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31 Plays in 31 Days, #27 - "Grow Up"

Ugh. So here's the problem with this scene. It's another for the Fraiser spinoff pilot, but it uses an idea I'm not sure I want to include.

I really want to have Freddy believe that David came to him in need, which create a sense of responsibility to his cousin that he latches onto for emotional validation. The idea that he has something to offer a desperate David makes him feel good. But then I want it to turn out that David's actually just using him for something else, which makes Freddy feel betrayed. It will temporarily cause him to withdraw his support out of hurt, but realizing that David's immaturity makes him need Freddy's guidance more than ever leads him back to actually be there for his cousin. That will create a real basis for their relationship-- David needs to learn from and rely on Freddy, and Freddy is taken outside his unhappy self-obsession by taking care of someone else. That idea is super solid and I want to use it.

Additionally, I want to include Alice Doyle in the cast. The trouble there is I'm not sure how. She'd need to turn up in Boston for some reason, and be hooked into the plot somehow, but I was concerned how to do that in a way that wasn't too coincidental with how David happened to arrive in Boston at the same time, after the two of them grew up in Seattle. She's also six years older, which puts her at a slightly different place in life than either Freddy or David.

So where I'm tripping is, what should David's true motivation be? And how does Alice factor in? Unfortunately, at the moment, the only thing I can think of to make these work are to have Alice arrive in Boston for grad school and David, who was believed he was in love with her since he was a kid, decided to come to Boston after his Yale suspension to try to keep pursuing her. She has rejected him in the past and continues to, intending to go on with her own life.

The advantage of this is that it folds her into the story in a sensible way, taking away some of the coincidence. It's a solid ulterior motive for David moving in with Freddy, and one likely to make Freddy feel used and offended. It also makes the need to honor her feelings and develop a relationship with her based in friendship and respect part of David's growing up process.

The problem, however, is that it's a little stale to motivate one of my two primary leads with a disappointed crush on a woman. Despite my intention for her to be one of the main cast and a fully-rounded character in her own right, it brings Alice into things initially as a plot device. I hate doing that to a female character.

I might be able to make it work in a way that wasn't reductive. Maybe if I show that the POINT is that she's her own person and that David is making a mistake in how his crush on her makes him ignore her own agency. It might be okay then. But I'm not sure.

I'd love to think of some other way to make these ideas work, but at the moment I don't have anything else. So I took a crack at it with this scene. It would fall directly after Day #20 - "Reaching Out" in the scene order.

If I did use this, though, it would mean that the whole first half of the pilot was drafted.

Day #27 - “Grow Up”
From Frasier spinoff
By Phoebe Roberts

David sits impatiently on a bench, throwing glances over his shoulder. He is shocked by the sudden entrance of Freddy.

Hey, cuz! How’s it going?

Freddy? How did you find me?

It was harder than I thought it would be, that’s for sure! Good thing you have location services turned on on your phone!

As David stares at his phone like it betrayed him, Freddy sits on the bench beside him.

How did anybody ever find people to hang out with before that? Anyway, I was thinking I could show you a bit of the town. I mean, you’re going to be living here, and you don’t even know where the public libraries are!

Wow, I don’t know if I’m up for that much fun right now. Maybe another day, okay?

Okay, it doesn’t have to that. We could…go on a pub— creep, or to the Green… Beast, and catch a baseball match!

He sees David look over his shoulder again and pushes to recapture his attention.

Or we could just… Netflix and chill!

David turns around to stare at him in horror.

That’s what it’s called, right?

No. That is not what the thing you’re referring to is called. I hope.

Enter ALICE DOYLE, striding across campus with a bag. David stands and steps into her path.


David? What are you— you’re here?

Oh, my God— Alice? Alice Doyle, from Chicago? It’s been years!

Hi, Freddy. Good to see you.

You too! You’re in Boston?

Just started grad school here. But I thought David was at Yale.

Yeah, well, Yale might not be working out. I thought maybe I’d try it here for a while.

So… what? You just had to come here and tell me that? Why?

Well— we’re in the same city now.

And you think that means we can be together now?

Wait, what? I’m sorry, be together?

Distance wasn’t the problem, David.

I’m not just some little kid anymore. I’m out on my own now—

You think half a year at Yale is enough to mean you’re grown up?

Alice, I came all this way—

To see me?

To be here for you! Doesn’t that show you how serious I am?

Oh, my God. David, is that why you’re here? Because you followed Alice?

Freddy— this is none of your business—

How could you do this to me?

To you?

He’s crashing in my place! He told me I was the only person he knew in Boston! Apparently I was just the only apartment.

Oh, Jesus. David, nothing has changed since we last saw each other in Seattle. It’s not going to happen. I told you that loud and clear. And if you think showing up here to directly disregard that, then you’re just as much a child as you were when I first told it to you.

She steps around David and walks off. Freddy stares at David in outrage.

Well? What do you have to say for yourself?

Nobody’s ever going to Netflix and chill with you.

Posts from This Journal by “frasier” Tag

About Me

My name is Phoebe. I'm Boston area theater professional and English professor focused in writing, acting, directing, and modeling. I'm known for having lots of interests, lots of opinions about those interests, and a very high estimation of the value thereof. This blog is for talking about whatever's on my mind, from my daily life to my activities to musing on any number of abstract topics. Thanks for taking the time to read.

My productions:

Upcoming Productions:

MRS. HAWKING part 2 and 3

at the Watch City Steampunk Festival 2016

presented by The Chameleon's Dish

Vivat Regina
by Phoebe Roberts

at 2PM


Base Instruments
by Phoebe Roberts

at 6PM

Saturday, May 13th 2017
at 274 Moody Street, Waltham, MA

Other Achievements:

"The Tailor at Loring's End" screenplay
Quarter Finalist in the Final Draft Big Break Screenwriting Competition 2013

"Adonis" screenplay
Top Ten Percent in the Bluecat Screenwriting Contest 2015

Latest Month

April 2017


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