A-to-Z Challenge (2016 edition): M is for Man Up

It’s April A-to-Z month! Interested in signing up? Unfortunately it’s too late. I know! But even if it it, check out the 1500+ bloggers signed up and striving to complete this month-long challenge. They need YOU to cheer them on!

NOTE: Changes are happening! I’m no longer filtering these movies through the W-story structure, because it’s too rigid. Instead I’ll be using Jami Gold’s Basic Beat Sheet. BUT if you liked Mary Carroll Moore’s W-story structuring method, you can find info all about it here.

Disclaimer: This is MY version of a plot break down. You might decide I’m entirely wrong and spewing nonsense, and that’s cool. It’s all relative.


Now onto M – also we’re officially halfway through this April’s A-Z, so keep at it! – and I’ve chosen to watch a British rom com, Man Up. Very cute movie! Again, another heroine like the last one who’s older and questions her past and present and future. Life is very confusing, but it’s awfully romantic too.

Now let’s chop it up:

Inciting incident: 34 y/o Nancy has a crappy dating life, but she’s also unhappy about her fear of taking risks. So when she gets the chance to steal another woman’s blind date, she does.

End of the beginning:  So when she gets the chance to steal another woman’s blind date, she does (ha, I make it sound that bad – it is). After the preliminary 20 questions she decides to come clean about not being a 24-year-old called Jessica, only she’s having WAY too much fun for honest (pffft! who needs to be truthful?).

Pinch point #1: Nancy and her date go blowing, and they have oodles of fun. Nancy bumps into an old (sleazy) classmate, Sean. Sean was (and is still) obsessed with Nancy. Putting two-and-two together, he blackmails her into trading a kiss to keep her secret identity from her blind date. Nancy promises him a kiss later in the night. Meanwhile blind date is going swimmingly, until Jack – that’s the guy she’s stolen for the day – catches Nancy in the bathroom almost locking lips with Sean. Jack flips out and leaves, only they can’t part yet as Jack swapped journals with Nancy and they need to trade back. ALSO Nancy’s actually supposed to be at her parents’ 40th anniversary party, giving a speech, but she’s running late.

Midpoint: Nancy is about to leave with her journal when Jack bumps into his cheating soon-to-be ex-wife (the divorce papers are signed) and the new man in her life (actually the guy she was cheating with in the 1st place). Jack pretends Nancy is his date, since she “owes him one” for lying to him about her identity.

Pinch point #2: Nancy goes along with it, and she’s a great pretend girlfriend until Jack hates all her theorizing about relationships failing and sex and everything. He feels liek she’s judging him and his failed marriage and he ducks out to cry in the men’s room (dude’s 40 btw, but that’s cool. I’m not going to judge – also Simon Pegg’s cute in an older guy kinda way). They end up having a heart-to-heart in the toilet, where Jack’s crying, and they head back out to close the night with his ex-wife and her lover. Jack gets his closure when Nancy accidentally sets Jack’s ex-wife’s lover’s sleeve on fire and she splashes extinguishing foam all over the ex-wife and her lover in the middle of the bar to everyone’s humor (except the ex-wife and her lover; they weren’t laughing).

Crisis: Nancy and Jack are back where they first met, in the Waterloo train station under the clock and instead of clinging to each other, they part ways awkwardly after Jack asks Nancy whether he should meet Jessica and she says ‘yes’ believing he wants to meet his real blind date (whatever that means).

Climax: A super late Nancy arrives at her parents’ party and she ends up breaking down in front of everyone, relaying her spontaneous day with a complete stranger – a stranger she’s supposedly fallen in love with and because she doesn’t take risks, she’s possibly botched her one and only true love. Jack is finally out with young Jessica and he realizes they don’t fit as well as he and Nancy had (they big highlight was the age difference and the varied tastes due to the 16-year age gap) and he finally realizes he has to find Nancy. Only he never got her number, she avoids social media (i.e. sorry, no FB snooping) and he’s got nothing to run on. Oh, wait, he has. He heads back to the bowling alley and finds Sean and Sean drives him to Nancy’s parents’ place…um, not. Sean the arsehole decides to trick him and lead him to another house in the same neighborhood. Lucky for Jack he finds a teen who Nancy used to babysit and the dude leads him to Nancy’s house.

Resolution:  It takes a while but Jack confesses to Nancy and asks for a second chance in front of her parents, her sister and brother-in-law, and their guests. Nancy says ‘yes’…actually she says ‘f**k the past’ and they toast and make out, supposedly moving to the powder room down the hall to boink each other with Nancy’s parents in ear shot. THE END.

Have you ever been set up on a blind date? (Or did you do the setting up?) And if not, would you consider going on a blind date?

One thought on “A-to-Z Challenge (2016 edition): M is for Man Up

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