Saturday, January 12, 2013

Lucy: On Dress Codes

This is the last section for Lucy for a bit. She has condensed a lot of plot; enough that I am taking tomorrow off from this story to draw a character diagram for myself so I don't forget things. Most importantly is setting up the proper call backs and references between characters. In comedy, this creates a rapport between people. It's why you might have a comedy relief duo or trio in a more serious piece. You create a bond between the characters which makes them seem more real, while also giving them a specific niche of humor to work from. This dynamic is what you can use to build a running joke that grows and then gets subverted, like these scenes from Police Squad, which rest on the dynamic we build between Dreben and the scientist (my favorite being when he walks around the set.)

This can be either a specific style of humor or a subject of humor. In Frasier, Niles and Roz have a very specific dynamic with each other. Urkel and Carl have one in Family Matters too. Think of pretty much any sitcom (or comedy in general, I think,) and you find different dynamics in play between parts of the ensemble. In this case, we've now created some character pairings. We have Lucy and Jon; Lucy and Sam; Sam and Kenny; Sam and Fiona; Christine and Lucy; Lucy and Roger, and now Lucy and Peter. Also: Poor Lucy. Nothing ever goes her way. This feels like a good time to switch back to Sam for the next session, solely because we've set most of the dominoes in motion for her side of the story. It is now time to start setting up things from the other end so that it can all explode in everyone's face.

As always, fiction below the jump, while the links below can help bring you 

1. Start of Lucy's first chapter
2. Conclusion of the first Lucy chapter
3. Start of Sam's chapter
4. Sam's story continues with an unfortunate evening
5. Our two main characters interact as Sam gets shot down.
6. We're back with Lucy as she reflects on her new boyfriend
7. Lucy has a little crush; isn't it adorable?

Probably my favorite Police Squad quote: "We would have come earlier, but your husband wasn't dead then."
* * *

We finished shooting at three in the morning. Jon was out the door by 3:15, but Roger and I didn’t finish until four. He asked if I wanted to get a happy hour somewhere, but I had to turn him down. I had to be somewhere in three hours, and I wanted to not be wearing the same thing when I saw Jon again. I breezed into the apartment, whatever piece of my mind I wanted to give Christine lost. I unbuttoned my shirt as I moved went into the kitchen to grab a bottle of water. I pulled it off, tucking it into my purse, as I went back through the living room unhooking my belt.

I screamed when I came around the corner eyes to bare chest of Christine’s extremely tall, extremely naked date from the afternoon. He motioned for me to hush with one hand while he tried to cover himself with the other. I pulled my purse in front of me and bit my tongue. I looked at the ceiling and assume he did the same as we passed each other in the hall.

“I’m sorry,” He said. “She said you wouldn’t be home until late.”

“I don’t want to talk right now.”

“I didn’t mean for you to see me like this.”

“Still don’t want to talk. You know when a good time to talk is? When you’re wearing pants and I have a shirt on,” I said, shutting the door to my room. “That’s an excellent time to talk.”

And an excellent time to murder Christine, I thought as I started changing. If only I had some device with which she could get in touch with me and let me know that strange men would be home when I got home. I’m going to have to explain the concept of phones to her in the morning. There was a light knock on the door.

“Look, I’m really sorry,” He said. “I’m wearing pants now.”

“I’m not,” I said. “That wasn’t one of the initial conditions, but I’ve appended it as a new condition. No conversations unless everyone is wearing pants.”

“I was just going to grab a drink,” He said. “I must have fallen asleep and lost track of the time.”

“Still not wearing any pants.”

“I can’t even see you.”

“It’s the principle of the thing,” I said.

“Look, it just is, I have an early meeting tomorrow,” He said. “Could you let Christine know I had to leave.”

I was standing by my closet, mentally deciding if a personal assistant was the sort who should wear a skirt or dress, or if it involved a lot of things that were more pants-appropriate.

“What did you say?”

“Does this mean you’re wearing pants?”

“You can march in there and tell her yourself,” I said. I really did not want to continue discussing my utter lack of pants.

“She’s fast asleep, I’d hate to wake her up,” He said. I grabbed some pajamas and threw them on, because I wanted to put my finger in his face while I told him what a terrible person he was about to be. I swung open the door, eye to bare chest again. At least he was wearing his pants.

“I also need you to go in there and get me my shirt.”

“Listen here, mister, you don’t come into my apartment and give me orders,” I said, waving my finger at him. It was liberating. “And you certainly don’t run out on someone in the middle of the night without so much as goodnight. Also! New addendum to the conversation dress code: You also should be wearing a shirt.”

“Could you go grab it for me?”

“Absolutely not!” It would have been more threatening if the little puppies on my pajamas weren’t so adorable. I hoped when I crossed my arms that the golden retriever looked fierce as it frolicked with the collie.

“You don’t understand, I have an early meeting,” He said. “Look, I’ll make it up to her. I was supposed to be gone hours ago. And you, I’ll make it up to you.”

“I’m not going in there,” I said.

“Fine,” He said. “I guess I don’t really need a shirt to drive home. I’m Peter, by the way. Tell Christine I’ll call.”

The note I left for Christine read: “Peter walked out. You have his shirt; he said he’ll call you. Probably about his shirt. Also: here is my phone number. So you can call me when strange, naked men might be wandering around the apartment. He’s a jerk; don’t answer when he calls.”

No, that’s not what I wrote. What I wrote was: “Saw Peter; seems nice. Says he’ll call and make it up to you. We’re out of milk.”

No comments:

Post a Comment

Are you commenting? Thank you! Please be nice; I'm lazy and would hate to actually have to moderate things.