Spin-Offs

Aug 14, 2014
Originally published on May 7, 2015 2:29 pm

Television spin-offs are often terrible, but we're giving them new life. In this game, TV series titles are mashed up with other titles, names, and phrases to create new shows.

Heard in Episode 324: His Dark Material

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

Our next two contestants are on stage right now. Let's say hello to Carmine Giovino and Annie Brogan.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Carmine Giovino is an amazing name by the way. And you are a born and bred Brooklynite.

CARMINE GIOVINO: I am.

(APPLAUSE)

GIOVINO: Park Slope.

EISENBERG: Park Slope? Would you come down to this neighborhood where The Bell House is in Gowanus?

GIOVINO: Only if I wanted to get robbed.

EISENBERG: Really?

(LAUGHTER)

GIOVINO: Right.

EISENBERG: So all of your childhood this was just terrible.

GIOVINO: Well, when I wanted to get robbed, I came down here.

EISENBERG: And every once in a while...

GIOVINO: Other than that, right.

EISENBERG: How often did you want to get robbed?

GIOVINO: Once a week.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Once a week. Just to get rid of some stuff.

GIOVINO: Right. I mean, nobody wants too much, right?

EISENBERG: Right, exactly. No, you're not a hoarder. I like that about you.

GIOVINO: No, no, no, no, no, no.

EISENBERG: Annie, you're visiting us from Philadelphia.

ANNIE BROGAN: That's correct.

EISENBERG: Where you work in one of my favorite places - the Mutter Museum. Am I saying it right?

BROGAN: You are. I'm so pleased.

EISENBERG: The Mutter Museum, which, if you don't know is it is a museum of medical oddities. Is that the best description?

BROGAN: Yeah, pathological anomaly, weird stuff in jars basically.

EISENBERG: Stuff in jars, yeah.

BROGAN: Yeah.

EISENBERG: Have you ever carried around something a little too odd in your purse that you're like hey, check out this...?

BROGAN: I've carried some of Einstein's brain in my purse, actually.

EISENBERG: Some of Einstein's brain. Sure.

BROGAN: You know, like you do.

EISENBERG: Yeah.

BROGAN: Yeah.

EISENBERG: How did you get that in your possession?

BROGAN: I was tasked with couriering it to London and where else are you going to carry it but in your purse?

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: What is your favorite television show that has been canceled?

BROGAN: I don't know if it was canceled so much as just run its course, but it's "Buffy The Vampire Slayer."

EISENBERG: Oh yes, OK.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: How about you Carmine? What's your favorite television show that has been canceled?

GIOVINO: "The Wire."

EISENBERG: "The Wire."

BROGAN: Oh, yeah.

EISENBERG: Yeah.

JONATHAN COULTON: And in this next game, we have invented some TV show spinoffs. We will pitch you the idea for the spinoff and you will tell us the title. This will make sense in a moment. Puzzle guru Johnson Chaneski, please give us an example.

JOHN CHANESKI: Sheriff Rick Grimes thought that zombies in America were tough. But now he's fighting meat puppets on a lake in the Middle East that's got so much salt in it, the zombies float. That would be a summary for The Walking Dead Sea.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: So it's a bit of a mash-up. A bit of a pun. We'll always start with the name of an actual television show with some extra stuff jammed onto the end.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Elegantly. Are you ready?

BROGAN: Let's do it.

GIOVINO: Lets do it.

COULTON: OK. Down on their luck, the Dunfys and the Pritchetts go on a popular game show and suddenly find themselves undefeated champions. Will their hilarious answers to survey questions ever end?

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Annie.

BROGAN: Modern Family Feud?

COULTON: You got it.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: In this prequel spinoff, we discover the real reason Walter White started his meth empire. Years of exposure to chemicals gave him chronic halitosis.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Annie.

BROGAN: Breaking Bad Breath.

COULTON: That's right.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: Sort of a limited idea for a series.

EISENBERG: (Laughter) I love it. It's like who cares about your breath when you have meth teeth, I guess?

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Your breath is sort of the least of your worries.

EISENBERG: Exactly.

COULTON: To make up for a series finale that was hated by its fans, Ted Mosby and Robin begin telling the kids the story of how they purchased a liberal political magazine and launched a media empire.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Annie.

BROGAN: How I Met Your Mother Jones.

COULTON: Nice.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: People are impressed by that. They're like oh, that sounds like a show I would like.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Upon regenerating for the 12th time, our title character's tardess - that's a hint - is pulled to New York City where he is challenged to answer increasingly difficult multiple-choice questions to win a life-changing amount of money.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Oh, Carmine, you don't know? You're just giving it to Annie?

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Carmine's like go ahead Annie.

BROGAN: Doctor Who Wants To Be A Millionaire?

COULTON: That's right.

(APPLAUSE)

GIOVINO: This was my biggest fear.

(LAUGHTER)

GIOVINO: Not just about this show in general, this was my biggest fear.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: In your life.

GIOVINO: Yeah.

COULTON: When Peter Griffin leaves this animated show to pursue other opportunities, he is replaced by a British director whose ex-wife Madonna makes frequent appearances in cutaway gags.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

GIOVINO: Yes.

COULTON: Carmine.

(LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE)

COULTON: Great job, Carmine.

GIOVINO: I don't want to screw this up now - Family Guy Ritchie.

COULTON: That's right.

(APPLAUSE)

GIOVINO: I'm on the board.

COULTON: That's Carmine, ladies and gentlemen. Buzzer number two. To make peace with their human counterparts, the vampires of Bon Temp form a medical supply company and embark on a noble challenge to create a device that makes the most accurate systolic and diastolic measurements ever.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Carmine.

GIOVINO: True Blood Drive? True blood Machine.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: No those are both wrong.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Annie, do you have a guess?

BROGAN: I do and it's only because he said "True Blood." So thank you.

GIOVINO: You're welcome. Do I get half a point?

COULTON: Story of your life, Carmine.

BROGAN: True Blood Pressure Gauge?

COULTON: Just True Blood Pressure would have done it.

BROGAN: Oh, OK.

EISENBERG: Wait, wait, wait, it's where you go if you are feeling twilight-headed.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Wow.

EISENBERG: Come on.

COULTON: That was pretty good. That was pretty good. All right, this is your last question. In the season finale, Frank Underwood attempts to undermine his opponents chances at winning the presidency by filming him playing an offensive fill-in-the-blank party game with wealthy donors.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Carmine.

GIOVINO: House Of Cards Against Humanity?

COULTON: That's right.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: John Chaneski, how did our contestants do?

CHANESKI: Well, he made a big push at the end, but I'm afraid our winner today of Spinoffs is Annie. Way to go, Annie.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: Congratulations, Annie. We will see you at the final round at the end of the show.

EISENBERG: Coming up, it's what you've always wanted - a game where contestants take a crack at the "Thong Song." And I'll chat about comedy roasts and going on the road with comedian Anthony Jeselnik. So stick around. I'm Ophira Eisenberg and this is NPR's ASK ME ANOTHER.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "THONG SONG")

SISQO: (Singing) She had dumps like truck, truck, truck. Thighs like what, what, what. All night long, let me see that thong. I like it when the beat goes da na da. I like it when your booty goes da na da. Girl I know you want to show that thong, th thong, thong, thong. I like it when the beat goes. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.