(Transcript of story conference prior to shooting the video for “I Think You Might Like It” by Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta)

“Okay, so we’ve got our list of things that absolutely must be in this video. They have to hug, they have to dance together, and they just generally have to look like they’re totally banging.”

“It’ll be like 1978 all over again!”

“Well, but a little different… right? I mean, they’re 34 years older now.”

“That’s why we have to support their cosmetic surgeons’ attempts to make them look like they’re still in their 20s.”

“That’s not gonna work. It’s just going to be creepy.”

“No, no, no. This will be on YouTube — it’s a tiny screen. It’ll totally work.”

“I’m not sure about that… but anyway, so about the hugging. So this video is going to be the story of their reunion?”

“Well, kind of, but also not really. Just get the hug in there somewhere… it can be anywhere. There doesn’t really have to be a story as such.”

“So if they’re, like, dancing and riding in a car together immediately before the hug… that’s okay?”

“That’s fine. The hug is a flashback. You know, kind of a Rashomon thing or whatever.”

“A flashback to, like, 30 seconds ago?”

“Exactly.”

“Uh huh. And about the dancing… who’s the choreographer?”

“Sorry, we definitely don’t have the budget for a choreographer. But you don’t need a choreographer with these two — they’re pros! Just put these two in front of a camera together and play the song, and just let the magic happen.”

“What if they just do a sort of half-ass two-step?”

“Magic. I’m telling you, it’s gonna be magic.”

“Uh huh. And… are we going to put anyone else in this video?”

“Well, of course! I’m thinking we’ll shoot at an airport… just a small one, you know, where we won’t have to worry about permissions and security and all that. We’re gonna bring in some old people, some kids, and some soldiers.”

“Soldiers?”

“Yes, to show we support the troops.”

“What are the soldiers going to do?”

“Well, they’re going to… come home! You know, like they’re just off the plane.”

“And their families will be there?”

“Sure. That’s where the kids and the old people come in.”

“Uh huh. Got it.”

“But — now, work with me on this — I want to make sure this video’s really special, so we’re going to add more tears, more laughs.”

“How?”

“See, we’ve got two soldiers, and one of them has a family there and kiss kiss, hug hug, you know, all that. But the other one… he doesn’t have anybody! He gets off the plane, and he’s all alone! Isn’t that just sad?”

“Um, yeah, I guess. So he’s just going to be… sad?”

“Well, at first. But then — here’s where the laughs come in — there’s a cop who sees that the soldier is sad, and wants to make him happy, so the cop is like, hey, come on in for a hug, big guy! And they hug, and there are laughs.”

“But wait… why are the soldier and the cop hugging? Do they know each other?”

“I don’t know. Maybe. The point is, they hug and it’s touching and funny all at once.”

“Are they, like, a couple?”

“You know, we’ll let people just connect the dots on that one however they want. It’s not like they’re gonna kiss or anything, so Republicans can think it’s just like a bromance, but if you want to go gay with it, hey, that’s cool too.”

“And then that’s the end?”

“Yeah. Then they all dance, and that’s the end.”

“They all dance together?”

“Well, yeah, except John and Olivia.”

“Except John and Olivia? But it’s their video!”

“Well, they’ve already done their dancing. Separately.”

“They’re done already?”

“Yeah, we’ve got that stuff in the can. They did it on a lunch break. Really, we just need you to go do the airport stuff and then put it all together.”

“I’m a little concerned. This might not be a very good video.”

“Shaddup. It’s gonna be magic. MAGIC.”

Words by Jay Gabler, a co-founder and co-editor of The Tangential.

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