If you’re familiar with the WB’s hit sitcom, you’ll know that “I’m A Survivor” refers to the theme song of the TV show REBA. This morning it also refers to the fact that “I’m A Survivor…. of a REBA taping”. Let me preface this by saying I really enjoy REBA. It’s an underappreciated funny show that I’m always happy to spend 22 minutes with… not an endless Tuesday night in LA where I want to feel like I’m ready to blow my brains out if this taping doesn’t end soon.
Just to give you a little background, a sitcom thats tapes in front of a live audience is essentially a play. The audience sits and watches as the cast performs a segment of the show, then based on the success of the segment, they tape it again, and again, and mabye even again, just to get it right. Obviously I have no qualms about trying to ensure the episode is funny, and if you’re on the floor involved in the show it looks like a really great experience. Yet as a sitcom audience member the experience was tantamount to torture (or being forced to watch According to Jim for 24hrs straight).
While it’s fascinating to see the set, actors messing up lines and how a sitcom is constructed, the novelty wears of after about an hour. The true horror sets in between takes, when the lighting and costume changes occur. The audience is ‘entertained’ by ‘comedian’ MARK SWEET (please note that the quotes mean I’m being INCREDIBLY sarcastic). I’m generally a nice person and not one to slam anyone publicly, but the ‘entertainment’ provided by Mark Sweet was the most painful thing I’ve ever experienced. It was so unfunny and borderline offensive that it ruined the entire experience for me. I can’t imagine how this man has kept his job for the five years Reba has been on the air
So all in all, my fabulous REBA taping wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. I have tickets to another taping on FRIDAY – JOEY, and to be honest, I’m not sure I’m going to go. I’ll keep you all posted. Tomorrow night is the Paley Festival event featuring FAMILY GUY, and no doubt that will actually be funny. Check back for my report.