My wife and I watched the new NBC TV show Thank God You’re Here! this evening while we were waiting for the silly FBI warnings to scroll by on the DVD. The basic premise of the show is to get a well known actor to play an improvised scene with several other actors. The well known actor has no idea what the scene will be, other than whatever clues he can gather from his costume. Improvisation is really fun to watch. And to perform. It is tricky.
Basically the actors are supposed to accept whatever is thrown at them. If I walk into a classroom and am asked my opinion of how Chris is doing, and I say “he is blah blah blah” you are now stuck with him being a boy. You do not have a script that says “Chris is our daughter.” But on Thank God You’re Here! the ensemble has a script, which is designed to make the actor confused. Or to point out that the actor didn’t get it right.
The show is not improv. It is merely an attempt to get some cheap laughs at the expense of the actors. I won’t be watching again. I don’t recommend you watch it either.