The First and Only Season of Crosswalk Puzzlers
Words by Aron Simkins Art by Kirsten Spencer
In an attempt to cash-in on the crosswalk craze gripping the nation, Free Form launched its short-lived series “Crosswalk Puzzlers,” a show about a team that puts puzzles together in traffic-congested intersections. Not sure why it didn't get renewed.
Pilot – The Puzzle Pickle: A heated argument in a local Michaels Craft Store threatens to break up the crew when they can’t agree on a puzzle for their upcoming crosswalk build. “Jigsaw” Jess makes a strong case for the 500-piece Disney pick, but “El Pedazo” Sanchez demands a more challenging 1000-piece magic eye. Crew lead Kenny “Puzzerella” Pinkerton intervenes with a 1000-piece Norman Rockwell selection. Spoiler alert: Audience left hanging when Kenny realizes he forgot his wallet.
Episode 02 – Tension at the Seams: The crew heads downtown to begin their dangerous busy-intersection build only to be shut down by closed-minded city councilman Tom “No Puzzles on My Streets” Weiler and corrupt Police Chief Brock E. Anderson. Jigsaw Jess discovers she’s prone to nose bleeds.
Episode 03 – Piece De Résistance: The crew leads a defiant charge against Weiler. Pedazo breaks into the councilman’s car and fills it to the sunroof with Melissa and Doug animal cutouts. Jigsaw Jess jams several corner pieces into the city hall fire alarm after stealing all the toilet paper from the bathroom. Kenny repeatedly bludgeons corrupt Police Chief Anderson over the head with a Hello Kitty puzzle box.
Episode 04 – The Right Fit?: Inspired by the crew’s defiance, Crazy Dave Burnsides, introduces himself as a puzzle prodigy and petitions recruitment. Kenny, realizing the need to stay ahead of the councilman’s inevitable retaliation, agrees. Crazy Dave immediately loses credibility when he slashes tires on 14 cars, as well as his own wrist, and has to be rushed to the hospital.
Episode 05 – Defective Pieces: Enamored by Councilman Weiler’s coquettish assistant, Pedazo suddenly sides with the opposition and begins to sabotage the crew’s puzzle-building efforts. Jess learns her sinuses are failing and her estranged father is the only match for a transplant.
Episode 06 – Puzz and Fuzz: Suffering from crew losses, Kenny spirals further downward when he unwisely helps Crazy Dave move a truck load of stolen radar detectors to pay off local co-ed soccer league gambling debts. In an ironic twist, the radar detectors fail to warn them of the covert police sting aimed at bringing down the black-market radar ring. Kenny is left cuffed in the squad car while Crazy Dave slips through the cushions, so to speak.
Episode 07 – Lenticular Illusion: All hope seems lost until Pedazo abruptly bursts through precinct doors, waving governor-signed release papers and whipping 3-D jigsaw pieces at unsuspecting officers. Kenny, invigorated by the return of his crew member, confronts corrupt Police Chief Anderson, but the epic showdown is overshadowed by Crazy Dave’s subsequent arrest on charges of manslaughter.
Episode 08 – Boarder Run: In a not so subtle attempt at product placement, the newly reunited team meets at a Taco Bell to devise the ultimate plan for a late-night crosswalk build while enjoying the great value offered in the new $5 Box, featuring a Triple Double Crunchwrap, two tacos and a medium Mt. Dew Baja Blast. Later in the episode, Jess is confronted in a family-led intervention regarding her addiction to Afrin nasal spray.
Episode 09 – Masterpieces: Following a montage of pops, locks and sweaty brow wipes, the team steps back as their finished puzzle creation brings early-morning traffic to a standstill. In an unexpected twist, an inspired Councilman Weiler emerges with puzzles for everyone, officially declaring it Bring-Your-Puzzle-to-Work Day. Corrupt Police Chief Anderson is convicted of masterminding the underground radar detector ring. The puzzle crew engages in a slo-mo high five. Credits roll.