Till Death Do Us Over - Bonnie & Rick: Part One

Screenplay Award Sub-Category
Award Category
Logline or Premise
Struggling to make her first big break in the film industry, co-parent her make-up artist’s terrifying plastic baby and escape her fiancé’s infidelity habit, Bonnie Livingston is beginning to re-evaluate what exactly it means to be in love.
First 10 Pages

Till Death Do Us Over is a series that will navigate the struggles of marriage and the stances that different archetypal “families” have on the act of getting hitched. Each separate narrative is split up into two parts and told over the course of two episodes. The tone of the piece is a hybridisation of a dark comedy mixed with all the heart-wrenching stabs of a drama.

The first couple that we meet are Rick Clifton and Bonnie Livingston. Rick is a mysteriously-successful businessman and his fiancée, Bonnie, has never really worked out what he actually does for a living. When Rick isn’t working, (and to keep production costs at an all-time low), he usually features in Bonnie’s commercials that she writes and directs. These commercials range from advertising brands of health drinks to support lines that help you write up the perfect will. Feeling trapped in the repetitive nature of the clichéd advertisements that no one is actually being influenced by, Bonnie has decided to broaden her horizons and take on the challenge of writing her first feature film. However, she’s struggling to secure the direction that she wants to take with the story to solidify the final plot. After countless attempts at redrafting and being glued to her office chair, Bonnie is starting to grow tired of feeling stuck and is slowly coming to realise that she’s stuck in her own unhappy marriage. Was this destined to be the driving force of the film all along? Will drawing from her own experiences create that smash hit that she’s been so desperate to write? Not only has Bonnie got the script to think about, but her wedding day is growing closer with every scrunched-up disaster of a storyboard and she’s running out of time. Rick is growing suspiciously distant. Ava, her make-up artist on set, is trying out parenting with her new boyfriend, Tom in the form of a terrifyingly realistic, plastic baby that cries at the most inappropriate of moments. These two episodes flash back and forth, and they lead up to the fateful wedding day where Bonnie has a surprise up her sleeve to show all the guests that she made specially for her husband-to-be.

In the following two episodes, I want to introduce Ava and Tom’s relationship and delve deeper into the constraints and conflicts that come with wondering whether a baby is something that they both want. They’ll struggle with communication, which is already touched upon in Bonnie and Rick’s episodes, but the plastic baby parenting that was Ava’s idea plays a vital, and more sinister part in the ending of Bonnie and Rick’s story. Inevitably, Ava and Tom both come to realise that they aren’t meant for each other and that they were, like most couples do when their relationship starts to see cracks in the foundations, thinking that a baby would fix everything.

Bonnie also has a sister, Jen, who is first introduced at the wedding ceremony. Jen’s partner is called Nina Wright and episodes 5 and 6 I want to traverse through the queer landscape where Nina is battling with bringing Jess to meet her family for the first time. Nina’s relatives haven’t always been the most supportive of her sexuality and even though she’s tried to openly talk about it, Nina repeatedly gets dismissed. These episodes will navigate the struggles of growing up queer and the differences between supportive and contemptuous parenting styles. Nina comes to learn that she can be content with Jess and Bonnie being her “found family” and that as hard as it is to let go, it’s worth sacrificing a damaging relationship with her family, in order for her own happiness to bloom.