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Thursday, September 10, 2009

iCarly: Fun Facts about "iThink They Kissed"

by Dan Schneider
iCarly Executive Producer/Creator

*** SPOILER ALERT ***


Here's all the cool behind-the-scenes scoop about iThink They Kissed which premiered Saturday night, September 12th, 2009.

Please remember, about these Fun Facts – if you're an iCarly super-fan, you'll probably enjoy reading this stuff.  But if you're a casual fan, you might find it a little boring. But even more importantly...

DON'T READ THIS BEFORE YOU WATCH THE EPISODE IF YOU DON'T LIKE SPOILERS!!!!  YOU'VE BEEN WARNED!!! :)  Remember: You can wait and read these Fun Facts after you watch the episode.  Okay, here we go....

SCENE-BY-SCENE FUN FACTS

When you're done reading all this, please tell any of your friends who like iCarly about these Fun Facts, and that they can come here to read them. Thanks!

iThink They Kissed

This episode is sort of the "sequel" to iKiss, the episode where Sam and Freddie shared their first kiss together.

When I wrote that episode, I already had the sequel episode in mind (the basic idea).  Then, when iKiss became one of iCarly's most popular episodes, I went full steam ahead with the iThink They Kissed script.

*** Scene 1 ***
Scene begins with Freddie aiming his video camera at Carly and Sam as they giggle and run around, in the middle of the web show.
  • Like with the ShamWow, a few of the iCarly writers were obsessed with the Snuggie – that silly blanket with sleeves.  A couple of the writers even bought them.  We all thought they were ridiculous, so we decided to parody the Snuggie.  Ladies and gentleman, I give you... The Sack.
  • In this episode, the version of The Sack (fake infomercial) is shorter than the iCarly.com version you can see here.  This episode was long so I had to make cuts.
  • In the iCarly.com version of The Sack, you'll see the first 20 seconds (or so) is in black-and-white.  But I felt the black-and-white footage didn't look so great for television, so I switched to sepia for the actual episode.  (Sepia is a golden-ish or brown-ish tone. I think of it as a more interesting version of black-and-white.)
  • The voice-over for The Sack was done by the same woman who did the GPS voice in Drake's blue car for Merry Christmas, Drake & Josh.
  • The shower you see Spencer in is a real shower, located in one of the dressing rooms we use for guest stars who appear on iCarly.
  • I love how all the sack colors have a horrible adjective before them... except "blue".
  • In the writers room, we thought, "What could be a worse bonus prize than a 1996 penny?"  Our answer: a photo of a 1996 penny.
  • You'll notice the phone number to order The Sack is a "555" number.  I almost never use 555 phone numbers on my TV shows or in movies I write.  Because whenever I'm watching a TV show or movie, and someone says their phone number is "555-something" it completely takes me out of the moment, because it's so obviously a FAKE number.
Unfortunately, no productions are allowed to use real phone numbers – we're required to use 555.  But to me it sounds so ridiculously fake that I feel it's distracting. 
So, I just avoid phone numbers when I'm writing.  But it was okay for The Sack infomercial because it's a silly parody – an intentional joke.
  • Before Carly and Sam eat the squash, watch the super-cool FLIP Carly does with her piece of squash.  When we shot that take I was shocked!  I didn't expect her to do that... much less catch it. :)
  • When this first scene ends, get ready to enjoy... the new iCarly opening credits!!!  I hope you love them.  Let me know.
*** Scene 2 ***
Scene begins with Sam eating an ear of corn.
  • As you'll see, the writing credit on this episode goes to Steve Holland, a great writer and one of the nicest guys ever.  He's been working with me (on and off) since I wrote and produced All That back in 1994.  Steve is currently writing on The Big Bang Theory.  He's worked on every show I've ever done for Nickelodeon except The Amanda Show.
  • We learn in this scene that Sam's last visit to the dentist was when she was three years old.  Ha.  How very Sam of her (and her mother).
  • You'll hear the line, "Yeah, I'll add that to my list of things that'll never happen" – that's a joke I often make in real life all the time – whenever someone tells me I should do something that I know I'll never do.
  • Two words: Bloody Corn.  Now that's comedy.  :)
*** Scene 3 ***
Scene begins with Carly and Sam being led into a dental office.
  • Our awesome costume designer Kris Dangl did a great job of dressing Carly and Sam in this scene.  My wife Lisa loves Sam's shirt!  Perhaps I'll steal it from Kris for her.  (Don't tell Kris.)
  • I love the little exchange between Carly and Sam that goes:
Carly: Stay blonde.
Sam:  Stay brune.
That kind of cute "throw-away" dialogue just adds a little fun to the show, don't ya think?
  • If Carly hadn't come running back into the room, I wonder what Sam would have done to the dentist and the hygienist woman?
*** Scene 4 ***
Scene begins with Spencer in prison, getting ready to teach art.
  • Look at the big prison guard next to Spencer!  Jerry Trainor is six-foot-three – very tall.  That should tell you something about the size of the prison guard standing next to him!  WOW.
  • When Spencer hugs the big prison guard, you'll see him grab the guard's ears.  For some reason, Jerry just decided to do that (grab the guard's ears) when when were shooting Take 4 of the scene.  When he did it, I just about fell off my chair, laughing.  After the take, Jerry asked me if I thought the ears bit was too silly.  I said, "Nope!  And it's goin' on television!"  I find it hilarious.  So I made sure we used it in the show.
  • Hmmm... do you think "stabby" could be classified as an emotionSomeone does. :)
  • I particularly enjoy the line, "Hey, he wants to apolgize for trying to kill you."  Makes me laugh every time.
*** Scene 5 ***
Scene begins with Carly, the dentist, and his hygienist all looking into camera.

  • My post team decided to add the echo effect to the actors' voices at the beginning of this scene.  I think it works really well.
  • Kudos to Jennette McCurdy for her acting in this scene!  Playing "loopy" is not easy to do and keep it believable.  Jennette did an incredible job with it.
  • The bit where Sam is playing with the sharp dental tools, and Carly takes them from her as she says, "How ya doin'?" – that wasn't in the script.  I added that while we were filming the scene.
  • During the second half of this scene when Carly and Sam are talking, you'll see how Sam keeps pulling Carly toward her... and spastically wrapping her arms around Carly's head... and grabbing at Carly's hair.  None of that was in the script.  As we were shooting the scene, the pace and energy were feeling a little slow to me... not fun and funny enough.  So the director and I ran on set and worked with the girls, suggesting to Jennette that she be more grabby, and to keep telling Carly to "C'mere".  I loved the result, so when I got into editing, that's what I used in the episode.
  • How great is Carly's facial expression after hearing Sam's real secret?  Miranda is awesome.  :)
  • Sam making kissy faces/noises at Carly... also not scripted.  I added that while we were filming.
---- COMMERCIAL BREAK ----

*** Scene 6 ***
Scene begins with Carly and Sam walking into Carly's apartment.

  • In this scene, Miranda's acting is ON FIRE.  She's amazing in it (especially during Carly's whole conversation with Spencer).
  • It was not scripted for Carly to say, "You see me all whipped up now?!  It's because you told me to calm down!".  I added that while we were filming.
  • We did around 5 or 6 takes of this scene.  When Carly says, "to calm down!" -- you'll notice how she whacks Spencer with her hands for emphasis.  When I got into editing, I almost took it out and used another take where Carly didn't whack Spencer.  I worried that it was slightly out of character for Carly to do that.  But after watching it a few more times, I decided that it was really funny... and I believed that Carly would do that in this case because she's so whipped up about the secret she's learned. 
*** Scene 7 ***
Scene begins with Freddie working on some equipment in the iCarly studio.

  • How great is the song Freddie sings to himself at the beginning?  We (the writers) wrote the words.  Nathan invented the tune.  :)
  • Miranda and Nathan are both excellent in this scene.  As I watch this episode (while writing these Fun Facts), I'm realizing how phenomenal this cast is.  Not that I didn't know it before.  I just think they're getting better and better.
  • Freddie's line, "That's so crazy" was not in the script.  I added that while we were filming the scene.
  • We learn in this episode that, at least sometimes, Mrs. Benson calls Freddie by using some kind of whistle.  Of course she does.
  • Something happens in this scene that's a call-back to the Season One episode, iPromise Not To Tell.  But there's a new twist this time.  Can you identify what I'm talking about?
  • And there's yet another reference in this scene to a previous episode.  This time it's a reference to the Season Two episode, iSaw Him First.  Can you figure out what it is?
  • Ha!  And a third previous episode is referenced in this scene!  This time it's iTwins.  I never realized that there were three references to three previous episodes in this one scene (until I wrote these Fun Facts).  See?  Even I learn stuff here.
*** Scene 8 ***
Scene begins with Spencer and the prisoners, admiring the sculpture they made together.

  • Okay, I'm not gonna say much about it... but there's a very "unique" shirt in this scene.  I think you guys will get a big kick out of it.  ;)
  • Do you love the sculpture?!  I love it.  It was made by Tristan in our art department.  Tristan is the guy who makes all the great Spencer sculptures.  He's one of the many brilliant people who work on iCarly.
  • One of the prisoners in this scene has a line about making fruit punch in his own toilet.  This is something that actually happens with prisoners and wine.  Yep.  Guys in prison have been known to make real wine in their toilets.  If you want to read about it you can visit my friend's website.  But warning: It's kind of gross and contains adult language, so this isn't for kids.  Adults can CLICK HERE to read about it.
*** Scene 9  ***
Scene begins with Carly coming downstairs as Spencer fiddles with his sculpture.

  • Ahhh!  The shirt again!  ;)
  • Yes, there really is an Armenian food called "lamejune" (pronounced "lamma-joon").  Guess who turned me on to it?  My friend, the real-life Socko!  It's like a very thin pizza and it's great.
  • To my knowledge, there is no such thing as bacon-flavored ice cream.  I think I made it up.  But if it does exist, please let me know.
  • Nooooo, Sam does not say "Holy crap!" in this scene – I promise.  Listen closely.  She says "Holy crab!"
  • Can you believe Sam was able to pick Freddie up like that?  Pretty cool, right?
*** Scene 10  ***
Scene begins with Carly, Sam, and Freddie sitting side-by-side in red chairs.

  • I'll admit right now... some hardcore iCarly fans will have a slight issue (problem) with a specific situation this scene.  It's nothing major, but one could argue a logic problem if you know iCarly very well.  However, I have a good defense. ;)  It'll be interesting to see if any super-fans notice and bring up the issue that I'm talking about.  If they do, I'm ready to respond. 
  • It was not in the script for Carly to say (in a male voice), "Well you do realize we have to call the police."  I added that while we were filming the scene.  Miranda nailed it. :)
  • And the shirt returns!  Ahhhhh!!!
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And that wraps up the fun facts and behind-the-scenes info for iThink They Kissed.  As always, thanks for watching iCarly!!!!!!!!!!

–Dan :)

P.S. Remember: If you know of any iCarly fans you think might enjoy reading these fun behind-the-scenes faces, please send them this URL: http://tinyurl.com/meqkjz

P.P.S. Please tell your friends who like iCarly (or don't know about it yet) to follow my Twitter: @DanWarp