The first in a long and painful education. I learned more about writing than I ever had and probably ever will.
Which is not to me a necessarily great movie. And I started to play with that a bit, and I began to understand the show, and the High School as metaphor… It occurred to me recently that one of the main differences between movies and television is that movies are an answer, whilst television shows are a question.
This is the essence of what art is.
They opened up every genre and dissected it, and showed you their organs and where they went. These are the unknowns who captivate us on a nightly basis with virtually no thanks at all, save a paycheck and a quick screen credit.And ultimately that was the beginning of what Buffy the television show was, and the metaphor of High School as hell. So I was in heaven. But then I discovered that no movie ever would, as long as I was writing in Hollywood. An empowering and sweet gimmick, but a gimmick none the less. And to me the idea of blending genre is something we need in our genres, or they become ossified. And when I come up with the metaphor of High School as hell my career changed, and the way I write changed, and everything started to click. No, it did not turn out the way I hoped. Classic examples would be The Searchers, or Rio Grande, which have horror elements in them: they turn into horror movies for periods. Can you elaborate on that? My very first room, at Dinosaurs, was not like this, which I think was a good thing—it let me know that there were a variety of experiences out there.
JE: Yeah, sitcom rooms tend to be bawdy and competitive, and to work very long hours.