Harold Night - 3/4 (second block)

Okay, i’m just as disappointed as you may be, but due to technical difficulties (namely that my video won’t save or render to Youtube!!), you’re stuck reading last week’s observations. SORRY! I’m so sorry. For those of you new to this thing, this isn’t necessarily focused on recapping entire harolds as much as it’s focused on things I respect and learn from. Full disclosure, it morphs into a recap, sometimes. 
Graceland - Disney
Great opening. I love active openings, I could be wrong, but as an audience member, they’re fun to watch and seem to produce a ton of ideas, inspiration, etc. Also, just watching an island of misfit disney toys, characters and failed actors play out is pretty amusing too. Kudos to Graceland, when shit got weird, everyone joined in and piled on. Cue segue, I can’t say enough about how the tandem of Joey Price and Justin Lamb greased the wheels of this harold. Lamb had so many funny lines and sub games, it was almost hard to keep track. Watching Joey play an asshole talent agent/casting director to the T was highly rewarding. 
The first and second beats of the first game were really, REALLY fun/funny. Peter Sheer places a starving disney artist deeply committed to his craft was great. What made this scene work was how quickly everyone supported it, Sean grounded it to give the scene immediate stakes, reminding this mickey-actor guy that his job is to please kids which obviously juxtaposes Sheer’s position of being a real time method actor trying to make it big. Second beat here is just as good. Kudos again to Lamb for grounding this scene but allowing it to move forward. I’ve always heard teachers say that, “Say no to the character but yes to the scene." It was delightful to watch Justin lightly reprimand Peter on his first day at Fun Burger King his job is to collect money and punch orders no matter how enthusiastically he wants to get. The justification was spot on and was just sort of a throwaway line in a largely funny scene. Other throw away funny lines - Sean fucking with Peter (also, reacting to the last thing his scene partner said) when he asked Peter if his wife really left and handed him a $20 when she dumped him. Just easy laughs, that’s table nuggets right there. The button move was great, Joel walking on as a casting director who of course, Peter clamors to serve, spot on! 
I don’t want to call out too much but I will say, Graceland group games come correct. These were some of my favorite scenes from the night. The first, the $250,000 Secret Disney Tour. You know when they say you can make anything up in improv? They’re not kidding. Watching this group game reminds me. Want to walk on as a reanimated Walt Disney? Please do. Want to put a Shamu in the underground tunnel? Why not? Credit to Johnna who really was so honestly committed to real tour specifics that it really filled out the world for me. Sidenote: give yourself a sub-game. It was cool to watch Justin heighten his sub-game as a fixer-upper along the way. Whenever the game heightens to anti-semitic Walt Disney meeting a Jewish guy who’s got a question for him, always edit. Props to Graceland for not missing the button and closing out on a big laugh. 
Their second group game was the one that really stole my heart. I think as improvisers, sometimes the tendency is to find the game in the first 3-4 lines and not let anything build. Graceland had the patience to wait and see where this went, so what began as a scene about two farmers talking, feeding a bunch of chicken turned into a scene about how monotonous and cyclical life is. Yeah, I know, i just typed that, but i’m not kidding. Chickens do as farmers do, who in turn do as chicken feed does. Such a clean game and simple but mostly a real great example of people just trusting one another and being on board with something coming from absolutely nothing. 
Final thought: Joel nails “Goat Lord” and i guess the lesson for me is don’t feel bad about making strong character choices, especially when “Goat Lord” is a thing that gets referenced no less than eight times in a first beat. 
The Regulars - Courtney Cox 
I’m a sucker for the documentary opening so naturally, i’m sucked in right away but the thing i notice and a thing that changes the harold is an accident but the subsequent team support. Just when it looked like Pat was going to edit the opening, Zach took a seat to do one more duo and instead of making it weird and awkward, he made a character choice which Pat immediately matched to be overly-excited guys who are so excited about waking people up that they barely have enough time to sit down. Also, something i forget until i see this team is that they are SO good at establishing clear premises in their opening. 
The first and second beats of this game are pretty thin but still PRETTY funny. Grant plays an actress who only wants to take the roles of Monica - naturally she didn’t get cast as the one on Friends so she goes off in search of others, including famed 90s musician and well, you know the only other famous Monica from the 90’s (hint: blow job + blue dress). Bonus points to Shalyah for her 90’s agent specifics. I could just feel that this character had big hair. The second beat is where a lot more magic happens though because Grant is auditioning for a Sprint commercial - the sprint “lady” is called Cynthia which means we get to witness Grant have a lot of trouble auditioning/breaking on stage. I want to shout out Zack P. here because there’s a throwaway line which he calls back in third beats which leads to a black out. During the commercial, it’s established that Monica uses Sprint because it helps her run fast, but more on that later. 
While i loved the first group game - especially because it involved British accents and built towards subtle racism mapping slavery to beastiality, the second game is more pertinent. What at first glance started as a “Kids get in here” scene, is changed because if you, like i, assumed the question and tone “what’s on the floor?” would imply a negative connotation the simple answer they gave “carpet” did not. Such an easy choice and everyone was immediately on board. This led to a fun discovery that the kids were little architects because as Shalyah appropriately justified, was the job their non-existent father did. Only when it got too much, after the kids had put a kitchen island in and made other home improvements, she changed her tune, explaining the true nature of the relationship: just some guy she slept with at a bar. Without missing a beat, everyone begins humping the air or trying to hump their mother. Weird, but honestly, so funny. 
Final thought: Callback to Zack from earlier, in third beats, he starts with a pitch for Sprint about how they don’t want a commercial that talks about actual phones - that’s what he assumed from the fact that a sprint commercial was about running, instead of phones. Pat says Sprint is just like rent. Someone makes a move to clarify that Sprint is just like Rent. A tag follows for the pivotal set up question, “How many minutes do you get?” without missing a beat the back line support chimes in appropriately with 525,600 minutes. Blackout. Respect. That was barely a kernel of an idea but somewhere, Zack thought that would be fun to play with and he brought it back.   
Bucky - Velcro
What can i say? This performance was absolutely something special. I love that Laura Wilcox and Nicole Drespel can have such strong opinions as women playing women on stage and play them well enough to not make it cartoony. At one point in the show, Laura fainted and it just felt so on game because of her level of commitment, but honestly the harold was successful because it was believable. The loser shoe guy Frank played, the corny/kind of gross sales guy Nate played, the turbo jocks, the over concerned mother, IT WAS SO REAL! It might be hard for me to do their entire monscene justice so again, I’ll call out the highlights. 
The battle of Frank and Nate’s characters was great. Francis (Frank) was this loser who was on the verge of committing suicide whereas Ted (Nate) was this super slick shoe guy who got you multiple discounts at other stores around the mall or opened credit cards for kids to make the sale. Ted’s theme song is Flash by Queen, Frank’s is the Escape (The Piña Colada song) by Rupert Holmes. I mean, it gets pretty stark for Frank who’s idea of exercise is rollerblading around the park versus Ted who’s got a lifetime membership to Crunch Fitness (home of the douches). They really built these guys up over the course of the Harold. 
I’ve touched on this already but the commitment Laura used in being an overly-cautious/caring mom who equated modesty and velcro nursing shoes with somehow preventing her daughter from growing up and becoming a woman was great. Nicole as her daughter, already going through the stages of puberty and looking to break out with a sensible flat or a pump and wheel shoe - a shoe that does something for her, was really perfect. In fact, now that i mention it, Nicole playing an overly sheltered girl breaking out of that shell and striking out for herself was something else. Really fun specifics - especially when her mum leaves her alone and she accidentally joins a shoe cult.
Jeremy Bent and Matt Cutler both played two of my favorite characters in this entire show, and that’s really tough to call. But their overzealous dumb jocks who likened buying the proper athletic shoes to being gods versus ants were amazing. Their rants were insane but made absolute sense. Fun specifics - “This is Footlocker, athletic shoes are supposed to be 75% of their business, period.” and them repeating, “Try running suicides in loafers” repeatedly with heightened states of emotion was priceless. Laura walking on and directing their attention to the back wall, which they’d apparently never bother looking at was of course, stocked entirely with athletic shoes. This is important for me, because it wasn’t a denial of the fact that they hadn’t searched the store, it was an educated guess, that two guys standing on chairs or benches in the front of the store, hadn’t bothered to go all the way back and look. Not a denial. This is not a denial! Watching Bent and Cutler play the lesser known Kennedy brothers - Ken and Gary, whom scandal/the Kennedy curse had yet to touch, was also insanely rewarding because they committed. If you’re going to do a Kennedy impersonation, fucking do it. Kudos to Nate who was at the ready with all the relevant boat shoe brands. 
The BOGO (buy one, get one) group game was really fun and silly. It really encapsulated what it is to be in one of those stores during one of those promotions. Of course, the fun is partly in seeing adults run around and ravage whatever items they can find on the Chelsea stage - chairs and podium, but in the confusion over what BOGO actually means. Bring one, Get one? Bo Jackson one, Get one? I birthed one, get one? So good. 

I love how the justification for Laura’s character didn’t come until way late in the harold, but when it did, it was so much more rewarding in some way. We learned that she was an overly protective mother was because she was scared of the Kennedy family curse. The monoscene ended with a gay wedding and a minute later, a Kennedy scandal when it was revealed that new husband Francis shit in the OJ at Jamba Juice.  

Final Thoughts: Frank’s suicide sub game with shoe specifics - make laces into a noose/eat shoe polish and die. Matt Cutler working in a True Detective reference. Jeremy Bent’s Boston/Kennedy accent and quote, “There are no lesser Kennedy’s only Kennedy’s wearing lesser boat shoes.” What does it even mean? Who cares? It sounded amazing. 

Improv Observations Returns!

We’re back in business! Harold Night 3/4, 9:15pm…you’re up first. 

Goliath vs. Goliath at Cagematch

I realize it’s been awhile since I’ve posted any observations! So here are some observations.

The great thing about improv titans going head-to-head is pure improv—it always comes down to the performance, not necessarily the people who are on stage during the show. I don’t think anyone will make any bones about Cagematch being a bringer show, I think it’s designed that way, so it’s not uncommon to see a team win, perhaps even go on a run, that might not always deserve to do so. That’s just the nature of the beast. But a few times every season at Cagematch, a really cool thing happens. Two improv greats face off, effectively eliminating the ‘bringer’ factor, uniting factions of students and improv lovers alike to see a show where the winning teams’ performance quite literally takes center stage. For the performers too, as much as I’ve surmised, those big matchups are really about leaving it all on the stage, to utilize and apply an antiquated sports metaphor for no good reason.

Last night was one of those nights as The Stepfathers faced off against Grandma’s Ashes. Newsflash: if you missed it, I’m sorry. Should’ve been there. It definitely wasn’t the same thing as missing The Stepfathers’ DCM14 Rewind show, but it was pretty spectacular.

Speaking with Amos and Diston before the show, they wanted to pick my brain about my thoughts on the upcoming match, seriously—this isn’t a joke. What would the night come down to? In my opinion, whether or not The Stepfathers could come out with the right level of energy would impact the set. Would the Stepfathers get weird (if you watch them regularly, you know what I mean)? Had Connor had a nap that afternoon? Was Gethard in the house? Would Shannon be Shannon—BTW? Would Will find a character game early on, garner enough laughs per minute to sustain it throughout? Would Grandma’s Ashes play fast and loose? Would BSJ lose his mind? What would Abra do? It’s really a bevy of factors that makes Cagematch shows into what they are, but it’s the winning over of the crowd, and sustainment of a solid performance that REALLY makes it what it is.

Hands down both teams delivered. I won’t give you the blow by blow but rather a few highlights of the match. The Stepfathers settled into a monoscene fairly quickly and had the audience on board instantly through bold choices up top. After realizing they were sitting at a Russian roulette table, and without a ‘dealer’, Silvija got up to become one. It was seamless, no one made a big deal about it but it’s important to note that she was indeed sitting to start the set—we all saw it, improv is undeniable to the audience in that sense, but mostly because with about five minutes left to the show, The Stepfathers addressed it and spent a great deal of time talking, engaging and interacting with that lady, despite the fact that none of us could see her! They remember. Will Hines remembered every bet he placed and the correct amount. Will Hines heightened his character’s emotional stakes on life/death like a real human being, with credible justifications, just like Will would and should. Specifics. Shannon O’Neill called everything out, had fun and proceeded to play a game where she tried to crack everyone up “Cool WHEELCHAIR lady.” Connor Ratliff accepted gifts like it was going out of style. When his character was likened to a weak lineage of Kramer’s family, he made sure to exit and re-enter the scene in Kramer-esque fashion. They had history, connections, reasons for being there. It was a tidy monoscene that was resolved properly. It was beautifully paced. You expect that from a team of veterans – everyone has a strong character game/point of view and was driving the scene somewhere. No one is ambling about wondering what’s happening next. They’re sitting there like human beings would in such a situation. It’s just believable. No matter how insane the concept of Russian roulette table sounds, I bought it up. Grounded. Play grounded.

Grandma’s Ashes had a fun, high energetic set too. Montages – some scenes long, some short, all good, most great. Some scenes with cutaways or complete tag outs (LOVE THAT), reenactments, award shows, weird characters, fun characters, awkward situations—just the full gamut of what you can do on that stage when you’re having fun, trusting your teammates and supporting one another. What’s there to say about GA that you don’t already know? Game monsters. Support machines. The greatest thing about GA is that teamwork is their biggest strength. They are quick to jump in and flesh things out while adding to the reality. Sure everyone’s got their INDIVIDUAL strengths and that certainly helps a team flourish and play exceptionally well but I guess it goes back to the “whole is greater than the sum of its parts” thing.  They jump on board so hard once they find something fun to play and won’t stop until the game has been exhausted. Watching Grandma’s Ashes play makes me MISS 401. They are having fun. Improv is FUN guys, let’s not forget or maybe I need to remember!

Again, I won’t beat their set to death. The first scene was Rue McClanahan and Brad Paisley as presenters at an Award Show. Now we could’ve just seen that—BSJ and Dru presenting the awards, and that would’ve been a funny scene, but GA builds the world right before your eyes and so quickly, that you get to see the producers, you see the actual movies been named, you see the action of the movie, and get to see the gift giving overlapping. What’s a meet-cute? I didn’t know until last night but it’s a made up word for that thing that happens when you force a cute/romantic interaction—it happens a lot in romcom movies I guess. Who’s Lupe and why’s she soliciting people in a Gap? There were just a string of killer scenes that evolved into group games – Prom scene, virginity story, etc. They just follow the fun to the ninth degree and it’s so rewarding to see. A team built on great game moves and strongly grounded in support is great at making connections, they landed a pretty big one last night to close the show but it didn’t earn them a victory.

And you know what? That’s absolutely fine. If you’re a true purist, none of that really matters. Because when improv goliaths go head to head at cagematch, you’re rooting for the best team—the one that gave the better performance but ultimately, you’re just pleased and grateful that you got to see two great sets of improv. Or at least I am.

Final Score
Stepfathers 107, Grandma’s Ashes 84

Winners
Everyone on stage, everyone in attendance

I feel like i’m cheating on my Improv Observations video series…

but you guys, GUTHRIE and A SPARROW absolutely destroyed last night. 

A big difference? I think, making really bold choices and having STRONG openings.

Guthrie’s active invocation and A Sparrow’s source scene were so SOLID. Generated so many ideas up top. Bold, active choices whether it’s being a lesbian nun or a guy whose dick gets bigger at the sight of his overly pregnant wife! SUPPORT THAT SHIT!

I’ll save the nitty-gritty details for the vid, but man, was I impressed with how these teams shook out. Energy and dynamic seems spot on.

Also…CATHRYN MUDON FOR LIFE!!!! 

Lloyd Night tonight. 

Improv Observations: Take a…Lloyd Night Takeover And More. 

Rita talks about Lloyd Night, Harold Night, Cool Shit/Weird Shit, Improv Nerds, and shows you should see this week. 

For all my improv nerds out there - @willhines went on Hot 97 to talk about why @ciphasounds loves improv. The result was exceptional and hilarious! 

Tags: improv Hot 97

DCM 14 Highlights

I saw 48 shows in 72 hours. Sure it was intense, exhausting and exhilarating but some real magical stuff happened at DCM 14. Also, some pretty weird shit.

1. The Stepfathers – Rewind.
By now you’ve heard about it and if you weren’t there, you’ve probably kicked yourself for missing this show. The Stepfathers got a number of standing ovations following various intervals in the set. What you need to know is this. The Stepfathers did an entire set. With roughly 18 minutes remaining, Gethard stepped forward and informed the audience that they’d be doing the set in reverse. Without missing a beat, they proceeded to do the set in reverse. After reaching the beginning of the set, The Stepfathers began the set for the second time and midway through the first scene, Silvija pressed pause during it and began commentating, everyone else chimed in. As the blackout approached, someone on the backline had the good sense to just forward to the blackout, at which point, the show was blacked out. It was fucking insane. I got a chance to catch up with Gethard who said, and i quote, “that was possibly the best set of improv i’ve ever done.” I don’t doubt the man, it was definitely impressive. (It also directly relates to something Gethard teaches/preaches, but i’ll save that for another post!)

2. Play By Play.
For an unusually large group of performers this went off in seamless fashion. The Brothers Hines handled their commentator duties with ease and successfully got everyone to crack up at least once with the exception of Connor “Iceman” Ratliff. I especially enjoyed the fact that Will and Kevin made a point of shouting out Jump on Three (Dennie, Phil and JD) for getting on stage late. They called out Tanoye for having referenced a blowjob early on and then again throughout the set. He may or may not have been dubbed Alan Starzinski at some point (infamous for landing in a lot of scenes. Other things I enjoyed during this set: Chelsea Clarke’s object work on a swing set—VERY specific and then my laughter in response to that move getting called out on stage.

3. Death By Roo Roo.
I haven’t had the fortune of seeing all of the West Coast guys perform, at least not at once so having Gil Ozeri and Adam Pally on stage along with the recently departed John Gemberling was a treat. In true Roo Roo monoscene fashion, the set included everything from mythical creatures to shit references to murder. Just a fun performance to watch.

4. Press Conference/UCB.
Both these shows were really fun. First of all, at the presser, we got to find out how many people have been hit on by Jeff Goldblum or Andy Dick, slight advantage to Dick. Then again when the UCB convened and organized an impromptu dating game/scenario on Saturday was another fun appearance.  

5. We Can Fix You.
A lot of people jumped off line at Chelsea to get to the Beast or to queue up for Assscat but what none of us knew at the time was that Amy Poehler was sitting in with Burke, Roberts, Walsh and Besser. It was a pleasant surprise to walk in and see her posted up but even better to see how emotional she got trying to help a girl reconnect with her sister/estranged family. I took a great deal of Ian Roberts’ advice to heart, he sounds like a man who’s gone through a lot but also has a pretty solid outlook on life because of it.

6. Wicked Fuckin Queeyah.
The group was introduced by Doug Benson, could it get any better than that? Yes, it could. Missing a few notable Bostonians, those present did not disappoint.  

 7. Dayvin & Danielle.
Call it a mind meld or group mind or whatever. Gil and John were so in synch it was ridiculous. They undressed a man and sixty-nined another in a complete and utter crowd pleaser.

8. 15 minute sound and movement.
FUN. FUN. FUN. To watch and apparently to perform. The group was incredibly active as you expect. I saw some bum during this performance but ultimately, I saw a whole lot of chest in this show, par for the course at 4:15am.

Other observations:
- Watching both Zach Woods and Bobby Moynihan play with the UCB TourCo All-Stars was a real treat.

- I was a part of breaking bad prov which was apparently rendered so awful, a teacher/performer from the Philadelphia improv scene took to twitter to announce his distaste. This was then discussed at Assscat, ergo, we are famous? No. But seriously, I think we all saw “bad bit shows” or stuff we weren’t necessarily fans of but, no need to hate. People get drunk, then they improvise! At the end of the day, we’re all just here to pay homage to Del Close, so in the words of Pat Baer, ‘everybody, be cool.’

- With the help (read: permission) of Shaun Diston, Shannon O’Neill stole the show at the DCM Morning Zoo Crew.

- The Bonoscene was way more fun than I originally anticipated it would be.

- Krompf breakfast was my saving grace on Sunday morning after a full 24 hours, lets hope this tradition never dies.

- Chuck D, Pat Baer, all the managers, volunteers and behind the scenes crew did an excellent job at a. keeping the marathon running on time and b. keeping the spaces clean. Your work is greatly appreciated.

This is in no way shape or form a complete list as this is just based on the shows I saw. Feel free to respond with things you think I missed.

Tuesday, June 26: Harold Night - Weekend Edition

If you guys missed the Weekend Harolds last night, I apologize for your lack of sound judgment! Why would you miss this show?

Regardless, I have no real notes but rather a smattering of thoughts and recollections from a night of amazing performances. Things to keep in mind, most weekend teams at some point, started out as harold teams. Two, a good majority of the performers are teachers and so it was really interesting to see them get back to the structure.

Death By Roo Roo

  • With Dan Black making his official debut as a member of the team and Adam Pally sitting in, the set was what you’d expect, high-octane and unabashed
  • Roo Roo did a musical hotspot opening which led to a series of theme songs either hummed or sang, including Jurassic Park, DuckTales, Frasier to name a few
  • Excellent sex scene from Anthony Atamanuik and Gavin Speiller
  • John Murray as Frasier believing he’s actually Frasier
  • Neil Casey as comedic glue/edit master/tag out king
  • Anthony getting a dog to lick peanut butter off his balls

The Curfew

  • You’re not a boss until you can run a four-person invocation and kill it
  • Active scenes
  • Brandon Gardner and Charlie Todd in one of the greatest car scenes. Stuck in traffic on a bridge, they explored the lifetime of a relationship from a first date to a jealous ex-husband attempting murder
  • Heightening.
  • Everyone being responsible for the harold
  • 911 responders who refused to respond to suicide calls at the behest of the mayor
  • A nice preview for The Straight Men (DCM)

Law Firm

  • Pattern Game opening
  • Matt/Fran/Gabrus for calling out that thing people do in pattern games when they randomly shout out the suggestion whether there’s a clear connection or not
  • HUGE characters-duh
  • Wife scene. Brian and Gabrus (?) in a game one-upsmanship slash ultimate verbal cat fight
  • Fran as a boob grabber
  • Gabrus giving Brian a BJ — as dogs
  • Brian as that overly friendly guy you sit next to on a plane
  • Fran as a pilot freaking out on said plane
  • Sue so crisp 

The Stepfathers

  • Oh man, great set.
  • Musical hotspot as commissioned by the audience
  • Will Hines singing/dancing
  • Chris Gethard and Shannon O’Neill screwing with each other on stage
  • Gethard calling out that all the improvisers on stage needed to rest the game at one point
  • Will Hines and Connor Ratliff in the hotel/one keycard scene = the absolute tops

I left during Grandma’s Ashes and before Airwolf so no notes there. Some of my memory is hazy (as you might expect) but if you’ve got moments that i’ve missed or stuff that really stood out to you, feel free to share!

What did I miss/forget to comment on?

#DCM14 You Ready?Click through for complete schedule!

#DCM14 You Ready?

Click through for complete schedule!

Tuesday, April 10 - The Documentary

If you haven’t seen the Documentary yet, you should! Tonight is their final show of a four-week run. I saw last week’s set and was incredibly impressed with the entire form. I’ve only ever done a documentary opening and it was great fun but it will never compare to what these guys pulled off in 30 or so minutes.

The class includes: Daniel Buchbinder, Joseph Burns, Sarah Burton, Matt Cohen, Jocelyn Deboer, Maelle Doliveux, Cristina Duran, Sal Gentile, Eric Gersen, Chris Griswold, Alexandra Kokesh, Carrie McCrossen, John Sartori, Joseph Stanton, Kat Toledo and Joel Weidl as taught by Porter Mason.

I won’t recap everything because you should probably just go see it for yourself, TONIGHT, at UCB Chelsea, at 11pm.

The second group’s suggestion was Asylum and Maelle set up this institution. It started with an object which I thought was unique—a park bench outside It was an old folks home which for various experimental purposes—is classified as an asylum. It was a place papered with train schedules, respite with a replica train station but trains never came or went. It was just a thing that happened as one of the experiments they were investigating. I loved the backline support on this. Every time I thought I forgot about it, someone on the backline would make a train announcement to say a train was leaving. Improv is pretty cool like that.

I know listening in improv is essential but this seems especially true of the documentary form since there are no sweeps, everyone on the backline kind of has to pick their spots to come in and support what has been created. 

Matthew Brian Cohen kept asking the old codgers he was sitting with to guess really mundane and nonsensical facts about his life or about other people. Someone stepped out to a cutaway to further explain his behavior and  thus clarify the game, which basically amounted to the fact that MBC asked these questions, told people how close they’d get but ultimately never answered them. That game hit hard.

I was impressed by how well once games had been established, players within the world made attempts to set one another up to play them. Joel early on had established a prankster character who just messed with the old people residing at this place. A short while after the set got going, Jocelyn attempted to explain to her daughter that someone was wrapping her toilet in saran wrap to which Joel cutout to speak to the  camera and establish that he was the one playing practical jokes such as the one mentioned.

I always get scared for improvisers when they don’t step out. I’ve been in classes and practices where one person has only gotten into one beat or a group game because they played timid. I was glad to see Chris Griswold step out and establish such a sincere character that lasted the duration. He was that guy who didn’t have anything really going on in his life so he still visited the gang at this old folks home—despite his Grandfather already passing. That’s fucking funny.

Aside: Sal Gentile is a sort of putty improviser. You can put this guy anywhere and just watch him work wonders.

I liked the end to this documentary. Had an authentic feel. Seemed to heighten appropriately, and just about everything tied together. Eric Gersen made a nice choice to end the documentary in the fashion that many real documentaries end in — where are these people now and what are they doing? I thought that was pretty cool. 

Well that’s all i’ve got on it, but if i’m not tired, I’ll stick around for this set. It’s a cool form and a great bunch of improvisers!