A whole bunch of 'em. What’s yours?
Johnny Walker starts us off:
Ken, of the many TV shows about the behind-the-scenes of television (e.g. The Dick Van Dyke Show, Buffalo Bill, The Larry Sanders Show, 30 Rock, something called "Almost Perfect" - whatever that is), which do you feel portrayed the trials, tribulations, stresses and strains of a real TV show most accurately? I.e. Which make you smart in recognition and go, "That's SO true"?
No contest. THE LARRY SANDERS SHOW. So realistic it was painfully funny. ALMOST PERFECT is second of course. Okay... third.
Would you ever consider doing a drama that contained a fair amount of humor?
David Chase, by the way, always contended that THE SOPRANOS was a comedy. I think that's stretching it, but there's room for humor in all dramas (except maybe CRIMINAL MINDS).
Carol has a question based on the Friday Question a few weeks ago about profanity.
Do you think being handcuffed to not being able to use profanity, even when it would make sense to do so forced you to be even more clever with phrasing and jokes and things?
Absolutely. Our goal has always been to write jokes that are clever and elegant. It’s why you hire us and not kids on street corners. There's a certain challenge to writing a joke that is both low and high road.
From Mork. (Good to see you back on earth.)
Ken—what’s the cheapest thing you’ve ever seen a studio do?
I told this story before but it’s worth repeating.
From Angry Gamer:
Did you ever end up in a situation (script, outline etc) where the reviewer would reject the product but not give you any useful feedback? In my business we call this "polishing the rock"... you know where the guy says "not right" but can't tell you what is "right". (slushpile question probably :)
Yes. There was a network executive (who I’m very fond of) who used to give notes like “the script is here but needs to be here.” Or “you have the meat and potatoes, but it needs more dessert.”
We would turn in our rewrites and have no idea whether we satisfied the notes. Much time was spent by me and David arguing over whether to include apple pie or lemon chiffon cake?
And finally, from Frank from Campbell in NorCal:
I was talking to a friend who is a major M*A*S*H head and he said Gary Burghoff was the only actor to be in all iterations of M*A*S*H including the pilot of a show called Walter. Does that pilot exist in the You Tube world and did you have anything to do with it?
Gary was also in the movie MASH and guested on AfterMASH.
Have a great Easter weekend.
Getting close. Only 5 more books have to be sold for me to post the speech from yesterday's essay.