Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Turn-On: Episode #1003 Script

Well, boy howdy. Today's item it something that is unimaginably ridiculous and extremely rare. It is the script from the nonexistent third episode of the unclassic 1969 sketch comedy show Turn-On, featuring guest star Sebastian Cabot!

For some reason, George Schlatter, the guy who produced Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In (which was actually funny and smart) decided to make a new show where the premise is that a computer chooses what weird ass political comedy is going to be thrust into your face on your television.

Cool, huh?

Well, not really. It didn't really go as planned. Depending on who you believe, the show was either cancelled after the first episode, or as Tim Conway says, halfway through the airing of the first episode. I choose to believe Tim Conway. He is Dorf, after all.

Interestingly enough, Albert Brooks was on the writing staff of this show. Now, look, I LOVE Albert Brooks. I think Real Life and Modern Romance are two of the funniest movies ever, but this show is just BLECH. Sorry, Al.

RANDOM TRIVIA: Apparently, since the show got cancelled, the second episode's airing (which guest starred Robert Culp) was preempted with an airing of the film The Oscar, which is one of my favorite campy 1960s movies. Groovy.

Supposedly the comedy was too provocative for its time. Or it just sucked. Here, judge for yourself from some clips from the unaired second episode.

Yeah. Weird.

The thing that I can't understand about this show is why it has to be a semi-clone of the infinitely better Laugh-In. The show moves from one sketch to the other at the speed of light, and the "jokes" in this show are either weird sight gags or nonsensical one-liners that required a set up not short enough to fit on a popsicle stick.

Take for example, this one --


(Not really.)

Maybe I'm just too young or stupid or something, but I just don't find that funny at all. Maybe it's just really not funny. I don't know. I'm no comedy expert... although I pretend to be.

I also can't help but hear this sound whenever I read the punchline of all these jokes. That may be throwing me off.

The best thing about this script is the inclusion of some storyboard and concept art doodles for the episode, even though they aren't all that funny either... with the exception of this one --

Boob jokes are always hilarious, even if they make no sense with absolutely no context whatsoever.

If you wanna know more about this strange show, you should check out this interview with George Schlatter about Turn-On, or if you live in Los Angeles, go to the Paley Center for Media where you can watch the first episode in their library... which I've yet to do. You can also check out the Wikipedia page for a description of some skits from the first episode.

So, check out this rare oddity that you probably can't find anywhere else, and pray that maybe one day the two filmed episodes will be released on DVD for posterity... or for some other reason.

Download the Turn-On script for episode #1003 HERE.

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