I've tried to make this script LOOK more "Readable" ...
Formatting has always been the problem with Drama Scripts - surely it's not impossible to use BOLD or Italics???
Come on, Mods ... someone must have a simple solution?
Fingers crossed ...
Hmmmm: not perfect, still no BOLD/Italics - but at least it looks more like a Script now! Comments would be appreciated (next rehearsal scheduled for tomorrow, Wed 15th Feb ...)
Mrs.Nostalgia. Middle-aged (closer to retirement?)
Molly. Her friend, similar age
Mr.Jones. Factory boss. Only interest is factory profits. Flashy "George Cole" type spiv.
Mr.Hotsell. Panto-style villain. Owns a warehouse filled with "stuff that hasn't even been invented yet"
Dolly Bird. Featherbrain, OTT fashionista: latest styles, big hair, pancake makeup, extravagant nails etc, etc
Speaks her lines at an impossible rate of knots, even if most of what she says is rubbish ......
Dim Jim. Late teens.Baseball cap (backwards), brown dustcoat, apron. Speaks VERY slowly
Narrator (standing slightly offstage, holding guitar)
[preferably a LUTE, if one can be found. Narrator MUST be able to sing & accompany himself]
It's the Swinging Sixties and the politicians say:
"You've never ever had it so good as it is today!
We want you all to Spend, Spend, Spend your hard-earned cash
On all the latest modern technological trash
Don't worry how you'll pay for it, the reason is, you see
It all goes on the never-never, "drip-feed" and HP ..."
Mrs.Nostalgia enters, chatting with Molly
D'you know, it was amazing when we first got a phone put in! First in our street, we was! No more queuin' at the call box on the corner o' the street ...
Molly And no more pockets loaded down with pennies to feed the slot when the Op'rator said you'd run outta time! They weighed a ton, sometimes!
Mrs. N. An' I could speak to our Lily, she lives all the way up in Southport:- I didden even need t' shout!
Molly I remember speaking to our Bert the day he was demobbed. He was in Belfast that day, would you believe it!
Mrs, N, I never understood how they got them phone lines buried out at sea ... ?
Molly I think they used Pluto
Mrs.N. confused What? Mickey Mouse's dog?
Molly No, not him! PLUTO - Pipe Line Under The Ocean, you ninny!
Mrs. N. Ah! Alright, but no need to be rude, Molly! [beat] There was loads of things in them days was different. [beat] These 'lecky toasters are all very well, but I swear it tasted much better straight off the brass fork in front of the kitchen fire ... real coal, too, that was!
Molly Yeah - you could taste that on the bread, an' the smoke too if you wasn't careful! [beat] I always got a better pan o'scouse cookin' on the old gas stove. I remember, though, our Fred had to buy an alarm clock when they replaced the gas lamps in the streets with lecky lights an' the Knocker-up had to retire …
Mrs.N. Yes, but that's what they call progress, I suppose: some things will always have to change. I tell you, Molly, this new-fangled technology's all very well, but ...
Fade. They walk off together, still chatting
Mr. Hardsell looking after them, shaking his head
Cor blimey, will yiz look at them two! [beat] I swear, they haven't a clue! How can they be happy, living in the past?
[he is addressing the AUDIENCE]
Nah, if you want to be really happy you need to keep up to date, get the very best luxury goods as soon as they come
on the market! Nice big, fancy car, Sir? Maybe a new cooker,Madam - or perhaps a dishwasher, to spare your pretty
hands from all that nasty hard washing up?
Enter 4 'drudges': stooped, depressed, each carrying a battered suitcase.
Me, I've got this all sussed! I ot these guys working for me. right, lads?
they sigh, nod, start to plod offstage
They go round knockin on doors, flog stuff on the 'never-never' - fridges, freezers, TVs - an' they get paid IF they sell stuff. I get my 10% on everything they sell ... good, eh?
Evil laugh - hopefully Audience will boo him offstage (he should be 'winding them up' every opportunity)
And this is the best bit! Everything they sell comes from a warehouse I have in a quiet little spot down Scottie Road. Massive, it is - an' it's crammed to the rafters with stuff that hasn't even been invented yet, so it's all pure profit for me! [beat] Oooh, so yiz don't be-leeeve me? [banter] Well, I s'pose I'll have to show you when I get back ... !
Exit, arguing with Audience
ms Dolly Bird
No, I can tell you, I wasn't very happy when my Boss said he was scrappin’ all our lover-lee ol' "situpandbeg" Olympias an' gettin' in a job lot o' 'lectric typethingies instead. So I says to him "Mr.Jones" says I - 'cos that's his name, see? - "Mr.Jones, d'you want us all to be electrolised, electroplated to death while we're typin’ and all our hair stood out on end?" Then he says to me, "Don't you worry 'bout nothing, Dolly - he's a nice Boss, always remembers my name! -
don't you worry, it's perfectly safe, they've all got fuses an' everything, and you'll get rubber mats to go under your desks. It won't spoil your hairdo, Dolly, (he says) and for the amount of typing you get through it isn't going to make a great deal of difference anyway!
[beat: puzzled look on her face]
Strange, though: he never explained how keepin' our feet dry was goin' t' make us safer! [beat] Anyway, when I tried it I found out I didden 'ave ter hit the keys so hard as I did on the ol' machines an' it didden spoil me lover - lee nails, see?
[she shows them off to the Audience: they are OTT outrageous, overlong and false - useless for typing]
So far, it's working just fine!
[she moves across stage to a desk where a typical office switchboard is installed]
This phone system's great, too! I don't even have to leave my seat when a call comes in. I can call any of the bosses and find out if he's busy or if he's up to ... no, er ...never mind that! [beat] I can just say "One moment please" and press a button:and while they're listening to some nice music, I can find out if the boss is free to take the call. It does mean that sometimes I have to tell little fibs for him, but I like this technolo-whatsit, it seems to work fine ... even the colour scheme's pretty! D'you think I should have me hair dyed to match it?
[banter with Audience before swanning off stage still talking (nonsense) to herself]
Phwaaaaaaaarr! Is she a bit of alright, or what?!
[beat. He leans on his broom]
Glad me nuncle got me this job, though - I'd pro'lly be on the Dole otherwise ... gorra 'C' in knittin' at school but that's all I got. They wooden let me take stuff like English an' Maths, said thee was no point, it'd give the school a 'bad rep'
[beat] Funny, though: all the blokes I know are dead chuffed if someone says they 'ave a 'bad rep': why's it so diff'runt
for a school? [beat] Anyway, it suits me t' push a broom, I don' affta think 'bout it nor nuffin' [beat] An' yer know what?
This is the good bit!
[looks all round scene, then "stage whisper" to Audience]
I learnt something new!
Crosses to desk. Points to an ancient (the older the better!) early “Mk.1-style” 'computer' – preferably 9" 'green screen'
with massive 'tower': outdated cables & hardware sprawling everywhere. Dances around it, happy.
See this new typing-thingie? There's GAMES on it!
[Stops dancing, addresses Audience seriously]
I was only dustin’, like, an' I must've hit the ON/OFF button by accident. Anyway, the TV screen comes on [he suits action to word] an' - see down here? - [he points] next I know, this pointing thing's on a button what says "Start" so I does [action to word again]
and on the screen it says "GAMES" [he clicks on it] an' now I can play Ping-Pong anytime I like! Good, innit? An' as long as the Boss don' catch me at it, I can skive off any time I like, an' I don' even need noone t' play against!
[Audience must be able to see screen. Jim gets absorbed in the game and does not notice when Mr. Hardsell enters and approaches him]
Ah, Jim! Just the man I need!
[Jim jumps in shock/fear, guilt at being discovered. He quickly switches PC off: Mr. Hs hasn't noticed it was on but Jim doesn't know that]
Jim Ooh, Mr.Hardsell, you gvie me a shock, there! Err ... I've done your office orreddy, I allus do yours first 'cos I know how hard you work, first in ev'ry mornin' an' usually last to go 'ome ... I'm sorry - I mean, I never meant …
Mr. Hardsell Mean, Jim? Does anything you say ever mean anything? Don't worry, you aren't in trouble - at least not with me! I'm not here to talk about your cleaning duties or anything like that: I've got another job I think would be perfect for you!
Jim [with a VERY worried look on his face] Mr. H. you're not gonna fire me, are you? I promise I'll be good, work twice as hard, won't never mess with ... [glancing at PC again: Mr. Hardsell is still oblivious]
Mr.Hardsell Calm down, calm down! [imitating Harry Enfield + "Scally Scouser"] Listen, Jim! The job I want you to do is very important, both for me AND for the company! It has to be a secret, too, 'cos I don't want somebody else pinching our ideas! Now tell me: can you keep a secret? A really important Top Secret?
Jim Oooh, you mean you want me to be like Bond ... James Bond?
[He 'struts' in a way he imagines JB would]
Mr.Hardsell [sighs patiently] Yes, Jim, just like James Bond if that's how you want to play it! But I must have your promise that you won't breathe a word of this to anyone!
Jim Honest, Mr. H, I'll never tell nobody nothing!
Mr.Hardsell [to Audience] Hmmm, I make that a triple negative ... Even if he tried to tell anyone, I doubt they'd understand his ramblings, much less believe them!
[evil sneer, wind up the Audience: banter]
[to Jim] I want you to test some Games for me, Jim
[beat: turns to audience] because if HE can play them, it's guaranteed, every five year old in the country can manage!
[evil laughter, more windup] [Back to Jim]
Why don't we go up to my office and I'll tell you some more. Not a lot of people know this ('Michael Caine' mannerism) but I got this massive secret warehouse off Scottie Road ...
Mr. Hs leads Jim to a 'secret' room on floor 9¾. The sign on the door reads "Area 53"
Narrator. Lyrics of a song to follow. Starts:
A warehouse filled with wondrous things which haven't been invented?
A man who has such treasures in store must surely be contented!
After the song: Seriously: have you never wondered how sometimes the most unlikely things suddenly become "must have" crazes, from one day to the next - and just as suddenly disappear? Follow this man: follow, if you dare!
Mr.Hardsell Right you are,Jo .. err, sorry, Jim! Before I show you, I must remind you that this really is Top Secret. You can't tell anyone!
Jim No one? You mean, you haven't told anyone else who works here? Not even Dolly?
Mr. Hardsell [tearing his hair, etc] [aside, to Audience] Ooh, God! Did you have to make him sooo stupid? [beat]
He continues to 'work the crowd' by pulling faces, scowls, evil grins etc [turns back to Jim, more calmly]
Nobody at all Jim - and especially not Dolly! I've seen how you look at her: but I'm tellin’ you now, she's not as clever as you
[beat: pulls faces to Audience]
She can't keep a secret like WE can! ... on the other hand, if you'd rather clean toilets for the rest of your life ...?
Jim (Interrupting) No, honest, Mr. H. Sir! I can keep my mouth shut, your secret's safe with me!
Mr.Hardsell [aside to Audience: camp up the evil leer/ Panto villain, image] Shame he's so easy-peasy to push around!
[to Jim] Here we are: what d'you think of this, then?
[He hands Jim a small ball]
Jim [Takes the ball, looks puzzled. Tries to squeeze it, looks closely: sniffs at it, goes to put it in his mouth.]
Mr.Hardsell Jim, what are you doing? It's not a sweet!"
Jim Sorry, but it's so small I didn't think it was a ball: I thought it might be a gobstopper or something! [beat]
An' it's bigger than an 'olly or a marble. What sort of game d'you expect people to play with it?
Mr. Hardsell [Aside to Audience] This should be brilliant!
[to Jim] Throw it up against that wall: try to catch it when it comes back!
Jim That's easy ... not much of a game, Mr. H.. oh - ooh - OW!!
[The ball comes back like a rocket. It's a "superbounce", of course, and ricochets out of control, chasing Jim all around the room before hitting him on the nose: he collapses, exhausted]
Mr. Hardsell So, what d'you think of that, then?
[Jim is unable to speak/breathe. Ham up total exhaustion, sign language for water, etc]
Tell me: what d'you think of my latest idea?
[Jim pulls himself together]
Jim Mr.H. I think it's wicked!
Mr. Hardsell Wicked? What d'you mean? It's a toy: it's not supposed to be a weapon, evil, or anything bad at all!
Jim No, Mr. H! "Wicked" means "brilliant" on the streets - 's what my mates call something they really, really like a lot!
Wicked, that's like, "cool" y'know!
Mr.Hardsell Hmmm ... when I was your age, we called things like that 'hot' but never mind! You liked this, then?
Jim Lorra lorra laffs! Never seen nothing bounce about like that, so fast, for so long! Like Superman ...!
[He performs a (very clumsy) imitation of what he imagines Superman would do to take off]
Mr. Hardsell Fine, Jim. And that's a good name for it, too! I'll market it as a"Supaball" - it has a nice, snappy sound to it!
Thanks for the idea!
[He turns to the Audience with another evil grin]
It was a FREE idea, too! If only he realised how much he's saved me in market research costs! [beat] Not that I'd ever dream of telling him!
[Evil laugh: leads Jim offstage. Lights dim briefly, then spot on Narrator.]
Time moves on, it waits for no-one
A moment ticks, tocks, and then it's gone
Marbles give way to Supaballs and Rubik's
Then forward fast to video games and U-tube
Games based on films based on games within
Where does the cycle begin?
Gory slash/horror frame after bloody frame
Rated "18" by Censors - Really? For Games?
Virtual massacre, onscreen rape and pillage
Destroying an enemy spaceship. town or
Oh Brave New World that has such people in it