Puppet Up!

Episode Report Card
Joe R: B- | Grade It Now!
It's Like Some Kind of Torture to Have to Watch This Show

Meanwhile, Aubrey whines in an interview that she can't take over, because she got smacked down for it last time, so she's forced to become a team player, of all things, so she can win. It kind of works, because before long, Arsenio is enthusing about what a great team player Aubrey is. I love how Aubrey plays normal human interaction like a game tactic.

Paul is suffering from back problems, so he ends up doing a lot of sitting around while everyone else works. Brian Henson and "Stuffed & Unstrung" emcee Patrick Bristow (a longtime character actor whom I will always think of as from that Seinfeld episode with the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat) stop by to impart some puppeteering/improv wisdom. Here's what Teresa gleaned from the meeting, about improv: "They said the funniest things are when you don't even know what you're talking about and stuff just starts flying out of your mouth." Teresa at least has the self-awareness to realize why that appeals to her.

In the workshop, Teresa takes a loooong time designing her puppet, not to mention picking out a name: Beyonce? Rihanna? Easy, Teresa. This isn't like naming one of your kids. Can't get too tacky. Speaking of which, Teresa's puppet looks like Bourbon Street was melted down and poured all over her. She eventually settles on the name "Fabulnia," because her cook-book, Fabulicious!, comes out in May. Meanwhile, Paul is suuuupes laid back, and they're wasting a lot of time in the creature shop when they need to be practicing their improv. Aubrey bitches about this behind the scenes but decides to passive-aggressively clam up in front of the team, because she got yelled at a couple tasks ago.

When they finally do start to practice the puppet improv, we discover that Teresa struggles with concepts like syllables or nursery rhymes. Aubrey mean-girls in interviews, all about her "bubbly, naïve, childlike personality" that ends up working for her. Arsenio is a pro, of course, and Aubrey takes to the emcee position really well. But asking Teresa to think on her feet and be funny off the cuff was always going to be wayyyyyy too much to ask.

The performance goes reasonably well. Arsenio does a great job with a Norwegian dentist character, which can't be easy. But Teresa blatantly violates the "yes, and" rules of improv and in general can't keep her utter brainlessness under wraps. Shockingly, Aubrey thinks that Aubrey did a great job.

Team Forte:

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