Second Cherry Revision

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Photo by Min An from Pexels

The boring, unglamorous work of screenwriting
Seems, to me, a fitting metaphor for being human.
The bits and pieces of ideas, snippets of dialogue,
Coalesce into a rough draft. Notes from trusted eyes
Clean up the zealous, adolescent narrative
And over time we’re ready to present the “White Draft.”

Decisive black letters on crisp white paper.

But as the demands of production come in,
As roles are cast and locations secured,
As the dialogue between writer and director continues,
Pages are rewritten.

To make things easier, only the edited pages are replaced.
As this process continues, if you follow the WGA pattern,
You wind up with a sheaf of rainbow-colored pages
(At least metaphorically, since no one prints on cherry-red paper)

Clunky dialogue is replaced.
Leaps of logic, cleaned up.
Plot holes, filled.
Extraneous nonsense, removed, replaced by all-caps OMITTED.
But many early words are retained. The heart of the story, retained.

Every now and then, you see a finished movie
That clearly needed another draft.
Every now and then, a page-one rewrite is called for.
Sometimes a screenplay goes into turnaround,
And new partners are found to work with.

But here’s where the metaphor breaks down:
Most screenplays don’t benefit from change.
They gather dust in a pile of other abandoned screenplays
Or worse, are tossed in the trash, forgotten, irrelevant.
While the ones that get made are forever fixed in one form.

That’s not you. That’s not me.
There are further revisions to be made.
Further revisions are being made, all the time.
What pages are you on?

Kermit Imposters + Tutorial!

A brief history of Kermit doppelgangers and a bonus tutorial!

I finally get to take the wife to see The Muppets: Most Wanted tonight. I got to see it a couple of weeks before it opened (I know a guy) and I’m stoked to see it again. I enjoyed The Muppets, but it felt like a reboot, and more of a vehicle for Jason Segal than a MUPPET movie. I’m not complaining! Kudos to Segal for doing the damned near impossible (judging from recent history, i.e. Muppets in Space): making a GOOD Muppet movie!

The Muppets Most Wanted puts the Muppets front and center. And it introduces us to a new Kermit imposter, Constantine, The World’s Most Dangerous Frog!

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Image snatched from the Muppet Wiki: http://www.muppet.wikia.com

But this isn’t the first time Kermit has been replaced …

Kermit the Pig

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Image snatched from Muppet Wiki

In a second season episode of The Muppet Show, the pigs takeover the show. Performed by Dave Goelz, this is probably the most frightening of the Kermitgangers. At least it was to me as a little kid!

Robot Kermit

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Image snatched from Muppet Wiki

Season one of the Muppet Show gave us this guy, who seemed like an explosion of Kermit id — up to no end of mischief. We also get  a Kermit take on the old Marx-bros mirror gag! (A gag that is revisited by Kermit and Constantine.)

Lenny the Lizard

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Image snatched from Muppet Wiki

The Steve Martin episode of The Muppet Show is my all-time favorite. Martin shows up to host only to discover that it’s open audition night at The Benny Vandergast Memorial Theater (better known as The Muppet Theater nowadays). The only show to air without an added laugh track, the laughing and applause you hear is coming from the crew and performers watching the performances. Great stuff.

Baskerville the Dog (in Fozzie Bear-esque polka dotted tie and brown porkpie) kills in his audition as comic. Fozzie gives him the ol’ vaudeville hook and yells, “Next!”

Says Kermit, “C’mon, Fozzie, you’re taking all this too personally!”

Next up is Lenny the Lizard (Richard Hunt) auditioning to be the emcee.

“NEXT!” yells Kermit.

Kermit the Forg, Kermit the Gorf, Kermit the Grof (Honorable Mentions)

Not really Kermitgangers per se, but this bit from Sesame Street stands out in memory:

BONUS! Make Your Own Constantine PEZ Dispenser Tutorial!

And now, because the internet is fueled by DIY and lists (and cats, but the wife is allergic, so I’ve got nothing), it is with almost patriotic pride that I present to you the Make Your Own Constantine PEZ Dispenser Tutorial!

STEP 1: Obtain a Kermit PEZ dispenser:

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STEP 2: Using a fine point Sharpie, draw a mole:

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STEP 3: You’re all done! “Hi-lo! I yam Kyermeet the Frerg …”

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What did YOU think of The Muppets: Most Wanted? What sort of pointless tutorial would you like to see next? Let me know!