Friday Sketch War: Round Five

Our hearty meals digested, our concubines put aside, we stepped up to the dohyƍ. Again, three of us had come to the ceremonial ground to battle for supremacy. The yobidashi brush the sand smooth where we had sat as we step up to the shikiri-sen.

  • Coyote is terrifying in his non-traditional hemp mawashi. He strikes first…
  • Michael sports a bright red and yellow mawashi and cuts a noble figure…
  • David looks as though he’s been woken from a deep slumber by a ringing phone in his pale blue mawashi

This week we’ve got hippies, new jobs, danger at 3am, and secrets too frightening to reveal. Come revel in our words!

FSW: Fight the Patriarchy

I’m firing off an early attack in an attempt to draw First Blood. Or maybe to draw Rambo: First Blood Part 2. Should any new grapplers feel up to entering the Sumo ring of sketch war, please email a link to your submission (or its full text if you are homepageless) to sketchwar_at_dreamloom_dot_com.

Fight the Patriarchy
(Two hippies, Breeze and Anton, sit at a card table outside Whole Foods. Scent lines of patchouli and pot wafting from their hemp clothing and unkempt dreads are almost visible. A middle-aged man walks away from the card table with a pamphlet Breeze has handed him.)

BREEZE
You shouldn’t let your parents control your life.

ANTON
It’s not like that. I want to be an engineer.

BREEZE
That’s because you’ve been indoctrinated. Why else would you want to rape Mother Earth?

ANTON
Dude, I don’t want to rape anything. I just wanna build dams and bridges.

BREEZE
Dams block the natural flow of Gaia’s tears. Bridges support the war machine. Engineering was invented by white men so they could fight wars and enslave women and minorities.

ANTON
C’mon. It’s just cool to build stuff. When I was a kid, I’d play with my Legos for hours, building space stations and cities, and imagining all the people who lived and worked there. Didn’t you do that?

BREEZE
Plastic tools of the patriarchy! With all those round…pegs forced into innocent holes by grubby male hands!

ANTON
Whoa. You’ve got some serious issues.

BREEZE
Sorry. It’s the rape culture. It gets to me.

There’s a tribe in the rainforest where the women are in charge. They don’t even have a word for war. They don’t have a word for yellow either, but that’s okay. They call it “color of the pus from a scorpion sting”.

(A well-kept woman in her 40’s walks up to the table and glances at the material.)

ANTON
Do you want to sign our petition?

WOMAN
What’s it for?

ANTON
Um…

BREEZE
It’s a petition requiring all the schools in the district to use paper made from locally grown hemp. It’s biodegradable, renewable, and supports small farmers instead of evil international paper corporations.

WOMAN
Uh, maybe I’ll sign on my way out…

(Woman rushes away and into the store)

BREEZE
Did you forget why we’re here?

ANTON
I just…Tuesday it was to stop Japan’s whale hunt, Thursday it was to rename MLK Boulevard to Rosa Parkway —

BREEZE
— MLK was a tool of the hegemony! —

ANTON
— and yesterday it was to require Herstory be taught in grade school. I just lost track of the day.

BREEZE
You know, there’s a tribe in Laos that doesn’t have calendars or clocks. We could learn a lot from them. They have a wise-woman who tells them when it’s time to reap and time to sow. She uses her menstrual cycle to determine everything. I’m thinking of spending the summer there. Or maybe on a walking tour of Nepal.

(As Breeze has been jabbering, a 20-something dude in a pink shirt with popped collar has approached.)

CHAD
Bethany? What happened to your hair?

BREEZE
Uh, um, Chad. It’s, great to…see…um. Anton? This is Chad. He…I…we went to high school together.

CHAD
‘Sup.

So I was talking to your mom at the club yesterday. She said you weren’t going to Rome this year ’cause you just wanted to veg on the beach. You going to Cannes, or just hanging in the Hamptons?

BREEZE
(Embarrassed in front of Anton) The Hamptons.

CHAD
Coolio. Me too. Dakota and Bryce’ll be there, too.

BREEZE
(Failing to hide her excitement) Bryce? Oh…uh, whatever.

CHAD
Ai-ight. Peace out. See ya later.

(Chad struts off.)

BREEZE
Don’t say a word.

ANTON
Bethany?

BREEZE
Not a word!

Friday Sketch War: Round Four

The armies assembled on their respective sides of the battlefield the evening before committing their forces to the attack.

  • Unbeknownst to everyone, Michael stealthily climbed atop a tor a thousand yards distant from the battlefield. Selecting an arrow from his quiver, he pulled his bow taut and let it loose
  • Hearing the arrow whistling through the air, Coyote rallied his troops
  • Late but well provisioned, David ordered his trebuchets fire!

This week we’ve got the One True Plan – the millennial cell phone plan, Erin Andrews at the NFL Combine, and cube dweller hijinks. Come on it, the comedy is fine!

FSW: 2008 NFL Combine

(Scott Van Pelt and Mel Kiper stand in a broadcast booth at an arena. Graphics read “2008 NFL COMBINE”.)

SCOTT
Welcome back. I’m joined now in the booth by Mel Kiper. Mel, what are your thoughts on the first three days of competition?

MEL
Scott, this has been a great combine. It’s been an especially strong year for the skill positions, with quarterbacks and receivers performing particularly well. We’re still waiting on the official scores on the Wonderlic, but early reports show none of the surprises we’ve had in years past. Today we’ll be seeing defensive linemen and defensive backs and I know a lot of GMs are anxious to see how they do.

SCOTT
It looks like we’ve already got our first defensive back warming up down on the course now. It’s Darren McKnight out of Purdue. Mel, what can you tell us about Darren?

(Down on the field, we see that an obstacle course has been set up. There’s a large seesaw, a series of jumps, a long line of slalom poles, a curved tunnel. A layout familiar to anyone who has ever seen dog agility trials.)

MEL (O.S.)
Darren’s a smaller d-back, but he’s quick and agile and can run all day. You really love watching guys like this, the way they just jump around, always excited and happy to please.

(Darren and a middle-aged woman are at the starting line. Darren is hopping around like a Jack Russell and the woman holds out a piece of bacon for him.)

MEL (O.S.)
Darren’s handler is his mother and agent, Myrtle McKnight. She’s an experienced handler, having managed both of Darren’s older brothers at the combine in year’s past. Vince is a wide receiver for the Cardinals, and Trey is a punter and backup QB up in Buffalo. She knows what she’s doing out there, and as long as she can keep Darren’s attention, he’ll do great.

(A gun sounds and Darren starts running the course. Myrtle guides him through it.)

SCOTT (O.S.)
He’s going great out there. Looks like a real pro, doesn’t he?

MEL (O.S.)
He sure does, Scott. Myrtle’s giving him just enough freedom to really fly, but still keeping him focused. Look how she’s always one step ahead of Darren so he knows where to go next.

(Darren overshoots the entrance to the slalom poles and Myrtle has to get him back to restart them.)

MEL (O.S.)
Oh no! That’s a five second penalty! He’s going to have to really work hard to make up that loss.

(Darren finishes the course and jumps into his mother’s arms and kisses her.)

SCOTT (O.S.)
That really was a shame, wasn’t it. Looked like he had a shot at the course record.

MEL (O.S.)
He sure did, Scott, but I think his time will still put him in the top three for his position.

SCOTT (O.S.)
Let’s go down to Erin Andrews on the field and see what the competitors have to say.

(Sideline reporter and Internet sensation Erin Andrews stands by Myrtle and Darren. Darren jumps out of his mother’s arms and hops around, still excited from his run.)

ERIN
Myrtle, can you tell us what happened out there?

(Darren gets down on all fours and starts to sniff Erin’s crotch.)

ERIN
Oh my! That’s a good boy. Okay! That’s enough, now. Down, big fella!

MYRTLE
Darren! Mind your manners, boy!

(Darren stops sniffing and sits by Myrtle.)

MYRTLE
Sorry, Erin. He gets a little excited sometimes.

(Erin, excited herself, fans herself.)

ERIN
That’s alright, Myrtle. He’s a cutie pie. Aren’t you, Darren? Such a good boy.

(Back to the booth.)

SCOTT
Okay. We’ll come back to Erin in a bit. Up next, wide receivers jump off a pier to retrieve a stick.

BLACKOUT

Friday Night Sketch War: Round Three

On the killing floor, before the assembled masses the gladiators prepare for battle…

Will no one join our bloody conflict? Are your livers lillied and aspects yellow? Until next time, we writhe in our own blood and entrails, waiting for the bold and the noble to join the fray.

FNSW: The Certificant

(Scott Johnson sits at his desk. Ivo Princip enters the office, wearing a suit and carrying his resume. He crosses, shakes Scott’s hand, and sits opposite.)

SCOTT
Nice to meet you, Mr. Princip. I’m Scott. May I call you Ivo?

IVO
No.

SCOTT
O–kay…why don’t you tell me a little about yourself.

IVO
Did you not read my resume?

SCOTT
I did, but I was hoping maybe you could maybe elaborate, go into a little detail about some of your experience, tell me why you think you’d be a good fit for this position.

IVO
You are hiring for engineer, yes? I am engineer.

SCOTT
O–kay. Let’s start with a few questions, then. I see you’ve got your masters, that’s good. But you’ve only got one year of experience —

IVO
— I am certified.

SCOTT
What now?

IVO
I have MCSE, CNA, CNE, SCJP —

SCOTT
— That’s great, too. How about a couple of quick tech questions? Let me get a feel for your level. Can you explain polymorphism to me?

IVO
Polymorphism. No.

SCOTT
Nothing? Maybe you want to try talking through it, see if you can’t give me a few of its traits?

IVO
No.

SCOTT
Can you tell me why you would use an abstract class?

IVO
No.

SCOTT
Define inheritance?

IVO
Inheritance?
…No.

SCOTT
Ivo —

IVO
— Mr. Princip.

SCOTT
Mr. Princip. It says here that you’re an expert in object oriented programming.

IVO
Object oriented programming. Yes. I am certified.

SCOTT
Can you define that for me?

IVO
Object oriented programming?

SCOTT
Please.

IVO
No.

SCOTT
Alright. Let’s step back a bit, then. I see here under this technology section you’ve also got Photoshop listed. You certainly wouldn’t be doing any of that here, but while I was working my way through college I actually worked in a graphics shop. So why don’t you tell me how you’d use an alpha channel?

IVO
Alpha channel?

SCOTT
Yes.

IVO
That is…there are channels…many of them…this is the first. It is first channel.

SCOTT
O–kay. Let’s jump back over to programming for a minute. Can you give me an example of a recursive algor —

IVO
— May I ask question first?

SCOTT
Sure.

IVO
Are you certified?

SCOTT
Me? No. I don’t have any certifications. It’s never come up. I really only have time for the occasional conference or seminar and haven’t had call to get certified.

IVO
Then how can you be expected to ask me question? Is like…is like student, asking teacher, no? I am certified, but you are not. It make no sense, yes?

SCOTT
Excuse me??

IVO
How can I…to explain, be clear, to you? You are member of team, yes? Maybe I speak with someone more senior. Your manager is certified?

SCOTT
I’m the team lead.

IVO
So, is team of junior engineer.

SCOTT
We get by. Well Ivo —

IVO
— Mr. Princip.

SCOTT
Mr. Princip. It’s been interesting meeting you. I wish you luck in your job search.

(Ivo sits for a minute, then gets the hint and leaves.)

BLACKOUT

LIGHTS UP

(Scott sits at his desk. The door opens and Steve Kramer enters.)

SCOTT
Boss. What’s up?

STEVE
Scott, you know you’ve been trying to get some help on the team, well, I’ve got it fixed. I just interviewed a rockstar of an engineer.

SCOTT
That’s great! Do you want me to talk to him?

STEVE
No need. Already hired him. Whipsmart, and has certifications out the ass. Hell of an engineer. Ivo Princip. You’ll be reporting to him starting Monday.

BLACKOUT

FNSW: 62nd Annual Moriarty Awards

(Dancers finish up what must have been a large and elaborate number as lights dim, music stops, and applause is heard. A curtain closes and Billy Crystal walks to the center of the stage.)

BILLY
Wasn’t that great? I’ve been informed that no animals were killed during the performance of that dance, but two senator’s daughters and the ambassador from Uruguay all sank another two inches in Ernst Blofeld’s quicksand trap!

To present our next award, here is last year’s winner of Villainess of the Year and this year’s winner for Best Robotic Attack on a City: Population 1 Million or More – Poison Ivy and Dr. Victor Von Doom.

(Doom and Ivy enter and walk to a podium stage right.)

IVY
Victor and I don’t strike fear in people’s hearts all on our own–

DOOM
–I do.

IVY
–and you wouldn’t be able to enjoy your favorite megalomaniac–

DOOM
–Doom.

IVY
–striding down the street ahead an army of zombie cyborgs without the help of thousands of people.

DOOM
It takes dozens of scientists, engineers, and technicians just to maintain the fusion reactors, floating fortresses, and giant lasers used for burning names on the surface of the moon.

IVY
Not to mention the costume designers, bio-engineers, sentient killer squid, and henchmen who make all the best plans come to life. They make us look good. Earlier this week in a separate ceremony, those folks got together for their awards presentations.

(Roll video of Henchmen Banquet. Henchman is standing at podium, clutching a Moriarty tightly.)

HENCHMAN
…like to thank my mother, for never being there for me. My first parole officer, for believing I’d never be a contributing member of society, and…

(BOOM! The brick wall behind the stage explodes, revealing Superman. Mass pandemonium as all the henchmen try to flee.)

DOOM
HAHAHA! Maybe next year they’ll make it all the way through that ceremony.

(Music swells and Ivy and Doom walk off the stage. Billy reenters from stage left.)

BILLY
(Doing his Fernando Lamas impersonation) Doom, Dahling. Enough with the mask already. Take it off. I can tell, underneath, you look mahvelous. And that Ivy. I’d like to dig around her roots. Have you seen the stems on that one?

(Back to normal voice) It’s not often I’m awed in someone’s presence. Jack Benny, George Burns, Bob Hope, and this next man. What can I say about this next presenter that won’t get me killed in a giant thresher? He’s a level-nine intelligence, a snappy dresser, and an absolute lady-killer. I mean that. He kills ladies. Literally. Ladies and Gentleman, Lex Luthor.

(Lex enters to a hearty round of applause, waving and smiling.)

LEX
Thank you, thank you. Thanks for that welcome, everyone. Although I shouldn’t be surprised by it. After all, I do have satellites targeting all your loved ones!

(Polite laughter.)

LEX (CONT’D)
And by loved ones, I of course mean you!

(Raucous laughter.)

LEX (CONT’D)
But you’re not here to listen to me joke, or to tremble in fear at my presence – though tremble you should – it’s time for the big prize of the night. The Moriarty for the Evil Plan of the Year. The nominees are: Dr. No for his plan to replace the world’s oil supply with sea water, foiled by James Bond; El Seed for his plan to release genetically modified corn that can grow on asphalt, foiled by The Tick; The Joker for his plan to poison Gotham City’s drinking supply, foiled when he abandoned the plan midway through out of boredom; Kingpin for creating an army of evil hybrid Spiderman-Daredevil clones to take over New York; and Heat Miser for trying to melt out Christmas…again!

(Fumbles with envelope, gets out card. He squints a few times but can’t make it out, so he puts a pair of granny glasses at the end of his nose.)

LEX (CONT’D)
No!

(Dr. No starts to get up in the audience.)

LEX (CONT’D)
Sit down, Julius. I didn’t call your name. The winner is Kingpin, for creating an army of evil hybrid Spiderman-Daredevil clones!

(As Kingpin rises and waves at the applauding crowd, alarms start ringing and lights start flashing.)

LEX (CONT’D)
To the escape pods!

(Billy comes back to the podium as everyone runs away in the chaos.)

BILLY
See you next year, folks!

Joining Sketch War

Ai-ight. Looks like Michael and I are definitely going to do battle on Fridays. We’ve reached out to a few other writers and have gotten a smattering of interest back, so I suspect we’ll see one or two others joining us this week, and maybe a few more after that. My hope is that we can get five to ten sketches each week, but that might be overly optimistic.

Regardless, anyone who *does* want to play along, email a link to your sketch to sketchwar at dreamloom dot com. Michael and/or I will put up links to all the entries each week.

Friday Night Sketch War

Fellow Sitcom Room alum and all around great guy Michael Brownlee posted a hilarious short sketch tonight. He’s challenging himself to be more disciplined about writing, and figured writing an occasional short sketch will keep his comedy muscles limber. I agree. As I’ve been extremely lax writing lately, I thought I’d take the opportunity to make it a more communal (and competitive) process. I probably think that because it’s Friday night, and I’m reminded of all the great comics bloggers getting into the fun with Bahlactus’ Friday Night Fights.

Now, my sketch below is nowhere near as good as Michael’s this time. He didn’t post until late afternoon and I spent several hours just trying to come up with something. I think it’s okay. Next time, however, I plan on having a kick-ass sketch. I’ll let y’all know if it’s going to be weekly, monthly, or sporadically. If the latter, I think there’s a fungicide that’ll clear it up.

So, without further doobie-doobie-doo, here’s my first entry into
Friday Night Sketch War! (the name’s in flux. We think it needs the word “death” in it more.)



Mitt Romney’s Weekend

(Two workers bring a large crate into a dark, cramped lab and stand it up. They exit and Al Gore steps out of the shadows with a crowbar. One quick pry and the front of the crate opens, exposing a frozen Mitt Romney. Al steps close and reaches around to Mitt’s back; Romney comes to life.)

MITT
10010101 00010100 10100101 10–

AL
–damn it. They left him on hex. Hang on a second, Mitt.

(Al makes another quick adjustment at Mitt’s back.)

MITT
Greetings. How may I be of assistance?

AL
Actually Mitt, I’m going to assist you.

(Al unbuttons the front of Mitt’s shirt, and pops opens a panel on his chest. Taking a screwdriver and chip from one of the lab benches, Al attaches the chip to the center of the circuit board.)

MITT
That…tickles! Woohoo! What’s that feeling?! Wait, what is feeling?

AL
I’ve installed your Central Emoting Unit.

(Mitt starts to cry.)

AL
I know this is all very new to you. But you won’t be going through it alone, I promise.

(Mitt starts to giggle.)

AL (CONT’D)
I wish I’d had someone around to help me sort out all the new data I was receiving. One minute I was running fourier transforms to find some way of winning a protracted legal battle over the Florida recount and the next I was hosting Saturday Night Live.

(Mitt starts to dance.)

MITT AL
I’m a little teapot, short and stout.
Here is my handle, here is my spout.
When I get all steamed up, hear me shout.
Just tip me over and pour me out.
That’s great, Mitt.
Glad you’re getting in touch with yourself.
But we’ve got to boogie before the Professor gets back.

MITT
Who’s that?

AL
The Professor? You don’t remember? What do you remember?

MITT
I’m going to be President!!!

AL
Oh boy. Do you know what day it is?

MITT
Christmas Eve.

AL
Damn it! Damn! Your memory units must have been fried when those TSA idiots ran you through the x-ray. Mitt, it’s February 8. You’re out of the race.

MITT
For reals, homes?

AL
Don’t do that. It’s just a CEU. I didn’t install a hiphop chip.

MITT
So Thompson finally got in the game. I should have seen it coming. It’s so clear now. He’s down-homey. I couldn’t compete with that.

AL
Uh, actually…never mind. Anyway, we need to get out of here. He’ll be back soon.

MITT
Right. The Professor. Who is he?

AL
I don’t really know. All I do know is he built both of us to become President. I can’t help but think if he’d just remembered to put in our emotion chips we could have won, too. Let’s go. Tipper’s waiting in the boat.

MITT
A boat?

AL
We’re on an island. And we don’t want to be caught outside at night, when the mist rolls in.

(The Professor enters. He’s a very wizened man with a shock of white hair.)

AL (CONT’D)
It’s too late! Run!

(The Professor takes a small device from his pocket and presses a button on it. Al and Mitt freeze.)

PROFESSOR
Welcome back, Al. It’s been quite a while. Mitt, glad to see you.

AL
This was your plan all along, wasn’t it. You knew I’d come to free Mitt!

PROFESSOR
I suspected.

AL
You won’t get away with it. I’ve got friends now. Clooney will save us.

PROFESSOR
No. No he won’t. As we speak my Nick CounterBot is finalizing a deal with the WGA. Your Hollywood friends will soon have too much work to do to notice you’re gone. By the time they realize it, it’ll be too late.

MITT
Too late for what?

PROFESSOR
My ObamaBot will be President.

MITT
I don’t understand. Why would you put two of us in the same campaign?

PROFESSOR
It’s all the fault of my stupid assistant. He forgot to put in your CEU. Did the same thing with Gore, here. So I kept him busy scaring those crash survivors on the other side of the island while I built the ObamaBot. He’s perfect. And now, I have no use for the two of you except as spare parts.

Think I’ll build myself a Scarlett JoBot.

(Mitt starts to cry.)

MITT
Sorry Al. It’s all my fault. You never should have come back for me.

AL
It’s alright, Mitt. We’ll get out of this. I promise you.

PROFESSOR
Where’s that incompetent assistant? Gilligan!!!

BLACKOUT