by Matthew Carnahan, the same mind behind Showtime’s House of Lies.
It’s uniqueness comes from its storytelling, as Valley of the Boom blends scripted fiction with documentary-style interviews featuring individuals who were at the center of the real story. There’s tons of fourth-wall breaking, an element that viewers will recognize from the likes of House of Lies and The Big Short, but the jump back-and-forth between fiction and documentary is particularly unique.
But the show’s zaniness goes far beyond that. Noteworthy moments throughout the series include a rap battle, an interpretive dance, and a puppet that plays Bill Gates (we’ll leave the context as a surprise). There’s also John Karna (Scream: The TV Series, Lady Bird) not only playing the fictionalized version of Netscape co-founder Marc Andreessen, but also doing the “real-life” interviews after the show admits they couldn’t get the real Andreessen. Lamorne Morris (New Girl) is also a habitual fourth-wall breaker, as he plays both a character in the scripted portion and the narrator.
As The Hollywood Reporter’s Tim Goodwman explains in his review of the show, the unique style won’t be palatable for all, but for those willing to buy into it, it’s an enjoyable experience.
“Valley of the Boom won’t be for everyone, because it unapologetically rips up how a story should be told and takes the everything-and-the-kitchen-sink approach to a very important (and often funny and mind-blowingly relevant and revolutionary) moment in business and cultural history, and has a lot of fun with it,” he writes. “And guess what? That fun is contagious.”
The series focuses on three start-ups during the dot-com boom of the mid-to-late 1990’s: Netscape, a web browswer that was co-founded by the aforementioned Andreessen and went to battle with Microsoft in what was known as the first of the browser wars; theGlobe.com, a social networking site founded by Cornell students Stephan Paternot and Todd Krizelman that was Facebook before Facebook; and Pixelon, a video-streaming site that was founded by con-man and convicted felon Michael Fenne (real name David Kim Stanley, played by Steve Zahn in the show), gained notoriety for a massive $16 million launch party that featured The Who, KISS, Tony Bennett, Faith Hill, the Dixie Chicks and others, and then quickly plummeted when it was discovered its technologies were drastically overstated.
Combine interesting source material with a particularly unparalleled way of storytelling, and you have something that has the potential to be equal parts entertaining and informative.