The End of The World Show
According to televisual personality and Highlander Dick Clark, it is a new year. It is a time for “new years resolutions” in which people make a goal they have no intention of actually meeting because otherwise they wouldn’t have waiting to an arbitrary point to start. However, I am ready to join their masses. My resolution is this: I am going to become such a shameless self-promoter that people will begin to cringe when they hear my name. Although, that may already be true. But only because I have the same name as the guy who wrote three of the Fast and The Furious movies. I’m just going to use this as a forum for pitching show ideas until somebody buys it and I kiss them on the mouth in appreciation.
Here it goes: the easiest way to come up with a new TV show is to “borrow” an existing idea. We are all aware of the hit juggernaut that was the show Cavemen. As we all know, it is a show about modern Cavemen living in the modern world. Here’s my show: Ancient Mayans living in the year 2012. What makes this interesting is that the year 2012 is the end of their calendar, and thus is perceived by some people (like John Cusack) to mean that’s when the world is going to end. So, in a way, this idea still ties into the future.
However, in this world, the ancient Mayans won’t quite be as modern as their Cavemen counterparts. Like Cavemen, there will be three main characters: the kind of bland main character, the dumb one and the one that is Nick Kroll. They do believe the world is going to end after 2012, which is where much of the comedy will come from. It will sort of have a Y2K feel, only instead of about forty percent of people acting ridiculous, only like 10 percent of the people will be acting ridiculous. Still, we will be laughing with them, not at them. Surely, this is a logical and valid distinction worth mentioning. They will be the only Mayans around, and they just sort of have misadventures in the modern world. It will be just like when the Flintstones met the Jetsons.
The characters won’t perform human sacrifices, but they will play ancient Mayan flutes. Was it Mayans who played the game where people tried to hit a ball through a hoop with their hips? Let’s say yes, and let’s say they play it. Okay? Also, they wear fancy head dresses because, I mean, they have to look Mayan, right? They’ll work, they’ll learn, they’ll laugh, they’ll love. Just like us! It will be great.
Of course, the first season has to end with New Year’s Eve. If the show only gets one season – although how could an idea this brilliant not make it a decade – the show will need to cover the one thing everybody knows about the Mayans, which is the world ending in 2012. In the finale, and spoiler alert here I guess, they are preparing for the world to end as the ball drops and then…it doesn’t. The world goes on. Then, things get really somber and serious. Their lives are totally torn apart. They don’t know what to do with themselves. Their entire belief system proved faulty. Sure, this means they still get to live…but do they really want to? And maybe one of them kills themselves. During sweeps week.
So, there it is. Mayans in all its pitched glory. It looks airtight from here. Now, I know some of you may be saying that the Mayan calendar ends December 21, not December 31. Also, they don’t really think the world will end in 2012. They just think it is the end of a cycle of life. We’ll just slap a little “Based on Some Facts” disclaimer on the credits and call it a day. It’s hard enough to get people to watch shows about “those people,” so if suddenly we are teaching them actual Mayan culture, it will just confuse and irritate them, our beloved viewing audience. Plus, it’s not like there are any Mayans around to complain about it – again this is “Based on Some Facts.”
The clichéd ball is in your court, TV People. Don’t let this clear instant classic slip through your fingers. The world is clamoring for the Mayan version of Cavemen. Will you answer the call? At least before ending this cycle of life.
Chris Morgan is a writer living in Los Angeles. You can follow him on Twitter (@CMorganExaminer) and/or listen to his podcast.