Cal Shanley
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Quotes for
Cal Shanley (Character)
from "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip" (2006)

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"Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip: Pilot (#1.1)" (2006)
Wes Mendell: This show used to be cutting-edge political and social satire, but it's gotten lobotomized by a candy-assed broadcast network hell-bent on doing nothing that might challenge their audience. We were about to do a sketch you've seen already about five hundred times. Yeah, no one is going to confuse George Bush with George Plimpton. We get it. We're all being lobotomized by this country's most influential industry! It's just thrown in the towel on any endeavor to do anything that doesn't include the courting of twelve-year-old boys. Not even the smart twelve-year-olds - the stupid ones! The idiots - of which there are plenty, thanks in no small measure to this network! So why don't you just change the channel? Turn off the TV. Do it right now. Go ahead.
[in the control booth]
Jerry: Get the camera off of him!
Cal Shanley: And put it on what?
Jerry: Cut the boom mike then!
Cal Shanley: It's his show! I take my instructions from him!
Wes Mendell: [Wes is still talking] ... struggle between art and commerce. Well there's always been a struggle between art and commerce, and now I'm telling you, art is getting it's ass kicked, and it's making us mean, and it's making us bitchy. It's making us cheap punks - that's not who we are! People are having contests to see how much they can be like Donald Trump?
Jerry: Are you bleeping this out?
Tech: He hasn't said anything you're not allowed to say.
Jerry: He's telling people to change the channel!
Cal Shanley: I don't think you have to worry about anybody changing the channel right now.
Jerry: Get him off or you don't have a job tomorrow!
Cal Shanley: I'm running a live national broadcast right, can you threaten me later?

Suzanne: We're blowing off 4-A.
Lilly: You're kidding.
Suzanne: No.
Lilly: It killed at Dress. It was smart!
Cal Shanley: It never had a chance. What are we filling with?
Suzanne: 'Peripheral Vision Man.'
Cal Shanley: Ricky and Ron are just going to keep writing that one until somebody laughs, huh? What was the time on 4-A?
Lilly: 4:10.
Cal Shanley: What's the time on 'Peripheral Vision Man'?
Lilly: 3:45.
Cal Shanley: All right, tell the writer's room they're going to have to strecth it another twenty-five seconds, and I'm sure that making it longer was the missing ingredient in making it funny.

Cal Shanley: I faced off with Standards during a live broadcast, Harry. The guys I know who've done that feel lucky when they can get a job directing "Good Morning El Paso".

Wes Mendell: [going onstage in the middle of a sketch] Listen, fellas, we're going to stop that.
Tom Jeter: Did we lose the feed?
Wes Mendell: No, we're live. I want both of you to clear the stage - I don't want anyone to think that you were a part of this.
[Audience laughs]
Wes Mendell: Clear the stage. Go on.
Cal Shanley: [Audience still laughing]
Wes Mendell: Uh, it's not going to be a very good show tonight. I think you should change the channel.
Cal Shanley: [in the control booth]
Lilly: What the hell?
Wes Mendell: Change the channel. Right now.
Control Room Assistant: When did they put this in?
Lilly: Does anyone know what the hell is going on?
Wes Mendell: Better yet, turn off the TV, okay?
Cal Shanley: [Audience laughs]
Wes Mendell: No, no, I know like it seems like this is supposed to be funny, but tomorrow, tomorrow you're going to find out that it wasn't, and by that time I'll have been fired.
[Audience laughs]
Wes Mendell: No, this - this is not supposed - this is not a sketch!
Cal Shanley: [over the radio] Uh, this is real.

Wes Mendell: We're eating worms for money. Who wants to screw my sister? Guys are getting killed in a war that's got theme music and a logo? That remote in your hands is a crack pipe. Oh, yeah, every once in a while we pretend to be appalled...
Jerry: [in the booth]
Jerry: Cal!
Cal Shanley: I'm waiting for him to say something that isn't true.
Jerry: Who else in here knows how to do this?
Cal Shanley: Don't talk to my control room!
Jerry: Get him off!
Lilly: [aside] You have two kids in school.
Cal Shanley: What?
Jerry: She said you have two kids in private school whose father is about five seconds away from never working again.
Wes Mendell: America's broadcasters have turned into pornographers. It's not even good pornography! It's just this side of snuff films. And friends, that's what's next.
Lilly: Cal, come on...
Wes Mendell: ...And the two things that make them scared gutless are the FCC and every psycho religious cult that gets positively horny at the mention of a boycot. These are the people they're afraid of...
Cal Shanley: All right, stand by...
Wes Mendell: - feckless, off-the-chocks greed-filled whorehouse...
Jerry: There is is!
Wes Mendell: - this thoroughly unpatriotic motherf...
Cal Shanley: Cut in now!

Harriet Hayes: What went on in the control room?
Cal Shanley: [sighs] We got word the sketch was cut. Next thing I knew Wes was up on stage, Standards blew into the room, and I waited 53 seconds before I pulled the plug.
Harriet Hayes: There had to be a lot of confusion - it's not like there are rules or procedures for this kind of thing.
Cal Shanley: No, there are strict rules and procedures for this kind of thing, I just didn't follow any of them.

Cal Shanley: I'm sorry about Matt. I'm a big fan of his, and I like him a lot.
Harriet Hayes: I'm a big fan of his, and I hate his breathing guts.

Danny Tripp: You left him on for 53 seconds.
Cal Shanley: Yeah
Danny Tripp: What the hell, Cal? You practice that. It's live air. Tell you what. I don't think it was an accident. I think you left him on.
Cal Shanley: I did. And you guys do what you gotta do here. There won't be any hard feelings.
Danny Tripp: We need you to stay.
Cal Shanley: [chuckles]
Danny Tripp: All right then.
Danny Tripp: Cal? If you'd left him on for 54 seconds, I'd have given you a raise.

"Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip: The Christmas Show (#1.11)" (2006)
[trying to figure out how to make snow]
Cal Shanley: Shaved coconuts!
Matt Albie: Perfect! And they're indigenous to LA.
Danny Tripp: No, they're not.
Matt Albie: They grow on palm trees!
Danny Tripp: Not ours.
Matt Albie: What do ours do?
Danny Tripp: Nothing.
Matt Albie: This city needs me.

[looking at a plastic Santa Claus with his right hand raised]
Matt Albie: What's he doing?
Cal Shanley: There are gonna be reindeer up in the balcony; he's waving at them.
Matt Albie: He's giving the Nazi salute!
Cal Shanley: Nah, he's waving at the reindeer.
Matt Albie: Why wouldn't the reindeer be with him?
Cal Shanley: Well, when you start to apply logic to Santa Claus, Matt...
Matt Albie: Alright, let's set logistics aside. He's saying, "Heil, Hitler."
Cal Shanley: I think you're reading too much into it.
Matt Albie: He's giving the Nazi salute.
Cal Shanley: [pause] Well, now that you've said it, that's all I can see.
Matt Albie: It's all anybody can see.
Cal Shanley: He's got the crazy eyes too, doesn't he?
Matt Albie: Yeah.

"Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip: The West Coast Delay (#1.4)" (2006)
Jordan McDeere: [after completing the first live feed to the west coast] Alright, that worked! That was a nice piece of broadcasting, that was great, that was smooth-sailing.
Cal Shanley: Yeah.
Cal Shanley: We're going again!
Jordan McDeere: Why?
Cal Shanley: We attributed the material to the wrong guy, but the problem is this will throw our time off so we have to pace and fill as we go now. I'd get comfortable!
Jordan McDeere: [pause] When the phone rings, it going to be for me.

Danny Tripp: Seven second delay.
Cal Shanley: Yeah?
Danny Tripp: How does the math work? We add 7 seconds?
Cal Shanley: We subtract 7 seconds.
Danny Tripp: We add it.
Cal Shanley: We subtract it.
Danny Tripp: The tape broadcast happens seven seconds later in the West than it did live in the East.
Cal Shanley: That's why you subtract seven seconds.
Danny Tripp: You don't add it?
Jordan McDeere: Oh, and this has me bathed in confidence.
Danny Tripp: We're fine. I'm going to go have a conversation with Ricky and Ron.
Jordan McDeere: Is this going to work?
Cal Shanley: Sure.
Jordan McDeere: You've done it before?
Cal Shanley: A hundred times. Well, really? No, never, but I can't think what the problem would be.
Jordan McDeere: Sure, what could possibly go wrong?
Cal Shanley: There you go.

"Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip: The Disaster Show (#1.17)" (2007)
Cal Shanley: Can we determine if there actually is a bomb in the building?
Jack Rudolph: I trust them, but just in case why don't we handcuff them to the building overnight

"Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip: 4 A.M. Miracle (#1.16)" (2007)
[Tom and Cal have accidentally chopped the head off a RealCare baby with a guillotine]
Danny Tripp: How's it goin'?
Tom Jeter: Good.
Danny Tripp: OH MY GOD!
Tom Jeter: 'cept that we beheaded the baby.
Danny Tripp: The hell did you do?
Cal Shanley: Problem?
Danny Tripp: Yes, it's a problem. This is a special doll with... with computer sensors.
Cal Shanley: I've heard about those things. RealCare babies, they're supposed to be indestructible.
Danny Tripp: Yeah, they are, unless you drop an 80 pound hydraulic axe on their head.

"Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip: The Focus Group (#1.3)" (2006)
Cal Shanley: A transformer's out, something fell on a power line.
Danny Tripp: Are they fixing it?
Cal Shanley: In a manner of speaking.
Danny Tripp: What does that mean?
Cal Shanley: They don't know how to fix it.
Danny Tripp: [pause] How much do I want to know about this?
Cal Shanley: As little as possible.

"Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip: The Wrap Party (#1.6)" (2006)
Cal Shanley: Suzanne, tell your guys to put tarps over everything. The last time we had a wrap party in the studio we had to shut down for two weeks while we replaced the studio.
Jordan McDeere: Cal!
Cal Shanley: Jordan.
Jordan McDeere: Great show!
Cal Shanley: Thanks
Jordan McDeere: You're great!
Cal Shanley: Thank you again.
Jordan McDeere: I've had a couple of glasses of wine.
Cal Shanley: No one would ever know
Jordan McDeere: I just bought my first show.
Cal Shanley: We heard, congratulations!
Jordan McDeere: It's a one hour drama about the United Nations.
Cal Shanley: It can't miss.
Jordan McDeere: I'm celebrating!
Cal Shanley: Well, enjoy the party.
Jordan McDeere: I'm also hiding from Jack Rudolph. I didn't bid on a reality show he wanted, and then to add injury to...
Cal Shanley: Insult to injury.
Jordan McDeere: Insult to injury, Wilson White backed me and took Jack's legs out from under him, so I'm hiding here tonight. This is like for me Superman's Dome of Pleasure.
Cal Shanley: Fortress of Solitude.
Jordan McDeere: Yes!
Cal Shanley: Well, enjoy yourself.
Jordan McDeere: I believe I will!
Jack Rudolph: [bursts through the doors] Guess who's in the hizzaayy!
Cal Shanley: SUZANNE! Tarps over everything!

"Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip: K&R: Part 2 (#1.20)" (2007)
Matt Albie: She delivered the baby.
Andy Mackinaw: She delivered the baby?
Cal Shanley: Yeah.
Andy Mackinaw: Two weeks early?
Matt Albie: Yeah, but the baby's fine. Sixteen pounds, two ounces.
Andy Mackinaw: SIXTEEN POUNDS?
Matt Albie: Is that... not... normal?
Andy Mackinaw: Did she give birth to a tuna fish?
Cal Shanley: Mattie.
Matt Albie: Yeah?
Cal Shanley: SIX pounds.