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Fight Song: “Tik Tak”

September 19, 2017

Kesha’s new album came up in conversation the other day, and I remembered that I’ve had this little parody sitting in my email drafts folder for like three years. I have the whole music video storyboarded in my head, but sadly, it’s probably going to stay there — I’m not a filmmaker, and medical school has this thing where they want you to study all the time. I’m extra sad because the real music video for “Tik Tak” is pretty low-budget and we could definitely get the same vibe going for a parody video, just, you know, with more swords and doublets.
kesha inigo

“Tik Tak”

Wake up in the mornin’ feelin’ like Musashi
(I said good day, sir)
Grab my oar, I’m out the door, lookin’ for Tycho Brahe
(I am for you)
Yeah, you’re rich and yeah, you’re right, but that means Samurai Jack
Cause I can fight five rings around you with one arm at my back

I’m writin’ poetry about my nose, nose
Keepin’ you on your toes, toes
Cuttin’ buttons off your clothes, clothes

Drop chop and flirtin’ with all the ladies
Goin’ up to the parties
Tryna get up in thatduende

Don’t stop, pommel pop
Better get your parries up
All right, gonna fight
At the break of daylight

Tik tak, drive ’em back
Better stay on the attack, oh
Woah-oh oh oh
Woah-oh oh oh

Ain’t got a care in world cause I got plenty of steel
Bet all the money in my pocket I could make you kneel
Now, the dudes are linin’ up cause they hear we got swagger
But we’ll cut ’em to the quick with our rapier and dagger

I’m talkin’ bout everybody gettin’ tight, tight
Snaps are flyin’ left and right, right
Gonna smack him if he doesn’t wanna fight, fight

Now, now, we goin’ til they kick us out, out
Or the watchmen shut us down, down
Watchmen shut us down, down
Prince gon’ shut us… down
(Rebellious subjects! Enemies to peace!)


You work me up
You cut me down
My heart, it pounds
Yeah, you got me
With my hands up
You got me now
You win that round
Yeah, you got me

You work me up
You cut me down
My heart, it pounds
Yeah, you got me
With my hands up
Put your guard up
Put your guard up

Now, the party don’t start till I walk in



I initially thought of writing this because my old renfaire fight director called an extended series of moving 3-4-3-4 attacks “tic tacs,” but I’ve never heard the term anywhere else. Have you?


For the millionth time, HIRE A FIGHT DIRECTOR

June 8, 2017

I’ve written about why you should hire a fight director even if it’s “just a slap”; I’ve written about the potential benefits of hiring a fight director, even an inexperienced one, instead of hiring nobody. Now I’m going to write about some goddamn common sense.

Last April, though I only saw the article recently, two New Zealand high school students sustained serious injuries during a production of Sweeney Todd, when unsafe props were brought in and then improperly rehearsed and deployed. I’m talking, of course, about the straight razor the Demon Barber uses to dispatch his victims.

Feel that little chill go up your spine at the thought of children slitting each other’s throats? Okay, good. Now, why did the adults in charge of this production not have the same aversion to that scenario?

CNN reported,

In comments broadcast on TVNZ, school head Stephen Cole told reporters Thursday that the students were wounded by a prop razor “covered in all sorts of duct tape and foam and paper.”
“It’s a razor, but it’s been filed down and bound with various things,” he said, adding that the prop did not have a sharp edge and had been used during rehearsals without any problem.
“It was deemed important to make it as realistic as possible,” he told reporters.

Cole sounds like he works for the Trump administration: it was filed down, but also covered, and there was tape and foam and paper, and somehow it still looked more “realistic” than a prop razor?

Right. Okay.

Read more…

The Late Late Show needs a fight director

March 26, 2017

Med school leaves me with very little free time, but I’ve gotten into the habit of watching clips from late-night television — they’re just the right length to accompany a study break and a snack. When I saw this one just now…




Unlike most late-night talk shows, this one tapes in L.A. Hit me up next time, guys. 🙂

And I thought I could not love Tim Gunn any more

November 26, 2016

Fighters young and old

August 19, 2016

This little guy had me crying with laughter:


And this fierce lady is my newest role model:

Surprise Retroactive Encounters With Famous People

July 17, 2016

A college friend’s Facebook status just alerted me to the fact that I did college theater with Kate McKinnon — as in, SNL’s Hillary Clinton and Ghostbuster Kate McKinnon. (Her name was different, which is why I’m not quite as oblivious as I sound!) And not just, like, there-when-she-was-there: I fight directed The Skriker, with her in the title role (in this scene, in fact); I have really fond memories of that show and now that I compare them to the face in the Ghostbusters trailers… yup.

I made a fight for Kate McKinnon. I SAT ON HER. My eyebrows are up to my hairline and planning to stay for a while.


The cast of 2004’s The Skriker at Columbia University, directed by Elissa Goetschius, also starring Sarah Lord and Erin Walters — and look who’s in front!



A Tale of Three Macbeths

June 14, 2016

Over the past few nights I’ve been working on some props for Those Women’s upcoming show Margaret of Anjou. I like to have TV on in the background while I art-n’-craft, so I decided to finally check out the Michael Fassbender Macbeth. And then the next night, the Great Performances film of Patrick Stewart’s. And, of course, the recent production at the Berkeley Rep was on my mind. Thrice to thine, and thrice to mine…

macfassbenderThe Fassbender movie was… fine. It didn’t add much to my experience of the play, or the oevre of Shakespeare on film, but I also can’t point to anything in particular as “bad.” Ho hum, Scottish accents. The one interesting idea was that Malcolm actually catches Macbeth killing Duncan; they moved “the fountain of your blood is stopped” to this moment, and even if Fassbender didn’t own the role overall, he sure as hell can radiate menace. Malcolm, of course, high-tails it. So that was fun. I also really wanted to see The Borgias‘ Sean Harris as Macduff, since Harris is usually the one playing the murdering psychopath in any given… anything. He was serviceable, as well, but I find Macduff much less interesting than Micheletto, so.

sirpatstewmacbethOkay, I’m’a be a total spoiled Macbeth hipster for a minute here, but I saw Patrick Stewart live at BAM, and it was amaaaaaazing. There were changes for the filmed version, of course, and I missed some of the things you can only do onstage, like repeating the dinner party scene so we see it both with and without Banquo’s bloody ghost. The overall Cold-War-ish Soviet look was the same, love it, and most of the moments mapped onto what I remember, with one slightly disappointing exception: onstage, the most striking thing about Patrick Stewart as Macbeth is that he never yelled. Never. Did not shout defiance to Banquo’s ghost, did not roar at the oncoming Macduff, nothing. Threats and orders were delivered quietly, in a voice that scraped the bass end of his register. There was some shouting added in the movie version — but still about 95% less than your average Macbeth. Every performance in this one blows the Fassbender movie out of the water. Great knife fight at the end, too. (Terry King, you are the man!)

And then, swimming up in my memory, come Conleth Hill and Frances McDormand as the royal couple….  Read more…