It could be due to the fact that I watch far too much television, but lately I think my social life has begun to strongly resemble the structure of a TV show. Recently I haven’t been as heavily involved in the social antics of my regular circle of friends, as I’ve genuinely (and unfortunately) been busy with other things through no real fault of my own. I was given my own spin-off from the main programme if you will, a series that focused on my attempts to make it as a writer in the big city and that looked at the my relationship with a sexy, French twenty-something. Let’s just say the spin-off was little watched and while it had a small and dedicated cult following, a second season wasn’t commissioned. Instead it was scaled back to a collection of lower budget webisodes (A brief warning: I’m going to continue with this analogy throughout the entire blog, so if you’re not a fan, I would bow out now).
Having been written out of the original show as a series regular for a brief time, they had to recast. Unfortunately for me, the new cast members were funnier, better looking and far more popular than I had ever been. With the spin-off taking up less of my time and with my original contract still valid, they decided to bring me back to main series. As with any popular returning character, my comeback, although a ratings hit, was ultimately a bit of an anti-climax. I had a lacklustre script and my character didn’t quite gel with the new ones. The show had evolved and the storylines had moved on. All I was doing was pissing on the legacy of my once glorious character.
Instead of being a regular, I was now scaled back to a recurring role. No longer central to the ‘A’ storyline, I could be brought back when a particular scene required me or to tie-up outstanding plot threads.
This may seem like a muddled mess of words, so just let me clarify certain parts of the analogy:
Main show / programme = Social life.
Spin-off = My life.
Cast members = Friends.
Plot / storyline = Stuff my friends get up to.
Series regular = Part of the main group of friends.
Recurring role = Seeing friends occasionally.
Guest star = Seeing friends two / three times a year.
Got it? Good.
My central concern now is that I will eventually be downgraded to guest star and brought back only once a year for Christmas specials and wedding/funeral episodes. This is a very real possibility, as my current contribution to the storyline is minimal. I generally have the worst lines and when the script does require me to be in front of the cameras, it’s usually for expositional purposes only. Frankly, most of the time I may as well be a background extra, bumbling around the scenery to fill space in pub and club scenes.
I should be clear that I have loved my time on the show and I in no way blame my fellow cast mates or the producers for my current predicament. This is purely a situation of my own creation. Now all I can do is either pray that they don’t decide to kill me off (unfortunately it’s not a supernatural drama) or try and bag a movie deal. I just hope that I don’t land a dream job in Paris or decide to go on tour with my band. There’s no coming back from that.
I would like to thank you for sticking with this blog post as I stretched the metaphor to breaking point. It was probably as painful to read as it was to write.