To combat the creeping cabin fever and winter-madness of a Daylight Saving Time snowstorm, the author has decided to revisit his video collection of rare, unaired, failed television pilots starring Cochran.
The following is a partial transcript of the pilot episode of Cochran's Intimate Sit-Down Celebrity Interviews. The show was targeted for an afternoon time-slot on the ESPN family of networks, likely as a companion to Jim Rome is Burning, though the connection to sports was dubious.
The program was not picked up.
[Cochran, in a suit, enters from stage left to mild applause; camera pans over a two-thirds full studio audience]
COCHRAN: Thanks. Thank you so much. Wow, this is going to be fun. I was just backstage with my good friend Wachter... [heavy booing from crowd] ... I know, I know, the smell can be a bit much, but it's a good way to get rid of all my extra ham salad.
[Cochran ducks a tomato thrown at him]
COCHRAN: Tough crowd. Okay, let's scrap the opening monologue and get straight to our fabulous celebrity guests! [applause] First up, we have everybody's favorite sperm factory, Levi Johnston!
[Levi Johnston enters from stage left, completely nude; Cochran and Johnston sit down facing each other from two love seats]
COCHRAN: Great to meet you, Levi.
JOHNSTON: Good to be here.
COCHRAN: [leans in, rests chin on hand] You're naked.
JOHNSTON: Yeah. You guys paid me to be naked.
COCHRAN: [puts hand on Johnston's thigh] We did. But I want to move on to something else. Your mom is famous?
JOHNSTON: Um, no. My baby-mama's mom ran for Vice President.
JOHNSTON: Of the United States. Then she quit her job as governor of Alaska so she could pretend to write a book and then get a cushy Fox News talk show in 2010... Your hand is still...
[Cochran laughs nervously, takes hand away]
COCHRAN: Didn't you float around in a balloon or some shit?
JOHNSTON: No, and I'm getting cold.
[a few nervous coughs from the audience]
COCHRAN: Look, kid, I'm going to be honest, I thought you were someone else. What do you say we cut our losses and you go put some clothes back on?
JOHNSTON: [shakes head, leaves stage left] What the hell?
COCHRAN: I think this show is going really well. How about our studio audience?
[camera pans to audience; most seats now empty, a few people are reading newspapers]
COCHRAN: Thanks to everybody who's still here. Our next guest is going to be so much fun. You know him as a World Series champion, I know him as my stock broker for the last four years, ladies and gentlemen, please welcome my friend and yours, Lenny "Nails" Dykstra!
[Dykstra, wearing his old Phillies home uniform, enters from stage left to a slow-clap from one person]
DYKSTRA: What the fuck is this? I thought ESPN had some cheddar. [sits] This place looks like my bitch mom's basement.
COCHRAN: Lenny, how did you get so rich?
DYKSTRA: Bro, I don't know if you heard, but I'm not living the dream no more.
COCHRAN: Hmm. I see.
DYKSTRA: I've got nothing left. But it's not my fault. It was all the scumbags that I did business with for all those years, they stole all my money. My planes, my houses, my unicorns... Everything is gone.
COCHRAN: So the money I gave you to invest...
DYKSTRA: Oh, that's fine, bro. Are you fucking serious? [spits on floor]You've actually doubled your investment.
COCHRAN: What a relief.
DYKSTRA: Yeah, dude, you're all good. [snorts cocaine off of thumbnail] I just need like two grand to get it for you. It's complicated.
COCHRAN: Whoa, two grand? Do you take bad checks?
DYKSTRA: My empire was built on bad checks, bro.
[Cochran brings out checkbook, writes check, hands it to Dykstra]
DYKSTRA: Cool, dude. I'm gonna jet. [leaves stage left]
COCHRAN: Thanks, Len. Well, it looks like we have time for one more guest. [to audience] What do you say?
[a cricket seems to be loose in the studio]
COCHRAN: This is a big one, so without further ado, ladies and gentlemen, Regis Philbin!
[Cochran waits several seconds with a giant smile on his face; no Regis]
COCHRAN: Phil, do we have Regis? ... No? [sighs] That's it then? Ladies and gentlemen, sorry to tease you like that, but that is going to do it for the show this week...
[a glass bottle is thrown at Cochran and breaks behind him]
COCHRAN: What the...?
[The last two audience members begin throwing their chairs in the direction of the stage and chanting "Regis! Regis!"; the stage hands and Cochran fight back; final four minutes of footage consists of unbridled rioting; gunshots heard right before tape cuts out]
Internal ESPN documents indicate that Cochran's Intimate Sit-Down Celebrity Interviews was produced as an April Fool's joke for ESPN's executive vice president. It also resulted in seven arrests.
|Robb Witmer Full could not be reached for comment. |