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LA, Ep. 15

October 9, 2012 — In a wall-to-wall night of literary fascination and comedic astonishment, the Literary Death Match debut at Largo at the Coronet was a grand spectactle that saw cartoonist Keith Knight out-hoop co-finalist Jennie Ketcham in a wild game of Book Burning Basketball that saw Knight comeback for a knee-tingling 5-3 victory to win him the LDM LA, Ep. 15 crown. 

But before the rambunctious finale was even a thought, the night kicked off with Sofiya Alexandra reading “An Old Fashioned Love Story” of her grandparents falling for each other. Next up was Ketcham, who kicked her shoes off to read of the from her memoir I Am Jennie.

The mic was then turned over to the trio of all-star judges: comedian/writer Jackie KashianClassy Lady host/writer Alie Ward and actor/comedian/writer Eric Andre (of The Eric Andre Show).

The judges traded praise aplenty for both readers, but after masterful quips — Ward on Alexandra “you had a feather stuck to your left knee which reminded me of an angel sighing and shuddering”; Andre left wondering if ‘macabre’ began with a Mc; Kashian expecting Jennie to be reading a Christmas story— they huddled and decided it would be Ketcham who would advance as the night's first finalist.

Then came Round 2, in which (Th)Ink cartoonist Keith Knight wowed the audience with a visual and spoken-cartoon feast before producer/director/writer/television talent Richard Kramer (writer on My So Called Life/Thirtysomething) read a tale of teenage friendship from his new novel, These Things Happen.

Again the mic was given over to the judges, where Kashian noted Bill Cosby’s old-man politics, Ward saw Kramer’s body language as a combative message that he could beat Knight ‘with one hand behind his back’ and Andre reminisced on the now defunct band, Gay Dad. Despite the overwhelming judge-love for Kramer, it was Knight who was announced as the night's second finalist. 

Then LDM creator Adrian Todd Zuniga presented the Book Burning Basketball finale. In a warm-up to the Literary Death Match TV pilot, Michael C. Hall took centre stage as a human stanchion, as Knight and Ketcham flung crumpled balls of book-burning scenes at the hoop. For what seemed like eons both finalists missed narrowly until they rallied a long succession of balls into the hoop in a stonking 5-3 final score that won Knight the Literary Death Match LA crown, and literary immortality to go with it. 

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