Two Lists of Shows to Spec?! – March 9th, 2017

It’s beginning to look a lot like fellowship season. Time to pick a show to spec from the WB list of approved shows…

BUT WAIT — NBC/UNIVERSAL WRITERS ON THE VERGE PUBLISHED A LIST OF THEIR OWN?!

Below I’ve listed the approved shows and indicated if they’re on the Warner Bros list (#WB) and/or the NBC/Universal Writers on the Verge list (#WotV).

Comedy
2 Broke Girls #WB #WotV
American Dad #WB #WotV
Angie Tribeca #WB #WotV
Atlanta #WotV
Archer #WB #WotV
Better Things #WB #WotV – The buzz around the writing circles suggest this will be a popular show to spec.

Blackish #WB #WotV
Bob’s Burgers #WB #WotV
BoJack Horseman #WotV
Broad City #WB #WotV
Brooklyn Nine-Nine #WB #WotV
Casual #WB #WotV
Catastrophe #WB #WotV
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend #WotV
Difficult People #WB #WotV
Episodes #WB #WotV
Faking It #WB #WotV
Family Guy #WB #WotV
Fresh Off The Boat #WB #WotV
Girls #WotV
Grace & Frankie #WotV
House Of Lies #WB #WotV
Insecure #WotV
It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia #WB #WotV
Last Man On Earth #WB #WotV – If I were to spec a half-hour, it’d be this show.

Life In Pieces #WB #WotV
Master Of None #WB #WotV – My second choice if I were to spec a comedy.

Modern Family #WB #WotV
Mom #WB #WotV
Mozart In The Jungle #WB #WotV
New Girl #WB #WotV
Search Party #WotV
Silicon Valley #WB #WotV
South Park #WB #WotV
Superstore #WB #WotV
The Big Bang Theory #WB #WotV
The Carmichael Show #WB #WotV
The Goldbergs #WB #WotV
The Good Place #WotV
The Mick #WotV
The Middle #WB #WotV
The Mindy Project #WB #WotV
The Real O’Neal #WotV
Transparent #WB #WotV
Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt #WB #WotV
Unreal #WB – So far this is the only show to split categories. Warners considers it a comedy…

Veep #WB #WotV
Workaholics #WB #WotV
You’re The Worst #WB #WotV

Drama
Agents Of SHIELD #WB #WotV
American Crime #WotV
American Horror Story #WotV
Animal Kingdom #WB #WotV
Arrow #WB #WotV
Ash Vs. Evil Dead #WB #WotV – All you hardcore horror folk, you’re out of excuses.

Bates Motel #WB #WotV
Better Call Saul #WB #WotV – I bet this will be the most popular show to spec.

Big Little Lies #WotV
Billions #WB #WotV
Black Mirror #WotV
Blindspot #WB #WotV – I’m taking this show to the dance.

Bloodline #WB #WotV
Blue Bloods #WB #WotV
Bones #WB #WotV
Bosch #WB #WotV
Castle #WB #WotV
Chicago Fire #WB #WotV
Chicago Medical #WB #WotV
Chicago PD #WB #WotV
Code Black #WB #WotV
Criminal Minds #WB #WotV
Daredevil #WB #WotV – My runner up show to spec.

Elementary #WB #WotV
Empire #WB #WotV
Fear The Walking Dead #WB #WotV
Game of Thrones #WotV
Girlfriend’s Guide to Divorce #WotV
Gotham #WB #WotV
Greenleaf #WB #WotV – Allow me to admit that I’d never heard of this show until I saw it on the lists.

Grey’s Anatomy #WB #WotV
Halt And Catch Fire #WB #WotV
Happy Valley #WotV
Homeland #WB #WotV
House Of Cards #WB #WotV
How To Get Away With Murder #WB #WotV
Humans #WB #WotV
iZombie #WB #WotV
Jane The Virgin #WB #WotV
Jessica Jones #WB #WotV
Law & Order: Special Victims Unit #WB #WotV
Legends Of Tomorrow #WB #WotV
Lucifer #WB #WotV
Luke Cage #WotV
Madam Secretary #WB #WotV
Major Crimes #WB #WotV
Man in the High Castle #WotV
Mars #WotV
Masters Of Sex #WB #WotV
Mr. Robot #WB #WotV
Narcos #WB #WotV
NCIS: Los Angeles #WB #WotV
Once Upon A Time #WB #WotV
Orange Is The New Black #WB #WotV
Orphan Black #WB #WotV
Peaky Blinders #WB #WotV
Quantico #WB #WotV
Queen Sugar #WB #WotV
Ray Donovan #WB #WotV
Rosewood #WB #WotV
Scandal #WB #WotV
Scorpion #WB #WotV
Scream Queens #WB #WotV
Shades of Blue #WotV
Shameless #WotV
Sherlock #WB #WotV
Stranger Things #WB #WotV – Do we think everyone will spec this?

Suits #WB #WotV
Supergirl #WB #WotV
The 100 #WB #WotV
The Affair #WB #WotV
The Americans #WB #WotV
The Blacklist #WB #WotV
The Catch #WB #WotV
The Crown #WotV
The Exorcist #WotV
The Fall #WB #WotV
The Flash #WB #WotV
The Fosters #WotV
The Knick #WotV
The Leftovers #WB #WotV
The Night Of #WotV
The Night Shift #WB #WotV
The OA #WotV
The Originals #WB #WotV
The Path #WB #WotV
The Vampire Diaries #WB #WotV
The Walking Dead #WB #WotV
The Young Pope #WotV
This is Us #WotV
Timeless #WotV
Underground #WotV
Unreal #WotV – …but NBC thinks this is a drama. I guess if you’re one of those ride-the-fence “dramedy” writers, apply to both and let the studios put you in a box.

Wayward Pines #WB #WotV
Westworld #WotV

Holy, that’s a lot of shows. Kinda makes your head boil over with possibilities, right? Well, no time for that cause we all gotta get writing!

Posted in Writing

Writing Log Week 09 – March 6th, 2017

I was just at Emerald City Comicon so instead of writing I was like…

But all was not lost.

I did a little work on my pilot and on my Blindspot spec. I also started cracking ideas for a Black Mirror spec but as it’s not on the WB approved show list this year (more on that list in a future post), I have to give it up.

Have you ever seen Manhattan? Granted, aspects of it are super creepy but the opening and closing imagery and music, wow!

If it doesn’t make you want to move to New York, check your pulse. Patriot’s Day, on the other hand, is a well crafted Peter Berg thriller about the Boston bombing. If you’re looking for a dude movie that isn’t dumb, check it out.

Bubbles was the highest ranking script on last year’s Blacklist, soon to be a Dan Harmon stop-motion movie. Dan Harmon. Stop-motion. Need I say more?

Posted in Writing

Consumed February 2017 – February 28th, 2017

Short month, big content consumption, so I be like…

Television
Timeless
Conviction
Luther
Veep – Julia Louis Dreyfus is a goddamn national treasure.

Santa Clarita Diet
Broad City
Voltron: Legendary Defender – An awesome update to a beloved favorite but I miss the way OG Voltron used to murder the living f**k out of a robeast.

Legion – So many amazing things to rave about but #1 might be Rachel Keller.

Black Mirror – I am still waiting for that “blow me away” moment.

The People vs. OJ Simpson – The TV equvalent of a Long Island Iced Tea.

Blindspot
Lethal Weapon
Son of Zorn
Bob’s Burgers
The Americans – Simply the best show on TV.

Movies
Sleepwalk with Me
Man Up – an incredibly winning Romantic Comedy.

Monsters
The Lego Batman Movie
Lion
John Wick: Chapter 2
Elle – Paul Verhoeven and Isabelle Huppert are masters.

Get Out

Books
Mort(e) by Robert Repino – The first thing I read about sentient animals.

Pilots
Life Sentence
Reverie
Searchers
Killing Eve

Scripts
Hummingbird
Blonde Ambition

Comics
DC Comics: Bombshells
Animosity – The other thing I read about sentient animals.

Video Games
Ghost Recon: Wildlands – My character was basically a tattooed Natalie Morales with a sniper rifle. So, ya know, a badass.

End transmission.

Posted in General

Writing Log Week 08 – February 27th, 2017

Who’s a good boy?

… okay, not him.

I’m referring to me!

So this Feature Thriller has leapt to the front of my queue because I’m having a blast writing it. For the record, I decided to break the story using the eight sequence method. Basically, you think of your script as having eight sequences, each 10 to 15 pages. Each sequence has a beginning, middle and a cliff-hanger ending. For this particular project it’s working for me (so far).

This week I read two pilots. The first was Killing Eve, a comic thriller from Phoebe Waller-Bridge. Name doesn’t ring a bell? She’s the creator/star of Fleabag.

The second was the new pilot from The 100 creator, Jason Rothenberg. It’s called Searchers and it seems pretty cool. Boom. Out.

As for my movies, I watched a disquieting double feature about marginalization and micro-aggressions. I’m sure you’ve heard the buzz about Get Out but I would beseech you to watch Elle.

Despite the excitement about about my feature, I really need to keep cracking on my Blindspot spec because I start a Script Anatomy class mid March.

Wish me luck with keeping pace this week because I’ll be at Emerald City Comicon! Who else is going?

Posted in Writing

Writing Log Week 07 – February 20th, 2017

Who shot Mr. Burns?

We all know it was Maggie but it could have been me because I sure as hell wasn’t writing…

WAIT!!!

Did you see that? Right there in the middle…

HOLY S**T! I actually wrote a script page!

I know, you’re not impressed, but it’s big for me. So, you’re asking, what the hell is this project? It’s a Taken like thriller and so far it’s fun for me. Writing for fun? Crazy, right?!

As for the movies I watched, Lion is the kind of movie that used to win Harvey Weinstein Oscars. John Wick 2 is… it’s okay. Don’t believe the hype. It’s good but it’s no Hard Boiled.

Blonde Ambition was the highest rated script on this year’s Blcklst. It’s a fun, unauthorized biography about Madonna’s rise from obscurity to budding icon. It’s written in a clean, simple style, nowhere near as muscular or stylish as other Blcklst scripts I’ve read (and all the better for it).

Time to get back to writing. Therefore, I’ll leave you with a track that would absolutely be on that Blonde Ambition soundtrack.

Posted in Writing

Writing Log Week 06 – February 13th, 2017

A terrible cold knocked me out this week, so I was like…

Which means my writing was like…

Did you see The LEGO Batman Movie this weekend? Wasn’t his opening song the best! My other movie of the week was Gareth Edwards‘ debut, Monsters. I salute his hard work — he wrote, directed, shot and did the effects for his feature — but my inner editor wanted to cut at least 10 minutes out of his 94-minute movie.

Hummingbird was on the most recent Blacklist and it’s a super-slick read. When a executive tells you that “the read needs to be sexier,” use this as a reference.

Ugh, time to take another DayQuil.

Posted in Writing

Sorry You’re Sick by Ted Hawkins – February 11th, 2017

Thursday I woke up with a monster cold. That’s why I’m sharing this song with you. Enjoy “Sorry You’re Sick” by Ted Hawkins.

My only connection to this song is that I heard it from the album below and I loved it.

Time to write, then back to bed.

Posted in Off-Topic

Writing Log Week 05 – February 7th, 2017

That’s me.

This is why.

My excuse: it was a hell of a week.

But let’s talk about what I did do. I watched two great features this week. Sleepwalk with Me is the assured directorial debut of Mike Birbiglia. Man Up is an awesome romantic-comedy written by friend-of-the-Scriptnotes-Podcast Tess Morris. Both are on Netflix, each is under 90 minutes (YES!), and you should absolutely watch them ASAP.

I also read two pilots that I’m not supposed to say anything about: Life Sentence and Reverie. Still, I think it’s safe to say that both were excellently written.

Next week I promise to get more writing done.

 

Posted in Writing

No Sensitive Man by Haley Bonar – February 3rd, 2017

Music is one of the most important things in my life yet somehow I’ve let it slip away from me. Why? The crap that makes my daily existence a living nightmare has pushed it out. Well, fuck that noise.

This is Haley Bonar.

I love her. I first saw her at SXSW. I then saw her again at SXSW. I’ve only ever seen her at SXSW. I don’t know if she ever plays outside of SXSW.

This is her performing solo acoustic in a single take. Yeah, she’s that bad ass. That’s why I love her.

Posted in Off-Topic

Consumed January 2017 – January 31st, 2017

I know 2017 feels like this…

But we have to stand our ground like…

Here’s what my eyeballs ate this month:

Television
Supergirl – Gosh darn it, that Supergirl is totally winning!

The Flash
Arrow
DC’s Legends of Tomorrow
Quarry
The Grinder – Before they dove into the deep end of serialization, this was damn fun.

The Knick – Probably the best show I watched this month. Might be the best thing I’ll see this year.

Blindspot
Conviction
Son of Zorn
Lethal Weapon
The Good Place – That ending… damn fine job!

Bob’s Burgers
Maron – So, was it just me or did that last shot feel a little sophomoric and cliche?

Luther – I’m sorry but you can’t just get rid of Alice.

Sherlock – Um, that “flashback” episode was awful.

Timeless
Lucifer
Justified
Veep – Just started this series. Hot damn, it’s great!

Movies
The Cabin in the Woods
The Shallows – Once you get past that first reel with the forced family backstory, this flick kicks into high gear.

Zootopia – Maybe the best animated noir movie ever made.

John Wick – Was expecting so much more.

Prisoners – Some troubling messaging here (would probably do much better if released today).

A Monster Calls
Postcards from the Edge – Goddamn great writing from Carrie Fisher

Resident Evil: The Final Chapter – Hey, I liked (most of) these movies.

Books
The Disaster Artist by Greg Sestero & Tom Bissell – It’s easy to laugh but at least he had the courage to release his movie.

Scripts
In The Deep (The Shallows) – The script is better than the movie.
The Wall – Another great script. Can’t wait to see the movie.
Hotel Artemis – Can’t say much but it’s from the co-writer of Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation and Iron Man 3, so use that to gauge expectations.

Comics
20th Century Boys – I forgot that manga takes 20 volumes to tell a whole story.

DC Comics: Bombshells
Joyride

Video Games
Star Wars Battlefront – A great way to continue those Rogue One feelings.

And that’s all for January. See ya next month.

Posted in General