Thursday, March 21, 2013

My Short Career in Television

Following this week's earlier blunder, where I unintentionally maligned a colleague who is accomplished as both an Art Director and a Copywriter, I feel the need to give something back.

After all, I'm not an asshole, I only play one on the Internet.

It is in that redemption-seeking spirit that I give you, in its entirety, episode #12 of Mission Hill, an animated TV series that was created by Bill Oakely and Josh Weinstein, formerly of a little show called The Simpsons.

This episode, "Happy Birthday Douchebag" was written by myself and Rob Schwartz, before Rob went on to become the Chief Global President Chairman Royal Supreme Master Commander of TBWA worldwide.

And I went on to become an unemployed freelance writer.

A long time ago, Rob and I both thought we wanted to pursue a career in television writing. We spent ungodly hours writing spec script after spec script for Home Improvement, Frasier, Coach, Married with Children, Seinfeld and Coach. Finally, we were able to get a  Larry Sanders script into the hands of Oakely and Weinstein.

They liked it, meaning they actually read it, and hired us to work on the last show of the season.

There, we were put through a week of hell. Crammed in a 12 x 12 room with grease-stained carpet and 7-8 Harvard Lampoon graduates, who were also in need of soap and water, we slogged our way through the story, from page 1 to page 38.

The experience was not like anything you see in the movies. The process was slow and painful and surprisingly not very lucrative. And when it was all over, the Korean-animated product looked nothing like what we had submitted on paper.

That's the life of a TV writer, we were told.
Suddenly, advertising didn't look too bad.

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