February 4, 2011

Tough Room 2011

This week we bring you backstage with comedy writers at The Onion. They start with over 600 potential headlines for their fake-news newspaper each week, and over the course of two days, in the very tough room that is their editorial conference room, they select 16 to go in the paper. Plus other people speaking their minds in very tough rooms.

This episode is an updated version of Tough Room, from 2008.


Thanksgiving 2002, the Ohm family's dinner conversation turned to the recent terrorist attacks. Alexis Ohm, the youngest daughter, made a comment that in retrospect she admits was probably the wrong thing to say with her conservative, military-veteran dad at the table...that Osama bin Laden was hot. (5 minutes)
Act Two

Bar Car Prophesy

Writer Rosie Schaap tells the story of how she ingratiated herself into the adult society of the Metroliner commuter train bar car as a teenager. She would cast Tarot card prophesies for riders, in exchange for beer. This was fun and made her feel grown-up, until the cards showed her something she wasn't really ready to see. (12 minutes)

This story will be included in Rosie's upcoming collection of stories, entitled Drinking With Men.
Act Three

Mission: Impossible

Producer Jane Feltes spends a day with two young Mormons, on mission to possibly the least receptive environment they could find...the Upper West Side of Manhattan. (9 minutes)