Saturday, May 18, 2013

Arby 'n' the Chief S07E15: "Crush"

Hey, guys.

Here's the latest episode, titled "Crush":

Arby 'n' the Chief S07E15: "Crush"

Breaking Bad fans are bound to have realized that the past couple of seasons of this show have been heavily inspired by it in terms of execution, such as sound design and the ways in which episodes open and close (i.e. cold opens, silent cuts to black and the executive producer credit).  This episode's no exception.  I'm a Baking Bread freak.  I think it's totally tits, because out of the shows that I've watched, for me it's consistently suspended the greatest amount of tension across the greatest amount of time while remaining acceptably grounded and plausible throughout; and the way it's cut, minimally and skillfully scored, and its writers' repeated execution of the "less being more" principle are all incredibly effective.  It's a near-perfect formula, pun intended.  If you're gonna emulate something, emulate the best, right?

There's something that's been bothering me for a while; on occasion I'll stumble across a comment written by somebody who feels short-changed, because they feel that the show has strayed so far from its lighthearted comedic roots.  This is a point that I feel I can't argue.  It was that lightheartedness that helped me obtain an audience in the first place, and some of those long-term fans feel that they aren't getting what they want from me anymore, which is very unfortunate.  However, what I will say is that the evolution of the show has felt natural to me.  I don't feel as though I've forced drama into the show where it wasn't welcome (at least not currently, I'm definitely guilty of that in the earlier seasons, during which I was really struggling to find my footing and voice, and develop a style).  I chose to have the seventh and last story season revolve around the physical and moral deterioration of the toys not deliberately in order to upset old-school fans, but because it felt like a logical progression.  Not addressing those aspects felt like refusing to mention elephants in the room.  I write for the toys as if they were human characters, so why wouldn't they be faced with human conflicts?  Feelings of isolation and confinement, the questioning of their fundamentally illogical existence, coming face to face with mortality -- they all struck me as interesting obstacles for the toys to overcome, particularly because they're all obstacles that everybody faces constantly, and I feel a need to express that through what I feel is a perfect opportunity.

The fact of the matter is that, though I find great pleasure in writing both drama and comedy, at the moment I'm more creatively driven towards drama writing.  I love writing jokes, but solely writing jokes bores me quickly, I suppose because I feel that it doesn't establish many deep and memorable emotional connections and primarily serves as quick, disposable gratification.  Another fact is that I've always viewed the show as a tool to develop my ability to write, above all else, in terms of structure, pacing, and the execution of various dramatic storytelling devices.  I don't consider myself a great dramatic writer, but I'd certainly like to be one, and I think that the only way I'll become one is to practice.  Might as well use my Saturday programming slot, which I'm very lucky to have.

However, I'm doing my best to continue to inject humor into the show.  I'm just fearful of detracting from the sense of Arbiter's moral decay, which I feel is vital to the season.  I have the entire remainder of the season outlined, and there's some decent gags to come.

Please leave feedback on this latest episode if you have the time.  I soak up every comment that's written on each of my videos.  I hope you enjoy it and that you stick around until the bittersweet end.

Cheers,
Jon