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KING OF KONG: THE MUSICAL
by Amber Ruffin & Lauren Van Kurin
directed by Brendan Hunt
(eps. 4 & 10 directed by Jaime Robledo)
music by Amber Ruffin, David Schmoll & Zachary Bernstein

"A fistful of quarters... is a fistful of dreams."

Next Time: Episode 12
Original Run: 7 Eps, 3/2/13 - 5/11/13
Playoffs Run: 5 Eps, 6/29/13 - 7/27/13
PLAYOFFS CHAMPION!

CAST

Amber Ruffin

Billy Mitchell & others

Lauren Van Kurin

Steve Wiebe & others

Zachary Bernstein, Guy Picot,
Terry Tocantins & Matthew Merchant

The King of Kong Dancers (Ep. 5)

Brendan Hunt

Narrator (Ep. 7)
Choreography by Matt Valle (Eps. 9 & 12)

EPISODE ONE (3/2/13)
Video by Marz Richards
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  Steve Wiebe dreams of accomplishing something with his life.  Having failed at all else, he decides to go for the Donkey Kong world record high score... earning him the enmity of former champion Billy Mitchell.


Wannabe Donkey Kong kingpin Steve Wiebe explains to his son
how his dreams have been thwarted at every turn...in song.

Steve Wiebe (Lauren Van Kurin) dreams of making something of himself. What Billy Mitchell (Amber Ruffin) wants... Billy Mitchell gets. Steve talks about life with his son.  "A failure is just a success that you failed to succed at." Steve gets the high score.  All his dreams are about to come true!  Or are they... ?

EPISODE TWO (4/13/13)
Video by Annette Fasone
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  Steve Wiebe is on top of the world - until Billy Mitchell gets Steve's high score invalidated by having official scorekeeper Walter Day inspect his motherboard.  From now on, videotapes of high scores will no longer be accepted - only scores from live, in-person competitions.  'Cause what Billy Mitchell wants... Billy Mitchell gets.


Deposed Donkey Kong high score king Billy Mitchell and his wife sing to you about their favorite subject.

Scorekeeper Walter Day (Lauren Van Kurin) caves to Billy Mitchell's demands. Steve Wiebe's wife (Amber Ruffin) tries to console him when his title is stripped from him by Billy Mitchell's machinations. Concern. Billy Mitchell, with the help of his wife, sings  his own praises - uh, I mean, sings America's praises.

EPISODE THREE (4/13/13)
Video by Annette Fasone
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  As Billy Mitchell suffers pangs of regret, Steve Wiebe neglects his not-yet-wholly-potty-trained son.  Both events play out in song.  What with this being a musical and all.


World record Donkey Kong high score champion Billy Mitchell reflects upon his dastardly deeds in pursuit of the title.

Billy Mitchell confronts his guilt at what he's done to Steve Wiebe. Was it all worth it? The Wiebes. A father-son tap dance number.

EPISODE FOUR (4/20/13)
Video by Annette Fasone
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  Steve Wiebe unexpectedly shows up at the FunSpot Arcade, and a worried Billy Mitchell orders that his own high-score videotape be unearthed.


Billy Mitchell always has a plan.

Natives of Laconia, New Hampshire sing Billy Mitchell's praises. The ref looks different than in previous episodes, "but if you see anybody wearing a referee shirt, you can be sure it's scorekeeper Walter Day." Billy gets down. Roy Shildt gets a call from Billy asking him to get out his doctored vid- uh, his videotape of his Donkey Kong high score.

EPISODE FIVE (4/27/13)
Video by David LM McIntyre
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  Roy Shildt questions why Billy is suddenly willing to use videotapes to establish high scores again and even questions whether Billy's tape is doctored.  Billy doesn't like Roy's tone, and sings a song about his perceived kinship with Donkey Kong himself.


Billy Mitchell admits to everyone that he doesn't mind being the bad guy.

Walter Day and Roy Shildt. An ode to Billy Mitchell. Roy wonders why it's okay for Billy to use a tape to establish his high score when it wasn't okay before. Billy doesn't like his tone. "Like Kong"

EPISODE SIX (5/4/13)
Video by Annette Fasone
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  The Wiebe family drives out to Hollywood, Florida for the head-to-head competition with Billy Mitchell, and all of them question the wisdom of what Steve's doing... including Steve.  Meanwhile, Billy Mitchell's wife sings of the life Billy promised her, and only sort of delivered on.


Steve Wiebe and his family take a cross-country road trip to meet Billy
Mitchell in Hollywood, Florida to battle for the Donkey Kong high score.

Steve takes a road trip with his family to his big showdown with Billy Mitchell. "Some people kind of ruin there lives to get in there."  Steve tries to ignore a hard truth from his daughter. Steve wonders if it's all worth it. Meanwhile, his son sings about poop and butts. Billy Mitchell's wife sings a lament.

EPISODE SEVEN (5/11/13)
Video by Annette Fasone
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  Steve Wiebe arrives in Hollywood, Florida... but Billy Mitchell is avoiding him, instead focusing on recording a commercial for hit hot sauce with his wife.  Will Billy show up to accept Steve's challenge in person, or will he continue to ask people to "Lick My Sauce"?


Billy Mitchell and his wife film a commercial for his spectacular hot sauce.

Steve Wiebe sings of his impending triumph. Walter Day tells Steve Wiebe that Billy Mitchell is avoiding him. Backlit Walter.  Dramatic! Billy Mitchell and his wife film a hot sauce commercial.

PLAYOFFS - ROUND ONE!
EPISODE EIGHT (6/29/13)
Video by Ed Goodman
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  Steve Wiebe, who is practicing his Donkey Kong skills while his wife and kids hit the beach (Walter Day is glad his priorities are in order) becomes annoyed that people keep pronouncing his last name "Weeb."


Steve Wiebe can't catch a break. He can't get the high score on Donkey Kong, his family
doesn't respect his dream, and worst of all, no one ever pronounces his name correctly.

Steve Wiebe practices as Walter looks on - and keeps calling him Steve "Weeb." A "Weeb" alone. Billy Mitchell schemes.  Like he does. More scheming.

PLAYOFFS - ROUND TWO!
EPISODE NINE (7/6/13)
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  Walter Day is bullied by Billy Mitchell, who still refuses to play against Steve Wiebe live, and demands that Walter not enter Steve's scores in his record book.  However, Walter meets another Walter Day - the alternate-world Walter Day of a Twin Galaxy - who asserted his authority as a referee by strangling Billy Mitchell with his own mullet.  Encouraged and empowered, our Walter finally steels himself to assert his own status and power as the referee of the Twin Galaxies arcade.


Walter Day meets Alter Day, the Walter of an alternate universe
where Billy Mitchell holds no sway over recordkeeping!

Walter Day consults the Guiness Book of World Records. Billy warns Walter that Steve "Weeb" better not make the record books. Billy Mitchell reigns supreme.  Or so he thinks. Alternate-world Walter, Alter Day, with words of wisdom for Walter!

PLAYOFFS - ROUND THREE!
EPISODE TEN (7/13/13)
Video by Annette Fasone
Photos by Aaron Francis

SUMMARY:  Billy Mitchell remembers his younger, still cocky but more idealistic self, who, in the early 1980s, unseats the reigning Donkey Kong champ, who had lied about his high score.  Billy calls him out in a public competition, and easily takes the crown.  Back in the present, Billy wonders what he's become, and begins to realize that he's gong to have to stop running and accept Steve Wiebe's challenge.


Billy Mitchell is wracked with guilt and doubt and reflects upon a
life lived in pursuit of ephemeral goals in the song "Keeping Score."

Billy and his pal, the original Donkey Kong high score record holder - who had lied about his high score. Teenage Billy calls the liar out. Billy challenges him to a Donkey Kong competition. Remembering all this, Billy has a crisis of conscience.

PLAYOFFS - ROUND FOUR!
EPISODE ELEVEN (7/20/13)
Video by Annette Fasone
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  Billy and Steve's wives meet and bond, while Walter exults in his newfound confidence.  Meanwhile, Steve despairs of Billy ever showing up, but Billy does finally show up - and mops the floor with Steve, taking back the title of Donkey Kong Champ.


Mrs. Wiebe and Mrs. Mitchell happen upon one another and
commiserate about their fates over yard-long margaritas.

The neglected wives, Nicole Wiebe and Evelyn Mitchell. Nicole reflects on her love for Steve. Or is frustrated by her son's inability to deal with his own poops. One of those. Steve despairs of Billy showing up for a face-to-face competition. But wait... Billy's here!  HOO-AHH!

PLAYOFFS - ROUND FIVE!
EPISODE TWELVE (7/27/13)
Photos by Marian Gonzalez

SUMMARY:  In a coda to the story, Billy welcomes us to a screening of the documentary, and we get a recap of the story so far.  And we learn that Steve eventually beat Billy's high score... but Billy took it back again... and back and forth... plus somebody else who "doesn't count."  They'll be locked in combat forever... to be the King of Kong.

Billy mops the floor with Steve. Nicole Wiebe sings. Nicole Wiebe sings. Steve sums it up.