Coming off a barrage of Hallmark movies, I was getting punchy and it came out as a Hallmark Christmas parody. I did a Hallmark St. Patrick's Day parody and then I did this. I've posted it elsewhere on the blog, along with a hope that it would be resurrected in a future format, but, alas, that theater group isn't doing it's annual Valentine Day show this year. So, let's toss the original sketch back into the mix in this year's celebration of St. Valentine!
(or Countdown to Valentine's)
(EXECUTIVE at desk. He hits intercom.)
EXECUTIVE: Send her in, Grace.
(Suddenly, a bunch of WOMEN enter.)
EXECUTIVE: Whoa, whoa, all of you are my 3 o’clock? Who are you people?
MABLE: We’re the CPHCCVDMF!
GLORIA: Not the acronym. Don’t use the acronym.
ARLENE: We’re the Committee to Protest Hallmark Channel’s Countdown to Valentine’s Day Movie Fest!
GLORIA: And the fact that you extended it to the end of the month!
EXECUTIVE: I don’t understand.
ARLENE: You are inundating us with this romantic drivel that totally distorts reality.
GLORIA: Movie after movie after movie showing some weird, complicated way of falling in love. It’s not like that.
EXECUTIVE: These are just frothy entertainment movies!
ARLENE: Yeah, yeah but you’re over doing it! Sure, once in a while it’s nice to go out to some rom-com playing at the theater and enjoy it. But you are pumping this nonsense into our homes 24-7!
MABLE: Yeah! I mean, for this I’m missing Golden Girls?
ARLENE: Oh, I love that show.
GLORIA: I know, right?
EXECUTIVE: Ladies, please, I think you’re overreacting--
ARLENE: Overreacting?? Overreacting!!
GLORIA: Dial it down, Arlene, just a bit.
ARLENE: This is not how people behave. How do you have women throwing away a committed relationship because of some “Meet-cute” scene?
EXECUTIVE: That’s a classic rom-com conceit. It’s funny. Lighthearted. And a way to show a woman how wrong the man she’s with is.
MABLE: Yeah, what is that? Why are these smart, savvy women even in a relationship with the wrong man? Could you make them anymore pathetic?
GLORIA: I mean you show us these women, it looks like they have it all. They’re successful lawyers, chefs, hotel managers, florists and chefs.
ARLENE: Tell ‘em.
GLORIA: And they are working hard to keep it together. Then you show how these women are misguided because some alpha dude snuck in under their radar?
ARLENE: Right, like being a success at something means you have a blind spot about having a relationship.
MABLE: Yes! I mean, really, what are we, men?
ARLENE: Why do you always have these women with the wrong guy?
EXECUTIVE: It’s a plot. We need character arcs. Conflict. An inciting incident. Have you ever read “Save the Cat”? It’s all--
GLORIA: I’m tired--we’re all tired--of seeing love reduced to some contrivance to be overcome.
MABLE: Don’t get me started about the Christmas movies.
ARLENE: Yeah, you really don’t want to get her started about that.
EXECUTIVE: Nobody wants that. Also, that’s Countdown to Christmas, which is three offices down.
GLORIA: As I was saying; Love isn’t a plot point. Love isn’t a happy ending. Love is a commitment. A choice! It’s something to aspire to, not fall into.
MABLE: I’ve fallen in love and I can’t get up!
GLORIA: Mable, what did we say about that?
MABLE: Not to use it.
GLORIA: Correct. Anyway, you’re flooding the market with endless retreads of the same plots. These TV movies are all cookie-cutter.
MABLE: Especially the ones about the cookie makers.
GLORIA: Stand down, Mable. Look, Mister--
GLORIA: Mr. Reynolds, your channel needs to pull back. You’re turning something wonderful like love and St. Valentine’s Day into something tired and trite.
MABLE: I’m not even going to mention the fact that you’re diluting your brand by over-saturation that may reflect positively in the short term, but eventually will undermine your long-term ratings and profits.
GLORIA: She was specifically told not to mention that, Mr. Reynolds.
EXECUTIVE: Dave. Look, ladies, I see you’re point. Some of it is valid. I can certainly touch upon these concerns at our next meeting.
GLORIA: That would be appreciated.
MABLE: And can you see about showing Empty Nest? That was a fun show that spun off of The Golden Girls.
ARLENE: I loved that show!
GLORIA: So good!
EXECUTIVE: Again, I can bring that up at the next meeting.
(Executive makes a note of it. Arlene and Mable walk out. Gloria hangs back.)
EXECUTIVE: Actually, I’m grateful for this feedback. You’ve made some of the points I’ve been trying to make upstairs. Having some public feedback can help.
GLORIA: Oh, well, happy to help…Dave.
EXECUTIVE: Thank you, again---
EXECUTIVE: Thank you, again, Gloria.
GLORIA: So…are you seeing anyone?