Backbone war room. Meat Loaf's decided he'd like them all to be animals in their story (so, it's nonfiction, then?). He'd also like to have a moral to the story. I think it might be a little difficult for this group to figure out what a "moral" is, but we'll see. Mark McGrath, a "writer," sort of takes the lead, story-wise, leading to this gem from Busey: "God bless Mark McGrath. He's the hood ornament. On your car of creation." Anyway, Mark's brilliant idea is to make Lil Jon a superhero, which Lil Jon thinks "might be kinda hot." Which is always what you want to get across to children, right? That you're hot.
ASAP. Lisa's trying to come up with a them: diversity? Tolerance? But Nene thinks no one's focusing on the fact that the children are four and five years old. La Toya (whose name I spelled wrong throughout last week's weecap; sorry about that, Ms. Jackson) and Star agree that those themes are too big for that age group. Lisa explains that the brainstorming started out well, and then went bad. La Toya says that Lisa was discombobulated as a leader. Lisa says it's hard to lead women who can't be led, and who want nothing positive to happen for her. Even Marlee -- who suggests teaching the kids sign language -- tells Lisa to just take charge already.
Back at Backbone, the men get to meet with Margery Cuyler of Marshall Cavendish Publishing. She's published many children's books, so she knows what she's talking about. Margery tells them not to try to use rhyme in the book unless they have someone who's very good at that. John takes that as a direct challenge to make the book rhyme, of course. At ASAP, Star suggests an ABC book done in sign language, but Lisa says kids already know their ABCs by that age. Marlee says that they don't necessarily know signs for animals, which are very visual. This is when Margery comes to visit them. Nene, as usual, looks pissed off. She's so warm. Margery tells the ladies that animals are wonderful for children's books, because they're so visual and kids love them. They all decide to have La Toya be the main character in the book: La Toya the Lion. She's happy to be the star. Not for the attention or anything, but because she's a team player. (Giggle.)
Backbone. The guys have a storyline, which John reads: "Lil Jon's going to a brand new school. / He's afraid the other kids won't think he's cool. / Lil Jon's kinda quiet and not very tall. / And no one talks to him when he walks down the hall." They all love it. John advises them to write the rest of it like a country song: a "very big idea, short amount of words." Jose's like, "no one talks to him? Like, not even teachers." But Mark thinks he's getting into semantics. Jose says that people don't realize how creative he is, and then he tells the group that he doesn't like saying "nobody" because that includes teachers, which is a bad message. "I don't think teachers should ignore little kids." Meat Loaf says teachers aren't normally in the hall, but Jose gets deadly serious: "Oh yes they are! I beg to differ." Is Jose's mom a teacher or something? Mark still thinks it's semantics, and Meat Loaf tells him to lay off this a little bit. John asks Jose to come up with another word if he doesn't like "no one," because it seems like all he's doing it shooting him down. John tells us that "Jose Canseco smashes baseballs. He does not write rhymes."