Sunday, June 6, 2010

Where everybody knows your dummy's name

+  Series Pilot  +
Scene 1

At the Budding Ventriloquist Bar and Grille, the regulars regularly belly up to the bar. Bartender Max LeMonk is always ready with a quip. Handsome waiter/actor wannabe Steed Hideaway struggles to perfect his craft(s), and Owner/Chef Dan is always looking for a new recipe.

What makes this bistro interesting is that the regulars are virtually all ventriloquists.
Steed hustles to the bar, calling out a drink order to Max.

Steed: I need two Miller lights and a rusty nail
Max: Who's the rusty nail for?
Steed: The red headed dummy at table 12.
Max (rolling eyes): Figures.

In walks Charlie McCarthy and Edgar Bergen. They pull up a stool at the bar. Charlie looks at Max.

Charlie: Hey bartender, does this place ever play live music?
Max:  I could ask the boss. What kind of music do you play?
Charlie:  I don't know, but people are always getting carried away by it.
Max: They are?
Charlie:  Yes, I play at funerals.
Dan the owner and chef comes out of the kitchen.

Max:  Hey boss, this dummy wants to play music here.
Dan: Oh, that could work. Do you have a label behind you?
Charlie: Yes, Fruit of the Loom
Bergen:  Charlie, he wants to know if you have support.
Charlie:  They're support hose.
Charlie McCarthy and Edgar Bergen appear in this pilot episode courtesy of a script written for them that was donated by Ken Shapiro to the website Ventriloquist Central. Thank you, Mr. Shapiro, for the jokes, and thanks to Vent Central for being a great repository of history and reference materials.
To my new ventriloquist friends:

Here's the pitch I am making to any ventriloquist who might see this:
Pick a few line of your ventriloquist routine (say, one or two rimshots) that can work as dialog  with a monkey bartender or a dummy waiter or a human owner/chef, send them to me along with your web address, pictures, and other promo materials.  Allow me to weave a script (trust me - I will treat your material like it's gold!) just as I did with Charlie McCarthy and Edgar Bergen, making you "this week's special guest at "The Budding Ventriloquist Bar and Grille". 
You get a little promotion out of it, and I get to have fun writing it. I hope this sounds like great fun all around.
My email is:

Think Cheers, or the Jackie Gleason "Joe the bartender" skits, or Dean Martin having a drink with the guests on his show - except the guest are ventriloquists and their dummies and puppets.

Come join this adventure

Dan Bushman
Budding Ventriloquist
Oops - almost forgot to introduce you to the cast:
Yes, if you look closely at it, you will be amazed at the chef suit I am wearing.


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