Wednesday, June 21, 2017

What to Watch: Best Banter

What to Watch: Best Banter

One of my favorite parts of any good romance novel (whether it’s written by me or not) is the banter. Give me a sharp hero, a witty heroine, and 380 pages of verbal ping pong, and I’m a happy reader. Even all those gushy love scenes and high adrenaline plots don’t matter as long as there’s a playful bandying of words.

Of course, writing this kind of easy banter is hard work. It usually takes me several passes and lots of painstaking edits before I can achieve the perfect light-hearted note. It also takes research—which, for me, includes hours upon hours of watching movies and television. (I know. It’s a tough life, but someone has to do it.)

Some of the best lines of dialogue in pop culture were painstakingly written into the script (I’m looking at you, Gilmore Girls). Others arise from actors improving on the set (a skill I’m hugely envious of but will never master). Either way, I find that watching these movies and shows—oftentimes over and over again—is a great way to learn. If you want to brush up on your own banter skills, or if you’d simply like to enjoy some TV time that will keep you smiling, here are some suggestions.

·       Two Weeks Notice (or literally anything starring Hugh Grant except for Notting Hill because I hated that movie)
·       The Ref
·       Grosse Pointe Blank
·       Ocean’s Eleven (or Dirty Rotten Scoundrels or Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang or almost any crime/heist movie, really)
·       Firefly
·       The Princess Bride
·       Party Down
·       It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
·       Philadelphia Story (I guess Philadelphia is pretty hilarious)
·       Archer
·       It Happened One Night
·       Bringing Up Baby
·       The American President
·       Community
·       Iron Man
·       Crazy, Stupid, Love (again, I’m going to go out on a limb and say anything starring Emma Stone…and adding Ryan Gosling into the mix doesn’t hurt)
·       The West Wing
·       Gilmore Girls

I’m sure I’m missing some good ones, but these are the top banter picks that come to my mind. 

…what about you? Are there any must-watch TV shows or movies that you’d add?




Tamara Morgan is the author of thirteen contemporary comedy romances and the new Penelope Blue series. Her books combine fast-paced antics and humor with heartfelt sentiment, and have been described as both “utterly unconventional and wonderfully smart.” Her debut novel was chosen as the Smart Bitches Trashy Books book club pick in April of 2012, and her books have since gone on to receive two starred reviews from Library Journal and three Romantic Times Magazine Top Picks, one of which was nominated in the 2014 RT Reviewers' Choice Awards in the Contemporary Love & Laughter category. 

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