Literature After Dark

Jan 31, 2020

Esmerelda, u up? In this game, literary romances are rewritten as flirty late-night texts.

Heard on John Cameron Mitchell: Getting Shrill.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

OPHIRA EISENBERG, HOST:

For our next game, we've uncovered late-night text messages from classic literary characters. Turns out Ebenezer Scrooge was a real horndog.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: OK. So this game is called Literature After Dark. Jonathan and I will depict famous fictional romances as flirty text exchanges. Identify the title of each work and the points are doubled. Hannah, stay in the lead and you're in the final round. Leah, you need to get more points or we'll add you to the ASK ME ANOTHER group text thread, and it is active.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: Here we go.

(SOUNDBITE OF TEXT MESSAGE NOTIFICATION)

EISENBERG: You up?

(SOUNDBITE OF TEXT MESSAGE NOTIFICATION)

JONATHAN COULTON: It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a booty call.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

COULTON: Hannah.

HANNAH CORRIGAN: Jay Gatsby.

COULTON: Sorry, that is incorrect. Leah, do you know the answer?

LEAH SCRIVNER: No, no.

COULTON: All right. We were looking for "Pride And Prejudice."

CORRIGAN: OK.

SCRIVNER: True, true.

CORRIGAN: Rich people still, though.

EISENBERG: Yes.

COULTON: Yeah. No, you're in the ballpark, for sure.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: Hey Esmeralda, I want to swing down on my rope and give you sanctuary - bell emoji.

(SOUNDBITE OF TEXT MESSAGE NOTIFICATION)

EISENBERG: Oh, Quasi, let's just be friends.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Hannah.

CORRIGAN: "The Hunchback Of Notre Dame."

EISENBERG: That's correct. Yes.

(APPLAUSE)

COULTON: Want to come over?

(SOUNDBITE OF TEXT MESSAGE NOTIFICATION)

EISENBERG: Your place?

(SOUNDBITE OF TEXT MESSAGE NOTIFICATION)

COULTON: No, to Singapore to meet my unbelievably wealthy family I never told you about.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

CORRIGAN: "Crazy Rich Asians."

EISENBERG: Hannah, yes, that is correct. Kevin Kwan and "Crazy Rich Asians."

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: That's the text I'm still waiting for my husband to text me.

(LAUGHTER)

COULTON: It'd be a nice surprise, wouldn't it?

EISENBERG: I know.

COULTON: Yeah.

(SOUNDBITE OF TEXT MESSAGE NOTIFICATION)

EISENBERG: Yo Ennis, Netflix and chill or herd sheep and grill?

(SOUNDBITE OF TEXT MESSAGE NOTIFICATION)

COULTON: Cowboy emoji, cowboy emoji, heart eyes emoji.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Leah.

SCRIVNER: "Brokeback Mountain."

EISENBERG: Yeah, that's right.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: I wish I knew how to delete you.

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: This is your last clue.

(SOUNDBITE OF TEXT MESSAGE NOTIFICATION)

EISENBERG: Are you ghosting me? Ham emoji.

(SOUNDBITE OF TEXT MESSAGE NOTIFICATION)

COULTON: Get thee to a nunnery, Ophira.

(SOUNDBITE OF TEXT MESSAGE NOTIFICATION)

COULTON: I meant Ophelia - autocorrect.

(SOUNDBITE OF BELL)

EISENBERG: Hannah.

CORRIGAN: "Hamlet."

EISENBERG: That is correct.

(APPLAUSE)

EISENBERG: After two games, Hannah is going to the final round.

(SOUNDBITE OF SERATONES' "POWER")

EISENBERG: Coming up, John Cameron Mitchell is here. He created and starred in "Hedwig And The Angry Inch," which is, just so you know, not about the owl from "Harry Potter."

(LAUGHTER)

EISENBERG: I'm Ophira Eisenberg. And this is ASK ME ANOTHER from NPR.

(SOUNDBITE OF SERATONES' "POWER") Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.