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The (2nd Annual) Universal Drinking Game

The (2nd Annual) Universal Drinking Game
Drew Troller

Remember last year when we presented the Universal Drinking Game? A year later, we’re back for round two. We’re tired of drinking game rules for individual movies and TV shows. We need a list that applies to ALL our entertainment.

So the rules of this game are simple: turn on ANY show or movie you want. And drink any time any of these things happen. ENJOY (responsibly)!

VOICE OVER

This might be your first drink of the movie. It can be tough finding out where you are, who the character is, and what’s going on. So often… they’ll just tell you.  Not recommended for “Shawshank Redemption,” “The Royal Tenenbaums,” or ANY movie based off of a book.

BONUS DRINK IF: The character looks directly into camera while delivering voiceover (“Malcolm in the Middle,” “House of Cards,” et al)

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Spacey’s character likes talking. Directly to you.

FLASHBACK / DREAM SEQUENCE

BONUS DRINK IF: they use that harp-sound-plus-wavy-video-transition effect.

Cue harps, and you have a bizarre Conan flashback

Cue harps, and you have a bizarre Conan flashback

“THE MAINFRAME”: MISUNDERSTANDING OF HOW TECHNOLOGY WORKS

Whenever a heist-movie “hacker” pulls out his laptop and, a few quick keyboard clacks later, claims he’s “in the mainframe.” Or when someone looks at their phone and the text they just received is in HUGE lettering so you can read it. Or, as on season 2 of “Homeland,” someone Skypes using a Blackberry model that doesn’t even have a camera.

Terrorists apparently have figured out how to Skype from Blackberry

Terrorists apparently have figured out how to Skype from Blackberry

FAKE WEBSITE

Along the same lines… sometimes you’ll see a character using a computer. What you probably WON’T see is a character using a real website. There’s any number of lawsuit-proof versions of Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and anything else the script may call for.

This is how "American Horror Story" Googles things without getting sued by Google.

This is how “American Horror Story” Googles things without getting sued by Google.

BONUS DRINK IF: The site name is a mashup of two real sites (MyFace, TwitTube, etc)…

OBVIOUS GREEN SCREEN

Green screens are part of the landscape of movies and TV these days. Without leaving a well-lit and air-conditioned studio, the magic-makers behind the scenes can make it look like a scene is happening in an exotic location, or between two people who aren’t on set at the same time (see “Arrested Development” season 4). Sometimes it’s seamlessly and subtly included in a scene. Sometimes it’s painfully obvious.

Henry Winkler was TOTALLY on set that day, right?!

Henry Winkler was TOTALLY on set that day, right?!

DRIVING WITHOUT LOOKING AT THE ROAD

Also notice the green-screen road in the windows of a car in any driving scene. The actor behind the wheel might give tiny little adjustments here and there… but they’re not in sync with the video around them.  Moreover, [insert character name here], LOOK AT THE ROAD! Why are you making eye contact with your scene partner! Look at the road.

FINISH YOUR DRINK IF: While looking off the road, the characters get into a car accident.

Pay attention, Mae Whitman's boyfriend! There's a car coming right at her!

Pay attention, Mae Whitman’s boyfriend! There’s a car coming right at her!

FOOD ON THE TABLE, BUT NO ONE’S EATING

When vanity (actors gotta stay in shape) and continuity (can’t have a meal halfway done in one take then uneaten in the next take) combine, you have a scene where people sit across from a kitchen/café table having a conversation, holding and gesticulating with forks, but never actually eating.

BONUS DRINK IF: The character has food on their fork, but doesn’t eat it.

TWO BONUS DRINKS IF:You pause the scene and find a continuity error in the amount of food/drink consumed.

You're INSANE if you think Sandra Bullock ate even a fraction of a Thanksgiving meal that day.

You’re INSANE if you think Sandra Bullock ate even a fraction of a Thanksgiving meal that day.

COSTUME/WIG USED FOR LAUGHTER

The Kristen Wiig syndrome. Sight gags are one thing, but when you’re expected to laugh just because a character looks goofy in their wardrobe.

BONUS DRINK IF: The costume or wig is racially insensitive.

FINISH DRINK IF: An old man or woman raps in a “hip-hop” costume.

Haha! Get it?! Because that's not their real hair!!!

Haha! Get it?! Because that’s not their real hair!!!

LIGHTING A CIGARETTE DURING DRAMATIC MOMENT

I suspect somewhere there’s a screenwriting guide that tells aspiring writers, “The act of going outside [preferably at night, and when it’s cold out] and lighting a cigarette reveals that your character is conflicted, traumatized, or emoting in a similar fashion.”

She WOULD smoke.

She WOULD smoke.

LOOKING OUT A WINDOW

…And in that same screenwriting guide, authors are advised that “Since the MPAA doesn’t like characters to smoke, you can get away with a G rating by having them just look out a window.”

BONUS DRINK IF: It’s raining.

Somehow, emo Don is STILL virile.

Somehow, emo Don is STILL virile.

WILHELM SCREAM

This one was brought up in last year’s Universal Drinking Game comments. The Wilhelm Scream was recorded more than 60 years ago, and has been used upwards of 200 times in TV and movies. Any time a character falls, gets blown up, or takes a bullet to the arm, they seem to scream the same way. That’s because it’s a readily available sound clip and it’s a sort of running joke among audio designers.

STOP DRINKING IF: You actually believe anyone screams like that in real life. You must be drunk.

Comments

  1. Beth

    :v – – – – -

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