Someone bought FranksandBeans.com. It wasn’t us.

Franks and Beans fake logo

A few years ago, before we bought the domain franksandbeansonline.com, Larry and I looked into buying the more obvious name of franksandbeans.com.  It probably doesn’t take too much thought to figure out why we didn’t buy that particular name: it was expensive.  REALLY expensive.  Like $18,000 a year expensive.  And so franksandbeansonline.com was brought into existence, and franksandbeans.com sat unused for years and years.

But then someone bought it and turned it into a site with pictures of girls on it.  That’s fine, of course, but I have to at least say that it’s a strange use of the domain.  Is it a desirable domain name?  Do people wander over there and click on the ads?  I have no idea.

Franks and Beans Ghostbusters

Interestingly enough, franksandbeans.com isn’t even porn.  It’s good looking girls, often in skimpy outfits, but that’s about it.  Porn, I could get.  Heck, that goes without saying (…ladies).  I suppose we’ll see if this experiment lasts, as that 18 grand (if that’s indeed what the name went for) is real money.  But hey, maybe we’ll have some cross promotions in our future.  Reach out, franksandbeans.com, and send us a line.  Heck, look at all of this free promotion that you’re already getting!

My favorite part of the website is the page dedicated to the privacy policy:

Screen Shot 2014-02-26 at 12.22.09 AM

 

Nice.

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I think First National Bank is trying to tell me something…

I got a flyer in the mail recently extolling the virtues of First National Bank, which bought out local Parkvale Bank locations.  Throughout the publication, the bank endlessly promotes its website, which is, as you can see, fnb-online.com.

This is funny for two reasons: first, this is perilously reminiscent of another website I know of.  What’s the name of it…it’s, uh…oh!  I know!  It’s basically the abbreviation of franksandbeansonline.com!  Second, I find it hilarious that a corporation had to opt for the “online” phrase in the URL address.  The only reason we here at F&B (the comedy show, not the bank, so we’re clear) have “online” in our web address is because http://www.franksandbeans.com, a much more desirable name, is listed for sale at around $18,000 per year.  Suffice it to say, we pay a bit less for our domain name.

That all said, if Franks and Beans ever hits it big and has the need for a separate, business-only bank account, you can bet we’ll be banking with First National Bank.  I mean, we’re practically family.

We do other stuff, too.

I know what you’re thinking – “Jeff, Larry, you two are so selfless for giving so much of your time to Franks and Beans.  Frankly, I don’t see how either of you have any time to do things like eat, travel, work, raise a family, learn to play the harmonica, garden, launder, solder, frolic, drill, sing, or do any of the things many people find necessary.”  Well, you’re not far off – I still don’t know how to play the harmonica, but maybe one day.  My point is, even though Larry and I are magnanimous in gifting the universe the Internet comedy show Franks and Beans, we still manage to do other things as well.  And if you, terrific Internet viewer, can enjoy some of those things as well, provided that you can find your own time away from watching our videos and looking at adorable pictures of cats.

Larry, for example, is probably the biggest Dukes of Hazzard fan in the world.  He’s got a collection that would either amaze or sicken the average person, and now he’s got a website with which he can show off his collection and connect with other collectors across the world.  But what in the world would he call this website?  That in itself is a mystery.

Except that it’s called this: DukesCollector.com.  There’s also a message board where fans can chat.

For myself, I have been known to write some things, and every so often some people read them.  I’ve got a comic book out titled Teddy and the Yeti, but more importantly, I’ve got a website where anyone can go and spend…oh, just hours (and also money).  I also have a second blog, one that’s associated with my comic book work and random musings, that you can find here: http://teddyandtheyeti.blogspot.com/.

If anyone just stumbled upon this Franks and Beans website and isn’t simply here because you were forced to visit by Larry or me, and you’d like to check out some of our other stuff, well, there you go.  It’s like a gateway drug without all of the chemical dependance.

…I think I might make that last phrase our new website slogan.

(Retro) Blog 01 – High School

It’s a good thing that I save my blogs as Word files, because this marks the third time that I’ve posted blogs for various episodes, and I wouldn’t want to have to do MORE WORK and write new things each time these were reposted (and besides, I’ve got about 20 more to write before I’m all caught up, anyway).

In any case, below is a behind-the-scenes look at our very first episode, “High School”, as it originally appeared on the old Franks and Beans website.  If I have anything new to add, i.e. if I can’t just leave well enough alone, I’ll type it in bold italics.  You know…for reference.

Originally posted 08.12.09

“Begin at the beginning.”  “You gotta start somewhere.”  “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.”  These are all really important quotes from tremendously famous people who are all dead (the middle one might just be a general colloquialism, but…just go with me here).  As these quote-makers are all dead, and have been for some time, there’s no chance any of them were thinking of Franks and Beans when they were laying down their words of wisdom.  In fact, if you had shown Lewis Carroll episode 1, “High School”, he might have responded to it by asking “what is this fancy magic screen showing me the lives of tiny men?”  The lesson here is this: screw those dead jerks.

As you may have read in the blogs I posted on the Funny or Die website (I admit, I blogged out of order), I had plans for Franks and Beans the series to take on a different life than what actually came about.  Initially, there was to be a more sequential feel to subsequent episodes, with plot lines and characters springing from this pilot.  When I think back to it, Larry and I might have been able to actually pull it off – perhaps we could have overcome the limitations of not having a regular cast beyond the two of us and a regular shooting location beyond the living room in Larry’s house – but in retrospect, I’m much happier with the freedom that a loose continuity affords us.  If we feel like filming an episode where I dream about having no pants, then we film an episode in which I have no pants with no need to squeeze it into an existing plotline.

The first seedlings of ideas for this series came about in late 2007, after I had moved roughly 600 miles from home and was looking for a way to tether myself to the place and the people I had left behind.  It might seem odd that I would try and develop an Internet skit show after moving away from the locations, actors and equipment, but to me, it made perfect sense.  In early 2008 Larry and I began filming, and though our schedules afford us very few hours of filming, I’m happy to say that we’ve kept up with it for over a year and a half.  (Ironically, we filmed more quickly before I eventually moved back home in 2011.)

“High School”, then, is our first shot at finding out just what we were about – the episode you look back on and say “oh, that character’s hair is way too big” or “they really didn’t have the back-and-forth down at all yet”.  It’s a beginning, with all that brings with it.

We begin this episode with the “Jeff” character (perhaps based off a literary character or some such noise) running down the street for what ends up being a big portion of the entire pilot.  As I’ve explained before (I’ll repost my earlier FoD blogs here with their corresponding episodes), this wasn’t just a random sprint down the road.  When I look back on this episode, I see the potential for two possibilities here: either I was so eager to tell Larry my new plan that I couldn’t wait to get in my car (or at least walk at a more leisurely rate), or I entered every episode this way.  As it turned out, it was a one-time gag, though we revisited it in a later episode, which might end up more confusing than funny, though just the sight of me straining and trying not to fall has a certain amount of humor to it right away.  I generally consider myself to be in fair shape, but the few times I tried to run – actually run – up and down these inclines, I thought my heart was going burst through the top of my head.

In similar fashion, we planted some seeds for Larry’s character (perhaps named for Lawrence Fishburne) as we show him sleeping in his clothes due to recurring nightmares.  Logistically, this also solved the problem of waiting for Larry to change into real clothes after waking up to hear my desperate pleadings, but when I think about it, I wonder how we would have dealt with this newfound character point.  Would Larry be afraid of changing clothes?  Would he wear the same outfit forever, as if he were a cartoon character?  Maybe we could have had an episode where he rips his shirt and goes into a panic-induced coma.  I suppose there were a limited amount of ways in which we could have taken this particular development, but the what-could-have-been still remains.

What stuck from this episode and was carried forward into the series once it got under way in earnest does more than justify the existence of this episode, which may stand out as strangely plot-heavy when compared to later ones.  The loose continuity and the reliance on sight gags, word play and a singular, driving joke is what Franks and Beans evolved into, and the beginnings of that are certainly present in “High School”.  Larry’s Action Jeep speeding out of frame becomes a staple, as does the oh-so-subtle tossing of the jacket over the downstairs railing, but the basic plot, one where, most of the time, my character comes up with a head-scratching scheme and Larry’s character, the skeptic that he is, decides to see it though, is this episode’s greatest gift to the rest of the series.  Certainly, we parody ourselves and this episode in particular a good bit, but this is where we learned what Franks and Beans was about.  This continues to be one of my favorite episodes even though overall our best work is yet to come.

Our first episode also marks the beginning of our long running “NO!” ending.  This is, for all intents and purposes, a simple parody of a generic cliffhanger.  We’re taking a serious plot – one character opens a door and is shocked by what he sees! – and shooting it over and over (and over…) again.  At first, the idea was to do basically the same thing every time – Larry opens the door, yells “No!” and that’s it; no mention is ever made when the next episode rolls around.  Soon after, we realized that we could tweak the ending just a bit so we could preserve the spirit of the cliffhanger parody while still leaving room for a little creativity.  Keeping the same ending new and funny has since, after 36 episodes as of this writing, become one of the most challenging parts of Franks and Beans.  But dammit, we keep trying.

“High School” the episode is, in a few ways at least, like high school the four-year institution.  It’s awkward at times and there’s no chance of girls going out with me (seriously, it’s not like I was a leper or anything), but there’s greatness waiting to come out.  Hopefully, as we continue to release these episodes on our BRAND! NEW! WEBSITE!, that will prove itself.

As always, both Larry and I thank you from the bottom of our blood-rich hearts for taking the time to watch our stupid videos and browsing the still-in-construction site (some things never change…).  If you like something, please, leave a comment.  If you hate it, leave a comment.  If you hate it and want to fight me, leave a comment with your address and I’ll be around sooner or later to beat your ass.  In any case, we do appreciate the views and the support.  Lots more to come.  Stay tuned!

The plan.

The new Franks and Beans website is up and running and looking halfway decent.  The web address – http://www.franksandbeansonline.com – is functional again and takes everyone (hundreds of thousands of you typing it in daily) directly to this page.  The “About” page has content on it for the first time ever.  There are links to the right of the page that lead you to pertinent sites like the YouTube page and our other projects.  The time is right to start adding videos again and putting content back out for all to see.

There are other things that will be changed: the background image (I searched Google for sunrise images…IT’S A METAPHOR) will become something F&B-centric.  If I can make the sidebar links less generic, I will.  Also, I’ll start being funny again in my blog posts, if I can ever break out of this spiraling, enervating melancholy that I constantly feel at the depths of my soul every waking moment of my existence (there we go!).

In any case, videos, blogs and other info will be re-posted in an expedient fashion in order to get us up to speed on all things Franks and Beans.  The sooner this becomes a more complete website, the better!  Then, the advertising push begins.

You can’t keep a good website down…

…at least not for too long, that is.  The original franksandbeansonline.com went dark a number of months ago, and this is one step on its slow crawl back from oblivion.  I guess I shouldn’t use “step” and “crawl” in the same sentence as that is mixing metaphors, but then again charming wordplay is just one reason so many people love Franks and Beans, the irreverent internet video show.

For now, we’re using franksandbeansonline.wordpress.com as the official homepage, but I’ll soon be linking the official domain name directly to this site…so either address will eventually take you to the same place.

It’s been a while since I’ve used WordPress, and I’m a bit limited with this current incarnation.  I will, however, strive to make this a fully functional site as soon as possible, with videos, blogs, behind-the-scene stuff, and news all making a triumphant return…or a return at any rate.  In the meantime, our reliable YouTube page is still up and running over at http://www.youtube.com/user/FranksandBeansOnline, and you can watch all 53 episodes there plus some other random videos…such as my Camry reaching 300,000 miles (it’s great, really).

Once I drag Larry back into the fold he’ll be posting here, too, and I hope to have some interesting stuff to reveal before too long.

Thanks for the patience, as it’s been a long road back.  But there is a mustache-shaped light at the end of the tunnel.  More to come.