I got to spend a lot of time with my Brother this Thanksgiving, most of the time it was us just watching TV, and I saw something that I never saw before. We all play “Game” even if we aren’t a trained improviser. We were watching Batman and I can’t tell you how many times I heard Dana say “That’s bullshit, if he could do that then he could also do X.” Straight from our “if this is true” lesson. Every time he pointed out what was bullshit, he was basically calling out the first unusual thing that he saw. Then he’d start making moves, or talking about possible moves. I sat there and just laughed at him and remembered how many conversations we have had in the past about him thinking he could never do improv, and he was doing the most talked about part of the UCB Philosophy without ever being taught it. So how much of our teachings are engrained in us, and how much of our teaching is simply just to point out that we all do what we are learning?
I have no clue. Watch children play. They are constantly making up unique rules that pertain to the reality that they have already established. They will argue down why things can and cannot exist in that game. And they will obey those rules to an extreme level.
So how often do we miss game or just don’t find the joy in a scene because we are just looking too hard? Is improvisation difficult because we are trying to improvise and not letting our natural intuitions speak for us? I wonder. I wonder how much better we would all be if we could just think like an adult and play like a child.
I want to thank everyone who’s been so kind in the wake of our announcement about this Comedy Central opportunity. The messages, comments, blog posts, and emails have all been insanely nice and it means the world to me to see them all. It’s very motivating and makes me want to get this thing right even more than I already did.
With that in mind, I feel like I wanted to just put my motivation out there publicly. This is for a few reasons. First off, I’ve always felt so strongly connected to the fans of this show and feel like they are a huge part of the process. People are already posting suggestions for the pilot on our message board over at the main web site unsolicited, and I think that’s the best. I read them all. Also, I think it’s interesting to let you guys see my thought process - I have a chip on my shoulder and often think about why and this should show that off. Mostly though, I feel like I put this out into the world it will force me to live and die by it a bit more - declare something publicly and you are accountable for it.
So why are we doing this? Why take this thing we love and change it? What motivates that?