Wednesday, April 12, 2006

I'll get by, with a little help - oh, he's gone.

I'm writing some sketches for a comedy thing, only they're being rubbish at sorting out contracts, and naming specific amounts of money, so said sketches are currently chained to a radiator in the dark somewhere until it all gets sorted out.

This happens a lot. Everyone wants material in as soon as possible, but the very mention of contracts and payment is so terribly ungentlemanly that to even mention it causes loud coughing, awkwardly adjusted ties and being shown an office with a bottle of scotch and a loaded revolver.

- And as if to prove something, I don't know what, Agent Matt phoned while I was writing this very post, to say movement has been made with contracts and I can start sending some stuff off, which renders this whole post irrelevant, but there we are.

At least I have an agent to sort this stuff out - poor old PP is having to re-interview for his job for a second time. He phoned me about this last time, and to be honest, I should really have logged off World of Warcraft for the duration of the call, but I tried to do both things simultaneously, and it didn't really work. PP thought there was an odd satellite delay, and Garnethor, the warrior I was supposed to be protecting from a distance with a barrage of healing spells (this character's a priest, which means you hide behind a tree and support butcher characters), got chopped down by four club-wielding thugs.

THUGS: (all four at the same time) Aha! Now you give us the chance to use this freshly-sharpened blade!*
GARNETHOR: Argh! Heal me! Heal me!
ME: Ooh, hang on a tic, I'm on the phone.
PP: So it's the day after tomorrow. I've prepared for the questions though.
ME: Shall I do big heal, or renew?
ME: Hmm, I've got a potion somewhere...
PP: ?
ONSCREEN INFO: Garnethor has died.
ME: Ooh sorry dude, I was on the phone.
PP: Yes, I know.
ME: Still, I sure it'll work out fine. Hey, did you see the banana thing?
PP: My mum told me about it in excruciating detail.
ME: Heh - someone described it as 'the troll office woman is tit-raped with a banana by the mad pregnant one'.
PP: Is that how it was in the script?
ME: Not really.

It's very uncool to lay claim to bits of GW, they're not 'mine', as without the top performances they'd be nothing. But I'm going to do it anyway, as that scene was based on a real-life thing, where I was eating a banana, when a friend who was slightly inclined to embonpoint leaned very close in (I think she was dyeing my hair for me) and the banana started making its way almost involuntarily into the darkness while a friend sitting on the sofa opposite (Hi Jeremy) stared at me, transfixed with horror. Fortunately a rare outbreak of common sense stayed my hand in time, but I've always wanted to put that in a scene somewhere.

UPDATE: the ho from the taxi would like to give credit for the 'I've still got my tights on' line to Richard, although I've talked to him, and he can't remember if that one's his or not, but he thinks, on balance, it probably is.

I knew I shouldn't have started this.

* 'freshly sharpened clubs!' it should have been of course.


Anonymous said...

the banana thing was yours?
it was effing brilliant. Olivia Colman was f a n t a s t i c, in my opinion.

James Henry said...

She was brilliant - the look of utter helplessness on her face as the banana slowly went in... Then she realisation afterwards of what she had just done.

And Pippa's calm, controlled 'Could you take that out please' was lovely.

Poor Pippa. She puts up with some terrible terrible things.

Anonymous said...


Without being sappy and sucky-uppy, that was my favourite scene of the episode. Me and my boyf sat there with equally gaping mouths as it happened, then had to pause it after as we were crying from laughing so much.

Oh well done you. I shall boast to him later that it was you. And he will no doubt say 'do you know him then?' and I'll be forced to say 'er well, I quite often comment on his blog'.

Oh dear.

Danny Stack said...

That was a highlight all right. Great! Another: "Do you feel anything?" "I've still got my tights on."

As my better half said at the time between snots of laughter: "Only Green Wing could do that."

And contracts: bloody hell. Work your ass off for them, submit everything on time, wait forever to get paid, then be told that cheques and/or contracts have been finalised but are on a desk waiting to be signed by producer who's filming in Outer Mangolia and won't be back till Christmas... You bet that they get paid when they're supposed to...

*Grumbles off into the corner*...

frangelita said...

Take the scotch and the revolver and DEMAND the money in Jerry Maguire style.

Bearded Lady said...

can i just say that i had more than tights on.

Bearded Lady said...

oh and thank mr preddy for the scene

James Henry said...


Anonymous said...

Just catching up on a few days worthy of blogg-age, having been a bit busy, umm, giving birth. We've named him Henry, I hope you are chuffed (don't worry, you didn't play a role in it!)

Got the impression from the midwives that our "Green Wing" comments had been made once or twice before though...

Husband has just bought me GW series 1 on DVD as congrats for having a baby!

Anonymous said...

Heh. Funnily enough, I watched that after a day at work spent trying to catch small fluffy ladybirds in the deep dark cavern that is my cleavage. (I work in a bookshop.)

Anonymous said...

But there are plenty of good things about being a writer surely james? Financially, it's a bit risky, but oh the creative freedom! (N.B this needs to be said theatrically)

Me and some chums had a wingathon last night (yes, that's 9 hours of GW episodes back to back)and I must reiterate what was mentioned on a post a while back- you really are quite handsome mr henry!

On another note, I went to buy alcohol for said wingathon party and the shop assistant looked at my driving licence and said "aw, you don't look old enough to buy fags love" It was mortifying. So much so I had to post it here. Ahem.

Anonymous said...

Hmm, so how comes Oriane got to be in the taxi with Mark? How comes not Richard? :p

I think the Banana Bra was an inspired piece of writing Mr Henry. Highlighted further by Olivia Colman's face. Twas a fruity picture, twas.

Rose said...

I loved that scene because a banana is part of the Green Wing drinking game round these parts. You get double points if Olivia Colman is involved, too.

Anonymous said...

oohh, green wing drinking game?
what are the rules?

Rose said...

It is currently very much in it's infancy as repeat watchings of Series 1 are required to catch all the running gags.

So far we have anything involving bananas for one drink (two with added Olivia Colman), one drink for "Let me finish..." one drink whenever a character touches someone else's hair (two if they pull it), down the drink for every c*nt reference.

There'll be more and I'll put them in an organised thought somewhere.

cello said...

Yes, the banana scene is my fave so far this series. Which completely gives the lie to my claim to prefer verbal comedy. But it's an extra-special scene because it made Mr C laugh out loud for many seconds, like he does only for 'It'll be All Right On The Night' or 'Takeshi's Castle'. Normally, I am checking every other second to see if he is enjoying GW and the best I hope for is a wry smile or two. But at least he does watch it which is more than he does for most stuff, unless it's Curb Your Enthusiasm or something in Japanese on Artsworld.
Anyway - Top Banana James! It had to be said.

Anonymous said...

The banana scene is one of my favourite things, not just in Green Wing, but ever. Quite what that says about me I don't know. Olivia Colman is actually a genius though.