The Donahues Episode 265

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic
Leonard tries to re-connect with his son Ethan, as Ethan attempts to win back Anella's affections, Ryan befriends two of his clients and plans to conspire against Ashton with them, and Jacob becomes concerned he has little in common with his two-year old son during a visit to a water park

Submitted: June 03, 2017

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Submitted: June 03, 2017

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THE DONAHUES

 

“SORIA MORIA”

 

TV-MA DL

 

“I have not stopped looking across the water from the few difficult spots where you can see that the distance from this haunted house where I lived to Soria Moria is a real traversable space. I'm an arrow now. Mid-air”

  • Phil Elverum

 

(We start with a shot of Ethan’s cell phone on his kitchen counter. It begins ringing, creating an irritating rattle against the marble counter top. Ethan walks in and sees his phone. He walks over to see it’s his dad)

 

ETHAN: Hmm. (Ethan answers the phone) Dad? What’s up?

 

LEONARD: (On the phone) Ethan! It’s so good to hear from you.

 

ETHAN: Dad, you…are right. I’m glad I called.

 

LEONARD: Good. Would you like to come over? Lynn and I are going to have cough drops and wine for dinner.

 

ETHAN: I wish I could, dad, but, I have to go to a meeting with Chairman Edelman in a few hours.

 

LEONARD: Ethan, I haven’t seen you since Christmas. It’s like I only ever see you during holidays now.

 

ETHAN: I know, I know, it’s just that I’m very busy-

 

LEONARD: Oh. He’s busy. He’s so VERY busy. Hold on, Ethan- (Cut to Leonard on the phone in his living room, with Lynn doing dishes in the kitchen behind him) honey, he’s too busy to see his parents, but we’re gonna live forever, so I guess it’s okay.

 

(Cut back to Ethan)

 

ETHAN: Dad, come on, I can see you another day-

 

LEONARD: (On the phone) Ethan, I’m afraid I’m gonna have to invoke my parental authority here.

 

ETHAN: Dad, you don’t want to press that button-

 

LEONARD: I summon you home, son! Come home!

 

(Ethan sighs)

 

ETHAN: …Fine. I’ll push my meeting with Edelman.

 

LEONARD: Good. That guy’s a communist anywhow.

 

ETHAN: Dad, he’s a good guy.

 

LEONARD: I can’t believe you’re a communist now, Ethan.

 

ETHAN: Dad, I’m a Democrat now, and apparently, there’s a huge difference. I didn’t realize this before.

 

LEONARD: That’s not what Bill O’Reilly told me-can you believe they got rid of that fine young man?

 

ETHAN: Young?

 

LEONARD: And what about Roger Ailes? That poor sap was gone too soon.

 

ETHAN: Yeah, he’s chasing angels with his hamburger meat-penis in heaven now, listen, dad, I’ll see you in a little bit.

 

LEONARD: Okay, son.

 

(Ethan hangs up, and sighs. Cut to Ethan driving his car)

 

NPR: According to sources, top White House adviser Jared Kushner has been targeted as a person of interest in the Trump-Russia collusion investigation being conducted by special counsel Robert Mueller.

 

ETHAN: (Sarcastically) Oh no! But he’s the moderating influence!

 

NPR: Mr. Kushner, according to various other sources, may have proposed a secret line of communication from the Russian Government to the Trump administration, raising red flags in the ongoing investigation into the President.

 

ETHAN: Surely, they can’t claim Mr. Kushner has Alzheimer’s! Maybe they’ll use the “affluenza” defense.

 

NPR: Some late breaking news tonight, according to The Guardian, Montana Congressional candidate Greg Gianforte body-slammed Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs for asking a question about the CBO score for TrumpCare. The special election for Montana’s sole congressional district is tomorrow.

 

ETHAN: You know, if anything mattered anymore, I’m sure this would shock me.

 

(Ethan’s car pulls into his dad’s driveway. He gets out and walks up to the door. He knocks, and Leonard opens the door)

 

LEONARD: There he is! MY son! In the flesh!
 

ETHAN: Hey, dad.

 

(Ethan hugs his dad. Ethan then walks into the living room and sits down, as Leonard closes the door. Leonard walks into the living room, and then into the kitchen)

 

LEONARD: Do you want a drink?

 

ETHAN: No, I’m okay, thanks.

 

LEONARD: Come on, Ethan, drink with your old man.

 

ETHAN: Okay, I’ll have a whiskey sour with not too much ice.

 

LEONARD: Oh. That was easy.

 

(Leonard reaches into his liquor cabinet, and takes out a bottle of whiskey. He then grabs two glasses and pours whiskey into them)

 

ETHAN: Where’s mom?

 

LEONARD: She’s out grocery shopping. (Leonard reaches up to put the bottle back, but he has a pain in his shoulder, and drops the bottle onto the floor, and it shatters, spilling whiskey everywhere) AGGGGH!!

 

(Ethan jumps up)

 

ETHAN: Dad, are you okay?!

 

LEONARD: SHIT!
 

(Leonard sits down at the dining table and rubs his own shoulder)

 

ETHAN: What happened?!

 

LEONARD: My goddamn shoulder flared up and it hurt so goddamn bad I dropped the bottle.

 

ETHAN: You shouldn’t keep the bottles so high up.

 

LEONARD: Ah, you young men don’t need to worry about that.

 

ETHAN: Dad, you thought Bill O’Reilly was a young man. I’m 51.

 

LEONARD: It’s like hell getting old, Ethan. I’m almost 82. I’ve lived under fourteen Presidents. I met Clark Gable in a women’s restroom one time.

 

ETHAN: What were both of you doing there?

 

LEONARD: I went from using a rotary, to a dial phone, and finally to a car phone, all in my lifetime!
 

ETHAN: Dad, for the last time, your cell phone works in places besides your car.

 

LEONARD: I’m just…so weak, now, Ethan.

 

ETHAN: Dad. Let’s just sit down. I’ll clean this up, you just sit down on the couch, okay?

 

LEONARD: Alright. (Ethan leads Leonard to a couch and he sits down) You know, I also met Kirk Douglas on the set of a commercial in the late sixties.

 

ETHAN: He’s still alive, dad.

 

LEONARD: No fucking way.

 

(Cut to Ryan looking at himself in the mirror of his apartment in Tokyo. He is straightening his hair. He looks at the hot iron, and then at his arm. He puts the iron to his arm, and it sizzles it, he quickly retracts the iron and his face scrunches up)

 

RYAN: Ahhhhhh! Goddamn, that’s good. (Cut to Ryan looking over sheet music on his bed as he holds a guitar) …If I knew how many Japanese folk songs I would be learning to play here, I might not have signed up for this summer abroad thing. (There is a knock on the door. Ryan gets up, puts down his guitar and walks over to the door. He looks through the peephole to see Ashton) Shit. (Ryan opens the door) What?

 

ASHTON: Ryan, what kind of way is that to greet a neighbor?

 

RYAN: Please, please, break my legs, Ashton, I would love that right now.

 

(Ashton walks in)

 

ASHTON: Ryan, I’m not a gangster. I just align myself with them when it fits my needs. (Ashton turns to Ryan as he shuts the door) I’m still just your friendly neighborhood dope peddler. I’m like your local ice cream man, bro. Would you think less of him if you found out he was tied with the mob?

 

RYAN: Yes!

 

ASHTON: But not enough to give up them sweet cones, right?

 

RYAN: …I suppose not.

 

ASHTON: Cool. Ryan, we’re two peas in a pod now.

 

(Ashton sits on Ryan’s bed, and Ryan sits on Sarah’s)

 

RYAN: What is it that you want, for real, Ashton?

 

ASHTON: Dude, chill your roll. Take a breath.

 

(Ryan looks at Ashton)

 

RYAN: Like, you actually want me to?

 

ASHTON: Yes. Take a minute.

 

(Ryan breathes in deep, and then exhales)

 

RYAN: Okay, I did that. For whatever reason.

 

ASHTON: Good.

 

(Ashton takes out a pack of cigarettes, picks a cigarette and places on between his lips, and then takes out his lighter)

 

RYAN: Could you not smoke in here? Sarah doesn’t like it.

 

ASHTON: Open the sliding glass door, then, shit. (Ashton lights his cigarette, and Ryan opens the sliding glass door and then sits down) I want you selling, Donahue. I need foot soldiers, I can’t do this all by myself.

 

RYAN: …What do you want me selling?

 

ASHTON: That was easy enough.

 

(Ashton reaches into his pocket)

 

RYAN: I’m hard up for money, so you’re in luck.

 

ASHTON: Yeah, well, it wouldn’t matter anyway because I control you.

 

(Ashton takes out baggies of weed, DMT and LSD tablets)

 

RYAN: Let me maintain the illusion of choice, please. It helps me cry myself to sleep at night.

 

ASHTON: Well, you’re in luck too, because these drugs help keep your conscience clean.

 

RYAN: Wait, there are drugs you can take to erase guilt?

 

ASHTON: Well, yes, but these aren’t those. These drugs simply allow you to deal without feeling remorse, because they’re not hard drugs, only pot, DMT and LSD.

 

RYAN: Oh. Well, that’s generous of you.

 

ASHTON: You don’t have the stomach for dealing coke, smack or dead ends anyway.

 

RYAN: Dead ends?

 

ASHTON: Those are the guilt-erasing drugs.

 

RYAN: Can I have some? I’m tormented by guilt, pretty much all the time.

 

ASHTON: Sure, you can have it for 100,000 yen per tablet.

 

RYAN: Shit. Never mind.

 

(Ashton smiles and throws the baggies in Ryan’s direction)

 

ASHTON: I’ll resupply you with the goods as soon as I get more. But for now, deliver that stuff to the following clients.

 

(Ashton takes out a list of clients on a piece of paper and hands it to Ryan)

 

RYAN: Oh, good, a paper trail.

 

ASHTON: It’s in English, these Japanese pigs won’t be able to decipher it.

 

(Ryan looks up at Ashton skeptically)

 

RYAN: All your yakuza friends seem to have a pretty good grasp of the English language.

 

(Ashton contemplates for a second)
 

ASHTON: …Nigga, shut up, and just keep that thing well hidden. (Ashton stands up) Good luck, and see if you can network with these peoples’ friends. We need more customers.

 

(Ryan stands up)

 

RYAN: Should I make some business cards, or something? I mean, we already have a paper trail.

 

ASHTON: You know, you’re being real cheeky for being my indentured servant.

 

RYAN: I had to find some way to resist.

 

(Ashton squints and throws up a peace sign)

 

ASHTON: Later, blood.

 

(Ashton leaves Ryan’s apartment, as Ryan flips him off as he walks away. Cut to Ryan walking down the hallway of an apartment building holding a pizza box. He goes over to a door, looks at his phone, and then looks at the door number, “1711” and nods. He knocks on the door, and a Japanese woman answers)

 

RYAN: Hi, I have your “pizza”.

 

(Ryan lowers the box to reveal the pizza box has a logo that is a picture of Ashton lying on a pizza slice, with his eyes closed, while smiling. Above him it says “??????????????????????” and below him it says “Crazy Ashton’s Pizza- Serving Tokyo Since 2017”)

 

JAPANESE WOMAN: Why would he put his picture on the box? That seems stupid.

 

RYAN: Well, he is. Do you have the money?

 

JAPANESE WOMAN: Yes. (Japanese woman hands Ryan 5600 yen and Ryan hands them the “pizza”) Have nice day!
 

RYAN: You too.

 

(The Japanese woman closes the door and Ryan pockets the money. A Tokyo police officer walks out of his apartment in full uniform. Ryan gets nervous and starts trying to walk away)

 

TOKYO POLICE OFFICER: You! Stop right there!
 

(Ryan anxiously turns around as the police officer walks towards him and stops)

 

RYAN: Yes, officer?

 

TOKYO POLICE OFFICER: You have some 100 yens? I need to break a 600 yen so I can buy used panty from vending machine.

 

RYAN: I’m sorry, officer, no.

 

TOKYO POLICE OFFICER: Damnit.

 

(The officer walks away, and Ryan breathes a sigh of relief. Cut to Renee driving her car with Jacob in the passenger seat and Kyle sitting in a baby car seat in the back. The radio is tuned to a Christian station)

 

RADIO ANNOUNCER: Coming up next on 3.16 the Grail, we have a hot new track from The Chainprayers, and then later on the new single from G.O.D. Soundsystem, “Call The Bishops”.

 

JACOB: Do Christian stations just have religious parodies of popular music now?

 

RENEE: What would the Chainprayers be a parody of?

 

JACOB: Renee, come on.

 

RENEE: I don’t know what you’re talking about. Pop culture is impure.

 

JACOB: Renee, we’re raising Kyle to choose whether he wants religion or not, remember?

 

RENEE: Yeah, I know…

 

KYLE: Let there be light!

 

(Jacob looks over at Renee)

 

JACOB: Where did he-?

 

RENEE: You were gone for a long time.

 

JACOB: Doesn’t mean you can brainwash him! Hold on. (Jacob turns to Kyle) Kyle, remember, buddy, you can think whatever you want.

 

KYLE: Whatever I want?

 

JACOB: Yes! Good! You can choose to like sports, or-

 

KYLE: I hate sports…

 

(Jacob blinks in confusion)

 

JACOB: …Oh. Okay.

 

(Jacob turns around)

 

RENEE: What?

 

JACOB: Why doesn’t he like sports?

 

RENEE: What’s the problem, Jacob, I thought you had no issue with him thinking for himself?

 

JACOB: I don’t, but, what would’ve caused him to have that opinion when he’s two years old? Have you been letting him watch that stuff about Tiger Woods?

 

RENEE: No, we were just flipping through channels, and it came to Football, and he said he didn’t like how violent it was.

 

JACOB: How did he say that exactly, though?

 

RENEE: He winced, cried and screamed “are they hurt”.

 

(Jacob sighs, and turns around to face Kyle)

 

JACOB: They wear helmets, buddy, the football men are perfectly fine. They’re not hurt.

 

RENEE: You know that’s a lie.

 

JACOB: Renee, stop brainwashing him!

 

RENEE: You’re doing that RIGHT NOW!
 

KYLE: Stop!
 

JACOB: You’re right, sorry, kiddo. (Jacob faces forward) This is about your 2nd birthday, not what kind of person you’re going to be and how I can mold you into your best self. (Jacob laughs) Nothing to do with that.

 

RENEE: It’s also about your 23rd birthday, Jacob, remember? We never did anything for it.

 

JACOB: Ah, yes, see? (Jacob turns to Kyle) We do have something in common! Both of our birthdays are in May!

 

KYLE: So?

 

JACOB: So, it’s…come on, kid, you gotta give me something.

 

RENEE: Okay, we’re here.

 

(Renee pulls into the parking lot of a water park with a big sign reading “Big Cousin Ashton’s SU-PREME WATAH PAWK X-PERIENCE” with the disclaimer “This Park is Not Responsible for Lost or Stolen Items, or For Items That Suddenly Appear in Your Bags”) The sign identifying it has a picture of Ashton floating on a floatie with sun glasses on and a cigarette sticking out of his mouth. Jacob and Renee get out of the car)

 

JACOB: Man, Ashton has really made it big in the business world.

 

RENEE: Get Kyle.

 

(Jacob opens the door and unbuckles Kyle)

 

JACOB: You’re gonna have so much fun, little man.

 

KYLE: Yay!
 

JACOB: Yay!

 

(Jacob lifts Kyle out of the seat and sets him down on his feet. He then holds his hand as they walk near the water park. Cut to Chris Hayes at the ticket booth in front of the water park. Jacob, Renee and Kyle walk up to it)

 

CHRIS HAYES: Holy shit, Jakey Jake is in this bitch!
 

JACOB: Chris Hayes, please, my kid.

 

(Renee covers Kyle’s ears)

 

CHRIS HAYES: Oh, my bad, dude, we cool?

 

JACOB: Sure. We’d like three tickets.

 

(Jacob hands Chris Hayes a credit card as Renee uncovers Kyle’s ears)

 

CHRIS HAYES: No prob, homie. How you been?

 

JACOB: I’ve been fine, why do you need to work at a water park?

 

(Chris Hayes swipes Jacob’s card)

 

CHRIS HAYES: Dude, MSNBC don’t pay that much. That’s job is just my side hoe anyway, my real passion is sticky icky-icky and you know it.

 

JACOB: Chris Hayes.

 

(Renee covers Kyle’s ears again)

 

CHRIS HAYES: I’m sorry, dude, I don’t know how to talk to you without our usual rapport.

 

(Chris Hayes hands Jacob three tickets)

 

JACOB: We don’t have a-

 

CHRIS HAYES: Do you guys need a receipt?

 

JACOB: No.

 

CHRIS HAYES: Cool, you guys are good to go. While your son’s ears are covered, though, I just made the dopest vape flavor ever, and you should try it, it’s called weed brownie.

 

JACOB: We’re going, Chris Hayes.

 

(Jacob, Renee and Kyle walk away. Chris Hayes nods. Cut to Jacob, Renee and Kyle sitting in the kiddie pool)

 

RENEE: Are you having fun, buddy?

 

KYLE: It’s like a bath.

 

JACOB: Nah, bud, it’s way better than a bath! It’s bigger! (Jacob splashes Kyle) See?

 

(Kyle starts crying. Renee holds him)

 

RENEE: Shhhhhh. (To Jacob) Jacob!
 

JACOB: I’m sorry, Kyle! Hey, I’ll make it up to you, we can go down the enclosed slide!
 

(Kyle cries harder)

 

RENEE: Jacob, he’s two years old! And he’s afraid of the dark!
 

JACOB: When I was two, I rode the Superman at Six Flags!

 

RENEE: Really?

 

JACOB: No, but I would’ve!

 

(Cut to Ethan and Leonard sitting in Leonard’s living room)

 

LEONARD: And so she proposed to me.

 

ETHAN: Really?

 

LEONARD: Yeah. First date.

 

ETHAN: Wow.

 

LEONARD: She was a wreck, she just lost her husband, and I guess was looking for a rebound husband, I suppose.

 

(Ethan chuckles)

 

ETHAN: What did you say?

 

LEONARD: I said yes.

 

ETHAN: What?!

 

LEONARD: Yeah. There was a lot of pressure to start a nuclear family at that time. But a few hours later, I thought better of it.

 

ETHAN: Thank God. Because it took an act of Congress to get divorced back then, right?

 

(Leonard laughs)

 

LEONARD: Yeah, and to make that happen, you needed to march. So you would never have been born. I would’ve had a bunch of looney bin kids.

 

(Ethan chuckles)

 

ETHAN: Well, I’ve divorced twice, and my girlfriend broke up with me recently, to boot.

 

LEONARD: The really young one?

 

ETHAN: Yes.

 

LEONARD: Like, the way too young one?

 

ETHAN: Yes, dad, I said “yes”.

 

LEONARD: Just makin’ sure, you could’ve had other really young girlfriends. God knows your old man did.

 

ETHAN: You’re sure mom isn’t here?

 

LEONARD: Yes, don’t worry.

 

(Leonard takes a sip of whiskey, as does Ethan)

 

ETHAN: I’m trying to get Anella back, but it’s just, awkward. I can’t help but feel like I’m laying a trap for her or something.

 

LEONARD: That’s what you gotta do.

 

ETHAN: No, dad, that’s not-

 

LEONARD: Politically correct?

 

ETHAN: Well-

 

LEONARD: Sometimes you gotta lay some leaves over a hole and wait for them to walk into it, that’s all I’m saying.

 

ETHAN: But, dad-

 

LEONARD: Not literally!
 

(Ethan chuckles)

 

ETHAN: Then be more specific.

 

LEONARD: You have to tell them you’re Olympic gold medalist Rex Cawley.

 

(Ethan laughs)

 

ETHAN: That is not ethical.

 

LEONARD: It worked!
 

ETHAN: How does it work long-term?

 

LEONARD: You just be Olympic Gold Medalist Rex Cawley, nobody remembers what that guy looks like.

 

(Ethan laughs and sips his Whiskey)

 

ETHAN: Goddamnit, dad. I’m glad I came by.

 

LEONARD: I’m glad you did too. Let me just say, that, if you’re trying to get somebody back, you should probably just leave them alone. They chose to leave you, and you don’t need that.

 

(Ethan nods)

 

ETHAN: Maybe you’re right.

 

LEONARD: Trust me, I’m right. You know how many times I asked Lynn out?

 

ETHAN: Usually old men say like, thirty times.

 

LEONARD: No, once. Because I would’ve never asked again because I’m not a freak.

 

(Ethan chuckles)

 

ETHAN: I only asked out Kimberly once too.

 

LEONARD: Damn straight. I mean, honestly, who would say “no” to a Donahue?

 

ETHAN: A lot of people said “no” to Ryan.

 

LEONARD: How is he, by the way?

 

ETHAN: He’s studying abroad in Japan for the summer with his girlfriend.

 

LEONARD: Lucky bastard. I used to go on business trips to Japan.

 

ETHAN: I don’t know if I want to hear the rest of this story.

 

LEONARD: Have you ever been to Tokyo’s Disney land? It’s really very magical.

 

ETHAN: Oh, that’s more innocent than what I was expecting.

 

LEONARD: I met a girl there.

 

ETHAN: Oh.

 

LEONARD: Let me show you something she gave me.

 

(Leonard gets up and goes into his bedroom. Ethan waits nervously. Leonard comes back in with a Mickey Mouse Ears Cap and hands it to Ethan)

 

ETHAN: Oh. Did she-

 

LEONARD: Yes, she was the woman who sold me that. Look at this picture I keep in my wallet.

 

(Leonard takes out his wallet and shows a polaroid photograph of a 49-year old Leonard in 1985 with a bunch of business associates wearing Mickey Mouse caps while standing in front of Cinderella Castle)

 

ETHAN: Are you telling me a bunch of grown adult businessmen went to Disneyland without their kids, for fun? And this is a cherished memory of yours?

 

(Leonard looks at the photo)

 

LEONARD: Where else can you see a place like Disneyland, Ethan? We had to go.

 

ETHAN: How about Disneyland in California?!

 

LEONARD: Was that around back then?

 

ETHAN: Yeah, for like decades!

LEONARD: Hmm. Didn’t know that.

 

(Ethan sighs)

 

ETHAN: It’s fine.

 

(Leonard puts the photo away, and takes a sip of whiskey, as does Ethan)

 

LEONARD: You’ll land on your feet when it comes to that girl.

 

ETHAN: I hope so.

 

LEONARD: How are Kimberly and that British twink, by the way?

 

(Ethan chuckles)

 

ETHAN: Nobody knows, I think they’re hermits at this point.

 

(Ethan and Leonard laugh and sip their whiskeys at the same time. Cut to Ryan walking down the hallway of another apartment building with a pizza box in hand. He gets to a door and knocks on it. A white American twenty-something wearing a sweatshirt opens up)

 

SWEATSHIRT: Oh, Tracy, pizza’s here!
 

RYAN: Oh shit, are you guys American?

 

SWEATSHIRT: Oh, shit, are you American?

 

RYAN: Yeah, you couldn’t tell?

 

(Tracy, a white woman, walks over)

 

TRACY: ?????-

 

SWEATSHIRT: No, Tracy, this is an American.

 

TRACY: No shit?

 

RYAN: Can you guys really not tell?

 

SWEATSHIRT: I mean, you’re skinny, you have long black hair, and your skin is as pale as that Japanese chick in The Grudge, so it’s kind of hard to tell the difference.

 

RYAN: I actually really appreciate that. Anyway, here’s your “pizza”.

 

(Ryan hands Sweatshirt his pizza)

 

TRACY: You know, we order from Crazy Ashton all the time, but we’ve never gotten you before.

 

RYAN: Well. Yeah. We have tons of other delivery boys. It’s actually amazing to see the international business empire Ashton has amassed. (Sweatshirt hands Ryan the yen) Thanks.

 

SWEATSHIRT: Wanna come in?

 

(Ryan puts the money in his pocket)

 

RYAN: Well…this is my last delivery…

 

SWEATSHIRT: Yeah, please, come in, it’d be cool to speak with another American.

 

(Ryan nods)

 

RYAN: Okay, sure. What’s your name, man?

 

(Ryan starts coming)

 

SWEATSHIRT: Sweatshirt.

 

RYAN: Huh?

 

(Sweatshirt closes the door. Cut to Ryan, Sweatshirt and Tracy sitting on the floor in their living room, around one of those Japanese ground tables)

 

TRACY: So, yeah, we moved here for the cultural vibe.

 

SWEATSHIRT: I was really into anime.

 

TRACY: That was most of our reasoning, yeah.

 

RYAN: Same for my girlfriend and I. But I still don’t understand why your name is Sweatshirt.

 

SWEATSHIRT: I wear sweatshirts a lot, so. People started calling me “Sweatshirt”.

 

RYAN: And…you started going by it?

 

TRACY: Yeah, it was way better than his original name.

 

SWEATSHIRT: We don’t talk about my original name.

 

TRACY: Sorry.

 

RYAN: …I won’t pry. (Ryan looks around, observing all the Japanese imagery and decorations around the apartment) So how have you guys liked Japan so far?

 

TRACY: I love this country. So rich with, people. And things.

 

SWEATSHIRT: What do you think?

 

RYAN: I don’t know. It sucks. Just like any other place, I suppose.

 

TRACY: Oh.

 

RYAN: But, at least it’s different. I like for my misery to have some variety.

 

(Sweatshirt chuckles)

 

SWEATSHIRT: I guess that’s true. It hasn’t been perfect.

 

TRACY: No, it has not.

 

SWEATSHIRT: In fact, I find myself getting home sick. Quite a bit.

 

TRACY: Sweatshirt lost his job at Sony, so now we’re in financial difficulties.

 

SWEATSHIRT: It’s only temporary, I’m looking for new jobs, and we’re getting through it.

 

TRACY: Speaking of getting through it, could you hand us the pizza?

 

(Ryan grabs the pizza box and puts it on the table)

 

RYAN: Since we’re friends now, I assume I can have a slice?

 

SWEATSHIRT: Of course, you’re one of us.

 

(Ryan opens the box to reveal several bags of weed. Sweatshirt takes out his pipe, gets some marijuana from one of the bags and starts loading it)

 

RYAN: Despite my reservations, it’s nice to be away from the U.S. right now.

 

SWEATSHIRT: God, I know. But even here, we can’t entirely get away from the orange cretin. I heard today he pulled out of the Paris Accord!

 

RYAN: Yeah, it’s a great time to be living on the coast.

 

TRACY: I heard the other 195 countries, states, cities, mayors and industries and stuff are gonna pick up the slack in meeting the Paris agreement’s goals.

 

(Sweatshirt takes out his lighter)

 

SWEATSHIRT: But even if that’s true, it’s an abdication of America’s global leadership role. It’s like they’re no longer the leader of the Free World.

 

RYAN: Angela Merkel said after Trump’s trip, they shouldn’t rely on the U.S. anymore. The U.S. is that alcoholic in the family that everyone else just realize has a problem and they’ve decided to just steer clear because they’re too far gone.

 

(Sweatshirt lights the bowl and inhales. He exhales and passes it to Tracy)

 

TRACY: I really like that Macron guy. When he said “Make The Planet Great Again”, that was sick. And he kind of looks like Michele from “Breathless”.

 

(Tracy takes her hit)

 

RYAN: Man, you guys are a cultured couple.

 

(Tracy and Sweatshirt laugh, and Tracy coughs)

 

TRACY: We grew up in the rich suburbs of D.C., what do you expect?

 

(Tracy hands the pipe to Ryan)

 

RYAN: How old are you guys?

 

SWEATSHIRT: I’m 29, she’s 27. (Ryan lights the bowl and takes his hit) You?

 

(Ryan exhales the smoke)

 

RYAN: I’m twenty-two next Tuesday.

 

TRACY: You’re a little babe. A little baby boy.

 

(Sweatshirt laughs, as Ryan hands his pipe off to him)

 

SWEATSHIRT: I’ve been thinking about doing motivational speaking if I can’t find a new job-

 

TRACY: How do you like your job, Ryan?

 

RYAN: I hate it.

 

SWEATSHIRT: Why?

 

RYAN: I don’t keep very much of this money. (Ryan takes out the yen that Sweatshirt gave him) And to tell you the truth… (Ryan leans in closely) I’m Ashton’s chattel. He has me working for him under the threat of physical violence from the Yakuza.

 

TRACY: Oh my God, really?!

 

SWEATSHIRT: REAL Yakuza? Oh my God, that’s sick!
 

TRACY: Sweatshirt.

 

SWEATSHIRT: Sick in a bad way, of course. But also, really cool.

 

RYAN: I thought it was pretty awesome too. But now I’m just kind of an indentured servant, so.

 

TRACY: Is there something we can do to help you?

 

SWEATSHIRT: And do you have pictures of these guys?

 

RYAN: I’m glad you brought that up.

 

SWEATSHIRT: You have pictures?!

 

RYAN: No, man, I’m talking to your wife.

 

TRACY: What is it?

 

RYAN: I’m gonna need a resistance. So, get out your corny Rosie The Riveter poster.

 

TRACY: On it!
 

(Tracy gets up and runs into her room. Cut to Jacob, Renee and Kyle in a little ice cream shop within the water park called “Big Daddy Ashton’s Cold Cream”. The sign has a picture of Ashton leaning against a Vanilla Ice Cream cone while holding a cigarette in his left hand. Jacob, Renee and Kyle are in line)

 

JACOB: Okay, Kyle, decide what you want. Chocolate? Rocky Road? Mint? Pizza- (confused) Pizza? Why would that be there?

 

ICE CREAM EMPLOYEE: That’s a special-uh, flavor, I wouldn’t recommend getting it for the little one.

 

RENEE: Ooh, get a double scoop of Vanilla, Kyle, it’ll change your life.

 

JACOB: How?

 

RENEE: Vanilla is great!

 

JACOB: That’s like saying “Mike & Molly” will change your life.

 

KYLE: I want vanilla!

 

RENEE: Good Job, Ky-Ky!
 

(Renee and Kyle high-five. Cut to Renee, Kyle and Jacob floating down the lazy river. Jacob is holding Kyle in his lap on a floatie while Renee drifts by on her own)

 

JACOB: Kyle, who’s your favorite SpongeBob character?

 

KYLE: Uhhhh…Squidward!

 

JACOB: Are you-come on, for real!?

 

KYLE: He’s silly!
 

JACOB: He’s the one you’re supposed to hate!
 

RENEE: Don’t yell at him. Over Squidward.

 

JACOB: Sorry, it’s just that my favorite SpongeBob character growing up was Mr. Krabs’ daughter Pearl. Oh, man. She could rock my world.

 

RENEE: Jacob!
 

JACOB: Sorry. My mind drifted for a second there.

 

RENEE: Jacob, maybe you should just accept that Kyle is a little different than you. It’s fine.

 

JACOB: A little different?! He’s completely different! Kyle, what’s your favorite color?

 

KYLE: Taupe!
 

JACOB: Do you like video games?

 

KYLE: They’re too violent!
 

JACOB: What’s your view on golf?

 

KYLE: Boooo!
 

JACOB: Seafood restaurants?!

 

KYLE: Gross!
 

JACOB: War?

 

KYLE: Peace!
 

JACOB: AC/DC?

 

KYLE: Dad rock!
 

JACOB: ARE YOU SERIOUS?!

 

(Kyle starts crying)

 

RENEE: JACOB, ENOUGH!
 

(Renee takes Kyle in her arms)

 

JACOB: I’m sorry…I’m sorry, Kyle.

 

KYLE: YOU’RE MEAN!
 

JACOB: Oh, geez.

 

(An overweight mustached man wades by in swim trunks)

 

OVERWEIGHT MUSTACHED MAN: Just what I need. A cryin’ baby ruining my afternoon walk.

 

JACOB: Are you here with anyone?

 

(Cut to Renee driving home with Jacob in the passenger seat and Kyle strapped in the back, asleep)

 

RENEE: You really made this a memorable birthday for him, Jacob.

 

(Jacob sighs)

 

JACOB: I apologized, okay? It’s just that, there has to be something we have in common.

 

RENEE: Jacob, he’s two years old! Can he even really have a well-developed personality at this point?

 

JACOB: I guess not, but…I just feel like I’ve been away so long, and I didn’t have the opportunity to mold that little guy into a smaller version of me.

 

RENEE: Jacob, that’s exactly what you were arguing against earlier!
 

(Jacob holds up his hands)

 

JACOB: You got me, I’m a hypocrite!

 

KYLE: (Sleep-talking) Marlboros… (pronounced as “Mawl-bo-wos”)

 

(Jacob looks back at Kyle, and then looks forward again, as Renee stares at him)

 

JACOB: Renee, watch the road.

 

(Renee looks forward)

 

RENEE: Where do you think he learned that from? Does it have anything to do with you getting out of bed in the middle of the night for no reason?

 

(Jacob bites his lip)

 

JACOB: Well, we have one thing in common.

 

RENEE: I hope you don’t view this as a “win”.

 

JACOB: I’m trying not to.

 

(Jacob smiles a little bit. Renee shakes her head. Cut to Ethan straightening his tie in the mirror. He then walks into the kitchen and pours himself a cup of coffee. He pours milk in and stirs. He then sets his coffee down on the coffee table and puts on his suit jacket)

 

ETHAN: (Singing) I’m walking on sunshine, Oh-oh-oh- (talking) oh wow, am I singing to myself? (Ethan places his hand on his cheek) Geez, what has gotten into me? (Ethan opens his laptop and logs onto Facebook) I should send Anella a “good morning” message. (Ethan goes over to his messenger bar, but then notices a Facebook notification reading “Anella Carpenter is now in a relationship with Lester Perth”. Ethan’s visage turns grave. He then sits back in horror) Motherfucker.

 

(Cut to Ethan sitting on the city council dais, hearing citizen complaints)

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: Next up, Mrs. Frasier Dunham.

 

(An older woman hobbles up to the podium, as other Hansbay citizens sit in the seats behind her)

 

FRASIER: Thank you, your honor.

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: I am not a Judge, Mrs. Dunham, but, proceed.

 

FRASIER: Quite frankly, Congressman, I am ticked off.

 

CITIZEN: You tell him, Frasier.

 

FRASIER: I am ticked off that there isn’t any water coming out of the fountain in Hansbay Town Center. I am peeved to my core, Senator.

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: I am not any of those things, Mrs. Dunham, I am a-

 

FRASIER: I don’t care if you’re Carol Burnett!
 

CITIZEN: Oh, she was great.

 

COUNCILMAN GRAVES: pretty MILF-y, too, if you know what I’m sayin’.

 

FRASIER: You are not going to get away with the fountain going dry, chancellor! Where will the kids play?! How will our wishes come true if there’s not water to throw our pennies into?! Are you going to create some sort of wish approval method through City Hall?!

 

CITIZEN: Good luck getting that through the bureaucracy!

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: Mrs. Dunham, the fountain is not spewing water because there’s a drought-

 

(Ethan sits forward)

 

ETHAN: Water is expensive, and there’s not a lot of it, Mrs. Dunham. Deal with it. Don’t you have something better to do than come up here for literally EVERY SINGLE citizen’s forum?!?

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: Councilman, please!
 

ETHAN: No! I’m tired of this shit! There’s a whole mall for you to peruse, but I’m sure you’ll find something to complain about there too, huh? Would you like to complain about your countless grandchildren while you’re at it?!
 

(Chairman Edelman slams his gavel)

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: COUNCILMAN! That’ll be enough! Mrs. Dunham, I apologize on behalf of Councilman Donahue.

 

(Ethan sits back and crosses his arms)

 

FRASIER: YOU’LL BE HEARING FROM ME AT NEXT WEEK’S COMPLAINT FORUM, YOU CRETIN!

 

(Frasier storms out of the room)

 

COUNCILMAN GRAVES: Chairman, I move that we recess temporarily. Someone’s a cranky crank.

 

ETHAN: Fuck off, Chexton.

 

COUNCILMAN GRAVES: Ah! He said my first name! (Graves points at Ethan) Did you hear him say it?

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: Is that seconded?

 

COUNCILWOMAN CUSICK: I don’t wanna help Chexton, so somebody else is gonna have to.

 

COUNCILMAN SLOANE: I second.

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: Good. Recess is approved. We will return for a continuation of citizen’s forum, in, I don’t know, one- actually, fuck it, let’s enjoy ourselves. Two hours. (The citizens in the room groan and begin funneling out. Once they’re gone, a security guard closes the door) Councilman Donahue, what was the reason behind your outburst today? It was wholly unacceptable.

 

COUNCILMAN SLOANE: But not surprising behavior from an upper middle class barbarian.

 

ETHAN: I’ve had a bad day. I’m sorry I flew off the handle.

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: What happened, if I may ask?

 

(Graves nudges Ethan)

 

COUNCILMAN GRAVES: Is it a girl?

 

ETHAN: You’re not my dad, Graves.

 

COUNCILMAN GRAVES: Yep, it’s a girl, it’s Anella, isn’t it?

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: Why didn’t the dog park work?

 

ETHAN: It just didn’t. She’s in a relationship with some guy now.

 

COUNCILWOMAN CUSICK: Ethan, this is the flaw in caring about other people. I get all the fulfillment and companionship I need from my gold. (Councilwoman Cusick takes out several bars of gold and lays them on the desk. She then rubs her face against them) They are so very special to me…

 

CHAIRMAN SLOANE: Jesus, are those real?

 

ETHAN: I actually like people, Cusick, and to be honest, I only read half of Atlas Shrugged.

 

COUNCILWOMAN CUSICK: How dare you.

 

COUNCILMAN GRAVES: What’s the guy’s name, Donahue?

 

ETHAN: Lester Perth?

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: Lester Perth? Really? He’s that guy who’s trying to primary me next year.

 

ETHAN: Oh, perfect, now I might have to serve with this asshole?! (Chairman Edelman squints) I mean, I’m sure you’ll beat him.

 

COUNCILMAN GRAVES: He sounds like one of those Berniecrats trying to primary Democrats because they’re not “progressive enough.” Fuckin’ purity tests, man.

 

ETHAN: Damn straight. If I want to take money from Lockheed, Bilderberg & Sachs, that’s my right as an American!
 

COUNCILMAN GRAVES: Lockheed, Bilderberg & Sachs, what law firm is that?

 

ETHAN: It’s over in South Burlington, they defend clients from charges of war crimes, financial crimes, and they prosecute thought crimes.

 

COUNCILMAN GRAVES: Hm.

 

ETHAN: Of course she would date someone like that. Fuck.

 

CHAIRMAN EDELMAN: Ethan, why don’t you go home for the day, huh?

 

(Ethan nods)

 

ETHAN: I agree. I’ll have my office prepare an apology for Mrs. Dunham and then I’ll go home to my…lonely apartment.

 

(Ethan blinks a couple times, gets up, and walks towards the door. Cut to Ryan, Sweatshirt and Tracy sitting on couches, high as fuck. The “Rosie The Riveter” poster is taped on Tracy’s face)

 

SWEATSHIRT: Could you-could you imagine, if I jumped out the window right now? Everybody would suddenly ask if that “reefer madness” shit was true. I would do it just to fuck with people. I think I’m gonna do it.

 

(Tracy puts her hand on Sweatshirt’s stomach)

 

TRACY: Babe, just sit down and relax.

 

SWEATSHIRT: Yes, Rosie.

 

RYAN: …I guess a big smoking session wasn’t the best time to plot against someone, huh?

 

(Tracy takes the poster off her face)

 

TRACY: Nah, I’m still totally down.

 

(A knock is heard at the door, Sweatshirt jumps up)

 

SWEATSHIRT: Who the fuck is that?! Is that the police?! I’ll jump out the window!
 

TRACY: Sweatshirt, sit down, I’ll see who it is. (Tracy gets up and goes over to look through the peephole, and then looks at Sweatshirt) It’s some brunette chick with tacky purple tips.

 

(Ryan jumps up)

 

RYAN: Oh, shit, that’s my girlfriend! Let her in!
 

TRACY: Okay.

 

(Tracy opens the door, and Sarah comes in, and Tracy closes the door)

 

SARAH: Ryan, what is this about?

 

(Ryan goes over and hugs Sarah)

 

RYAN: Sarah-su, I’m so glad you’re here. (Ryan relinquishes his hug and looks at Sarah) But what are you doing here? How did you find me?

 

SARAH: You invited me here thirty minutes ago, dumbass!
 

RYAN: Oh, riiight…

 

SWEATSHIRT: Why, though?

 

RYAN: Sarah, I’ve put together a resistance team against Ashton, consisting of people we can trust. Fellow Americans. This is Sweatshirt and Tracy.

 

SWEATSHIRT: S’up?

 

TRACY: Nice to put a face to a name I just learned-

 

(Tracy starts giggling and falls into Sweatshirt’s lap, who is also giggling)

 

SARAH: His name is Sweatshirt?

 

RYAN: Sarah, I’m like Nat Turner, and these are my fellow revolting slaves.

 

SARAH: Have they been wronged by Ashton?

 

SWEATSHIRT: He’s sold me shitty weed before.

 

RYAN: They just don’t like seeing a friend be indentured. That’s it.

 

SARAH: And what skills do they have?

 

TRACY: You know, you can address us directly.

 

(Sarah sighs)

 

SARAH: What skills do you have?

 

SWEATSHIRT: I’m a LEET hacker.

 

RYAN: Yeah, he used to work for SONY, and then Tracy, well-

 

TRACY: I can ruin his image.

 

SWEATSHIRT: She can. She got a teacher fired from H.D. Woodson over a snarky comment.

 

TRACY: It triggered me. And this way before “triggering” was a thing.

 

(Sarah sighs and looks at Ryan)

 

SARAH: Ryan, we’re picking a dangerous fight here. They have Yakuza on their side.

 

RYAN: We didn’t pick this fight.

 

SARAH: Can’t we just run out Ashton’s contract? He’ll set us free soon enough.

 

RYAN: Sarah, you don’t understand Ashton like I do. He’s a sociopath. A monster. You fled America to escape from being a drug ring’s chattel. And yet, here we are again.

 

SARAH: …Are you saying Ashton may indenture my future child to sell drugs after I go?

 

RYAN: Who knows? All I know is, we need to crush him. And these guys are our…. first chance.

 

(Sarah looks at Sweatshirt and Tracy. Sweatshirt is slowly putting a slice of pizza in his mouth while Tracy is asleep on Sweatshirt’s lap)

 

SARAH: …Fine. But on one condition.

 

RYAN: What?

 

SARAH: Tell me what his real name is.

 

SWEATSHIRT: Out of the question.

 

(Cut to Ethan driving home, listening to NPR)

 

RADIO ANNOUNCER: Comedian Kathy Griffin was fired from CNN after a controversial photo was released depicting her holding a decapitated head made to look like that of President Trump’s.

 

ETHAN: Ugh. (Ethan turns the radio off) If the best gig you could find as a comedian was on CNN, what career did you really have left to destroy anyway? (Ethan gets a phone call from his mom. Ethan answers) Hello? Mom. Calm down. Mom, talk to me, what happened? (Ethan’s visage becomes grim) Mom. Listen to me. (Ethan pulls into a parking lot and parks) Mom, you have to listen to me. (Ethan breathes heavily) I want to talk to, uh, uh, a Doctor or someone.

 

(Cut to Lynn standing at the front desk in a hospital, on her cell phone, her make-up running down from crying)

 

LYNN: I’m sorry, Ethan. But he’s gone. (Lynn sniffs) The stroke happened in the kitchen just a few hours ago. (Lynn breathes deeply) He was just talking, and suddenly-

 

(Cut to Ethan, who is now crying)

 

ETHAN: Talking about what?! What was he talking about?!

 

(Cut to Lynn)

 

LYNN: …He was talking about how much he enjoyed seeing you.

 

(Cut to Ethan. Ethan starts bawling, and drops the phone. The camera slowly zooms out. Fade to black)

 

THE END


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