Rap of the Week: Dan Schneider’s Paradise

All That logoHey, readers!

This week, I’ve reached back to the 1990s to attain the inspiration behind this latest entry on my blog: a remembrance piece dedicated to the much beloved Nickelodeon sketch comedy All That. To summarize things, I basically imagined the kind of performance piece I would have liked to put on, had I ever been a member of the All That cast, and set it to the tune of Gangsta’s Paradise by Coolio from the soundtrack of the film Dangerous Minds. That being said, regardless of whether or not you’re a fan of any of the aforementioned items, I still hope you enjoy what I’ve written here. Thanks and happy reading!

Regards,
Dustin M. Weber

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Dan Schneider’s Paradise
March 3, 2017

As I walk into the Green Room of the All That set,
I take a look all around me and begin to fret
‘Cause I’ve reacted to his randomness for so long
That even my friends think that my mind has gone,
But I ain’t never gotten a laugh and didn’t earn it.
Me be thought of as a frump? Take that trash and burn it.
Just watch me hold my own against Detective Dan
And the destructive force known as Repair Man-Man-Man.
It may come at the cost of my sanity,
But I can do it all without profanity (Fool!).
I’m the kind of joker other kids wanna be like.
Now sit back as I ham it up in the spotlight.

We’ve been spending our TV lives living in Dan Schneider’s paradise,
His comic grip tight like a vice, living in Dan Schneider’s paradise.
We’re trapped in a cage like mice, living in Dan Schneider’s paradise.
“Dance, rodents, and don’t think twice,” living in Dan Schneider’s paradise.

We cast members are facin’ a situation—
Not just any normal life filled with sketch comedy “strife,”
But one in which logic soars out the front door
With the personification of a plush ear of corn
And stupid people writing questions for a little girl
To answer with such fury that’d make your toes curl
While a lactose-intolerant superhero
Monologues the forces of evil down to zero (Fool!),
And don’t expect the end-of-show music acts to save
A hapless blue puppet when his master misbehaves.
It’s all just another day on the set of All That,
And if you’re not up to it, the just scat.

The Island Girls have been stranded for so long
Without any luxuries,
And Coach Kreeton’s been battered and bruised to where
He’s as miserable as can be.

We’ve been spending our TV lives living in Dan Schneider’s paradise.
We’ve been skating on thin ice living in Dan Schneider’s paradise.
Our fame and fortune may be nice, living in Dan Schneider’s paradise,
But it comes at such a price, living in Dan Schneider’s paradise.

Minute after minute, sketch after sketch,
Commercials only prolonging what’ll happen next,
Like Pierre Escargot’s warped lessons in French
Or Squash Boy leaving his friends waiting for him on the bench
While the Cheese Police bust another perp dealing gouda
And Miss Piddlin peddles peas like they’re her personal Buddha.
That’s what happens on a Dan Schneider cruise
As reported in the Channel 6-1/2 News (Fool!).

We’ve been spending our TV lives living in Dan Schneider’s paradise.
Our brains have become fried from living in Dan Schneider’s paradise.
Kids tune in and don’t think twice when they watch Dan Schneider’s paradise,
But trust me: it ain’t always nice living in Dan Schneider’s paradise.

Tell me how can it be that our time on TV
Can have such an effect on you and me?
Tell me how can it be that our time on TV
Can have such an effect on you and me?

*****

Author Pages: Smashwords.com
                         Amazon.com
                         Amazon.co.uk

*****

All That and All That logo (c) 1994-2005 Nickelodeon Productions, Tollin/Robbins Productions, and Schneider’s Bakery. Dangerous Minds (c) 1995 Hollywood Pictures, Simpson/Bruckheimer, and Via Rosa Productions. Gangsta’s Paradise (c) 1995 MCA Records/Universal Music Group. All other content provided above, however, is the author’s own.

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Poem of the Week: If You Want to Bring Back Sketch Comedy…

How’s it going, readers!

The inspiration for this week’s poem comes from what I personally consider to be a rather unique source, all things considering–namely, an old interest that I used to have in sketch comedy during my younger years. You see, not too long ago, when I decided on a whim to look up some odd bits and pieces of some of my favorite sketch comedy shows from back in the day (The Muppet Show, All That, and The Carol Burnett Show being the three that most readily come to mind) while taking a break from writing my current book–a children’s novel that I’ve presently titled Dream Roamers: Tyler Finds His Spirit and plan on discussing eventually on this blog one day–it had also come to my attention that Cartoon Network had decided to do its part in reawakening public interest in this art form on television with Nick Cannon’s Incredible Crew, which has received a somewhat polarized response from the YouTube community as a whole since its TV debut on December 31 this past year. Likewise, I’d also come to learn about Nickelodeon’s answer to IC, the somewhat controversial Nick Studio 10 and–upon learning more about each of these shows from the various rants and reviews made about them that I’ve come across–found myself wondering as to what it is that makes a good sketch comedy show. Naturally, on one hand, it only makes sense to credit the actors of these shows themselves for putting their talents to the test and making their intended audiences laugh their cares away. Then again, no matter how adept or incompetent they are as a collective whole at their craft, even the most gifted among them is bound to suffer humiliation in the eyes of the show’s critics, should the writing for the venue be substandard. After all, no matter the genre or tone of any scripted media, let it be known that the actors involved are but its face. The venue’s writers and the scripts that they write for it, on the other hand, constitute the media’s backbone, thus making it said writers’ responsibility for providing the players with the material they require to truly make the movie, television show, or stage production they’re involved with come alive and entertain its audience.

Therefore, my own opinions on Incredible Crew, Nick Studio 10, and all other sketch comedy shows I’ve ever familiarized myself with aside, I’ve composed a little villanelle that I hope inspires all current and future sketch comedy writers to make the most out of their understanding of the craft so that the talents of the actors they write for shine in the eyes of those whom they hope to make a fanbase out of. Without further ado, then, please enjoy the following composition: If You Want to Bring Back Sketch Comedy…

*****

If You Want to Bring Back Sketch Comedy…
May 13, 2013

If you want to bring back sketch comedy,
You must always remember this one rule:
Clever and thoughtful writing is the key.

Learn to play your actors’ strengths, McGee,
And leave it to them to play your skits’ fools
If you want to bring back sketch comedy.

Witty, complete jokes matter, too, you see—
Nothing too dark, mean-spirited, or cruel.
Clever and thoughtful writing is the key.

Don’t forget, either…versatility
Frequently proves a vital acting tool,
If you want to bring back sketch comedy.

Distinct and memorable’s how to be
If you’re one of the sketch character school.
Clever and thoughtful writing is the key…

And remember to have fun, finally,
And to keep your skits light-hearted and cool.
If you want to bring back sketch comedy,
Clever and thoughtful writing is the key.

*****

That should do it for this week. Thank you all for stopping my blog and taking the time out of your day to read my stuff, even if you’re not a fan of any of the shows mentioned in this post. In the meantime, as always, be sure to check out my author pages at Smashwords.com, Amazon.com, and Amazon.co.uk to check out my list of current publications. Also, before I sign off, I’d just like to make the side note that I’ve learned that Heather Anne Campbell–one of the players from Drew Carey’s Improv-A-Ganza–has been listed as one of the writers for Incredible Crew. If that’s true, then hopefully in the unfortunate incident that IC isn’t renewed for a second season (even if for some network owned by Time Warner other than Cartoon Network), the kids on that show still might have a chance to try their hand at improvisational comedy via the likes of Whose Line Is It Anyway? After all, The CW is a limited liability joint venture between Time Warner’s own Warner Brothers Entertainment and CBS Corporation, and the IC kids certainly have the energy for improv, from what I’ve seen of their work, if nothing else. Just a thought…

At any rate, readers, happy reading!

Regards,
Dustin M. Weber