Friday, February 18, 2011
Monday, February 14, 2011
INT. – COFFEE SHOP - DAY
Two Gentlemen, ROD and JIM are seated at a table.
Rod: (points at someone behind Jim) So, I was at this party the other night and these two guys, Mike and Phil made a bet on a boxing match. The loser had to be known as the other’s bitch for a full year.
Jim: So, they just do each other favors and call each other “bitch,” or what?
Rod: No, the loser had to legally change his name. So the loser, Mike, had to go down to the courthouse and change his name to Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike. Isn’t that hilarious?
Jim: No fucking way! I don’t believe you.
Rod: Straight up, my man. That’s the whole reason I brought it up. Phil Johnson’s Bitch Mike is right over there. (over Jim’s shoulder) Hey Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike! What’s up dude?
(PHIL JOHNSON’S BITCH, MIKE approaches. Rod stands to shake his hand.)
Rod: (continuing) Jim Halverson, this is Phil Johnson’s Bitch Mike.
Jim (standing, shaking Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike’s hand): Um, nice to meet you, um Mike.
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike: Actually, it’s Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike.
(They all sit.)
Jim: Okay…Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike. But doesn’t it bother you to be called that?
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike: Nah, man. A bet’s a bet. I don’t think my fiancée likes it too much that we have to change our wedding announcement to Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Michael Edward Everett and Caitlin Fleur Nelson, but that’s all right.
Rod: You’re just missing the bigger picture. Actually at the party, we went around the room assigning one-dimensional qualities to people that best explains their personality archetype. You can get to know someone so much better that way.
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike: Sorta like how Native Americans used to name each other, like Chief Sitting Bull or Crazy Horse.
Rod: Right, but with a modern twist. For example, that girl you used to date in college, Mary, was there. And she was the first to be renamed as Mary Takes-A-Lotta-Dicks.
Jim: She does?
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike: And then there was Gunter Coke-In-Nose, because he’s always doing so much coke. And Rebekah The Semi-Retarded Waitress. It’s like, synergy, man.
Rod: Yeah, exactly.
Rod: What, you’ve never heard of the advertising concept of the interaction of two or more agents or forces so that their combined effect is greater than the sum of their individual effects?
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike: Yeah, it’s like, an ad thing.
Jim: Yes, yes. I’m familiar with synergy, but I don’t find the fact that this guy legally changed his name to indicate that he’s someone’s bitch particularly synergistic.
Rod: Well, you’ve heard about these guys who’ve had the names of companies tattooed on their foreheads or whatever, right?
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike: Well the same thing applies here.
Rod: And it’s catching on. You’ve to get in on the ground floor on this one, Jim. People are changing. The world is changing.
Jim: Like, how?
Rod: Well, take me for example. I’ve rented out my ass and my dick for sponsorship contracts.
Jim: You what now?
Rod: You heard me right. On my ass, I have a temporary tattoo of Frizzle Freeze Fruit Droolers and my dick has been renamed Celltech Wireless Presents Rod’s Cock. So, everytime I get naked, I am contractually obligated to say, Celltech Wireless Presents Rod’s Cock. A lot of porn stars are doing it, too. They get the logos tattooed right onto their junk.
Jim: They have advertisements on their genitalia?
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike: Same here, man except when ever I take my shirt off I announce, “Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike’s naked upper torso is Brought to you by Squeezie’s Extra Soft Tissue Paper, Vitriol Vitamins and Deuce-Loose Juice Incontinence Products. The Juice gets the Deuce Loose!”
Jim: You guys are fucking with me, right?
Rod: Sheeyit! How do you think I paid for Paradigm Pictures’ in partnership with Sinking Ships Studios Presents Cinderella 2 Presents Rod’s new Audi?
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike: The same way I paid for Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike’s new nose was produced by Funderland Amusement Parks, a division of Stooperlaim Entertainment Corp, LLC. Synergy.
Rod and Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike (together): Synergy.
Jim: So you think I should get down with synergy?
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike: Everybody should get down with synergy. As a matter of fact, I hear Chewsy Chopper’s Chewing Gum is taking applicants for forehead-tattoo billboards right now, right down the street at the Vietnamese-American deli. It pays pretty well, too.
Jim: You think I should go check it out?
Rod: Maybe…and by" maybe," I mean, “Hell yes!”
Jim: All right, I’m gonna go check it out. Wait here for me? I’ll be right back.
Rod: You know it.
(Jim stands to exit, turns back to them.)
Jim: And, thanks, Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike.
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike (calling after Jim): Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike and the Department of Education advise you to stay in school!
(Jim exits hastily.)
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike (continuing): You think he bought it?
Rod: I told you he would, he’s a sucker for money.
Phil Johnson’s Bitch, Mike: Nicely done. Who should I make the check out to?
Rod: How about Chewsy Chopper’s Chewing Gum’s new favorite synergist, Rod “Richman” Richmond!
(They share a hearty laugh.)
Thursday, February 10, 2011
NOTE: THIS IS SOMETHING I WROTE CIRCA JANUARY 2005 BUT NEVER POSTED FOR WHATEVER REASON. SO PLEASE TO EXCUSE IF IT SOUNDS DATED.
Ah, the spin-off. If ever there was a better way to impress upon American pop-culture the recycled ideas of clearly intoxicated television executives, then I have yet to witness it. Several of our favorite shows have been spin-offs of more popular franchises: A Different World from The Cosby Show, Laverne and Shirley from Happy Days, Frasier from Cheers. But, much like the sequel, the spin-off allows for the distillation of fresh ideas by otherwise creative minds and the remanufacturing of already tiresome notions by the bloated powers that be in the merry town of Televisionville. Believe it or not, some spin-off ideas are actually rejected. Listed below are some of the lesser-known spin-offs that were pulled from the proverbial womb in mere infancy, so to speak.*
The Cosby Show:
The Rudy’s Friend, Bud, Show
Rudy Huxtable’s mini male-chauvinist friend Bud expounds his ne’er-seen brother’s comical worldly sexual political genius on hot 80s topics ranging from the role of the female in the workforce, to Reaganomics, and abortion.
Pilot Episode: “Really Now, What Kind of a Name for a Girl is ‘Rudy?’ ”
Lisa Bonet in An Even Different-er World
In this ill-fated pilot, Denise (Lisa Bonet) leaves a promising acting career to marry Larry Horowitz, a fledging rock-star wannabe played by Terence Trent D’Arby. Scrapped because it seemed too far-fetched.
Pilot Episode: “So, I See You Got Your Dreadlocks On”
Vanessa and Theo’s Middle Child Syndrome Variety Show
The mere fact that Malcolm-Jamal Warner was constantly being upstaged by his Medusa-esque dreadlocks, coupled with Tempest Bledsoe’s lack of a third name is an indication that this truly was a spectacle to be witnessed and subsequently ignored.
Pilot Episode: “The Newly-Reformed Flying Burrito Brothers Perform While Channeling The Spirit Of Gram Parsons. Also, Stand Up By Emo Phillips”
The happy-go-lucky Happy Days gang amidst the backdrop of racial tension, radical sexual experimentation, and the rise of the drug culture of the tumultuous war-torn late sixties.
Pilot Episode: “Fonzie Nearly Becomes a Mansonite With Hilarious, Yet Murderous Results”
This spin-off was intended to showcase the lives of the black people represented in the cast of Happy Days, but was quickly shelved when the producers realized that there were, in fact, no black people in the cast of Happy Days, possibly because of the incorrect notion that black people didn’t exist in the fifties. And, surprisingly, NOT because of the inherently racist under- and overtones.
Pilot Episode: “When In Doubt, Just Go With The ‘fro.”
Chachi Does Joanie
Self-explanatory scenario that, due to its titillating one-dimensionality, was later re-thought and sadly, re-titled.
Pilot Episode: “Cherry-Poppin’ Chachi”
The Adventures of Woody’s Girlfriend Kelly
Cancelled after the creators realized the only good thing they had going for them was the theme song: “Kelly-Kelly-Kelly-Kelly-Kelly…, etc.” and that the inclusion of the character of Kelly wasn’t really crucial to the show and, in fact, may have actually been detrimental.
Pilot Episode: “Kelly Hangs Out With Woody and Somehow Pisses Off Her Father In The Process, Even Though She’s Like, Thirty, or Something”
Norm and Cliff in Pukin’ Is For Pussies
Originally slated as a one-off made-for-TV movie, but was stalled in development after one of the stars (I’ll leave it up to you to guess who) was offended by just how fat the other was getting. Curiously enough, both were of relatively the same life-span-shortening size and shape at this point. Also, the attempt to include elements of Sci-Fi wasn’t well received.
Pilot Episode: “Cliff and Normie Versus Eerily Familiar Life-Sized Copyright-Infringing Robots”
That Fat Guy With Glasses That Sits at the End of the Bar Who was Nearly a Regular Cast Member But is only Useful Enough to Mutter One Inconsequential Line Every Few Episodes as a Device to Set-up a Sarcastic Chastening Remark from Carla Show
Never got beyond a brainstorming session.
Diane’s A Pompous, Frigid Bitch!!!
Re-imagined as Frasier Is a Pompous, Insufferable Dork, which eventually just became Frasier.
*In case you haven’t figured it out already, all spin-offs listed above never existed and were entirely made up by me.