Difficult People: Carter the Musical / by Charlene Wang

From Season 2 Episode 7 of Difficult People

From Season 2 Episode 7 of Difficult People

Since it was just announced that Difficult People has not been picked up for another season and Taylor Swift is out there promoting her latest album, it seems like the perfect time to resurrect this highlight in my career thus far. 

Taylor Swift and President Carter.png

One of the storylines from Difficult People Season 2 Episode 7 “Carter” was a musical that Julie and Billy are writing which evolves from a musical about Taylor Swift from the point of view of her cats (“Swiftical”) to a musical about President Carter in a pastiche homage to the runaway Broadway hit “Hamilton.”

This sort of improbable and absurdly comic combination of pop-culture elements is a hallmark Difficult People move and what made the show so fun. (#RIP)

Difficult People Carter Musical.png

So the idea was that they wrote the musical about Taylor Swift, and then they had to change it overnight to make it about President Carter and the script called for a storyboard that showed this evolution in the set. 

Knowing that writing story beats about a musical about Taylor Swift was a job perfectly designed for me and my embarrassing wealth of knowledge about Taylor Swift, Jess the set decorator delegated me the task of coming up with the storyboard elements.

this is after I wrote it out at my desk in the production offices

this is after I wrote it out at my desk in the production offices

In order to transform the Taylor Swift musical storyboard elements into a musical about Carter, I did a quick Carter presidency wikipedia read and tried to find storylines or characters that had any sort of parallel to the story beats I came up with for the Taylor Swift musical. 

Yes, what I’m saying is I tried my best to make it actually logical and realistic in how I transformed a Taylor Swift musical storyboard into a Carter Presidency musical storyboard. 

here is a nice little close-up of Arthur and the storyboard in the episode

here is a nice little close-up of Arthur and the storyboard in the episode

So you can imagine my utter delight when watching the episode to see how prominently the storyboard was featured!

 It was one of the wonderful moments in life when you are like YES I AM GETTING PAID TO DO A JOB THAT I AM PERFECTLY SUITED TO DO. 

here is one last zoom-in of the finished board on the set from a still from the episode. 

here is one last zoom-in of the finished board on the set from a still from the episode.