Whose Watchdown is it Anyway: S04E01, or What a Friendly Seagull!

The year 2019 is about to end, and I still wanna fit in one more Whose Line. Because it’s a really damn good one.

Season 4 is another strong one in terms of Whose Line, as it’s really the last one before the producers would bank wholeheartedly on guest stars and gimmicks for shows. Like S3, it relied upon a small bank of fourth seaters- Greg got 3 tapings, Kathy got 4 (including 1 that airs in S5), Chip got 3 (including a carryover from S3 and a carryover TO S5), Brad got 3, and Jeff got 1. Since there’s a lot of S3 carryover (like one whole Chip taping), some S4 tapings wouldn’t get their material shown until S5, where they’d sort of be passed off as S5 tapings. Also, we’d get a few S5 episodes thrown onto this season in advance. So…very complicated stuff going on.

Still, the producers of Whose Line definitely wanted to put their best foot forward at the beginning of Season 4, because S3 was so damn strong, and it ended even stronger than they thought, so they wanted to start with something that good…and they picked the right one. This episode, featuring the welcome return of Jeff Davis, comes from a pretty great taping, and features pretty much the absolute best material from it (not counting an Infomercial here or a Greatest Hits there). This one was one of the few non-guest-star additions to WB’s Best of Whose Line DVD from last decade, and I can definitely see why it’s on there.

Note that as Drew sits down, Jeff is doing his ‘audience controlling’ hand signals

Remote Control: Chicken
Wayne: South Park
Jeff: Televangelist
Colin: Game Show Network
Ryan: Jerry Springer show

A GAME WE HAVEN’T SEEN SINCE THE UK ERA, and one that always seemed to be an amusing deviation from Authors.

Wayne starts right in as Cartman.
Wayne: “I like chicken, but chicken don’t make me fat, chicken make me big-boned.”

Ryan: “So you figure it’s okay to go out and get laid, is that what you’re saying?”
[this would have been censored a year ago..]

I love Jeff trying to do a healing ritual on a chicken, and then:
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 3.59.10 PM.png
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Colin’s in this round are just simple and quick, like “I’m sorry, you didn’t cluck in the form of a question…”

Wayne throws in Chef, Garrison and Mr. Hand. The guy knows his stuff

Jeff, reaching: “Open your books to…chicke-miah, chapter two…”
And then he finally happens on a good pun: “AND THE LORD SAID unto the chickens of Israel, THOU HAS BE-FOWLED THE EARTH.”
YES

Ryan: “Jerry, I’ve been plucking that chicken for two years now, and my wife didn’t know about it…”

Colin: “WHEEL…OF…POULTRY!”
Drew cuts Colin off here, and is losing it as he passes off to Ryan
Ryan: “and now for my final thought [pensive chicken noises]

Wayne is given the last spot, and does, as Cartman, as many chicken-related products as he can. Drew just keeps him going, and doesn’t buzz. Once Wayne starts to run out of steam, he realizes what’ll get Drew to buzz, and goes into a rendition of Kyle’s Mom that just BARELY wedges a curse: “BECAUSE KYLE’S MOM IS A BIIIIG…SHE’S A BIG FAT-”
BUZZ BUZZ BUZZ

Then, once they head back to the seats, you just hear Drew waving his arms broadway style and doing more of Kyle’s Mom. It’s like Ryan going ‘BIIIIIIRDMAN’. You forget what these guys are into

A really fun Remote Control round. Everyone had fun lines.

After this game, Drew announces “of course you know, this is not a game show, the points don’t matter, but tonight…100 dollar bills, anyone who wins a game. Wayne, you’re the winner..”
And so commences the taping’s runner- Drew just hands Wayne a 100 dollar bill, and Wayne’s absolutely in awe of it, going “IT’S REAL!”

Ryan asks to see it, Wayne hands it over, Ryan looks at it…and pockets it, muttering “that’s not a REAL 100 dollar bill..”
Of course, he throws it back after a beat

Let’s Make a Date: Jeff must choose from Wayne, a novelty singing bass fish, Colin, a temperamental actor having to do take after take of his big kissing scene with Wayne & Ryan, and Ryan, a series of death row inmates in a crowded jail cell welcoming new arrival Colin.

Odd that they don’t start with LMAD.

Drew: “yes, I cannot wait for you, Colin…”
Colin:
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I love Colin’s casual ‘oh, hi’ as Jeff starts. Colin couldn’t be less excited for this game

Wayne…uh…
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 4.11.18 PM.png
This is a classic. And it gets like 10 seconds of audience reaction.

Wayne interrupts Jeff’s 1st question and breaks into song, then goes right back to that same pose. He is SO damn good at this

Colin gives the audience a second to get his, then kneels down to Wayne. I love how the camera slowly zooms in on Colin and Wayne as Wayne smiles a little

Of course:
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 4.16.43 PM.png
I love the detail of the quirk card flying off the stool as he does this.
Also, why the stain on his side? Was there a water incident in an earlier game?

Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 4.17.57 PM.png

Then, Colin gets up and looks at Ryan. And Ryan is staying stern, but has this small little head-shake no. Like, quietly, “please no”. And Colin kisses him anyway.
Colin, to an unnerved Ryan, “CAN I GET SOMETHING HERE?”

Colin exits to his trailer, which makes it awkward for Ryan, as his quirk involves Colin being there. So he’s trying to stay alert
Jeff: “I don’t like #2, because on our first date he’s going to kiss other men”

Ryan begins the question: “I’m not gonna take YOU-”
Then he hears Colin come back in from behind him, and buckles: “oh, you’re back, are ya?”

I love all the characters Ryan has in there, like the guy with the shower mirrors, the old guy, the crazy guy, and back to the mirror guy. He then opens the cell door and does a kissing noise.
Ryan: “I enjoyed the kiss.”
Colin: [does nothing]
Ryan: [slams door, denied, cracking a bit]

Wayne’s wooing words: “YES I REALLY LOVE YOU, WE COULD HAVE A BALL
WE COULD MAKE LOVE AND YOU COULD MOUNT ME ON YOUR WALL.”
HAHAHAHAHA. PERFECT.

Jeff: “Bachelor #2?”
Colin: “I’m not looking forward to scene 51…”
He then eyes Ryan, still lusting over him, and sighs

Colin then suddenly kisses Ryan, who isn’t any more prepared or okay with it. Then, as Colin kisses Wayne again, Ryan hangs himself.

Once the scene ends, Wayne breaks, gets back up on his stool and puts an arm around Colin

Then, for one of the first times [if not THE first time], Drew offers Altoid mints to anyone who just got kissed, and Ryan takes a few.

As Jeff guesses, Wayne and Colin collect some altoids themselves

Drew gives Colin the 100 dollar bill, and throws in a smooch as well.
Wayne barely stays in his seat after this.
Ryan: “That’s just dirty money, now…”
Drew, tauntingly: “How bad d’you want it, Mochrie? C’mon, get your dirty money…”

Wayne: “He kissed really nice…for a DUDE.”
Ryan: “I don’t think the TONGUE was necessary…”
Wayne, singing: “I’m in love with a Canadian maaan…”

Drew: “Just when you thought Will & Grace was the gayest show on TV…along comes Whose Line is it Anyway…”
Ryan makes a point that he’s got a wedding band, as do Colin and Wayne (at the time). Jeff and Drew do not. Once Ryan sees Jeff without one, he points and laughs.
Jeff:
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 4.32.28 PM.png
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 4.32.35 PM.png
This is arguably one of the first Jeff moments where we can see the kind of performer he’d turn out to be- daring, fearless, and damn funny.

A really strong LMAD. All the quirks led to some good interactions, Wayne and Colin did top-tier work, and there was a ton of funny moments.

Drew sums up this show: “the points don’t matter, but the 100 dollar bills sure do…”

Sound Effects: Ryan is a husband and Colin is his heavily-pregnant wife at an amusement park when Colin suddenly goes into labor and has to get to the hospital

Michelle comes down and hugs Colin, and lets out a very audible ‘AAAAIIIIE YEEEAHHHHH!”
Ryan hugs Michelle, then goes to hug Colin but they awkwardly don’t. Heheh

I love Colin’s resigned headshake towards playing a woman again

The first part is Ryan and Colin doing the shooting range, and Michelle and Charlene can’t do the noises right. Either the silencer’s on or “there’s gum in there!”

Ryan: “Let’s go on the roller-coaster, that’ll get the baby going.”
Colin: “Let’s go on the big Scream-a-Whirl-a-Noise!”
Charlene: “WOOOOOO”
Colin: “It’s the loudest roller-coaster in the world!”

Ryan: [opens roller coaster apparatus]
Michelle: [ker-chip]
Ryan: “excuse me”

Ryan and Colin have to close the bar a few times to get a noise out of them. I love Michelle’s confused ‘C-CLICK?”

Michelle: “SSSSHHHHHHH bum.”
Ryan, thinking it’s over, starts to lift up his bar: “Okay”
Colin: “MY WATER BROKE.”
AHAHAHAHA. PERFECT MOVE.

Ryan: “And we’re stuck at the top, what a time for your water to break!”
Colin: “Well, IT WASN’T LIKE I WAS PLANNING THIS 9 MONTHS AGO MISTER-”

I love Ryan trying to put on the gloves, and Charlene doing feeble sound effects so he just keeps trying to get them to stay on
Colin: “You brought the laughing gloves!”

Ryan: “Alright, we’re gonna need hot water, but we’re on top of a-”
Charlene, randomly: “SHHHHHHH”
Ryan, taking it: “OH, THAT WAS HANDY. THANK YOU!”
Colin: “WHAT A FRIENDLY SEAGULL.”
This cracks Ryan up, but he has to keep with it

Ryan: “Wait, I think I see the head!”
Charlene and Michelle: “…BRAAAAAAHHHHH”
Colin: “Oh, isn’t it smart?”
HAHA. I love this one so much. Colin’s just shaking his head, not believing it either

Ryan asks Colin to push, and Michelle throws in this VERY CLOSE TO THE MIC breathing which cracks everyone up

Ryan: “IT’S COMING!”
Charlene: “AAAAAAAAAAH.”
Colin, not sure:
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 4.44.34 PM.png
Ryan, with a line that will never not send me into hysterics: “IT’S THE COPS!”
And Ryan just shoots at them.
Colin: “NO, DON’T SHOOT!”
Drew is dying at this point. I don’t blame him

Somehow, it’s Colin who has the most genius move. As they’re still up on the rollercoaster, he realizes they should actually get to the hospital, and says “Oh, there’s a ladder, why don’t we climb down?”
AND THEN HE DOES THIS:
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 4.46.27 PM.png
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 4.46.34 PM.png
[FFWWP]
And Ryan…not only cracks, but gets ANGRY
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 4.46.43 PM.png
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And believe me, I know why he gets so mad- I’ve been in a scene where my scene partner has done something so stupid and GOOD that it makes you mad that they thought of it and got away with it. So I get that face.
I also get Drew’s:
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 4.47.53 PM.png

They get down the ladder, and Ryan’s still kinda gone, looking at Colin with a mixture of scorn and jealousy

Ryan: “TAXI!”
Michelle” “AIIIIIGH”
Ryan: “PUT YOUR PANTS BACK ON!”
ANOTHER GREAT MOVE
Ryan: “…they’re SCREAMING at you with a baby hanging out of you like that, TAXI!!”

Charlene throws in a screeching noise, and Ryan and Colin are very confused what that means.
Ryan: “…I THINK THAT SCREECHED TO A HALT, IF I’M NOT MISTAKEN.”

They get into the taxi
Michelle: “JAM!”
Ryan: “…you sat on a cockatoo!”
I love the randomness of that line.

Ryan: “Alright, take us to the hospital, quick!”
Both Michelle and Charlene start doing screeching and near-animal noises. I love Ryan’s tired, exhausted reaction.

Then, as they get out of the taxi, Charlene throws in a ‘BAM!’
Ryan, without a better idea, clutches his side, yelling “SOMEONE SHOT ME!”
Dear lord.
As the audience applauds, you just hear Ryan go “WHY WOULD SOMEONE SHOOT ME?”
Then, as he has a moment, Ryan remembers the other part of the scene and pushes the baby back up Colin, because we needed one more of those.

The scene ends, and…that was hysterical. One of the funniest SFX playings in the show’s history, and one of the few where some of the humor came from the strength of the SFX, and some came from just Colin and Ryan making each other laugh. It felt very advanced, and a lot stronger than some other ‘we react’ scenes. One of my favorites for sure.

Drew passes Ryan and Colin a 100 each, and Ryan immediately goes “let’s give it to the girls”, so they go up into the audience and give them to Michelle and Charlene.

We cut to Drew and he looks very awkward.
Ryan: “Oh, I’m sorry, did you want that back at the end of the show??”
Drew: “No, you just saved me $200 dollars, I was about to do that and now I don’t have to..”
Colin: “…hey, that was our money!”

Doo-Wop: Jeff, Wayne and Colin sing about Peggy, who died in a freak taxidermy accident

This is the first playing of this by the new rules- Drew asks for a woman’s name and a hobby, and they use those.

Wayne: “She would read all of the books from the shelf
I remember the day she stuffed herself.”

Jeff: “Ooh, Peggy, I remember when she died
I opened her up and I reached up inside
I stuffed that girl, arms and legs and head and all
Now that girl sits up on my wall.”
Fantastic verse from Jeff

Colin debuts his drastic bass voice for his verses

Colin mentions: “I didn’t have the chance to slip you the tongue.”
And his punchline: “next time you stuff a tiger make sure that he’s dead.”
HA

Then, as Wayne goes back up, Colin debuts his bass ‘buh-buh-buh-buh’, which he’s kept using to this day

Jeff gets the dollar there, which he deserves

Drew: “Thanks Colin, I love the way your cheeks go [imitates the buh-buh-buh bit]
Ryan: “You should have seen from behind, they were around the sides of his head…I’M SAYING IT’S A GIFT.”
Colin: “yeah…”

Colin’s fine without the 100 (this must have been late in the show), so Drew throws it into the audience
Ryan: “THAT’S *MY* DOLLAR!”
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A really damn good Doo-Wop, and a great standard for future playings.

Props: Wayne & Colin vs. Ryan & Drew

Jeff is controlling the audience response at the desk, telling them when to start and stop the applause. He’s a NATURAL.

Wayne starts with a favorite:
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 5.11.30 PM.png
Wayne: “ANIMAL! ANIMAL!”

This is such an energetic round of this: even mundane ones, like ‘the clean and jerk’ or ‘wrestling belts’ are coming off as fun. Also, this probably the best ‘King Kong on the Empire State Building’ one.

Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 5.13.53 PM.pngColin: “I’m an out of work Dr. Seuss character…I will work for money, I will work for honey, I will work for you…doodle-loodle-loo.”
I love Colin, man

Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 5.15.36 PM.pngColin: “This was a hard stone to pass…”
Screen Shot 2019-12-31 at 5.15.59 PM.png
Ryan: “Lemme tell ya, this is a hard stone to pass…”
HOORAY FOR PROPS RUNNERS

Drew, as he sends off, is spitting out bits of a prop.

A really strong Props, one of the better ones we’ve had. It’s always nice when they’ve got enough energy to make even the mundane ones fun.

Overall: Last season we had to wait 2 shows for our first 10/10. We don’t even have to wait that long this season, because MAN is this good. Two games are classics, the other three are among the best playings of that specific game. The $100 bill runner is a classic, and carries into the other shows from this taping. Jeff had more moments where you can see how important he’s gonna be to later seasons of WL. The looseness of S3 carried over to here, where lots of fun things happened between games, the Altoids came out, and it felt like a really fun environment. And plus, you have the hook of that Let’s Make a Date, and the hilarity of that Sound Effects, to have people coming back for years anyway. A personal favorite episode, and one that seems to be remembered fondly by the fanbase as well.

Show Winner: Jeff
Best Performer: Colin juuust beats Wayne for those Props moments. The most live moments of the show (Colin grabbing Wayne, pushing up the baby) came from him.
Worst Performer: Ryan had solid moments, but felt like a bystander in many games.
Best Game: Sound Effects. It’s very close to my heart, but I can’t say it’s worse than anything else here.
Worst Game: Uhhh…GOD THIS IS TOUGH. Nothing here is even remotely bad. Let’s just say Remote Control cause it’s the most self-contained? But even that one’s awesome.

COMING UP NEXT: First Kathy episode of the season, and suffice to say they do her dirty. Luckily there’s a new game and a classic SFAH moment.

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