Larry Brody: How Not To Write A Great TV or Film Script

by Larry Brody

Just what you need to start off the week: 18 non-rules (because the Brode doesn’t believe in rules) guaranteed to bring your beloved pet TV or film project to a lowly and humiliating end.

1. Start without an outline and wing it.

2. Don’t bother having a central theme.

3. Don’t bother having a central problem.

4. Keep everyone peaceful and avoid conflict at all costs.

5. Have your characters talk and talk and talk.

6. Make sure that key events happen off camera.

7. Start without an outline and wing it.

8. Make your dialog totally realistic, plain, and dull.

9. Don’t write anything that hasn’t been seen before.

10. Have lots of chase scenes.

11. Better yet, make the whole script one long chase.

12. Start without an outline and wing it.

13. Create characters not even a mother could love.

14. Remember that a joke isn’t funny unless you’ve already laughed at it in another movie.

15. Make all your characters victims adrift in the sea of fate.

16. Use lots of fancy descriptive phrases like “adrift in the sea of fate.”

17. Make sure all your characters fail.

18. Did I say to start without an outline and wing it?

There you go!

Want to thank me? It’s easy. Simply do not – I repeat, do not – succumb to any of the writing temptations listed above.


Munchman: The Best Place on the Web to Learn about TV Writing – Even If You Can’t Read!

How about that headline? Clickbait or fact, what do you think?

Take a look and then let me know:

Truth to tell, el munchero found Gray Jones’ YouTube channel a very helpful site indeed, and – maybe more importantly – its very existence in this way, shape and form points out something every writer needs to know:

The most important thing you can learn about making it as a television writer is HOW TO SELL!

Damn, I wish I had a voice like Gray Jones.

That’s it, kids, yer friendly neighborhood munchman’s gotta go before I completely, helplessly, hopelessly, superlatively crack up.



Munchman sees ‘Altered Carbon’

Holy crapoly, guys ‘n’ gals. We live in a dystopia where every new show being presented to us on TV and its hangers on is being labeled “dystopic” and “about a future dystopia where…”(fill in the dots – it’s easy cuz all you have to do is look at just about any new description of just about any fiction just about anywhere).

Except that it’s all bullshit, with the in, hip, trendy, and in and of itself totally dystopic buzzword of the day being used when it absolutely doesn’t apply. By which yer friendly neighborhood munchamatic magilla here means, CHECK OUT THE GODDAMN DEFINITION, OKAY MOTHERFUCKERS?!

Cases in point:

“Dystopia. Relating to or denoting an imagined place or state in which everything is unpleasant or bad, typically a totalitarian or environmentally degraded one.”

And “An imaginary place where people lead dehumanized and often fearful lives.”

With that I mind, munchamoneybags has to say, “Sorry, misreading, misinterpreting, misogynist momos,” but while yes, this is a dystopia if ever there was one:

As is this:

And this back in 2016 when we were all certain it could only be a fictional future:

This is not:

It’s just another interesting science fiction novel about a future civilization that has its good sides and bad sides and exciting sides and terrifying ones and everything in between, just like just about every civilization just about anywhere and anywhen.

And this:

Netflix’s Altered Carbon TV show is just another overblown, pompous, self-important, hideously violent, unconscious parody of every ridiculous trope used in every other science fiction show and film that totally misinterpreted what made the book interesting.

Oh Christ! The voiceover! Puh-leeze! And the music! Turn them off, turn them off, turn them off! For the love of God, montresor!

In other words, nope, munchikins didn’t really get much of a kick out of watching this abomination. But I sure liked writing this review.

Podcasting for Fun and Profit

There’s a whole new world of opportunity out there, gang. Agents, managers, studios, and networks are looking for new talent in places they never would have considered before.

No longer do you have to scrimp and save and borrow and – ulp – steal to shoot your own indie film and hope for the best. You don’t even have to scrimp, save, borrow and steal slightly less and make your own web series.

Instead – it’s time to start podcasting. With minimal equipment and moolah, you can record your own audio dramas (which we’ll be talking about a lot more on TVWriter™ in weeks to come). And with even less than that you can go straight into the podcasting business and earn some income while you wait for lightning to strike.

Or so Forbes tells us. And those rich bidness-type folks over there wouldn’t lie, would they? Gotta be honest to work as closely as they do with, you know, bankers, right? Anyway:

Dammit, munchman, we said podcasting, not pod!!!

How Aaron Mahnke Makes A Living Podcasting (And How You Can, Too)
by Sarah Rhea Werner

Confession time: I don’t know how to feel about the whole “podcast monetization” conversation.

On the one hand, I think creators should be paid fairly for their work. And if you’re a podcaster, you know: podcasting is a ton of hard work.

On the other hand, there’s supply and demand. I didn’t create any of my podcasts because people were clamoring for them. I created them because I wanted to share a positive message and learn about audio production. I’m not sure it’s reasonable to enter a market with a product no one has asked for (and which is being given away for free en masse) and feel entitled to payment for it.

So I’m torn. I’m well aware that this is Forbes (a business and finance magazine), but I also know that money doesn’t always make things better. In fact, it can easily distract, consume, and corrupt us, and get us into a clickbait-y, content-factory mindset—where the need for revenue-driving clicks outweighs the need to say something important.

 Getting into podcasting “for the money” is like getting into animal rescue or becoming a nun for the big bucks. If all you want is money, there are a thousand better ways to go about getting it.

That being said, many podcasters dream of leaving their day job(s) and podcasting full-time. So I chatted with Lore‘s Aaron Mahnkeabout how he managed to do it. Turns out it takes (brace yourself) a lot of careful planning and a ton of hard work….

Read it all at Forbes

Munchman sees ‘The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy’

TV science fiction’s best robot and friends, one of whom is human. Can you tell who’s who?

by Munchman

One of my favorite series of books when I was in high school was Douglas Adams’ Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. They were funny, they were – to me at the time – new, they weree – again, to me at that time – deeply philosophical and a wonderful analyses of the human condition.

To high schooler munchman, AKA tim muncher, or (and this one fills me with shame) t.t. muncher, as I thought of myself back then in a now-embarrassing homage to several obscene mags I’d seen while peering into the darkened window of a San Fernando Valley adult bookstore, Adams’ was what/who (?) Kurt Vonnegut Jr. was to the feeble old folks of LB’s generation.

My Writing God.

My Holy Shit This Son Of A Bitch Is So Cool inspiration.

Which is why when, one day over the 2017 Christmas vacay, I discovered a 1981, six episode BBC Television adaptation of the original BBC Radio series written by Mr. My Holy Shit This Son Of A Bitch Is So Cool hisself to actually write the damn books, I nearly crapped meself with excitement.

Thanking the Most Highest, whoever the hell that was or they were, I did what anybody who knows me would plainly expect. I set my bittorrent client to “Download, download, download” (the voice in my brain screeching it ala the “Dive! Dive! Dive” alarm in all the classic WWII submarine movies I’d heard in my Brit mom’s womb), and pulled all the episodes onto my hard drive from my current favorite interweb pirate site that I won’t name because for some reason that causes trouble but it sounds a lot like “Da Pilot’s Gay.”

And then I sat down in front of the screen of my horrifically overpriced MacBook and binged, baby binged.

Bring yer friendly neighborhood munchaholic to:


  • Forget that terrible movie some idiots made in 2005, this is the real fuckin’ Hitchhiker’s Guide,  peeps. Complete with the most memorable tropes from the book (and, I assume, the radio show too). “The answer to the universe is 42!” “Thanks for all the fish!” “The Restaurant at The End of Universe!” and, yeppers, more, more, more.
  • It’s every bit as funny as the books were in my mind, and five times as droll, with perfect – I mean this – perfect casting and direction. Woah! The timing of these episodes! Amazing!


  • It was made in ’81, which means that the sfx are almost as primitive as the ’70s earthlings who populate the first episode before, as aficionados may recall, the earth is destroyed to make way for a new intergalactic express road.
  • The middle sags. A lot. But so do the middle volumes of Adams’ “trilogy.” (Hey, it’s comprised of five volumes but it’s a trilogy. Who but the Great God Dougie could get away with that, huh?)
  • It’s only six half-hour episodes. A measly 180 minutes. Crap.


The beginning and end of the series each are such a solidly entertaining combination of the original Doctor Who (a show where My Holy Shit This Son Of A Bitch Is So Cool was one of the most popular and highly regarded writers) and one of the funniest UK comedies of the ’70s, olde Monty Python itself (particularly the music and graphics and “who gives a fuck” aspect throughout.)

Hey, what can I say except that this munchy one loved it and definitely thinks everybody out there who’s sick of the slick corporate propagandtainment we’re subjected to today.

C’mon, get up off yer butts. Fire up yer copy of  qBittorent and head on over to Oops. Well, what the hell. Go on. And tell ’em munchadaddio sentcha because I’m just a figment of yer imaginations anyway.

Buh-bye fer now!

yer friendly neighberhood munchhausen


Indie Video: Why Film Students Are God’s Chosen


I didn’t make this video, but I sure wish I did.

If yer friendly neighborhood munchaderio ends up not being able to live forever (although I sure don’t know why, or how, that could possibly be) then I want to die and live in the same hell as the crew in this behind-the-scenes. Christ knows that I already feel like I know ’em.

Brought to us by Mommy Comedy

Credits –
written & directed by Andrew Heder & Ryan Kelly
shot & edited by Ryan Kelly
graphics by Amy Bury
Cast –
Mateo St. Portugal – Andrew Heder @andrewheder
P. Brooks – Paul Brooks @cupcupdrinks
Rose Pilates – Amy Bury @AmyBury1
Grey Epcott – Greg Santos @GregorySantos
Kyle Schmidt – Matt Kelly
Randall Hamms – Ryan Kelly @RyanKelly______
Tobe Merkle – Paul Morgan @Paul_J_Morgan
Mommy Comedy – Andrew Heder @andrewheder Ryan Kelly @RyanKelly______

Munchman sees ‘Disjointed’

by Munchman

Yeppers, boys and girls, mothers and fathers, rich men and poor men, straights and tokers, hipsters and genuine individualists, conservatives and genuine human beings, yer friendly neighborhood Munchaderata is back, and I’m here to tell ya–

I say, I’m here to tell ya–

I say…well, you get the point–

Disjointed has shown this munchadelic one the Kingdom and the Glory, and the hell with “goods” and “bads” and pros and cons or stars or thumbs up. Format be damned, damned to hell, sistahs and brothas!

All I can do is give thanks to, in no particular order except that of course the writers go first:

David Javerbaum
Chuck Lorre
Will Hayes
Taii K. Austin
Warren Bell
Sam Johnson
Chris Marcil
Kevin Shinick
Brenda Hsueh
Bill Daly
Mike Dieffenbach
Matt Kirsch
Angeli Millan
John D. Beck
Ron Hart
& the Fabulous Kathy Bates
+ the rest of the cast and crew

And I also pledge total allegiance forever (or until Disjointed is cancelled, whichever comes first) to Netflix for stepping in after CBS totally fucked up and didn’t just drop the ball they killed the fucking messiah before he even had a chance to preach, let alone get nailed.

In other words, Disjointed is the best thing I’ve seen on TV since BBC Two stopped making The League of Gentlemen. Click, do not walk, to your closest available PC or similar computery thingy, light up a joint (or don’t because you don’t need to be high when you’re watching this spliff), and let the world around you burn, baby, burn.

You’ll be way too busy laughing to care.

munchman luvs ya!