Marianne Bayard and Jonathan Kaplan’s web series Killing It! reminds us that no one really has life figured out — even people who are almost 40.
The series follows two best friends, Mares and Kaps, trying to find the “meaning” of life at nearly 40 — all while making misguided attempts to reach their fullest potential and remain best friends. It’s a narrative usually reserved for young adults, fresh out of college and ready to take on the world, but Mares and Kaps’ lovable, yet goofy interactions make it work.
“It’s a story about two idiots following their dreams, driven by their delusions, committed to their friendship — ’til death do they part,” says Kaplan in press materials.
Mares and Kaps’ chemistry is evident in scenes such as when Mares insists that being a “mom-aged” actor without actually being a mom is ruining her chances of being cast, therefore she needs a baby and subsequently a “real mom-post-baby body.” Kaps reminds her that she would be a terrible mom and would have to give up her dreams. When Mares insists, Kaps goes along but reminds her that “if acting is your main priority, your baby is going to grow up to be an asshole.”
Bayard and Kaplan co-created and wrote the show while living 600 miles apart, sharing ideas for the first year of the series via email. Bayard now resides in Pittsburgh, and has film and TV credits including the Jennifer Lawrence film Joy and the Netflix series Mindhunter. Kaplan is based in Lindenhurst, N.Y., and performs in standup clubs in New York City.
Killing It! receives its Pittsburgh-premiere theatrical screening Feb. 8 at Steel City Improv Theater, in Shadyside, and will be followed by an “excellently DJ-ed dance party.” The event is free. - Lauren Ortego