Friday, October 30, 2009


(This is from the UCBTLA Theatre Page. UCB New York folks click here.)

As many of you already know, in February 2008 the UCB Theatre introduced the creation of its third stage - UCBCOMEDY.COM. We recently completed a massive reboot of the website and we're now thrilled to announce the creation of the first ever House Teams for UCB COMEDY: BETA TEAMS!

Much like Harold Teams create improvised shows and Maude Teams create sketch shows for the UCB Theatre stage, Beta Teams will create videos for Beta Teams may also be given occasional live shows at the UCB Theatre to showcase their best videos and/or premiere special projects.

-Beta Teams are teams of directors, cinematographers, and editors who will work together to create and produce video content for UCBCOMEDY.COM.

-Beta Teams will receive scripts submissions from Maude teams and writers within the UCB community. Under the guidance of an approved Beta Team coach, you will select which scripts to shoot and edit, and work with the writers to produce their scripts. Beta Team members are eligible to submit scripts to their own teams, but it is at the discretion of your coach as to which scripts will be selected for production.

-Beta Teams are meant to create opportunities for directors, cinematographers, and editors to:
-gain regular feedback on their material
-gain experience in many different production situations
-collaborate with some of the top writers and actors in the UCB community

-The longterm goals for Beta Team members will be to:
-build their packets and reels with solid material for future submissions to TV and movie jobs
-find other writers, directors/DPs, and editors that they may want to work with in the future on other projects


-Beta Teams will consist of a mix of six (6) directors, cinematographers, and editors. The team members will work together in varying capacities to produce and upload videos to UCBCOMEDY.COM.

-Each team will be asked to upload roughly one new video per week to UCBCOMEDY.COM. Teams will be encouraged to create one-off videos as well as video series.

-Every team member will be encouraged to learn every job on the team. As team members become more and more proficient in each skill, the production workload will hopefully be more evenly shared, and the quality and quantity of the team's videos should increase.

-Beta Teams will have access to the some UCB Comedy camera, sound, and lighting equipment. Teams will sign these out and will be responsible for returning them on time. Of course, teams may also use their own equipment.

-Beta Teams will meet with an approved team director on a weekly basis to receive feedback on their edits, read through submitted scripts (or hear pitches from invited writers), and determine which scripts they would like to produce. The team director will basically work as a studio producer - deciding which scripts to put into production, giving notes on scripts and rough edits, making casting decisions, helping to set production schedules, directing videos when needed, etc.

-Beta Teams will cast their videos from a list of interested performers from advanced Improv classes as well as interested performers from the UCBT stage. Headshots and contact info for these performers will be made available to each team. And, of course, teams can use other means to cast their videos as needed for specific roles/types. Team members may also act in their own videos, but they should give priority to always casting the best possible person available for each role.

-Each team's videos will be featured on their own page on UCBCOMEDY.COM. Teams will also create a video bumper to intro all of their videos.

-In addition to the team's director, the Artistic Director will also give feedback on completed videos. The Artistic Director will choose some videos (at his/her discretion) to promote as "UCB COMEDY ORIGINALS." ORIGINALS are chosen/developed from many different sources. In addition to their being featured on UCBCOMEDY.COM, ORIGINALS are also featured and promoted on the UCB COMEDY YouTube channel and UCB COMEDY-branded pages on other websites. Occasionally, we are also able to obtain income from advertising and other sources for ORIGINALS. When that happens, we share that income with the video creators.

-As with all new initiatives at the theatre, this process will change as needed.


-Beta Team members will be selected from eligible submissions. To be eligible you must have completed a UCB Improv 401 (or higher) class OR a UCB Sketch 101 (or higher), or you must be a current UCBT writer/performer.

-If you are selected to be on a Beta Team, you must:
-attend meetings, shoots, etc. as scheduled
-be a consistent and active contributor to the team.
-perform your share of production jobs, including P.A. jobs, etc. as needed
-be able and willing to make your team a priority

-If you are not willing/able to comply with the above requirements

-If you miss more than two (2) meetings in a row, miss meetings on a regular basis, or fail to produce the required quantity of work - you will be replaced on your team.

-Beta Team members will be expected to pay their team directors for their time in meetings. This should be handled in the same way (logistically and financially) that Harold and Maude Teams pay their coaches. Teams should get approval for their team director from the Artistic Director.


-The submission deadline is Wednesday, November 11 at 7pm.

-Submissions should be dropped off at the UCB Theatre Box Office (5919 Franklin Ave. 90028), Monday through Friday, 11am to close.

-IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO SUBMIT TO BE AN EDITOR, DIRECTOR, AND/OR DP: Your submission should consist of a directing/editing/DP reel, no longer than 5 minutes, submitted on a playable DVD (no computer files - it should be a DVD playable in any DVD player). Your reel should focus on your ability to make good comedy videos as much or more than your technical proficiency. We want videos to look good, but we're looking for people who can really make things funny. Feel free to include videos you've written - though you don't have to. Your submission should also include a cover page telling us what position(s) you're submitting for, why you should be included on a Beta Team, and any equipment you own that you could use to help produce videos (camera, editing software/computer, etc.).

-IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO SUBMIT FOR MORE THAN ONE POSITION: Your submission should consist of all of the above. Please submit everything together in the same submission. DO NOT SUBMIT SEPARATELY FOR EACH POSITION.

-IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO BE INCLUDED ON THE LIST OF POTENTIAL BETA TEAM ACTORS Do nothing. We will contact eligible actors later to begin building this database.

-Your Beta Team submission should be placed in one (1) manilla envelope with your name, phone, email address, and all teachers names listed on the outside. Write BETA TEAM clearly on the envelope.

My Halloween Costume Predictions for the year, 1503

A few days ago, I gave you my Halloween costume predictions for 2003, but I realized that some of you may be attending a Halloween party in the year 1503 A.D. I know it's probably considered Satanic in 1503, but I bet those of you attending this party are the risk-takers and not afraid of a little danger. However, if you need a little help deciding on your costume, here are some of my predictions of what costumes people will wear in 1503. Hopefully, this can give you some ideas.

1.) The Mona Lisa

2.) Margaret Tudor

3.) Pope Julius II

4.) A Gold Nugget from Seville's port in Spain (Ugh, even in 1503 there where still those chicks who used Halloween as an excuse to dress up as sluts.)

5.) The Actual Book, Canterbury Tales

Okay, for realsies, though, Happy Halloween!


I love that blog title because it's Halloween-based and a funny joke! You're welcome, world.

We also have some hilarious new Halloween videos up that may be as funny as Hallow-Weiner.

1.) Park Prank

2.) My Zombie Ex-Husband

3.) Lost Saw Scene

Watch them if you dare...

...dare to LAUGH, that is!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

My Halloween Costume Predictions for 2003

I worked in a costume store for a third of a semester in college. Therefore, I consider myself pretty knowledgeable when it comes to predicting trends that already happened. So, get ready to see these popular costumes at your 2003 Halloween party. Hopefully, you can get some ideas for what you're going to wear when it's seven years ago.

1.) Tom Cruise from The Last Samurai.

2.) Roy Horn (of Seigfried and Roy fame) post tiger-mauling.

3.) Giovonni Ribisi's character from Lost in Translation.

4.) Arnold Schwarzenegger - The Governator

5.) Sexy Freedom Fries

6.) That girl from Evanescence.

Happy Halloween! I hope you all have a wonderful time and stay tuned for some upcoming videos!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

SAT Prep

Please fill in all bubbles fully. If you don't, your bubbles will look unpleasant.

Question 1: Math
Miguel liked Saw VI more than Saw II, but less than Saw III. He also liked Saw IV more than Saw V, but less than Saw II. Additionally, he liked Saw I better than Saw III. On top of that, Hostel Part II sucked.

How does Miguel rank the Saw movies and the crappy Hostel sequel, from best to worst?

(A) Saw I, Saw III, Saw IV, Saw II, Saw VI, Saw V, Hostel Part II
(B) Saw I, Saw VI, Saw III, Saw V, Saw II, Saw IV, Hostel Part II
(C) Saw I, Saw III, Saw VI, Saw II, Saw IV, Saw V, Hostel Part II
(D) Saw I, Saw 3, Saw VIII, Saw II, Saw XFL, Saw MCMIV, Hostel: First Blood Part II

Question 2: Grammar
Read the following sentence, and choose the answer that would best replace the part in italics.

Jon Gosselin is a total douchebag.

(A) not a former star of any television series on TLC
(B) a raccoon
(C) not Jon Gosselin
(D) a total douchebag (no change)

Question 3: Reading Comprehension
Read the following passage from New Moon.

"Before you, Bella, my life was like a moonless night. Very dark, but there were stars, points of light and reason....And then then you shot across my sky like a meteor. Suddenly everything was on fire; there was brilliancy, there was beauty."

Based on the passage, the Twilight series is:

(A) poorly written
(B) retarded
(C) more like HAWTly written and retarded HAWT!!1
(D) all of the above

'Kay, pencils down. How'd you do? Hopefully well, otherwise you won't get into Barnett College, which leads the nation in professors that kill nazis and uncover ridiculous alien artifacts.
"Well, I was sort of in the middle of releasing a horde of souls from the Ark of the Covenant upon a Nazi platoon, but sure, I'd love to read the first draft of your lousy honor thesis."

Answer Key: 1. E, 2. E, 3. E

Friday, October 23, 2009

Spotlight On: The Birthday Boys

I was originally gonna feature a girl today, and from the New York theatre no less, but Becky went and had a feminist mental breakdown in response to some Huffington Post earlier this week so I thought I'd respond by featuring not just a male, but a group of males with a male word in the title. For all you mathematicians, that's like chauvinism to the third power. But rest assured, the featured group is not sexist. I am.

Spotlight On: The Birthday Boys
The Birthday Boys, a sketch group of seven very funny guys, perform monthly at the UCB Theatre LA with shows chock-full of upbeat and energetic comedy, and are regularly asked to perform in sketchfests around the country. It's extremely rare to find someone that doesn't outright love them after attending one of their shows, and it's not hard to see why. Their humor is always clever, always likable, and always funny. Here's some of their work (click their name above for more):

Halloween Badasses

Great Film Performances

And, if you want to see a full live sketch show by a group with a great specific voice, click right on here. I didn't want to embed it here, because it's a 40 minute video and thats pretty big for a little blog.

So there you go. And don't worry, New York, I'll feature one o' youse guys next week. That is, if Becky doesn't get upset about some Huffington Post story on neglected New York comedians first.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Movie Review Headline Suggestions: 10/23/09

Being clever is hard. Let me tell you from experience. For instance: just today I was at Walgreens, and the lady working there was all "your card has been declined." It took me a minute, but I finally came up with a clever response: "You've been declined." Awesome. So movie critics, yet again let me do the cleverest part of your job for you: the movie review headline. Here they are for the releases this week:

Astr-Oh Boy!

Good Boy!

A Star is Boy!

Amelia Lands Right In Our Hearts!

I Am-elia Impressed!

She Disappeared! That Sucks!

Cirque du Two Stars Out Of Five!

Cirque du One Star Out Of Five!

Cirque du No Stars Out Of Five!

I Saw This Movie!

Saw'll Good!

Cirque du Saw Stars Out Of Five!

There you go critics! See you next week!

Where The Emo Things Are

Where The Wild Things Are debuted this past weekend and, if you're anything like me, you think it's okay to eat pizza for dinner two nights in a row. Also, you may have seen Where The Wild Things Are, based on the classic children's book, with a story primarily revolving around a James Gandolfini monster and his monster friends crying, hitting things in frustration, and generally being sad all the time. Sure, it all takes place in a depressed kid's imagination, but that doesn't undo the fact that they all act in a manner befitting a 13-year-old that insists he's just not "understood."

The "Wild Things" dance to the latest My Chemical Romance album.

But director Spike Jonze ("z" instead of "s" because z's are cooler, and "z" before "e" because dyslexia's also cool) can't shoulder all the blame, because the Tony Soprano monster and company are far from the first screen horrors that just need to take a chill pill and cut the whining.

King Kong was on his way to mainstream success as a celebrity, but instead got all mad when people starting snapping pictures of him (likely because they weren't moody monochromatic close-ups for his MySpace profile) and went on a whiny rampage through the city which ended with him dying the most melodramatically theatrical death of all, being shot down by tiny planes and falling off the top of the Empire State Building. Really, dude? Was refusing to sell out really worth it?

"I do this for the art, Dad!"

Dracula has pale skin, dresses all in black, and only rarely goes outside and only at night. He's like the sole inspiration for Hot Topic, and I half expect him to pop out of his coffin one morning wearing a glow-in-the-dark Misfits shirt or an ironic Thundercats tee. We know you didn't watch Thundercats as a kid, Drac. Take off that tee. As for why Dracula's more emo than goth, well, he's a rich dude whose thirst is never satisfied with a voice that sounds on the verge of tears at all times. Not only that, but he's all about crummy dinner parties where he makes everyone watch his grand entrance on a staircase. Attention-hound. Quit using eyeball-hypnosis to make people be your friends, Dracula, and join a youth soccer league or something.

You didn't play Battletoads, Dracula. Don't act like you played Battletoads.

Since the Phantom of the Opera lived in an opera house, his music of choice was playing slow organ ballads and likely half-committed In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida covers where he'd give up just a quarter of the way through. Just imagine if he'd been haunting a Tower Records-- you'd hear nothing but Fall Out Boy and Coheed and Cambria. Sure, the phantom was born deformed, and that's sad. But he also had an incredible singing voice, and instead of embracing his gift and using upheaval of false expectations to his advantage (a la Susan Boyle, or Joey Ramone), he seized a construction-related accident at the opera house (apparently he was one of the original builders) as an opportunity to live in the catacombs beneath and basically pretend to haunt the place. Really, he just should have negotiated better worker's comp. Phantom seems like the kind of guy who'd "just know" exactly what people would say about him before he'd do anything, so he wouldn't even try.

"I just want to be left alone, so I'm gonna make lots of noise and jump in the way of your plays and sneak into your bedroom at night and start a blog and stuff! But leave me alone!"

Basically, inherent to monsterdom is an intense emotional overreaction to being put down in some way, which typically includes lots of hitting, yelling, and general violence where a normal person would have found a more talk-based way of solving the issues. Well, at least they're all better than Godzilla. That bleeding heart environmental activist could never get enough attention, but instead of just joining Greenpeace, he's killed thousands of people and has been fighting giant moths and robot versions of himself for more than fifty years.


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Spotlight On: Some of my Faves

Yesterday, I came across an article on the Huffington Post about the New York Comedy Festival not featuring any women this year.

I'd like to quote female comedienne, Tom Cruise: "Now, I'm not going to get mad. I'm not going to FREAK OUT."

For realsies, though, there's no way for anyone to express an opinion on it because the entire line-ups aren't even posted. So take that, Arianna Huffington.

(Oh my God, just joshin' Arianna. I LOVE you!)

(You guys, is Arianna mad at me?)

(Just tell me. Is she?)

Anyway, as Matty began doing spotlight posts, I would like to use this opportunity to spotlight some funny people on the site (who happen to be women) that I respect.

1.) Jackie Clark and Julie Klausner - Their "Welcome to Our House" series is one of the few web-series you can watch over and over again and still find something new to laugh at every time. They're so silly and aren't afraid to get weird. Watching their videos always puts a smile on my face - even if there's already a smile. I call it the double-smile. I wish they could be my parents.

2.) Dannah Feinglass and Danielle Schneider - Their personifications of celebutantes are pitch-perfect, among other hilarious characters they do. Every time I've seen them perform, I always think, "This sketch is really sad and dark and adorably hilarious." Also, I wish they could be my legal guardians.

3.) Jessica Chaffin and Jamie Denbo, are, of course as we all know, Ronna and Bev. From mole removals to reading glasses to French tips, they portray Jewish women to a Tet. (A Tet, I think, is a Hebrew 'T' - don't quote me on this. Tet is also the Vietnamese New Year. That you can quote me on ; I do a lot of crossword puzzles instead of making friends... or being a good Jew, for that matter.) Needless to say, these two have inspired me since I came to LA, and I wish they were my god-bubbies.

Okay, that's my spotlight for today. You are all wonderful beautiful people. Go watch these videos I've linked.

(Can someone please ask Arianna if she's still mad at me?)

Friday, October 16, 2009

Spotlight On: Justin Donaldson

Ladies and gentlemen, we (the royal "we") spend a lot of time writing stupid stuff on here, and we (the royal "we") got to thinking. Thinking that it's about time we (the royal "we") turned the spotlight more on the great performers of the UCB theatres rather than ourselves (the royal "ourselves") and our (the royal "our") dumb thoughts. So I* want to start a feature now, a feature I plan to actually repeat each week through the foreseeable future-- that is, through 2012, when a Mayan earthquake kills everyone but John Cusack and maybe Joan Cusack because they never work apart. So here it is, a featured performer segment I'd like to call Spotlight On.**

Spotlight On: Justin Donaldson
Justin' is a writer/performer at the UCBTLA, and a very funny and talented dude. He writes and performs with Maude sketch team Marvin Berry, hosts the regular This Is Your Life variety show at the theatre, and he regularly directs videos for the monthly Sketch Cram. Here's some of his work (click his name above for more):

Dir. Justin Donaldson, Wri. Mark Rennie

Security Signs
Dir. & Wri. Justin Donaldson

Crazy Marv Breakfast Emporium
Dir. Justin Donaldson, Wri. Scott Davis

Have a suggestion for a performer to spotlight? Just lemme know!

*Denotes me giving up on that stupid bit.
**I stole this title from a dorm activity from college.

Movie Review Headline Suggestions: 10/16/09

As usual, reviewers, feel free to use any of these. Just give me credit. And monies.

Where The Wild Things Are

You'll Go Wild For This Thing!

Where The Wild Things Are? More Like Where The Wild Fun Is!

This Is A Movie Based On A Book! Stars!

Where? Here! Is A Good Movie!

This Adaptation of Maurice Sendak's Children's Book Will Send-ak You A Message: That You'll Want!

Law Abiding Citizen

Abide By This: This Movie Stinks!

Abide By This: This Movie Rules!

Abide By This: This Movie Is Okay But Not Great But Still Sorta Okay If You Like This Kind Of Movie!

The Stepfather

Step Away From The Theatre-- We Got a Stinker!

If This Father Were Your Real Father, Then You'd Be The Child Of A Bad Movie And That's Impossible Because Movies Don't Procreate!

Stars! Just Kidding No Stars!

New York, I Love You

New York, I Love You... But Your Movie's A Stinker!

New York, New Stinker!

More Like New York, I Stinker You!

More Like New York, I Love Stinkers! No Wait I Don't Love Stinkers No Stars!

Black Dynamite


I've Heard This Movie's Legit Good And I Would Like To See It If It Releases In AMC Theaters Because I Have Coupons There!

I can keep churning these out forever.

The Top 1 Reason Why Your Kid Probably Isn't In A Hot Air Balloon

1. Because that's ridiculous. Now go inside, ya hippie.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

SHHH... Don't Tell!!

SHHH... Don't Tell.

I'm at work right now and I'm blogging. That's why I'm whispering. You should read
this blog in a whispery way. If you read it too loudly, I'll get in so much trouble.
Temping is kind of my dream job and I don't want to screw up any chances I'll ever
have of being a permanent temp on a permanently temporary basis that is temporarily permanent.

A Week of Kindness' Mike Still is interveiwed on Take a listen.
But shhh. Keep the volume on super low. I'm serious. Don't screw this up
for me. I used to dream about being a temp while watching SNL growing

Also, my real father, Matt Jones, is interviewed on
Read it quietly and make sure to keep that Excel spreadhsheet open so you can switch
screens right away when your boss or Nurse Ratchid comes wandering in to tell you what to
do so she can say "thank you" in a really condescending way.

Check out some of Mike's videos and Matt's videos.

Shhh! Six-inch voices!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Trying Too Hard

The following is a real gchat between Matty and Becky. It's chock full of wit and insight, and trying too hard. This is very special and behind the scenes, like, more behind the scenes than that time P. Diddy video blogged himself peeing. I thought about editing it to make it more interesting, but that'd be dishonest and I'm all about truth in comedy and thinking about writing a book about that. I did add visual aids.

Becky: let's have a funny gchat conversation and then post it on the UCB Comedy blog
all the hip people do that
and... scene.
me: how's the data job?
Becky: you mean... my data job with the president on the moon?
it's okay
(that's anti-heightening)
me: no it's less than just okay, it's so-so
(that's a heightened anti-heightening)
so i'm personally glad we finally attacked the moon
Becky: me too
me: it'll make us better prepared for triffid attacks
Becky: hang on i need to google triffid
holy shit
me: it's a plant that makes everyone blind and attacks, but also from space
Becky: triffids are scary
me: if i remember correct
Becky: yeah you're right
Do you know what else I'm scared of?
me: i don't need to google that to know it's terrifying
Becky: like, i'm afraid i'll give birth to one
me: yeah it'd be terrifying
a cross between a hummer, an ant, a zebra, and bees
Becky: i know- a horrible carbon footprint mixed with the least adorable animals
me: hey, zebras are dark-horse cute animals
they'll surprise you
just kidding, they're not dark, they have stripes
Becky: oh my god, when people read this blog post, they are going to think we're hilarious
me: rofl rofl
Becky: LFMAO
me: roflcopter
Becky: United ROFL
btw prw
Becky: ROFLercoaster
me: Rofl Nader
Becky: Little Rofl from a Christmas Story
Hi, Souplantation, can I get the clam chowder in a breadROFL?
me: rrrrrrofls have rrrrrrridges
Becky: btw pROFLw
Sent at 11:52 AM on Friday
me: btROFL pROFLw
Baroflack Obroflama won the Roflbel Peace Profl
Sent at 11:54 AM on Friday
Becky: Did you watch the of ROFLice last night!
I'm so glad Rofl and rofl finally tied the rofl
me: did you see last nights the rofls? I can't believe rofl went through with marrying spencer.
Sent at 11:56 AM on Friday
Becky: oh, rofl! i missed it! I instead watched "Rofl and a Half Rofl" on my DVR last night
me: that show's been downhill ever since the third rofl
Becky: i know, but i still like it
it makes me roll on the floor laughing
I also really like How I Met Your GPOYW
me: i do not know what that means
but i chose to read it phonetically and leave it at that
Becky: ok
one more thing
I never told you this before
My favorite movie is What's Eating Gilbert GPOYW

Admittedly, we lost it at the end there. And what was that, a political cartoon? That was pretty unacceptable.