Sunday, March 22, 2015

Walking Away from The Walking Dead

Expert use of subtext hinted that there would be a fire.
*Spoiler Alert*  

We find ourselves about to give up on THE WALKING DEAD for the second time. We know, yes, the much-beloved THE WALKING DEAD. But after watching the season two finale on Netflix... meh.

The first time we bailed was right after the pilot, which seemed full of holes as well as a blatant "28 Days Later" rip-off. But because of the urging of friends, a year later we went back to it.

Season one was fairly flaccid -- not a lot of forward momentum, as well as constant, irritating sexism. But it wasn't awful; they just hadn't found the rhythm quite yet. Well, the sexism in season one was awful to be sure. But we had it on good authority that situation would improve, so we stuck it out (hint: it did not.) 

This is hard to admit, but losing (season one showrunner) Frank Darabont apparently helped the show tremendously, 'cause the first part of season two picked up the pace in a big way -- multiple heart-pounding storylines going on at the same time. What a turnaround! Suddenly, the show became GREAT. 

And then... it all kinda started to unravel again. Mid-season 2, we had two stinker episodes in a row -- one in which nothing happened but talking heads, an obvious cost-cutting "bottle" show, and the next featuring a poorly thought-out and unmotivated attempted suicide "B" story from a character we didn't care about (Herschel's daughter, whose mom actually died months ago - so why does she want to kill herself now?), while ignoring the far more fascinating Daryl/Carol dynamic. It's Carol who should have had this "B" story -- she's the one who just lost her daughter!

Um... yup.
Throughout the season, we found ourselves repeatedly shouting at the screen, "Hey, Rick, how about organizing a party to go shore up that fence?" "Rick! THE FENCE!!!" Like, the first and most obvious thing you'd do, right? But no, this was never even mentioned. And so it came as no surprise (to us) when these dopes were caught off-guard as the flimsy fence gave out in the season 2 finale and the farm was overrun. Groooan.

Dammit woman, see what happens when you try to drive? Get back to the laundry!
Oh, and there were other irritations along the way -- we're TOLD Andrea is a civil rights attorney, but we never see her say or do anything attorney-like, even in the key scene that would specifically call for her to step forward and handle the whole situation -- the discussion of the fate of the intruder boy. That should have been her "Inherit the Wind" moment. 

And yet more sexism smashes us about the skull as Laurie bitches to Andrea that her not doing laundry is actually creating more work for the rest of the women -- are you shitting me?  But the piece de resistance: the one time a woman goes off on her own, she wrecks the car and has to be rescued by a dude. WTF???

And, writers, have you noticed the show's aversion to subtext? Characters MUST always speak directly what's on their mind, generally one on one, with nothing else happening at the same time. Because apparently you can't do action and drama simultaneously, and you certainly can't have characters keeping thoughts to themselves or using body language or saying the oppositie of what they really mean. 

Last but least, there's the secret the CDC told Rick -- who cares? This piece of information doesn't change their situation at all. So what if we all carry the disease? *That's* the big reveal? Completely useless factoid we'd already figured out, because duh. 

It's all so frustrating, because there is a lot to like about this show, which is why we stuck it out until the end of season two. But for now at least, these ambulatory deceased are going back on the shelf. Now we know a lot of folks love this show -- tell us we're wrong!

Monday, March 09, 2015

Underground's Trevor Engelson Joins CI's Get Repped Now!

What is that pleasing fragrance in the air? That, fellow scribes, is the sweet smell of opportunity.

We are pleased as punch to welcome manager Trevor Engelson from Underground to our Get Repped Now! manager panel. The red-hot management company reps such folks as John Singleton and our own former CI analyst Kevin O'Hare, who has moved on to become a successful TV writer/producer with several shows in the works.

Engelson, who covers both features and TV, joins our panelists Jake Wagner, head of lit at Benderspink (who sold Get Repped Now! contestant Brandon Barker's script "Nottingham & Hood" this past fall,) Chris Mills from Magnet Management, and Jeff Belkin from Zero Gravity.

How does Get Repped Now! work? From April 6th to May 3rd 2015, all scripts (features and TV pilots) submitted to Coverage Ink for script coverage are eligible to be advanced to our manager panel. The script must score a "consider" for script (roughly top 5%) of all submissions) to qualify. All considers are guaranteed to be ready by the panel -- Wagner, Engelson and Belkin for features, and Wagner, Mills and Engelson for TV. Those who do not garner the coveted grade of  "consider" for script will receive our standard detailed coverage report. Writers may then elect to polish the script and resubmit before the deadline, if possible, or simply use the notes to plug all the leaks in the script. Either way, it's win-win for everyone.

In fall 2014, Brandon Barker's Robin Hood comedy "Nottingham & Hood" grabbed the eye of Jake Wagner, who signed him and got him into UTA as well. The script then sold to Disney for six figures, launching his career. Mission accomplished.

For more on Get Repped Now! please visit our website. Then get polishing, because we are looking to give these guys something they can sell!

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Coverage Ink's Get Repped Now! Returns April 6th

Last year, in the very first Get Repped Now!, we had the pleasure of reviewing several hundred scripts. Five were rated 'consider' for script, and were read by our panel of industry managers. Writer Brandon Barker's Robin Hood comedy "Nottingham & Hood" blew away Benderspink's Jake Wagner. Within a month, Barker had signed with UTA and the script sold to Disney, where it is now fast-tracked for production.

Sweet, huh?

So we're doing it again. From April 6th through May 3rd, all scripts submitted to Coverage Ink for script analysis which score a 'consider' for script will be read by our panel of managers, guaranteed. We're looking for the next Brandon Barker. Have you got the goods?

So whip out that can of Pledge and start polishing those scripts. We want the next big splash to be made by you.

For more about Get Repped Now!, please click here. Good luck, everyone!

--Jim C.