I was actually assigned the first draft of The Rivalry, but didn't get to it before it was deleted, so I was happy to get the second draft. It was a good read, and has potential to be a good traditional light hearted RomCom.
One of the reasons I was interested was I am a huge Football fan. Unfortunately I mostly watch NFL, but I do keep track of College Football and go to a few Hawaii games now and then. I understand rivalries and the way team allegiance is passed on from generation to generation.
Dialogue was clearly the strength of the script, and considering how dialogue driven RomComs are, that is a big plus. About the only thing I could see that needed improving was the tightening of a few lines to strengthen their comedic punch:
P19 "Totally. I wanna have tons of his babies. (cut)Itís a pretty common name, Harris. (cut)"
P28 Hi. Iím Jay Harris, number eighty two for the Michigan Wolverines. Can you help me find my ass? (cut) I hired a detective, but he hasnít gotten back to me. (cut) "
The characters were okay. I felt they were a little bland and you missed a bunch of opportunities to create some real eccentric characters with Kayla and Jay's parents (more on this later). I actually began to get a little annoyed with Kayla's overzealous love for Ohio St. I understand she "bleeds red" (good joke, BTW) but she was pushing her religion way too hard. I would have dumped her if I were Jay.
Most of my concerns were with the story. The premise is great. I honestly don't know why someone hasn't done this already. I think it reeks of comedic potential because of how passionate some people and families are about their sports teams.
Your basic plot is good, and there are some real highlights, particularly Kayla's mom watching the game while in labor, the dinner scene where Kayla keeps getting bland food, and the ultimate football finale. The problems I had were with the story as a whole. After the initial debate on whether Kayla should date a football player from a rival school, there basically isn't a whole lot of conflict other than Kayla's obsession with Ohio State above all else. Like I mentioned in the character section, this made her character a little too unbelievable for me. I've seen some obsessed fans, but never to the point to where Kayla was. The surprising thing is this would have worked perfectly for both Kayla's parents and Jay's parents. You could really go for a Romeo and Juliet-esq type story if you wanted to go in that direction.
I guess it all boils down to the relative lack of conflict and consequences to their "forbidden relationship". The majority of the second act consisted of conflict that was self-inflicted by Kayla's Ohio State obsession. The rest of the conflict happened behind the scenes, Like when jay tells her that his team is uncomfortable with his relationship with her, I wanted to see that happen instead of hearing about it. You finally got others involved closer to the end of the script. I enjoyed the cheerleaders taking a stand to Lisa and defending Kayla, which was a really cool moment. I also enjoyed the big game, but (you knew there was a "but" coming, lol) I think Kayla needs something to truly test her loyalty to Jay. I don;t know exactly what, and I truly do love the sudden cheering for the other team moment. I just think there was a smidge bit more you could do to build up the tension of that critical moment.
Finally, to end this on a positive note, I really enjoyed your writing style. very smooth, and easy to read. I hope to read more of your scripts in the future.
A few notes:
"Ohio State sucks". Funny!
"Stop eating all my Ramen?". Funny!
Unless it's a Bowl Game, the visiting team's band doesn't do a halftime show on the opponents field. I've seen visiting cheerleaders, but think about it. Why would the home team want to showcase the opponent's school?
Review of: The Rivalry
reviewed by iceeis on 08/04/2010
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