Land of the Giant Forest Iguanas – with Guest Rick Horner!

 In the Style of a Planet of the Apes Sci-Fi Movie - with Special Guest Rick Horner! 

In a World...where humans no longer rule and giant iguanas are the dominant species...a small group of humans will find themselves as the ultimate outcasts, fighting for their own survival and the survival of the human race...

This show contains the improv games Limerick, Movie Trailer, 2-Word Typewriter & Tempo, Newsroom, and Cutting Room.

This episode also features our friend and awesome improviser Rick Horner! Rick participates in the whole show - genre discussion, outline, picking the games, and performing the show! We had a ton of fun with Rick and did some great improv comedy.

About This Episode

In this episode, we pay homage to The Planet of the Apes with special guest Rick Horner. Rick is a huge fan of The Planet of the Apes franchise (maybe not so much the Tim Burton one…) so it was the perfect movie for us to use as out starting point.

Three astronauts find themselves stranded on a planet ruled by giant iguanas and they must use all their skills to escape and survive. Will they make it? Will they find allies? Will the human race survive? Listen to the episode to find out!

About Rick: 

Improv Incubator:

Bright Inventions:

Vintage Improv Festival:


Planet of the Apes on Wikipedia:

Time Codes:

Introduce our Guest, Rick Horner: 02:05

Segment 1 - Discussion the Genre Tropes: 11:32

Segment 2 - Creating the Movie Outline: 21:57

Segment 3 - Picking the Improv Comedy Games: 30:15

Start of show: 37:36

Improv Game: Limerick + Movie Trailer - 39:23

Improv Game: 2-Word Story Typewriter - 41:52

Improv Game: Monologues and Tempo - 53:00

Improv Game: Newsroom - 59:54

Improv Game: Cutting Room: 1:08:49

End of show, into announcements: 1:22:52

More Information About the Show, Mike, and Avish

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Our Website:

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Avish’s site: 

Mike’s site:


Transcription of the “Discussing the Genre Tropes” Segment (Unedited and Un-Cleaned up)

Avish Parashar: segment one discussing the tropes alright, so now we're going to spend about five minutes discussing the tropes cliches and commonalities of.

Avish Parashar: The planet of the apes movies, I have my five minute timer which quacks like a duck at the end, and here we go rick's if you are a guest, and this is your area of expertise, what do you what's the first couple things that come to mind when you think of planet of the apes.

Rick Horner (he/him): Alright, so planet of the apes for me divides clearly using the TIM Burton movie as a stop gap between them and not counting as an actual movie.

Rick Horner (he/him): There are five original movies, and then there are three new movies, so if we wanted to talk about classic planet of the apes today, and then in a future episode, I could come back and we could talk about the new trilogy that'd be sweet way to you know sort of.

Michael Worth: come on board that's a great yeah we can talk about Andy Serkis at another time.

Avish Parashar: Or we can do, one of the sequels like the battles, the wars, the.

Avish Parashar: Maybe stick with like kind of the original okay there's also a whole cartoon series based on so we.

Rick Horner (he/him): Just watched it.

Michael Worth: i've watched it it's good it's really good.

Avish Parashar: All right, so what do you think of with them with that original movie and series.

Rick Horner (he/him): So the things that I love the most about the planet of the apes are that, in the first movie there are such master strokes of genius but by the fifth one we get to such a humdrum Murray sludge.

Rick Horner (he/him): That it really looks like it runs the gamut and I think most people feel that way about the movies, I love them all, so I feel like i'm.

Rick Horner (he/him): i'm okay with saying the things that I don't like about them, because I love them all ultimately right, so the one of the things was that they had a.

Rick Horner (he/him): Pretty expansive for the time budget for the makeup and the costumes and the first movie but by the time they got to the fifth one they were reusing things and they were yeah I mean honestly even.

Michael Worth: Lower grade.

Michael Worth: Lower grade rubber on the on the mask.

Rick Horner (he/him): yeah totally so So the first thing I think about is it's so interesting to me that this was a movie that was conceived and there was literally nothing else like it that had ever transpired before and that john chambers, who did the makeup for the movies.

Rick Horner (he/him): came to making movie magic making making the apes, because he had been in the military and was creating prosthetics for soldiers that's how we came upon this whole idea of.

Rick Horner (he/him): Like i'm going to make these you know different creations for the faces, so I think for me it's so interesting that that he was interested in making sure that the actors performance came through.

Rick Horner (he/him): The making so wasn't makeup meant to disguise it was makeup that was meant to you know to sort of like bulk up the performance kind of thing which, again I don't think i'd ever had before.

Rick Horner (he/him): So that's first thing is that you know yeah you can't you got to talk about the mockups and all that kind of stuff and then the second thing I think about is how much.

Rick Horner (he/him): really interesting social commentary is all wound into the five movies there's definitely a lot of talk about racism and the idea of intelligence, because the it's it's the those that speak and those that don't speak conversation, which is ultimately like you don't speak my language.

Rick Horner (he/him): You know, but, but so, so I think that for the time they got away with talking about like they talked about.

Rick Horner (he/him): Having a bomb and should we use the bomb or not a whole bunch of things that were happening in the world that nobody was really talking about, because you really kind of couldn't talk about huh.

Avish Parashar: yep yep so I guess not speak the language like it was you know phobia to me that was like obviously racism was we're already here but there's enough phobia like to speak our language and the world was much more closed off place.

Michael Worth: And another thing to think about going with that rick is that when these astronauts come back or these these in this kind of thing the fact that they're not behaving according to the societal expectation is what throws the whole side of this cast because it's a very rigid.

Michael Worth: Again it's a caste system it's not like oh my God, there are these people that can actually they're humans that can actually speak what an amazing thing it's like what what's wrong, this is this is.

Michael Worth: This is destroying our carefully conceived pyramid of social you know struggle, I mean if I remember correctly, the rank of tanks, the chimpanzees and gorillas are the three races and they're like.

Rick Horner (he/him): yeah.

Michael Worth: they're like it's like it's like brave new world it's like you're the scientist, you are the soldiers you're the craftsman right so.

Avish Parashar: So that's.

Avish Parashar: awesome and let's talk a little bit about then kind of characters and plot points, because this is kind of the This is like a world of the the movie.

Avish Parashar: But we do our characters main character speakers who were kind of some of the the common or the kind of the cliched characters you have in a movie like this.

Rick Horner (he/him): So the way they set up the caste system, the rank of tags are the are the law providers the chimpanzees are the scientists and the apes, are the military or the soldiers.

Avish Parashar: Right and when I said cast i'm in cast without an e so like the cast of characters.

Michael Worth: Although that's.

Avish Parashar: that's good to know.

Avish Parashar: Like you.

Michael Worth: like this has to be because it's such a weird world that if you don't have a society that the audience can hook onto there'll be like all right now.

Michael Worth: And as a society that makes no sense.

Rick Horner (he/him): You don't mean so you have to like you have to be really rigid with it, which is true.

Avish Parashar: All right, that's our timer but let's get a little let's make sure we have some because this is where we're going to use for our outline so let's get some of the plot points and character information.

Avish Parashar: it's fun man.


Michael Worth: that's my take on it.

Avish Parashar: Alright, so let's talk i'm characters so who are some of the key characters in this type of movie the arc types of stuff.

Rick Horner (he/him): OK, so the architect archetype human character is Taylor, who is a person that was sort of self cast off from his current society, so it was a perfect person to you know go and explore.

Avish Parashar: yeah so there's a bit of an outcast already.

Rick Horner (he/him): he's a bit of an outcast already.

Avish Parashar: yeah okay and he's always very like man, we you know it's called to heston mark wahlberg yeah it goes much, but you know.

Avish Parashar: more like a different level of the movie so it's like.

Avish Parashar: um and then story wise we're getting.

Avish Parashar: there's there's always like a love interest right like whether it actually leads anything or not there's like a sympathetic female character.

Rick Horner (he/him): So what they did with the female role in the movie is that they created an air leak in side of the capsule that brought them there, so their lieutenant who's a female.

Rick Horner (he/him): is dead before the movie ever begins, so they don't have to do any sort of like there's another human here, so I can explain the plot by talking to this person because she's already pre dead before the movie you know even starts.

Rick Horner (he/him): But they do mention that she is supposed to be the eve of this journey, so the idea is that all three of the men are going to recreate society with this one woman, which had escaped me, for many years and was.

Michael Worth: that's kind of grim.

Rick Horner (he/him): Reaper dark.

Avish Parashar: I didn't get to rewatch has been a long time since i've seen the original.

Avish Parashar: um is there a an eight character, because they're whether it's female love it or not, there's always like apes there's a couple apes, who are sympathetic with the as and whatnot is kind of sympathetic right.

Rick Horner (he/him): Yes, zero and cornelius are the two doctors and.

Rick Horner (he/him): zero.

Rick Horner (he/him): is definitely in my opinion, this definitely the star of the movie it's Kim hunter absolutely the star of the movie she sympathetic to taylor's plate because.

Rick Horner (he/him): She has been studying these you know quote specimens her whole life and she's never encountered anybody, like him, so at first she's fascinated by him because he's an interesting specimen, but I do think there's there's, certainly in the.

Rick Horner (he/him): plot, but maybe didn't make it into the movie there's definitely a lot of romantic subtext.

Avish Parashar: Okay.

Michael Worth: Oh yeah oh yeah is it is it, this one, where he kisses her.

Rick Horner (he/him): Oh yeah yeah yeah there's there's a.

Michael Worth: Human on.

Avish Parashar: Which is like in 1968 whatever is like the metaphor for the interracial kiss, which is a big.

Michael Worth: star trek already didn't you know, sending a one off right.

Avish Parashar: should be no more interracial kiss I didn't want.

Avish Parashar: Any anything else that like plot wise, because obviously they get there's like the discovery phase they're trying to figure out what's going on, they get captured.

Avish Parashar: And then there's escape and then usually the end there's some kind of like revolt or fighting back right is that kind of like the overall structure of the story goes.

Rick Horner (he/him): yeah I think it's basically like I would say the overall like sort of inciting action is that.

Rick Horner (he/him): Man is in the situation where he is quote against ape but ultimately it's man who's truly defeating himself throughout the whole.

Rick Horner (he/him): entirety of the movies, like all of the reasons why things didn't work society are all squarely on men's shoulders, not the apes.

Rick Horner (he/him): But the apes want to believe that they were first and so their civilization is rocked by the idea that, like Oh, you know we were once.

Rick Horner (he/him): owned or put in a zoo or you know, whatever by humans, but these guys yeah but the humans are the reason why society completely failed, which is kind of like yeah I could I could see that.

Rick Horner (he/him): From here.

Michael Worth: But yeah yeah so and I mean i'm the well the next part of it, but it's more about a when we get to the actual beats of the access stuff like that.

Avish Parashar: Alright, have a good list of kind of information and.

Michael Worth: it's working nearly it's really like like rick said it's really like this really cool a good SCI fi it's creating an interesting social commentary by mapping out of some really cool What if statements it's a lot of what planet of the apes are.

Michael Worth: And let's also finally not forget once again getting shoved shoved under the bus but Jerry Goldsmith score to planet of the apes, which, to quote.

Michael Worth: Henry man CD scared the hell out of the rest of us in Hollywood because it was a super avant garde.

Michael Worth: Anybody who knows anything about film scores knows that's like one of the seminal scores of jerry's career it like influenced SCI fi horror, for years, and he got nominated and didn't win for the Lord.

Avish Parashar: Well we're all happy that john Williams was not available.

Avish Parashar: genre.

Avish Parashar: truck discussion so that brings us to.

Transcription of the “Creating the Outline” Segment (Unedited and Un-Cleaned up)

Avish Parashar: All right now we are going to spend about five minutes hashing out a high level outline we use a four act structure for our outline we did like a three act structure.

Avish Parashar: But we break it into two parts, the first half being a little more reactive figuring things out second half, being more proactive.

Avish Parashar: And this is the outline we're going to start with, we use it as kind of a guide but it's improv comedy so we may completely abandon it or veer off of it so we'll see how it goes.

Avish Parashar: yeah i'll set my and I looked really quickly, I could not find an ape sound or a monkey sound when the timer goes off so we're sticking with the.

Avish Parashar: dog timer and here.

Michael Worth: So i'll start off by just going real well, we can expand upon an act one is pretty easy it's going to be establishing the fish out of water So whoever our heroes, are going to be on this alien planet or this alien place.

Michael Worth: And they're just exploring it passively an act one will probably end with them being captured by what the new dominant species, whatever it is that's a pretty.

Michael Worth: Because that's how plan of the apes work, it was a lot of them exploring and then they got all got captured and then that was it we're not alone, and not only we're not alone but we're not the dominant species so that's my take on that one how close, am I love it.

Avish Parashar: yeah sounds good lot of exploration and learning, maybe encountering some eight and then one thing we talked about the tropes um.

Avish Parashar: who and what is the villain like usually the head of the apes, or like the second in command of the apes is like a real deck.

Avish Parashar: hates humans so that's basically who's going to be a villain we may or may not meet them in act one probably maybe during the capture scene, but somewhere soon will meet them.

Michael Worth: Either the military leader would be one of the head bad guys or there's three, it could be so you got to pick the military leader could be head scientist because he's a mega maniacal or the actual governmental leader, because they represent a threat to his.

Avish Parashar: New World yeah and I think that can come out they.

Avish Parashar: Were the problem.

Michael Worth: I mean, I wish I could be more specific, but those are kind of the big three right it's not like Joe random Gardner he's like I hate this human.

Avish Parashar: I mean.

Avish Parashar: It could be.

Michael Worth: Exactly.

Avish Parashar: Alright, so act do, then so we've ended Act was that we've captured.

Avish Parashar: So what what do we need to have happen in Act two of our story.

Michael Worth: So right now we don't have any we're going to have this but they're all captured and.

Avish Parashar: They need to this is where I think one thing happens the hero starts making connections with the species sympathetic apes like that's you know they like stick him some food is are talking and listening and building relationships yeah.

Michael Worth: um he also started to discover more about how this society works, so he started to get into the understanding of the various.

Rick Horner (he/him): forces at play and things like that um right like in beneath it becomes evident that the apes feel like their food sources being depleted by the humans and that's the reason why they want to invade.

Rick Horner (he/him): The as yet unknown mutant population that's under the ground but that's what causes that to to pass so yeah like that discovery of the plate.

Michael Worth: yeah yeah yeah yeah.

Avish Parashar: i'm like figuring out here, if there were other humans who survived in the initial that probably killed off here at some point.

Avish Parashar: right if I get.

Avish Parashar: killed off before we get to the fourth act oh.

Michael Worth: Well there's there's gonna be a culling look like it's okay to have three or four main characters to start this off because you need that you need to have some bodies, you know.

Michael Worth: Just just remembers the my favorite part was in the movie where he's running away and he runs into the museum and sees his comrades stuffed in the in the museum that's the one of the gifts, because you know he.

Avish Parashar: sounds terrible.

Michael Worth: Like a great idea for act to.

Rick Horner (he/him): we've all had that happen happen, we.

Michael Worth: have to culminates with the here's the big reveal act to should combine it with the apes realizing that these humans or whoever this animal is.

Michael Worth: are different like they don't know they're like kind of maybe like oh it's kind of weird they're wearing these clothing would understand, but like one of them talks or one of them like you know deactivates a car battery what is happening he's demonstrating fine motor skills and.

Avish Parashar: that's kind of I would say that he probably is fried right either he cut he gets away here.

Avish Parashar: And there's often often but and to Craig if i'm wrong there's sometimes be like a rebel community of apes like that's.

Avish Parashar: that's kind of doesn't believe in what the main apes, are doing that kind of got their own like secret base like he somehow finds like allies and he escaped from.

Avish Parashar: The clutches and meets up with the allies and kind of start figuring out all right, how are we going to use this to fight back or overthrow.

Rick Horner (he/him): yeah they did that more than the TV show and the cartoon than they did in the movies.

Rick Horner (he/him): guys are adding that element of like they're getting helped, but it does stand to reason, if you were human beings on the planet of the apes that were in charge, you probably wouldn't last too long, so you.


Avish Parashar: So he gets he gets to go in captivity, probably with help which brings us to act three This is where they get more proactive, because I think the other thing we didn't talk about which.

Avish Parashar: The kind of cliche and chrome is there's that twist right like the ending like oh my God a monkey became Abraham Lincoln I know.

Michael Worth: horrible.

Michael Worth: horrible decision that was.

Avish Parashar: But the yeah but the whole like oh my God was earth so in act three I feel like a lot of it is like.

Avish Parashar: How do I get back home not realizing like he is home already but.

Avish Parashar: Like how do I get out of here how do I.

Michael Worth: Proactive escape it's it's really escape he's not trying to overthrow the government they're not trying, especially in this.

Rick Horner (he/him): Being like you know.

Michael Worth: It is literally, how do we escape and that involves engaging the allies and learning about long forgotten lore and using that to kind of end there's usually like a.

Michael Worth: Nice escape fight thing where like you know the evil bad guys soldiers are trying to chase you and and it kind of ends with him or her or them somehow escaping through some long forgotten era.

Avish Parashar: through a combination of what they actually will end with them not escape escape plan doesn't work and so they're kind of backs against the wall, which is why the only option and part for us to like enact for us to like.

Avish Parashar: fight back or you know take some drastic action.

Avish Parashar: The simple escape plan like oh.

Avish Parashar: You can get to this tunnel, it will take you out to the other side of the mountains, which is like a you know, a free area, you can go live there by yourself, but then like when they're about to do that the bad guys common like destroy that time I was like oh crap what do we do.

Michael Worth: That that's what happened in planet of the apes, they got there, and there was the soldiers like they kidnap doctor says to show him that they were in fact human so you're right they have to do that.

Avish Parashar: So it's like the darkest hour, like all the shit hits the fan at the end of activity yeah yeah and.

Michael Worth: uh so then act for is going to be two things one then proving.

Michael Worth: You know they but it depends on how we didn't necessarily have to prove that they're like the humans were the smarter race so, even if they existed before I just basically.

Michael Worth: convince the bad guys that they need to be let free and then they go free and then you have the big plot twist at the end of like you said, the Statue of Liberty or the statue of Abraham Lincoln.

Rick Horner (he/him): yeah they never did anything with a script for the sequel which was originally going to be called planet of the men and it focused squarely on Taylor where he creates a new civilization, because there were deleted scenes from the original plan in place where a novel was pregnant.

Michael Worth: And so very cool.

Rick Horner (he/him): Taylor creates a whole new race of talking humans and i'm so glad that somebody at some point was like Why would we do a whole movie about men in a movie called planet of the.

Avish Parashar: apes.

Rick Horner (he/him): Or that is.

Michael Worth: Yes, exactly.

Avish Parashar: Call it like.

Avish Parashar: reality.

Rick Horner (he/him): I can't wait to go to this theater and experience when I experience every day.

Michael Worth: But only 35 millimeter with Dolby sound right.

Avish Parashar: Alright, so our duck time or did go off the one thing we did not we always like to start with either a prologue or a trailer um, what do you feel in for this one mikey uh huh.

Michael Worth: uh I think the trailer because the prologue is going to be handled by the act one exploration, I think.

Avish Parashar: yeah I think that's fine so we'll do a quick movie trailer.

Michael Worth: And, and that gives me that get to channel Jerry Goldsmith and actually write like weird a total for the trailer.

Avish Parashar: I love this giant, so we got a nice little outline least as a starting point


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