Trust Us, This is All Made Up


Splitsider has an article on a long-form improv documentary called “Trust Us, This is All Made Up.” Watch the trailer above!

Most of the film features a performance by the duo at the Barrow St. Theatre.  The rest follows Jagodowski and Pasquesi as they look for inspiration and, after the show, as they dissect the choices they made.

TJ Jagodowski and David Pasquesi are improv partners and Second City alumni. The director, Alex Karpovsky, is currently appearing as recurring character “Ray” on HBO’s “Girls.” The film was an official selection at the 2009 SXSW Festival.

Advice from Jagodowski on improv beginners:

Improv FTW

I found Heather and Miles after looking at some Upright Citizens Brigade videos and clearly they are an amazing improv team.

Rule 1 of improv is to agree with your partner and build off of their premise. AKA “Yes, and…” BUT, all rules are made to be broken.

I like the perfume sample scene above because it shows that once people reach a certain level, they can work outside the rules.

Even though I love Portlandia and SNL and Key and Peele, they aren’t improv shows.  If something great happens during filming, they might keep or add it, but everything is scripted to start.  So, I guess I will just keep watching clips of random improv teams and Whose Line is it Anyway on youtube:

Historical Improv by PERIODS

If you like Drunk History, you might like the “anachronistic period pieces with costumes a show choir would die for” created by PERIODS:

PERIODS. is an improvised comedy film series. Created by Victor Quinaz, Anna Martemucci, and the entire PERIODS. crew. PERIODS. is a co-production with Robinson Films, Inc. , Nomadic Films, and Before The Door Pictures.

While the characters and struggles might be straight out of The Hills or Real Housewives, these videos have historical settings. Their commitment to historical accuracy is truly admirable.

The Hairpin introduced me to Periods Films and here are a few of their videos:

My Drunk Kitchen

My friend told me I reminded her of Hannah Hart.  What a compliment!

My Drunk Kitchen is part cooking show, part hilarious drunk antics.

One day, Hart decided to make a cooking show and get drunk while doing it. “My Drunk Kitchen” was received much critical acclaim from aspiring alcoholics everywhere. For this she is very proud.

While you may not learn any recipes, you may pick up some new catch phrases, such as “Butter yo shit.”


Really people are just looking for ways to transport cheese into their mouth. All food that involved cheese is just an excuse to eat cheese. That’s life. You know how that’s like life? Because… We think we’re going after something, but really we’re just hiding from ourselves the thing we actually want… And that is to… just… bite into the cheese…I don’t think you realise how much cheese I just put into my mouth.

Wise words.  Wise words indeed.


I kind of stumbled upon BriTANick (rhymes with titanic) while watching different sketch/improv groups on youtube and they are one of the best.

Brian and Nick first met in Atlanta, GA at the Atlanta Workshop Players Performing Arts Camp. In 2004 they shipped off to New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. They worked together sporadically until finally deciding to unite themselves under the BriTANicK flag. Here’s how it works, Brian and Nick write, direct, edit, and act in all of the videos. If ever they are in need of assistance, as is often the case, they call upon their army of friends to come to the rescue.

Here are a few of their videos:

Academy Award Winning Movie Trailer


The Bathroom Pep Talk


The Morning Routine


Two longer projects:

Eagles Are Turning People Into Horses: The Movie

Brian McElhaney’s 2008 NYU Thesis Film, based on a script he and Nick Kocher wrote that garnered no support or money from any of the faculty, and nearly got him thrown out of class.



Suckerpunch is a short comedy by NYU grads Jeff Chan and Andrew Rhymer.  It stars Brian McElhaney and Kick Kocker, best known for their awesome sketch comedy duo BriTANick.

SNL cast/writers guest star in “I Want to Have Your Baby”

I read The Hairpin and The Awl and am now adding SideSpliter to the list.

Splitsider is a website about comedy and the people who create it. It covers movies, TV shows, web videos, books and any other format that exists to make you laugh.

I came across this article today “This Week’s Web Series You Need To Watch: I Wanna Have Your Baby.”  The author, Luke Kelly-Clyne, describes the wed-series as:

Written, created by, and starring SNL writer Christine Nangle alongside a host of other SNL/UCB talent including Vanessa Bayer, Gavin Spieller, Will Hines, and Taran Killam, I Wanna Have Your Baby follows Dolores Santangeli (Nangle) on her escapades as a surrogate mother for hire.

There are six videos so far. Here is the first:

Corrine and Jerry – I Want to Have Your Baby


Also, yes, that is Mike O’Brien (an SNL writer) of Seven Minutes in Heaven fame as the doctor and, yes, Broadway Video is Lorne Michaels’ production company of Portlandia, Baby Mama, and Incredibad.