When I initially got the call for guest-editing, I had the idea I wanted to do a little 2-minute video spoof on what it was like to prepare for being a Gawker editor, and how frenetic and crazy it was behind the scenes. So I pitched a Fight Club style spoof of Gawker Boot Camp. I didn't write a full treatment, just a scene-by-scene synopsis of what I'd like to do. Alas, there were no thespians among us, so we couldn't proceed.
Chris Mohney – Drill Sergeant
Jess Coen – Lt. Editor
Alex Balk – Lt. Editor
Krucoff – Krucoff/Various
TAN – black person
1. We open on TAN sitting outside with his laptop. He is blogging earnestly, but his face shows a look of carefree amusement. A stealthily cloaked STRANGER (Krucoff) sits down next to him. The stranger stares at TAN silently for a few seconds, then hands him a small piece of folded paper. TAN takes the paper, unfolds it, and reads. We close in on the sloppily handwritten note, it reads, “FIDELIO” on it. Seeing TAN has read the note, the stranger starts to leave, tan grabs him and makes him wait. TAN then takes out a small piece of paper, writes a note on it, then folds it up and hands it to the stranger. The stranger, looking very much like TAN during the previous note opening, unfolds the paper and reads it. It says, “what the fuck does that mean?!!?” The stranger takes out another piece of paper and writes, “do you want to write for Gawker???” He includes check boxes for yes, no, maybe. TAN gazes off into the horizon, then checks YES. The journey begins …
GAWKER BOOT CAMP / GAWK CLUB
2. We see TAN walking the street. He receives a phone call. The voice asks, “are you ready to begin your training blogger!” TAN responds, “Yes!” “Well training begins tomorrow morning 5 AM sharp."
3. Training Montage. Shots of running city blocks. Running staircases. Working out on a Total Gym (a la Chuck Norris). Lots of blood, sweat, and tears. He’s also doing ten-pounds-of-vogue-crunches, where his trainer/spotter hits him in the head with Vogue magazine as he raises his body for each crunch. All exercises are performed with an open laptop in-hand.
4. Fight Club. TAN stands at attention outside of Gawker HQ. He has been instructed not to respond and to stand there for three days and nights. Chris and the editors take turns in coming out to verbally abuse him, “Go home TAN. We don’t want you here. We gave you comment privileges, now get the fuck out of here! You’re too poor. You’re too stupid. You’re too fat. …. You’re too BLACK!!” TAN cries, checks his skin and weight, and starts to leave. Krucoff comes out and urges him to stay.
5. Fight Club Acid Test. One of the editors tells TAN to put out his hand. He takes a bottle with a clear fluid in it. Tan cowers in anticipation of the pain. The liquid is poured on to TAN’s hand. TAN yells and screams and holds his hand in excruciating pain. The editor watches in cold silence. After a bit, TAN is informed the liquid is plain water.
6. Blogger Line-Up. Alex and Jessica are lined up in front. TAN and Krucoff are behind them. Interns are behind them. They are all facing Chris Mohney who is pacing in front of them drill sergeant style. He is preparing to rev them up for another blog day.
TAN, who is lined up behind J Coen, is trying to talk to her. She ignores him.
“First rule of Gawker, THERE IS NO TALKING ABOUT GAWKER”
TAN now tries to touch J. Coen, and indicates some sexual gesture to Krucoff next to him. Coen, still trying to ignore, tries to evade TAN’s touch.
“Second rule of Gawker, THERE IS NO TALKING ABO— TAN!, Second rule of Gawker, THERE IS NO TOUCHING OF JESSICA COEN!!”
Third rule of Gawker, “We don’t have a God complex, WE ARE GOD!!!”
7. Blogging Montage. Fast paced blogging, people sweating, throwing magazines and things all around. Interns perform slave labor in the background. Everyone is wearing gawker tees, but they change them every five minutes. The editors may yell snarky comments at people from the window, to test reactions in person.
8. Finally, we see TAN exhausted, his clothes are dirty and tattered. But he has completed his stint as a Gawker editor. His life is complete.