WHOSE LINE IS IT ANYWAY? (UK 1998; US 1999—2006) is an improv comedy show in which performers are prompted by host and audience.
12/01/09 | Television

Whose Line Is It Anyway?

by Maria Anderson

Two deep sea monsters are in a state of search. Monster leagues upon leagues under the sea, beneath amounts of water too large to for us to comprehend. They are both intellectuals.

The giant squid is 43 feet long, male, and insecure.

The whale is of even greater mass, and briny corpuscles break flesh around his eyes. Small maggots team in dark places on his body. They are at comfort with his skin to such a degree that they are building museums, crafting their own history of place from small maggot statues of Aphrodite and framed fossils of the first maggots in the blowhole. They will soon begin work on the Pyramids.

“I need to find a meal. I am hungry. I want to eat now,” says the whale.

“What should I do to help you?,” asks the squid. “I have suggestions but they cannot be worth much.”

“My appetite is of a killing size today. I feel I should maim something.”

“Hunger is too broad a term for your wants, my friend. You require something specific, the exact foodstuff that will sate your needs. You should find a fresh dumpling, or a marsh porpoise, something that is soft on the palate yet requires effort to squish between the jaws.”

“You over think this advice, friend squid.”

“Satiation is but vague at best. This timeless orb of your stomach is due for an awakening. Spice and unclamping…a sea snake to whirl through your miles of intestines? Plankton spackling in the dank light that filters through leagues of grime suspension, a manatee lost and bawling in the gloom?”

“Ah, squid, your stomach is transparent. Therefore you see all that it contains and must live with those conquests. Mine is deep and dark, a pit of whorl tissue, and the flesh on which I feast must not be so gorgeous as all that. It has been ages since I’ve last eaten. I hear the echoes of the lone grasshopper in my empty stomach, sharpening his ankles on his ears and humming softly.”

Whining, the giant squid does not answer. He frustrates himself with circular accounts of what should be done, and misinterprets the whale’s bobbing in the soft current as nods.

A lone camera on a mechanical line drops down into the fog, and the two friends examine it curiously. A dart explodes from a grey box behind the lens and passes through the whale’s eye. He shrieks in surprise, not yet feeling the pain of the incision. The beings from above will soon control him, and afterwards they will fawn over his mechanical corpse and their children will eat biscuits off his cheeks.

The squid hollers for help and squirts luminous black clouds in his wake as he runs away. He tries to squeeze his thighs together as he runs, but cannot stop squirting. It runs down his tentacles in dark streaks and stains the backs of his many knees. This is the second time he has inked himself. He forgets about his friend the whale as even the plankton gawk and snicker. The other beasts gather around.

He is utterly humiliated.