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Jul 20, 2021

John and Craig hint at the best ways to tease expectations in their discussion of foreshadowing. They take a look at popular examples, the difference between foreshadow and symbolism, and techniques for executing it well.

We answer listener questions on bad premieres, bad bosses, and good home theatre set-ups. We also...


Jul 13, 2021

John welcomes writer/producer/creator Jen Statsky to discuss getting started writing comedy, from late night to The Onion to The Good Place. Then it’s a deep dive on the Hacks pilot, looking at how jokes change from the page to the edit.

We follow up on the best way to get fired, the WGA pilot guide, and answer...


Jul 6, 2021

John and Craig discuss preproduction, with Craig sharing how he’s prepping for an entire season of television. From costumes to casting, we look at the showrunner’s decisions beyond just the words in the script.

Then it’s another round of How Would This Be A Movie, with further analysis on why certain movies...


Jun 29, 2021

John welcomes back Liz Hannah (The Post, The Long Shot, All the Bright Places) to explore the bad side of good news. They discuss the challenges of celebrating accomplishments in a mercurial industry, and follow up with a discussion on how to handle being fired.

We also answer listener questions on becoming successful...


Jun 22, 2021

In this rebroadcast, Aline Brosh McKenna joins John and Craig to discuss how movies featuring good mentors (Dead Poet’s Society, To Sir with Love) differ from films with bad mentors (Whiplash, The Devil Wears Prada). It’s not just that the teachers are bad guys; rather, the stories are structured completely...