Greetings Chairman, judges, and my esteemed opponent, Iron Chef Kings. I was very pleased with today's theme ingredient, science-fiction, as I am a huge nerd. I have endeavored to prepare an article for your reading pleasure today that is both entertaining and engaging, and which combines elements both of humor and proven storytelling techniques into a playful, almost insouciant medley.
*Megalodon walks into a television network executive's office, his arms full of posterboards and notes scrawled on index cards*
Network Executive: You've got ten minutes. Wow me.
Megalodon: Thank you for your time. May I present...
M: S.H.A.R.K.S. is Ender's Game meets Men in Black meets hockey.
NE: Ender's Game? What the hell is that? Which network is it on?
M: Um, it's not a TV show. It's a book. A sci-fi classic, really. It's about -
NE: You're losing me.
M: Sorry. Anyway, here's the theme song and how I imagine the credits: just picture players from the Sharks in place of these people:
NE: I like it. I like it a lot.
M: Let's start with the backstory: it is the year 2010. The National Hockey League that we know is, in reality, only a front organization for the New Homeland-defense League, an elite group of secret police that guard humanity against threats both from outer space and from the darkest corners of our own world. The entire game of hockey has been designed to identify people with the perfect balance of strength, determination, speed, and teamwork necessary to serve in the League,
Between games and during the off-season, specially selected and trained NHL players work in squads armed with advanced technology, biological and cybernetic enhancements, and ludicrously high-powered weapons. They could be sent anywhere, from the moons of Jupiter to the center of the Earth, in order to stop the newest deadly monster or evil scheme before it can end life as we know it.
The show will center on the S.H.A.R.K.S., or the Super-Human Armed Response Kill Squad.
NE: Okay, this could be interesting. What about the characters?
"Brows" is the team leader. He's sort of a strong silent type who struggles with the burdens of command. He's proven his abilities over time against such foes as the Red Winged Horrors from the dark side of Mars and the Snow Beasts of Tibet.
Patrick Marleau has undergone treatment to make him invulnerable to injury, but as a side effect his eyebrows grow slightly thicker and darker than a normal human's.
Marleau is a very straight laced and rule-abiding squad leader, hence his frequent consideration for the Lady Byng.
In his spare time Marleau takes public speaking and business management classes at the local community college in order to become a better leader.
Inspirations: Leonardo, Jack from Lost
"Cyclops," so-called because of his black-magic-afflicted left eye, is the bad-boy foil for Marleau. Dany is a rebel with a troubled, tragic past and a reckless hotshot attitude. He takes big risks and frequently clashes with level-headed Marleau and League Command.
During a secret operation in Europe Heatley was cursed by a witch. His left eye turned black and now sees only the evil in everyone's soul. It's really depressing. His right eye can shoot lasers, but it doesn't really make up for it.
At heart Healey is a wounded man, driven nearly to the point of self-destruction by guilt over past misdeeds and his tainted vision. In his spare time he drinks heavily and stares at the sun with his left eye, trying to blind himself.
Inspirations: Wolverine, Starbuck
"Dog" is the muscle on the team. He's a man of few words and many hatreds. He's fiercely loyal to his team-mates and will kill on command.
Douglas Murray is an immovable object, like the Blob. He was once hit straight-on by a missile and he didn't even blink. Since he's not invulnerable, however, the missile really messed him up.
Inspirations: Chewbacca, Zangief
"Papa Bear" is the team's resident genius, an expert on everything from cryptozoology to engineering. When he isn't on the ice or on a mission, Thornton can be found in his laboratory deep beneath H.P. Pavilion.
Thornton has had his arm strength increased ten-fold so that he can give the best hugs in the world. He can also squeeze enemies to death, but he rarely uses this ability.
Thornton has a pet miniature woolly mammoth named Hector. Think of the merchandising possibilities!
Inspirations: Donatello, Gadget from Rescue
"America" has been frequently scolded for his choice of nickname, since he is a defender of humanity as a whole, rather than a specific country or region, but Pavelski's extreme, almost offensive patriotism makes this a sensitive issue. His battle cry of "U.S.A.! U.S.A.!" was initially a sore point among his Canadian and Swedish teammates, but now everyone just ignores it.
Pavelski is the plucky, enthusiastic youngster on the team. When the situation seems hopeless or grim, Pavelski can be counted upon to rally the troops and inspire everyone. With more experience he will make an excellent leader, but for now he is happy in a supporting role on Marleau's S.H.A.R.K.S.
Joe Pavelski also has super speed, which he sometimes uses to play childish pranks on the others.
Inspirations: Cheetor from Beast Wars, The Indian Kid with the Power of Heart from Captain Planet
NE: Are those all of the characters?
M: The main ones, yes. What do you think?
NE: Too many white guys. It's boring! There's no diversity on this show.
M: What are you talking about?is Swedish!
NE: That doesn't count, and you know it. You've got to stick a couple of minorities in there so they'll watch the show too.
M: Isn't that a little, uh, racist?
NE: Look, do you want to get this show made or not?
M: Yeah but -
NE: Make Murray a black guy, a Michael Clarke Duncan type. Then somebody needs to have a disability and someone has to be a girl, but make sure they're not the same person. You pick, I don't give a damn.
M: I don't think that -
NE: And what about romance? The show needs some heat, some Ross and Rachel style stuff, you know? Some main characters need to get it on.
M: Well, uh...maybe Thornton could -
NE: And no gay stuff, this isn't Gossip Girl.
M: Never mind then.
NE: You've got three minutes left. Anything else about this show you want to tell me?
M: Yes - I've got some episode ideas.
Episode 1: Meet the S.H.A.R.K.S. - We are introduced to the squad and begin to understand their group dynamics. They fight a monster duck in the sewers of Anaheim.
Episode 3: That's Our Moon! - The squad suits up to battle the Space Kings on the moon, which the foul creatures are attempting to steal. Joe Pavelski goes berserk when one of the monsters knocks over the American flag, and Marleau lectures him about self-control.
Episode 7: Star Wars - Our solar system is invaded by a group of hostile sentient stars. The squad gets into their battle rockets and has an awesome space war. Douglas Murray kills like 200 bad guys.
Episode 14: Boxing Day - In this pointless episode the squad has a recreational boxing tournament.
Episode 15: Hector's Day Out - This one is for the kids. Joe Thornton's pet mammoth gets in to Squad Commander Todd McLellan's office and ruins all his important documents, and Thornton tries to cover it up with a little help from the mischievous Pavelski. At the end we all learn an important lesson about responsibility and friendship.
Episode 16: Oh Dany Boy - In this very special episode, Marleau confronts Heatley about his attitude problems, and Heatley is forced to face his demons. I've written some dialogue for this one:
Marleau: Heatley, you are way out of line!
Heatley: Get off my back, Pat!
Marleau: Your reckless disregard for the rules has put this team in danger for the last time!
Heatley: Well what are you gonna do about it, bub?
*The two glare silently at each other for a full three minutes.*
Episode 20: Time to Kill - The squad is sent back in time to prevent evil robots (are there any other kind?) from assassinating Wayne Gretzky's father and thus dooming humanity.
M: So what do you think? Are you interested?
NE: I could be. But first you have to prove people like the idea. We're not getting into this without some solid market research.
M: You heard the imaginary character, readers! Go down underneath the body of this post and Rec it! (I guess you should make sure to read Rudy's post and Rec the one you like better, but whatever - we aren't picking the freaking Pope here.) With your help I can beat Rudy so bad he will cry, just like he did during Homeward Bound.