Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Blast from the Past #494: September 7, 2005: Re: show 123 ("Bishop to Knight") Second Draft

Subj: Re: show 123 ("Bishop to Knight") Second Draft
Date: Wednesday, September 7, 2005 1:18:38 PM
From: Peter Laird
To:   Lloyd Goldfine


Here are my 16 notes on Ep123 second draft.

1.) Re: the following:

Morning, Cody… amphibians."

I'll let this one slide, as Dun is either being sarcastic or just can't be bothered to call them by the right word -- "reptiles".

2.) Re: the following:

"* ANGLE - RAPH tries to kick-start a sleek but clearly 21st century MOTORCYCLE. Mikey’s seated behind him.

Don’t worry about us. I finally got the bike running last night. A good old-fashioned gas-guzzling hog."

Not sure why Raph is trying to kick-start a "clearly 21st century MOTORCYCLE" -- even in the last quarter of the TWENTIETH century, virtually every street-going motorcycle not only had ELECTRIC start, but had lost the vestigial kick-start lever.

3.) Re: the following:

Guys, I read all about the Pan-Galactic Alliance. They’re like, one of the most respected organizations on the planet. Like the U.N. but for aliens."

I would take out the "like" after the word "they're".

4.) Re: the following:

But it doesn’t prove Bishop’s come over from the dark side.
Maybe he’s gone over to the dork side."

I'll reiterate my previous suggestion, as this time around Mike's "Dork side" bit seems even more to be hanging out there with no support. I mean, even for Mikey, it's tenuous (in terms of being appropriate to the conversation/making sense). Here's what I said in my last notes:

"It might be funny to give Raph a line here after Mikey's. something like this:

That would mean he's ready to team up with you!"

5.) Re: the following:

I say we spread out. Mingle with our ears open. We’re bound to hear something-"

"With our ears open" is, I think, superfluous.

6.) Re: the following:

"IN THE MIDDLE OF THE ROOM - A big and nasty looking BAD DUDE staggers around, bragging. 

…no, me the best smuggler in entire Milky Way Galaxy! Greased lightning – nothing touch me! Me best smuggler in known universe! Me, Torbin Ziixx! 
Mikey smiles, but Raph isn’t so sure.
Or we just look for the biggest ugliest guy in the place? That was easier than the yellow pages."

As I pointed out in my last notes:

"While this is a decent gag, it just occurred to me that it is also kind of dopey, as it depends on the precept that NONE OF THE TURTLES HAVE EVER SEEN A PICTURE OF TORBIN ZIXX!!! Given that he is a " troublemaker of legendary proportions" with "active warrants out for his arrest from a dozen planets", doesn't it make sense that in researching Torbin Zixx, they would have come across an image of him?
If the idea is that Zixx, like some famous terrorists in our history, have never been photographed (and I'm not so sure that's a great idea or makes a whole lot of sense, given that Zixx is a mercenary as opposed to a terrorist), then that should be stated outright before the Turtles get to the bar.
Conversely, we could establish that the Turtles HAVE seen images of Zixx, and this big alien who is picking the fight looks a LITTLE bit like him -- maybe enough that Mikey could make a joke about how Zixx has been packing on the pounds/sucking down steroids/pumping himself up/etc.."

Now it seems even dopier given that there is a previous bit where Don is even more clearly seen researching Zixx online.

7.) Re: the following:

"* BAD DUDE – rips a TABLE out of the floor and swings it like a club!
Me punch you to the moon!
* THE GUYS – dodge the table, FLIPPING and DUCKING as he swings and <SMASHES> the table into BAR STUFF around the room.
That’s better than you mooning me with your punch."

"Mooning me with your punch"??!! That line just doesn't make sense, even for Mikey. Unless the big guy's fists look like ASSES... and I suspect we don't want to go there.
Also, does it make sense that the big guys is threatening to PUNCH them when he's actually not PUNCHING but using a club?

8.) Re: the following:

"MIKEY <POWERS UP> his CHUCKS, creating a SHIELD. The TABLE HALF <CRACHES> to bits as it strikes him…"

I think "CRACHES" should be "CRASHES".

9.) Re: the following:

Snap that, spud. Reverse it. He’s not Torbin Ziixx…"

"Snap that, spud. Reverse it. " seem like extraneous bits to me.

10.) Re: the following:

"*DON – fires up a bo staff, a beam of light shines out.

No problem!
*ZIIXX – caught partially in the light, is seen crawling across the ceiling towards and out the exit."

That's pretty cool!

11.) Re: the following:

"*RAPH – violently throws aside the trashcan, surprised to see Ziixx standing facing him from about ten feet away, laughing.
You think it’s funny? Dude, I am so gonna knock…
*RAPH – flying drop kick towards Ziixx’s head.
…your block off!
*RAPH – passes through Ziixx into and slides down alley wall.
*WIDER – the other turtles standing around Raph, on ground.
I’m really starting to hate holograms."

My immediate response to this bit was "From where is Zixx projecting this hologram?" Then I thought it might be cool if -- like a ninja -- he had thrown down a little device (a mini-holo projector) which created a diversion through a pre-recorded hologram of himself. And Don could pick this device up -- "Hmm... fascinating!" and possibly use it in a future episode.

12.) Re: the following:

"*DON (O.C.)
…the Southstreet Moonport. Wow. Check it out, it’s amazing! And look – there’s the Howitzer Gravity Lift! It’s massive! Guess it’s gotta be to propel ships directly to the moon."

Don doesn't say "gotta".

13.) Re: the following:

Then is there anyway to make the ship go faster? To get it away from earth before it explodes?
TWO SHOT – Don and Robot Captain.
Over-ride the auto-pilot. 
Excellent! Where’s the auto-pilot?
I am the auto-pilot. 
*TWO SHOT – Don rips Robot Captain out of its seat.
Don’t worry, I’m a professional. (beat) Now let’s see what this baby can do!"

Don's ripping the auto-pilot robot out of his seat seems a little too Raph-like in its dumbass brute force approach. I wonder if it might be more in character and possibly funnier if instead of ripping the robot out of his seat, Don instead sits on his lap (or maybe stands behind him) and puts his hands over the robot's to manipulate the controls. Either way would make for amusing visuals, and if he did sit on the robot's lap (assuming that kind of robot HAS a lap), he would be literally "over-riding" is. Get it?
(Not to mention that this is a particularly egregious example of the silly and annoying "Don knows how to fly ANY kind of spaceship/airplane IMMEDIATELY" bit that has found its way into many episodes.)

14:) Re: the following:

Listen. The first rule of smuggling is to not ask what’s being smuggled. I would never have taken on the job had I known it was a bomb."

This strikes me as kind of... odd. First, Ziixx is saying that it's important for a smuggler to not know what he's smuggling. But then he contradicts that by saying he wishes he DID know what he was smuggling. I think this needs to be reworked, or at the very least the "The first rule of smuggling is to not ask what’s being smuggled" line should be taken out, as the really important concept here is that Ziixx is not into killing innocents... right?

15.) Re: the following:

But… I thought Sh’Okanabo was just a myth, a story to scare children by…

*BISHOP – full. Hands behind back, pacing, thinking.

There… there had been rumors of some sort of malignant alien… but… but him? Sh’Okanabo? (beat) Hm, that must be it.

BISHOP - regains his composure.

The explosion temporarily knocked out the Extra-Terran Defense Grid. That must have been his real goal."

This is REALLY weird. First, Bishop speaks of Sh'Okanabo as if he were a mythical boogeyman -- then in his next set of lines, he talks about him as if he KNOWS that Sh'Okanabo exists! Which is it?

16.) Re: the following:

That’s twice now that those turtlesss have meddled in my business.
We need to erase their programming before they ruin everything.
Yesss. The rightnessss of this planet… isss perfect.  "

Although I have no problem with the sibilant "s"'s of Sh'Okanabo, I don't recall him speaking in this way in previous appearances. Should he speak this way?

-- Pete

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