Ideas are funny things. They inhabit a plane of existence outside the physical universe…the same universe that holds everything else, known or unknown, with the exception of these ideas. When you think of something, and you picture it in your head, electrical signals are shooting around your body, but where does the idea itself exist? Where is this image you’ve pictured in some ethereal capacity? Nowhere, of course, but if that’s the case, how do we have those ideas? How can something exist and at the same time not exist?
This is not to overmysticize the whole process and try to make it sound like something it’s not. But the point of this all is WHERE DO WE COME UP WITH THESE GREAT IDEAS FOR FRANKS AND BEANS? Another level of existence, that’s where. And you can tell your friends this, because it’s true. If they call you a liar, punch them right in the throat.
This brings us to our 46th episode, “Previously”. The idea for this episode sprung from two places: the unknowable nothingness that I just spoke of, and the desire to do a “backwards” episode, which is not a new concept but is probably attributed to Seinfeld more than anything else, at least as far as television and the like is concerned. Now, you may be saying to yourself that this episode of Franks and Beans is not in fact filmed in reverse sequence, and you would be right. Ideas, fleeting as they are, sometimes change in the process, and such is the case with “Previously”, where instead we ended up with lots and lots of fake buildup, only to have no real payout in the end (just like every other episode of Franks and Beans, amIright, fellas?).
Speaking of change, there’s an interesting easter egg-y moment happening in this episode, as for once we try to be subtle about something. Larry and I wear the same shirts throughout the episode, swapping them at times for no other reason than to have a background joke tossed in.
The episode took some strange turns but I think it worked to its full effect, poking fun at the really long and expository recaps that some shows put at the beginning of new episodes. The tension builds and builds and builds (“You, all right? I learned it from watching you!”), and we even manage to keep a fairly consistent continuity throughout the “previously on…” sequence, with the exception of the non sequitur of the two of us laughing for no apparent reason. Larry’s mysterious letter is the driving force! What could its contents reveal?
Somewhere out there in the universe (but in our real universe, not the strange abscess of reality where ideas exist), there’s an extended clip of our penultimate scene, where the apparently non-long-for-this-earth Jeff takes us to the cliffhanger. This deleted scene lasts about three times as long as the actual episode, and I go on and on about whatever I can think of. I’m pretty sure we put it on the season two DVD. Whatever. Maybe Larry can dredge it up for you one day, blog readers.
The joke of this episode plays on all of our expectations, or more appropriately, the complete turn we take from everything that had come before. Instead of answering any of the questions we post, either explicitly or implicitly throughout the episode, we end with us (in new shirts!) eating ravioli and spouting a “that’s what she said” line, which, let’s face it, is always sure to please (that’s what she said).
Not to let the backwards theme go, our “No!” ending features a backwards scene…of sorts. It’s a stretch, but…it is what it is. Such is the life of ideas.
Oh, and I finally (we knew it was coming) messed up with the sequence of these episodes, as I forgot we had a commentary episode lined up for “Why So Misleading?”. We’re all probably surprised that it took this long for it to happen. Please watch it, and listen to Larry sound like he’s happy that he’s throwing up.