Two weeks back – June 21st to be exact – I wrote a post about my new chair, an amazing cheesecake that my brother made, and that I had been re-writing some old scripts. Here is a link to the exact post: LINK
In that post, I’d said that I might end up posting some of my old scripts online (once they had been re-formatted and re-worked a little). It’s not perfect, but I’m going to share one of them with you all, today.
Back in 2008, after a series of life changing events (albeit small on most people’s scales), a friend of mine came to me and said:
Why don’t we write a sit-com?
My initial reaction was trepidation. I wasn’t entirely sure I could write a long enough script for an entire episode of anything, let alone making it funny. But after talking through our ideas, we hit upon a sort of combined life experience that we felt we could share.
You see, my friend Simon is a very funny chap, and I like to think that I’m very funny when around him, too. We’d both been through some heavy stuff, and we felt the need to expunge ourselves of the experiences. Through writing, we could learn to live with them.
One of the caveats with using our own experience, was that we would craft the main characters after ourselves. Names, details, experiences, friends, they would all come from our own existences. After all, a writer should write what they know about… or some such nonsense.
Reading through this script, it’s not difficult to see that we where inspired by the work of Simon Pegg, Jessica Hynes (nee Stevenson) and Edgar Wright on Spaced.
In fact, there’s a reference to spaced on the first page of the script.
We’d both recently re-watched the entirety of Spaced and the first two films in the Blood and Ice Cream Trilogy (“Shaun of the Dead” and “Hot Fuzz”). At the time, the third film was only being speculated about.
The name came to me while I was eating out at a Nando’s. One of the waiters there – a friend of mine called Carl – was taking my order, typing it into his touch screen device. Except that he wasn’t using his finger to enter the details, he was tapping away with his pen.
Presumably because everything in this city seems to be covered in grime. Sometimes, I feel as though I’m living in one of the cleaner areas of Ankh-Morpork
He was struggling with some specific character or item on the screen, tapping it more than a few times before the device accepted his input command.
Oh, I’m using the wrong end of the pen, here. That’s why.
Instantly, I saw myself talking to my friend Alex about my life:
I feel like I’m writing my biography, but with the wrong end of the pen.
So, we’d decided that we would be the main characters in it (we were more than OK with not playing ourselves, though). This meant that we had to come up with story lines we would find ourselves in, in reality. This meant that we’d have to pick secondary characters that we’d likely be friends (and enemies) with in real life. This also meant that our main characters had to have a similar obsession with video games, movies and TV shows as we did.
So, we decided that the main content would be about the two of us sharing a house. Me being a graduate, and Simon being an undergraduate. My friend Alex would appear, as she is like a big sister to me. Marc, one of Simon’s friends, would appear as he seems quite laid back.
I’ve only made minor changes to the script in the recent re-writes. Changing things like names of characters, spelling errors, and setting them out into a standard three act structure.
These were my first scripts, after all, and they were created more as a stream of consciousness, than a planned out series of scenes.
That’s pretty much all that I’ve changed. That and the layout.
I’m sharing the first script in the hopes that I can get some dialogue going about it, see what people think is good, what needs changing, what needs removing, etc.
Obviously, I hold and retain the copyright on this script, the characters and the idea for the show. But feel free to peruse the scripts and tell me what you think.
One final note: I know very little about the American TV rating system, but this script would definitely not pass the PG-13 bar. In the UK, it’s be a 12 or 15 rated script, I think. Which should tell you that it’s potentially Not Safe For Work.
Without further ado, here is a working link to the first script. Tell me what you think. LINK
Until next time,