Do your research!

Thursday · April 09, 2009 · 10:19 AM

I wrote an episode of The Office, figuring it was a good way to show my ability to write humor. I watched the last episode, two weeks ago and continued the storyline with Michael leaving to start his own paper company after fighting with the new VP.

Somehow I missed the name of the new VP, so I checked my favorite TV resource and they didn’t have the character’s name – just listed the actor. I googled and came up with an article that talked about the character.

Type, type. I put together an episode. It was quickly written, but I think it’s pretty solid – the right amount of humor, awkward situations, and the plotlines all come together nicely. I send it out to a couple friends to read and I get feedback.

The Wire character is in The Office?” Wha? Oh, Idris Elba plays Stringer Bell in The Wire. That’s NOT the name of his character in The Office. Doh!

The sad thing is that it wasn’t a “search and replace” sort of fix. Kelly riffed on what her new name would be if she married the VP (Charles Minor, not Stringer Bell – how the heck did I forget that was his name – Michael made C-shaped bagels). Anyway, she goes on (and on and on) about her name being “Kelly Belly” or “Kell Bell” and Kevin makes a funny comment about it.

Bleh, I had to fix it. Mostly by cutting out a lot of the funny.

Then the big shock. I thought March 26th was the last episode of the season. There’s a new episode tonight. And it looks like the same story that I wrote, which hurts. Partially because I thought I was being original.

But also I wanted to submit the script in a contest. If my script is too similar to the one that airs, I’m going to shred it.

Maybe I’ll try to write another episode…