In the Style of an Amnesia Thriller like The Bourne Identity and The Long Kiss Goodnight
In a World...where most people live their lives unaware of the forces at work around them, one man will find himself with no memory of who he is or was. Moving on with his life, he finds peace, until his old life desperately seeks to drag him back for his own nefarious purposes.
This episode contains the improv games Gibberish Switch, Old Job New Job, Pardon, Countdown, and Cutting Room.
About this Episode
In this episode, we pay homage to the genre of “Amnesia Thrillers.” You know the movies, where a hero wakes up with no memory of their previous life, and the slowly discover that they used to be a very dangerous person involved in very dangerous things. Some movies in this genre are The Bourne Identity, The Long Kiss Goodnight, and the TV show Absentia (which Avish keeps referring to as “Amnesia” - whoops!).
We make some changes on the fly to our improv game list and end up having a lot of fun being commentators at the world cup as player after player is taken out...
The Bourne Identity on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Bourne_Identity_(2002_film):
The Long Kiss Goodnight on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Long_Kiss_Goodnight
Absentia on Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Absentia_(TV_series)
Segment 1 - Discussion the Genre Tropes: 04:53
Segment 2 - Creating the Movie Outline: 10:53
Segment 3 - Picking the Improv Comedy Games: 17:27
Start of show: 24:35
Improv Game - Gibberish Switch: 26:00
Improv Game - Old Job, New Job: 28:57
Improv Game - Pardon: 40:41
Improv Game - Countdown: 51:27
Improv Game - Cutting Room: 56:11
End of show, into announcements: 1:09:53
More Information About the Show, Mike, and Avish
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Avish’s site: www.AvishParashar.com
Mike’s site: www.MikeWorthMusic.com/
Transcription of the “Discussing the Genre Tropes” Segment (Unedited and Un-Cleaned up)
Avish Parashar: Without further ado, then we will begin with segment one.
Avish Parashar: Right now we're going to spend five minutes discussing the tropes cliches commonalities of this genre so i'm going to set my little timer i'm still here on the duck I know at some point, I said I switched from the duck but I did not yet.
Michael Worth: I like the duck the duck.
Avish Parashar: Nothing.
Avish Parashar: You know what some variety, though.
Avish Parashar: All right, five minutes starts now all right, you want to kick us off when you think of the tropes of this type of.
Michael Worth: email or what do you think so it's actually a fairly small cast you've got the main character, which is of course the amnesiac um.
Michael Worth: The main character, has a series of skills that are highly specialized and very uncommon.
Michael Worth: This is kind of the triple that what the skills will be will probably be part of the funny and it's at this particular one um there's usually the main character is there there's a second secondary characters are as follows.
Michael Worth: The person or small group of people that rescue and slash nurse this person back to health, so it could be like a family could be you know, like just a person.
Avish Parashar: off at a love interest.
Michael Worth: yeah there's a love interest that emerges somewhere in there, like if it's a family, maybe, like the eldest daughter falls in love with him or you know this assuming it's a guy because it could be a girl, but whatever i'm.
Michael Worth: The major secondary character is the villain that wants this guy back he either wants this guy back or dead yeah i'm.
Avish Parashar: For what the pursuer like there's a person trying to get me or whatever is they're trying to get the the main character right.
Michael Worth: And the pursuer will oftentimes have access to a couple things one is still have access to like good surveillance technology and like kind of like assets, you know, like he can he can.
Michael Worth: spy on the guy or he can you know, like use like you know drones to like figure out where he is and then he also has access to like you know just warm bodies to throw the hero right he's got like.
Avish Parashar: yeah and I would say this kind of movie though you get the almost the triangle so sometimes you get like.
Avish Parashar: The villain villain but then you also may have like the government or authorities who are trying to recapture slash track this person down or like i'm born.
Avish Parashar: The government is trained born, they thought he went road they're trying to get him back with them they're also like bad guy so that could be like.
Avish Parashar: i've got that also bad guys but, like the others a combination, or maybe within the authorities there's like the rogue faction that wants in debt versus the other people that just want to save him so there's a lot of times as like a triangle is like two groups of bad guys.
Michael Worth: Are antagonist exactly, and you know I think honestly there's not too many tropes right there is a the other trope is well let's talk a little bit about how the skills are revealed.
Avish Parashar: And yeah.
Michael Worth: What the skills are because that's kind of a very common thing I mean you can just you just say, maybe, just as easy as they're always when their emotions are always access assassins are always exercise.
Avish Parashar: yeah if we're going with the thriller genre that the skills yeah always like violent.
Avish Parashar: You know, and so one of the trope says they get forced into a situation where they have to use their skills and all of a sudden, they reflexively like almost kill somebody.
Avish Parashar: yeah is one drove I think I don't know if it always happens, but a lot of times like there's there's like bread crumbs in mystery so like.
Avish Parashar: They come across something that looks familiar or someone recognizes them on the street and they're like why I don't know who you are so there's like these weird like little little hints at who they are yeah.
Michael Worth: And it almost always culminates in.
Michael Worth: The hero, the here's the question does the hero end up at the end of the movie remembering who he or she is to the memories come back or do they kind of.
Michael Worth: Because, at the end if they do at the end they take the fight to the boss, is part of the trope and they kind of free themselves in a good movie unless you try to build a sequel at the end, the hero has kind of freed himself from whatever.
Michael Worth: marionette strings are hanging from either he eliminates the organization that wants to dead or he convinces the organization that wants to backlit he's dead.
Michael Worth: The question is, does he do it, while remembering, who is old self is or is it almost like he's a new man with old skills new skills, this new way, because I think you can go both ways with.
Avish Parashar: I think you can go I think in the born in the board book he doesn't really remember who he is.
Avish Parashar: or your another good SCI fi example of this is total recall is like.
Michael Worth: Yes.
Avish Parashar: You scored like I mean that's he's because he went in the recall machine but same thing he's like discovering all this stuff, so I think I think I go either way but yeah I agree that whether or not he gets full access or not.
Avish Parashar: He remembers enough and then kind of makes that choice to completely defeat the people who were trying to stop him recapture him kill him whatever yeah.
Michael Worth: Exactly and.
Avish Parashar: Usually some bigger plot as well, like they're after him or her, because they know something or they have like like the access codes to something like there's something about them that they have, or they know or like you know before they got amnesia they hit the the.
Avish Parashar: Nuclear launch key or something and like yeah.
Avish Parashar: The try to get them back for that exactly.
Michael Worth: And that's the other part of the tropes, and this is a good thing, the villains are competent, the villains, are in a true thriller they're competent now, of course, we can Fuck with it because it's our.
Avish Parashar: it's our podcast it's the car, it could be.
Michael Worth: grossly but in general uh you know jace the main character has to play their a game to outsmart defeat the villains, but the villains are defeated but they're not like definitely empire.
Avish Parashar: yeah alright so that's our town had one other thing to add is that.
Avish Parashar: I think, often what happens is that the.
Avish Parashar: When the main character learns about who they were they were not a good person it's almost always like they did bad things.
Avish Parashar: Now they're like their new lease on life and I realized that they're like living a good life and being a good person, but before turns out, they were an assassin or a villain or you know.
Michael Worth: something bad, yes, yes, exactly good job good.
Transcription of the “Creating the Outline” Segment (Unedited and Un-Cleaned up)
Avish Parashar: Fantastic which brings us to segment to.
Avish Parashar: Right now we are going to spend five minutes and it creates a high level outline based on the tropes we just.
Avish Parashar: went through we're going to use a four act structure to tell our story it's like set up reaction proactive conclusion and just quick note.
Avish Parashar: we're not this is improv comedy So this is the outline we're going to start with, we may veer from it significantly but we're going to come up with a rough outline, so I minutes now cool.
Michael Worth: I think she'll prologue not a trailer.
Avish Parashar: Okay, so for those listening, for the first time we usually start with either a prologue or a trailer I agree, I think prologue would be good for this.
Avish Parashar: Car so then what's going to happen in the prologue is.
Avish Parashar: We may see a glimpse of this person in their life in their like what what leads them to having amnesia is often what happens like we see them almost get shot or get in the car accident or we could see like the villains, and their big picture plot type thing.
Michael Worth: yeah yeah i'm doing one of those two things we'll figure that out.
Avish Parashar: Okay cool so.
Avish Parashar: So here we meet the hero kind of in their life.
Avish Parashar: In their quote unquote ordinary life right.
Michael Worth: Now, do we want or what will sometimes happen is, we will be introduced to the hero in act one by having them be rescued.
Michael Worth: meaning they washed up on shore and his family takes them in right or like the family's driving through the woods pump a campsite they're like oh my God there's this body in this guy's like all scratched and maybe he's got some some nice food.
Michael Worth: yeah so.
Avish Parashar: I feel most are like that long kiss goodnight was not but bourne identity is amnesia is, I feel a lot of them do start with the discovery of the person.
Avish Parashar: yeah yeah.
Avish Parashar: Or that could be the prologue so yeah yeah so.
Michael Worth: One of the ordinary ordinary life.
Avish Parashar: or alive kind of see them, but I think we, I think we need to meet the villains here right like we have to see.
Avish Parashar: Maybe I would say at the end of the actors, were the main antagonist discover where they were and what this person is yes.
Michael Worth: Oh, by the way, do you know you don't have a great example of one that does what you're talking about where we start by beating the ordinary life history of violence with viggo Mortensen.
Avish Parashar: There yeah.
Michael Worth: that's another lesson classic one yeah cuz he starts off he literally is like a Deli owner owner owner.
Avish Parashar: yeah I haven't seen a long time yeah remember it started like you didn't know.
Avish Parashar: They kind of set it up, so you think these people are incorrectly after him and then you're like oh no there yeah yeah he's.
Michael Worth: yeah that's really good that's really good viggo Mortensen could do no wrong he's amazing.
Avish Parashar: Well yeah aragorn the bomb.
Avish Parashar: I think, also maybe the hints we talked about like.
Avish Parashar: An act one like the purse something happens and maybe the person uses their skills.
Avish Parashar: Which is often the thing that tips off the bad guys like there's a news report about this person that like you know rescued a kid from a burning building and then they're like oh wait that's sorry so and so yeah.
Avish Parashar: I think they use their expert skills somehow in this act one.
Michael Worth: So the end of act one, the main antagonist shows up and there's that initial encounter it's either a direct face to face encounter or to them kind of discovering and maybe learn again doing surveillance or something like that.
Avish Parashar: yeah yeah they get kind of.
Avish Parashar: put on the case yeah then brings back to, so I think Act two is when the this is kind of the main characters quest to discover who and what they were they start like researching a little bit and like trying to learn what they were before their amnesia yeah.
Michael Worth: yeah totally do that okay cool.
Avish Parashar: um but they're very unclear very foggy for them like they're not like Oh, I must be to govern operative they're like wait a minute like here's a key to a safety deposit box, let me go see what's in there and oh my God it's like God what the hell is that now, at this point.
Michael Worth: The years in reactive mode one of two things happen.
Michael Worth: Either either the bad guy organization tries to kill him for the first time, because he can't be left alive right, so the first attempt that is life happens.
Michael Worth: Or the first pressure attempt to get them to do work for them where they're like you know he comes like he comes back in like two of the members of the family are being held hostage or something and it's like hey listen you got to tell us where.
Avish Parashar: Oh yeah right so yeah they do like a hostage and they're like oh you got to go use your expert skills that you don't remember to go do this.
Avish Parashar: The course to do something clients yeah either work for them, or you know hey you know you have our diamonds bring to us and we'll let your family go or something like that.
Michael Worth: yeah that kind of stuff you know so there's there's definitely an attack on the hero either to attack with the hospital force compliance or to tack on his life.
Avish Parashar: yeah and then at the end of Act two is like I think they they learned some critical piece of information about who they were.
Avish Parashar: Like they may not remember it but they learn like that they were a government operatives they were an assassin, or they were you know slip and slide or whatever they learned yeah exactly no APP three.
Michael Worth: it's going to kind of be one or two things it depends on what i'm actually liking, the idea of of the the bad guys kind of holding people hostage to comply him to like you know.
Michael Worth: finished whatever mission, he or he so at three is him proactively solving the conditions that created the hostages, meaning if the hostages were there, because you had to.
Michael Worth: get this diamond that you had hidden somewhere he goes back and he finds the time and he overcomes trials and traps to get it right so.
Michael Worth: Yes, at three is him removing the barriers to remove the hostage situation.
Avish Parashar: Right and he's re acquiring we learning remembering those skills as he's going through this process right.
Michael Worth: And then, if know how obvious you want to be, since you went up and reading and prefer storytellers, the answer is going to be very obvious.
Michael Worth: For his he.
Michael Worth: Rescue he knows he's going to get portrayed so he basically takes it to the villains breaks the back of the villain organization or no kills the main villain rescues the hostages and disappears kind of thing.
Avish Parashar: yeah yeah oh I gotta say our plot yeah.
Michael Worth: So at four is takes down shadow org.
Michael Worth: rescues hostages.
Avish Parashar: And then, and then disappeared disappears who's on with their life or whatever.
Michael Worth: we're gonna have an epilogue we've never had an epilogue before.
Avish Parashar: You have an epilogue.
Michael Worth: gonna disappear disappears there we go.
Avish Parashar: Alright, so that brings us I think that's a pretty good outline so that brings us to the end of that.