Thursday, March 24, 2005

Resurrecting Your Dead Babies

Something to know about Elephant Larry’s gloriously democratic sketch selection process: When a sketch gets 5 votes, it usually means everyone likes it and it’s immediately put into the show’s final setlist. The number of 4’s and 3’s that get in after that varies, depending on the amount of set time left to fill. It’s pretty rare for a sketch that only gets a 1 or 2 to be seriously considered at all.

And then there are the Zeros.

The Zeros are a special case, in that even the authors of the sketch have betrayed it, leaving it to rot at the bottom of the comedic dregs where it probably belongs.

Below is one such Zero. Its author, Christopher Principe, shall remain anonymous. Though looking it over now, this sketch would have definitely gone over gangbusters. Especially with the ladies. “Enjoy.”

Jed and Lee sit at a table. Innkeeper stands behind them.

Innkeeper: Two ales, comin’ right up.

Lee: And an extra one also, for our friend. He’s running late. (Innkeeper exits) I wonder where he is.

Jed: Probably died.

Lee: Now why would you say something like that?

Jed: I was kidding. (An Old Man has walked up to them) Hi.

Old Man: A mysterious evil has spread over the land. A poison has seeped so deep into the earth that even the village well is contaminated. If you do not help, I fear all life shall wilt and perish.

Lee: …thanks. (Old Man continues walking. Toth enters, sad)

Toth: Hey guys.

Lee: Toth! What happened?

Toth: I died.

Jed: See?

Lee: Shut up. Hey don’t worry about it, man.

Toth: I had to start all the way back at the…ya know.

Jed: The Fire Temple? (Toth shakes head) The Ice Cavern?

Toth: Yeah.

Lee: You gotta save more often.

Toth: Thanks, Mom. I’m thirsty. Innkeeper!

Jed: No not him—!

Old Man: A mysterious evil has spread over the land. A poison has seeped so deep into the earth that even the village well is contaminated. If you do not help, I fear all life shall wilt and perish.

Lee: Thank you. (Old Man exits)

Jed: How’d you die?

Toth: In the Fire Temple. (winces)

Lee: You gotta use Ice Spells.

Toth: What? (winces)

Lee: On the fire monsters.

Jed: Makes sense.

Toth: Why is everything so confusing?

Jed: Toth, what level?

Lee: Jed.

Jed: What level are you, Toth?

Toth: What level are you, Jed?

Jed: 37.

Toth (ashamed): 25.

Jed: You gotta go out into the woods and fight some animals.

Toth: Maybe I’m not cut out for this whole adventure fighting thing. Some days I just wanna settle down and open up a Weapon shop...or an Armor shop...or an Item shop.

Innkeeper: Three ales. That’ll be nine gold pieces.

Lee: I got it.

Toth: Thanks. Those Fire-dicks stole my gold pieces when I died. (winces) Ow. And I think they poisoned me. (winces) Ow. I’m pathetic.

Lee: Here, have this antidote. (Hands it to him, “ding” sound)

Toth: Thanks. I’m better now.

Jed: You just need more experience. How many points ‘til you level up?

Toth: I don’t know. 5,460?

Lee: Hey. Kill five Blizzard Dogs and you’re all set.

Toth: But I hate getting experience. It’s so boring.

Jed: Whaddya have ADD? (They stare at him) What?

Toth: Lee, you’re a thief. Can’t I just steal someone experience?

Lee: Nah, I don’t think so—

Jed: Hey. Remember that first monster we had so many problems with in the beginning?

Toth: Yeah, sure, the Cave Troll.

Jed: Well I went back, right? Equipped my new SoulCrusher Blade. And I fought him.

Toth: Again? We killed him.

Lee: Don’t worry about it. What happened?

Jed: (pause) I got 9999.

Toth: Woah. Maximum damage.

Jed: Experience works, man. That, and you need a good weapon, like a Dwarf Axe or—

Toth: Ohhh! Maybe there’s something in that treasure chest. (runs and opens. Monster “jumps out” of chest)

Monster: RAR!!!

Toth & Jed: Ahhh! Skeleton Soldier!

Lee: I thought this was neutral territory!

Jed: Yeah, well that is definitely battle music. FUCK. Come on. (They face opposite the monster to battle.)

Monster attacks Toth.

Jed attacks Monster.

Lee attacks Monster.

Toth attacks Monster.

Monster attacks Toth, Toth dies.

Jed: Oh come on.

Jed attacks Monster, Monster dies, Victory music.

Jed: What the hell was that all about? (Lee: I don’t know) And what, did Toth die already?

Innkeeper: Thank you, heroes. Please take these magic stones as a reward—

Jed: Yeah, great, thanks. Cure him, will ya?

Lee: (“magic” hands at Toth) LIFE.

Toth: …what happened?

Jed: Great, let’s get outta here.

Innkeeper: Would you like to rest here? It will cost you 50 gold pieces.

Toth: Sure.

Lee: No, we’re already at full health—(Lights out. Melodic sound cue. Lights up)

Toth: That felt nice.

Lee: Where are we going?

Jed: To find that poisoned well, climb down it, slay the monster that’s probably poisoning the water, and then come back here so when we talk to that old man again he’ll say something different and maybe give us swords.

Toth: ‘k.

Jed: Fine.

Toth: Can we search the inn for hidden items first?

Lee & Jed: Yes. (They all do)

Innkeeper: Hey! HEY! Stop stealing my shit, heroes!



Ted said...

Don't feel so bad, Chris. We 3rd Floor kids wrote a sketch possibly referring to the same game you did. Only, we actually took money from people and made them watch it. It wasn't what I'd call terrible, but it WAS what I'd call "never-ever-put-it-up-againable". And maybe one day when we grow up and have our own blog, I'll post the infamous "Turkey Boy". It's bad. And I mean BAD bad. People in our troupe don't call sketches bad anymore, they just gobble.

Alex said...

This is actually #12 on the Top 20 Monty Python sketches list.

Anonymous said...

Maybe if it was based on the Sims it would be more sublime? And what about the religious effects of cheat codes? Who can't vote for this premise???

Stefan said...

You know, speaking as an outsider, I have to say this isn't really an egregious sketch. And I'm a little confused as to why it got a zero - didn't you like it at all, Chris?

christopher said...

Actually, Geoff and I wrote a sketch a couple of years ago called "SimSimCity" where this guy is playing a game of a guy who's playing a game of SimCity. It was fine. And then Futurama made the same joke, but in a single line, and it was five times funnier than the entire sketch. Oh well. Also, no one plays SimCity anymore.

Don't get me wrong. I like this sketch and the idea. It mainly came about from my brother and I joking around about how we wished we could go out into the woods and get stronger and smarter by fighting animals.

But it just felt too narrow for the show, if that makes sense. I think it would have alienated people, without enough payoff.

Alex said...

Also, it fucking sucks.

Alex said...

Wow, that joke was in direct opposition to the joke I wrote above!

Anonymous said...

chris, thanks for teaching me about video games. if you'd like, i could tell you what it's like to talk to girls.

christopher said...


Anonymous said...

I certainly liked it.

Also, what's a girl?

j, hoping there would be a mention of THAC0

Anonymous said...

not to be an awestruck fan or anything like that but might i be so bold to suggest that offering us raving lunatic fanatics your dead babies every now and then is not such a bad idea. (BURP)