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I SURRENDER: The TV meme that ate Manhattan

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Show: (Re)Group
turn you on turn you out
supersyncspaz7 wrote in isurrendered
title: (Re)Group
premise: The semi-estranged members of a massively popular late '90s boy band go on a reunion tour. Shenanigans ensue.
genre: Comedy/drama
miscellaney: Running time, one hour; twelve episodes in season one.

You remember Pulse, right? That super-popular boy band that reigned supreme from 1997 through 2001; the group that broke all kinds of sales records, made the best videos ever, and (most importantly) gave us the acting careers of Eric Westerfeld and Alton Warner?

Of course you do.

Well, guess what? They're making a new album AND they're going to go on tour again!

the cast

descriptions are pretty much out of order, but I think you can figure it out!

Lee Pace as William Forrester (The Quiet One)
Will Forrester feels that his life can best be summed up thusly: pre-Pulse, during Pulse, and post-Pulse. Before, he was an idealistic soon-to-be graphic design student who was thinking of proposing to his high school sweetheart. And then he got the call from Alton, who was saying something about a record deal and one more guy and come on, Will, you know you like to sing, it'll be awesome.

Post-Pulse, Will has become a graphic designer, divorced his childhood sweetheart, and is pretty content, except for the fact that yeah, okay, he kind of does miss performing. A little. But it's not like he was the one who had serious star aspirations, or that he was the most talented performer. (That was Alton and Eric.) Everything in his life? Fine.


Matt Bomer as Alton Warner (The Heartthrob)
Alton is two years older than Will, and they have been best friends since Will was able to talk. After graduating from high school, Alton headed to Florida for college and spent some time working as face characters at various amusement parks. This is how he inadvertently caught the attention of a Shadowy Music Mogul, who liked Alton's voice and gave him an offer that the wannabe superstar couldn't refuse: want to start a boy band? So Alton got his roommate at school, who got a friend of a friend, who brought in his girlfriend's younger brother, and then to round out the group, Alton called Will.

After the group more or less disbanded, Alton started acting. He's been less successful than Eric, but he works fairly steadily and has, until recently, been a recurring guest to the point of almost regular status on a cop procedural. Except, oops, the show just killed off his character. Alton loves performing, cannot fathom doing anything but, is a bit of a Casanova, but is fiercely loyal to the people who matter to him, especially to Will.

Chris Evans as Eric Westerfeld (The Cute One)
Eric is Pulse's Justin Timberlake to Alton's JC Chasez. Young, blondish, a Jack of all trades, and massively talented, he was sixteen when the group started and the guy that most of the girls screamed loudest for.

While the band went on "hiatus" after their summer tour in 2001, he got an offer to appear in a show on Broadway. The musical he was in ended up being one of the hits of the season, and soon more theater jobs came up, because people were all OMG, that Pulse kid is kind of talented. Initially Eric politely declined questions about Pulse, and whether or not the group was going to be reuniting any time soon, but later he would flat-out refuse to acknowledge any reporter who asked him about his old group. His success on stage and screen has been the major thing holding back any possible reunion (because while the other Pulse members could, in theory, get back together, half the draw of their comeback would be Eric). More than anything, Eric wants to be taken seriously, and his acting career has definitely helped that. In his mind, returning to the boy band that got him off the ground would be akin to career suicide.

Or so he thinks.

Alex Skarsgard as Mark Phillips (The Bad Boy)
Mark met Alton during their first year at UCF, and when Alton came to him with news about potentially getting a record deal if he could get together four other guys for a group, he was kind of reluctant. After all, he was a Serious Music Major, and the idea of singing sugary pop tunes while sober was not his idea of fun. But after much begging and pleading, he signed on, only to find that, well... he kind of liked it, in all of its obtuse, strange glory. While comparatively normal for a college-aged guy, he ended up being seen as the one that parents didn't want their daughters to swoon over (he had tattoos! he confessed to smoking pot! he wrote that one song on their second album that was rife with double entendre!), and embraced the bad boy role with open arms.

At present, he's more or less dabbled in music production and has directed the occasional music video. He's mellowed out and written more songs in the decade since Pulse dropped off the charts than he did during their entire run. Some he's sold, others he can't bear to part with. (It doesn't help that they're written in five-part harmony.) But he still has a reputation of badassery to maintain, so he's definitely in need of some coaxing if he's going to come back.

Daniel Henney as Jason Park (The Ripped One)
Jason's involvement with Pulse was sheer fluke. One of Mark's friends had been in show choir with Jason in high school, and that friend mentioned "this one Korean guy in my choir who could dance like no one's business." Jason, having no idea of what the hell he wanted to do after graduating, was all too eager to sign up when he got the call. While he was never as popular as Eric or Alton, he was known for being all too eager to whip off his shirt during shows, sending the girls in the front rows into a frenzy.

After the disbanding, Jason went to college, got a degree in accounting, and has been living rather quietly off the millions made during his Pulse days. It's an easy, relaxed life... and boring him half to death. So when Alton and Will call him with the reminder of the last album that they have to fill on their contract, he's all, "So when do we start?"

Also, he was the one who ended up dating hot pop starlet Alison Tate back in the day. We do not talk about this.

Rachel McAdams as Felicity Cavendish
Eric's personal assistant, and all-around pro. Saying that Felicity is the Pepper Potts to his Tony Stark would not be entirely correct, but let's face it, she's had to deal with some absolutely absurd things simply because her client is a former boy bander with his star on the rise. She gets involved in the madness once Eric decides to join the rest of the guys to make the album, and takes a shine to Will--who likes her, but hasn't really had a lady in his life for a while. At the same time, Felicity doesn't want to seem unprofessional, so she tries to hold back on the more obvious flirting.

Elizabeth Banks as Molly Cavendish
Always the optimist (and a bit star-struck, even after living in New York her whole life), Molly has always been amazed by the fact that her sister works for the Eric Westerfeld. When Felicity ends up semi-constantly glued to Eric's side as the album is recorded (and later, when Pulse finally goes on tour again), Molly is all too eager to try to show up and promote her cupcake shop. Mark likes her because she always has food, and Felicity spends half the time horrified by her presence.

Anna Friel as Julia Abernathie
Will's high school sweetheart/ex-wife. In late '97, just as Pulse was starting to really get big internationally, Julia and Will got married in a small ceremony on December 29. The next morning, he was on a plane to New York to perform on Rockin' New Year's Eve. Julia was the one who encouraged Will to give Alton's group thing a chance ("Just see how it goes. At the least, you'll have fun making a demo!"), but eventually the travel and time away from home proved to be too much for both of them, and they divorced in 2002. But even after the split, they've remained friendly. When Will returns to New York while recording the album, he stays with Julia on and off. Eventually she and Felicity become friends, and along with Alton, they tell Felicity that Will is Really Into Her.

America Fererra as Caterina Santos
When the guys first meet their new photographer, Caterina Santos is polished, polite, and entirely too cool. What they don't know is that once upon a time Cat was probably the biggest Pulse fangirl at Our Lady of Lourdes, with Tiger Beat and Teen People pictures of the group taped to her locker and an I [HEART] ERIC pin on the flap of her backpack. Honestly, though, she had no idea that when she submitted her portfolio to the thirtieth company, she'd end up as personal photographer to the boy band that provided the soundtrack to most of her middle and high school years. She also did not expect to be able to constantly keep her cool around Eric, the object of her still-ongoing adulation.

She really did not expect for him to possibly feel the same way that she does.

Samuel L. Jackson as Vincent Kendrick
Vince has managed a lot of successful acts, but Pulse was his first hit group, explaining why he's still fond of them. He's always been about running a tight ship and is therefore seen as being a major hardass, but that's just because he believes in his clients and wants what's best for them. The guys still think he's kind of scary, though.

Alan Tudyk as Ronald Fields
Ron was the frequently beleagured head of security during Pulse's heyday, and is convinced that it will be easier to hold back the crowds now that the fans are no longer twelve year old girls. He's wrong. So very wrong.

Gemma Arteron as Rosalie Ralston
Something of a female Ryan Seacrest, Rosalie has acted as host of Entertainment Now! for the past three years, and is a wee bit obsessed with Alton. She's constantly popping up here and there, trying to get a scoop on him or the other guys in the group, and insists on being present at all the major events he's at.

episode guide
Each episode would be titled after a style of song that a boy band would sing--"Introduction" is for the Pilot, "Lead Single" is the second episode. Other titles include "The Come Back Song" (think *NSYNC's "I Want You Back"), "Babe, I'm Gonna Leave You" (I know it's a song title of its own, but in terms of the theme think 98 Degrees' "The Hardest Thing"), and "The Wedding March" (the song most likely to be used for slow dances or first dances at weddings; think Backstreet Boys' "No One Else Comes Close", "This I Promise You" by *NSYNC, or "I Swear" by All-4-One). The first episode's about Alton and Will getting the old gang back together/Will and Felicity meeting cute; episode two is when we meet Cat, Molly, Vince, and Ronald. By episode four the album's on the brink of being released, and everything from episode six on takes place during the ensuing tour.

Other notes: The entire show would have lots of nods/in-jokes relating to other boy bands and vocal groups, and feature flashbacks from Pulse's heyday with the actors wearing era-appropriate clothes and bad wigs.

Cat and Eric's potential relationship is kinda sorta inspired by Singin' in the Rain, in that Eric is Don and Cat is Cathy.

Season two could feature an international round of the reunion tour. Season three could feature a possible joint tour with a rival boy band who decided to get back together after seeing how well Pulse's reunion did.

*: In all honesty, the whole idea for this came from both an idea I've had for a NaNo novel for forever (the memoirs of a member of a teen pop group) and some random late-night convo I was having with a friend. Somehow we started going through a list of male celebrities who looked like they could have at one time been in a boy band. We started with Matt Bomer and went from there, and then I ended up developing this after revisiting my own boy band obsession. I KNOW, I KNOW.


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