The Great Indoors
We attended the CBS studio taping on Nov. 16th, 2016 of "The Great Indoors," starring Joel McHale (Community). I found it a great way to network and meet up and coming stars, both in the audience and on the show floor. I got to meet a very generous McHale, who was extremely pleasant and accessible.
It was a great learning experience. The clockwork precision of the crew and its four cameras with four monitors each was something to behold. It was interesting to watch the director as he changed the script and worked with the Actor's for certain parts of the performance. I asked our host if they changed the script on an improv basis or if they had decided in advance different versions to see which got the most laughs.
The way shows are set up, the studio audience watches a very technical performance usually with 2-3 takes per shot and so they use a warm up comedian (Roger Lundblade) to keep the audience engaged, excited and laughing and cheering a lot. The live studio audience is the best way to get a performance out of the actors as well as provide a laugh track for the final version of the show.
This particular show engages wild animals as part of their storyline. These animals were taped in advance and thus the show has pre-taped "Roll Ins" which we watch while the actors wait for their next cues.
It was interesting to see how the drama is being built. The hero of the story is a very flawed character who still loves the woman who works with. She is engaged to another, but yet she has invited Jack to come back to work with her at the magazine.
The show relies too heavily on millennial jokes, however the writing is excellent and provided a lot of laughs throughout the taping.
I found that there was a lot of laughs and joviality from the crew, probably because they're getting paid very well vs. indie features.
During the audience warm up in between takes, they held a competition for talent in the audience. A couple of singers performed for the other side of the audience. Another guy did a pretty credible "Robot."
I actually ended up singing a couple of verses from Joan Jett's, "I Love Rock 'n' Roll," which netted our side three points, LOL, that was good for a melty, Snickers and a smashed Rice Krispie treat.