This week in "The Shirt Contest" (airing Thursday at 9;30 pm/ET), the Boys get embroiled in another one of their competitive moods. Let's just say
comes to Chicago. It was really fun shooting this one. I got to show a little more flesh than normal. As a redhead, it's always great to show the world a little more of my pasty white skin (note the heavy sarcasm). I'm almost as white as Jim Gaffigan, but my skin is covered with freckles and red fur. All of you redheads out there know what I mean. Nudity is not one of our strong suits. Even if I was Mr. Olympia, people would still scream, "Put your shirt back on. You're burning my eyes out!" It would be nice to go to the beach without wearing SPF Infinity!
OK, enough of the "ginger" talk. It's depressing me, and when you see my bare skin this week, just remember that I didn't write the episode. It wasn't my choice for you to see my bare flesh. I am merely a pawn in a greater scheme. And at this point, I think the writers are deliberately thinking of ways to torture me. And I will pay them all back one day! Ha-ha-haaaaaaaaaaa (evil laugh).
We also have a great guest star this week, Hayes Macarthur, who plays a very funny turn as a collaborator of PJ's. It's supposed to turn into a career opportunity for her, but things never seem to go as planned. That's as much plot as you deserve.
Have you all seen who was on the plane yet? Because this is the last week I won't talk about it. Next week, we're talking about it, so if you haven't seen it,
get on it
I just finished reading
Rebels on the Back Lot
. It's a book about the making of six films from the '90s, including
Being John Malkovich
. After reading it, I'm amazed how any film ever gets made. To combine commerce and art is a delicate process. It's the same with TV shows. For us, the cast and crew of
, it's about our craft, whether it's acting, writing, directing, casting, cinematography, editing, lighting, or any of the other many jobs that are included in the production of just one episode of our show. We all got into this business because of a love for what we do.
So what is the formula for a successful show? Can't you just look through history and piece together the next great show? Take a little bit of
... throw in a cup of
... add just a spoonful of
The Dick Van Dyke Show
... and bang! Commercial success. It happens every year. Hundreds of pilot episodes for new series are written. "It's like
, but Ralph is a columnist for the New York
." "How about a WWII prisoner of war camp as the setting for a broad comedy?" (Yes, that one actually worked as
.) A few pilots are shot. And even fewer are aired. Out of those, only a couple will survive to see a second year, let alone a third.
So, what is the secret? I have no idea. It's lightning in a bottle. So, I want to hear what you think. Tell me your favorite shows and why you think they work on both a creative and commercial basis. How do some shows like
win the Emmy for best comedy and still not find an audience (a travesty, by the way), while others receive terrible reviews but are huge successes? If we can figure this out, we will rule this town.
airs Thursday at 9:30 pm.