Monday, April 19, 2010

'Let's blame Rolf Harris'

I, and some of the Green wing writers, and two of the not-Green Wing writers, are maybe about two thirds of the way through writing Campus, which is the thing that was piloted last year. It's being written sort of in the Green Wing way, which is to say we have some very vague ideas for plots, then we all write quite sketchy sort of scenes that hopefully fill those plot gaps, but also are ideally funny in their own right. This method does have quite a high attrition rate for material, which combined with me writing in sketch mode rather than normal scene mode means I end up operating a sort of 'fire and forget' policy. Which leads to this kind of phone call:

PRODUCER: Just wondering if you explain the end of this scene to me.

I look up the scene. Two people are talking for a bit, and it ends with one of them saying 'Let's blame Rolf Harris'. Which doesn't really tie in with what they're talking about. At all.

ME: Um...
PRODUCER: (helpfully) I think perhaps you missed a couple of lines.

I stare at the scene again, trying to think of a couple of lines that link the penultimate line (something about a sexual vigilante called 'The Mucky Whale') to the line 'Let's blame Rolf Harris'.

ME: I'm not sure I did. I think... at the time, that seemed like a reasonable ending.
PRODUCER: (gently) Is it possible you're not re-reading these before you send them?
ME: That is certainly a possibility.
PRODUCER: Could you perhaps give that a go?
ME: (warily) I will try.

Later it occurs to me I don't even read them while I'm writing them.

8 comments:

Jayne said...

Now I'm trying to think of a link between a sexual vigilante called The Mucky Whale and Rolf Harris damn you.

Mind you according to Wiki he did have a hit single in 1963 called "Someone's Pinched My Winkles"...

james henry said...

Close enough.

Tim Footman said...

It's a non sequitur. Like "never trust a Venusian shanghorn with your perigosto stick." Which is the best line ever.

Hannah said...

Can you not just...leave it as is? Blaming Rolf Harris for something random sounds pretty good to me! (Not that I have anything against Rolf Harris. Today.) Non-sequiturs can work, after all. But I guess producer is supposed to know best.

But either way, I shall now blame Rolf Harris for all that is wrong in my life.

'So our cousin can't fly home from Beijing after all.'
'Blame Rolf Harris.'

'Agh, left the very important paperwork for the very important meeting at home!'
'I blame Rolf Harris!'

'My shoes are on the wrong feet!'
'Let's blame Rolf Harris!'

Okay I could do this all day...

Eleanor said...

The Mucky Whale: Rolf Harris.
You mean Rolf Harris isn't The Mucky Whale?

BlackLOG said...

Rolf Harris did a cover coversion of - The Divinyls "I Touch Myself". Listning to this was one of the most disturbing moments of my life. Hold it a second I'm going to have to go and wash myself again.....

If that does not make him the Mucky Whale...

Piers said...

Oh God.

I had to look this up to check it was real.

It is.

WHO SHOULD WE BLAME?

Oli said...

Deeply, deeply creepy.