Style Invitational Week 1074: Parody hopping: Describe one show with a tune from another


“Sweeney Todd” by way of “Les Miz.” ( Bob Staake for The Washington Post )
May 29

“Sweeney Todd,” set to “I Dreamed a Dream” from “Les Misérables”
I screamed a scream with blade raised high,
The razor slashed, his cries arrested.
His body soon became a pie,
And shortly after was digested
. . .

Some of the best work in the Invitational’s dozen or so song parody contests over the years has been songs set to show tunes. This time, thanks to the suggestion of Matt Monitto — already a renowned Invite parodist even though he just graduated from college — we’re making it a double of sorts: Describe a stage or movie musical in a parody of a song from a different musical, as in Matt’s own example above. By “musical,” the Empress will accept any play or movie, including animated ones, in which the characters do a significant amount of singing. The inking songs published in the print paper are likely to be set to familiar tunes, but online I can provide YouTube links to the melodies. As always, longer songs need to be worth the greater space they take up.

Winner gets the Inkin’ Memorial, the Lincoln statue bobblehead that is the official Style Invitational trophy. Second place receives a collector’s item that will never become a debt collector’s item: It’s a mint-condition Style Invitational Loser T-shirt given to runners-up of Year 2 (1994-95), donated by Hall of Fame Loser Elden Carnahan as he begins to divest a heap of his vintage Loser prize stash into our eager little hands. It’s the first of dozens of Loser prizes designed for us by Bob Staake, with his taste-challenged cartoon on the front; Cindi Rae Caron’s slogan on the back — “New and Imporved T-Shirt” — was the winner of the Week 74 slogan contest.

Other runners-up win their choice of a yearned-for Loser Mug or the ardently desired “Whole Fools” Grossery Bag. Honorable mentions get a lusted-after Loser magnet, either the Po’ Wit Laureate or Puns of Steel. First Offenders receive a smelly tree-shaped air “freshener” (FirStink for their first ink). E-mail entries to losers@washpost.com or, if you were born in the 19th century, fax to 202-334-4312. Deadline is Monday, June 9; results published June 29 (online June 26). No more than 25 entries per entrant per contest. Include “Week 1074” in your e-mail subject line or it might be ignored as spam. Include your real name, postal address and phone number with your entry. See contest rules and guidelines at wapo.st/InvRules. This week’s honorable-mentions subhead is by Danielle Nowlin; the alternative headline in the “Next week’s results” line is by Tom Witte. Join the lively Style Invitational Devotees group on Facebook at on.fb.me/invdev, and click “like” on Style Invitational Ink of the Day at bit.ly/inkofday.


See, we were even more tasteless than we are now.  The Year 2 Loser T-shirt given to runners-up: this week’s second prize.

Style Conversational The Empress’s weekly online column discusses each new contest and set of results. Especially if you plan to enter, check it out at wapo.st/styleconv.

REPORT FROM WEEK 1070, OUR GRANDFOALS CONTEST

Four weeks ago, on Kentucky Derby weekend, we presented the winners of our annual contest in which we give a list of Triple Crown-nominated horses and ask you to “breed” any two and name their “foal” to reflect both parents’ names. Then then we asked you to breed them to make “grandfoals.” In its ninth running, the “Colt Following” contest isn’t losing any speed.

THE WINNER OF THE INKIN’ MEMORIAL:

&*^$ Mammogram x Clans Casino = Squish and Chips (Danielle Nowlin, Woodbridge, Va.)

2nd place and the snacks made with real crickets:

I Urned It Baby x Age Plus Gravity = My Ash Is Draggin’ (Harold Mantle, Lafayette, Calif.)

3rd place:

Bagel and a Sneer x Heresy’s Kisses = Judas’s Carryout (Chris Doyle, Ponder, Tex.; Kathy El-Assal, Middleton, Wis.)

4th place

GloriaInEggshells x Pack of Camels = Ova the Hump (Barry Koch, Catlett, Va.)

Imperfecta: honorable mentions

Bagel and a Sneer x Cash and Carrie = Noshville (Kathy Hardis Fraeman, Olney, Md.)


The back of the Year 2 T-shirt, with Cindi Rae Caron’s winning slogan.  It inspired the Losers’ annual awards for “Most Imporved” and “Least Imporved” contestants.

Vlad the Inhaler x Coup de Tot = Yessir, AsthmaBaby (Frank Osen, Pasadena, Calif.)

Ion the Prize x Midnight Snack = High-Proton Diet (Rob Wolf, Gaithersburg, Md.)

Midnight Snack x Lunar E-Clips = Chips in the Night (Harvey Smith, McLean, Va.)

Keister Bunny x Tip = Them Ain’t Raisins (Barbara Turner, Takoma Park, Md.)

Hoyle of Ole x Tip = Mohel of Ole (Rick Haynes, Boynton Beach, Fla.)

Tolkien’BoutShaft x Tip = John Wayne Hobbit (Rob Huffman, Fredericksburg, Va.)

What Constitution? x Keister Bunny = We the Peeps (Drew Bennett, West Plains, Mo.)

YouCanKeepYourPlan x Pi Rho = Backfire (Becky Fisher, Madison, Wis.)

Bagel and a Sneer x Toast in New York = Synonymous (Kathryn Q. Perry, Fort Worth, Tex.)

Bagel and a Sneer x Midnight Snack = Go to Bed, Mom (Philip Justus, Potomac, Md.)

Commanding Perv x Bank and Trussed = Stalks and Bonds (Laurie Brink, Cleveland, Mo.)

Best Pla_Y- x Thou Shall Knot Steel = Thornton Welder (Mike Gips, Bethesda, Md.)

Clans Casino x &*^$ Mammogram = Squeezers Palace (Chris Doyle)

Coup de Tot x Loch and Load = Coup Coup’s Ness (Dudley Thompson, Cary, N.C.)

Dow Shalt Not x Wizzer of Wall St. = Not NYSE (Barbara Turner)

Olympic Spear-it x Gloria in Eggshells = ShakeSpearsOmelet (Susan Thompson, Cary, N.C.)

Ride on Hurlin x Homer = Barf Simpson (Beverley Sharp, Montgomery, Ala.)

Homer x WizzerOfWallStreet = D’oh With the Flow (Craig Dykstra, Centreville, Va.)

Alien Wife Form x Homer = Odd to See (David Letizia, Alexandria, Va.)

Pitch Set Me Up x Homer = The Silly Ad (Marilyn Pifer, Falls Church, Va., a First Offender)

Homer x The Nope Diamond = B*arry B*onds (Nan Reiner, Alexandria, Va.)

Janitorah x Gettin Outta Dodge = Mount Cyanide (Nancy Schwalb, Washington)

Cruller deVil x Cry Me a Ribber = Beignet &TheJests (Dudley Thompson)

Tip x I Urned It Baby = Top O’TheMourning (Mae Scanlan, Washington)

Janitorah x Pitch Set Me Up = In the Big Inning (Harvey Smith)

Commanding Perv x Keister Bunny = Floggy Bottom (Mark Raffman, Reston, Va.)

Homer x Kilty as Charged = Odyssey a Lawyer (Jeff Shirley, Richmond, Va.)

Homer x YouCanKeepYourPlan = The Idiossey (John O’Byrne, Dublin)

Loch and Lode x Not Billy Joel! = JustTheWayYouArm (Laurie Brink)

Pack of Camels x Keister Bunny = Baby Got Bactrian (Pam Sweeney, Burlington, Mass.)

Abstract Dart x Parish Hooters = Dali Parton (Jeff Shirley)

Greece is the Ward x Peace and Carats = VisualizeWorldBank (Nancy Schwalb)

Bagel and a Sneer x Peter Paul & Merry = LeavenOnAJetPlane (Rob Wolf)

Peter Paul & Merry x Tryst and Shalt = Flower’s Gone (Harold Mantle)

Pitch Set Me Up x The Nope Diamond = NotTheMarionKind (Ellen Raphaeli, Falls Church, Va.)

The Wheel McCoy x Toast in New York = He’s Bread, Jim (Danielle Nowlin)

Toast in New York x Tip = 20-Dollar Breakfast (Warren Tanabe, Annapolis, Md.)

Blank Lloyd Wright x YouCanKeepYourPlan = Failingwater (Harvey Smith)

Loch and Lode x Tolkien’BoutShaft = Who Shot J.R.R.? (Kathryn Perry)

Keister Bunny x Wizzer of Wall St.=Tuchus for a Ride (Jonathan Paul, Garrett Park, Md.)

I Urned It Baby x Perp’ll Reign = Dust for Prince (Pam Sweeney)

Midnight Snack x Gu = Ate Half the Ragu (Neal Starkman, Seattle)

Next week’s results: A Pair of Threes, or Similarithrees, our contest to explain how a two entities with the same three-letter abbreviations are alike are different. See bit.ly/invite1071.

Still running — deadline Monday night — Our perennial “bank heads” contest. See bit.ly/invite1073.

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