Prep School Murder Mystery: AwesomenessTV’s New YouTube Series, “Runaways” [INTERVIEW]

One by one, the students at Danbury Prep are called into the principal’s office. They get grilled by the police about the disappearance of Mason and Kaylee, two of their fellow students who are madly in love with each other.

“Since when are a couple of runaways a reason to interrogate half the school?” prep school student Lily snidely asks the investigating the detective.

The suspenseful YouTube teen web series “Runaways” on AwesomenessTV delves into the lives of prep school students as their school investigates what happened to a young romantic couple after police find a dead body.

Pierson Fode, who plays Jared, a fellow student who has strong feelings for Kaylee and will go to great lengths to break up her relationship with Mason, tells NMR about how the story unravels in the first season.

He said: “The police show up and they’re trying to figure out by piecing together all the other students’ [stories] if these two kids did [the murder] or if it’s somehow related to the students. It’s really a story of romance but at the same time it’s a story of ‘who done it?’”

The series, which was filmed in less than a week, is shown through the perspective of six students who are questioned by an unseen investigator while being recorded. Throughout each episode, “Runaways” cuts to flashbacks that detail what occurred before Mason and Kaylee’s disappearance and an older woman trying to hide evidence of a murder in her garage.

Fode adds that each character in “Runaways” are well-connected to the missing couple and want something that they can’t have at the moment, which is true love.

Fode explains: “It’s been a crazy mix of events where all these kids themselves are trying to figure out what’s going on exactly, but at the same time they’re all intrigued at what’s happening with the runaways and the murder. They’ve been looking for an interesting moment in their lives, and this is it.”

Most of the songs featured on “Runaways” fall into heavy dubstep and electro territory. However, NMR friend Kurt Hugo Schneider’s familiar sound can be heard in the theme song, “Run to Me,” which he performs with The Royal Suns.

The first five episodes have garnered more than 219,450 views so far with an average of around 43,890 views per episode. Noell Coet, who portrays Kaylee’s best friend Keesha, a student who’s cheerful and likes to be in control of the situation, says she has enjoyed reading response from viewers of “Runaways.”

She tells NMR: “It’s fun to read the comments on YouTube and see how they’re talking about it. It’s nice to be able to do a show where you get immediate feedback on it.”

“Runaways” is one of many series broadcast on AwesomenessTV, a YouTube channel dedicated to the teen and tween audience with original web series, interview shows and sketch comedy. AwesomenessTV is the brainchild of producer Brian Robbins, who is known for creating dramas like “One Tree Hill,” “Smallville” and directing teen flicks like “Varsity Blues” and “Good Burger.”

So far, the web channel is on its way to 20 million views and according to the Los Angeles Times, secured $3.5 million in investor funding.

You can watch the first episode of “Runaways” right here:

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