Sunday, January 17, 2010

Straitjacket Ninja script, episode 25

Here's a Straitjacket Ninja script. Although it's a bit of a tease as the bound berk only makes a cameo appearance in this one. It's scheduled to be the 25th six-pager in the series, should we be lucky enough to ever get that far. Simon called it juvenile, which I'm going to take as a compliment. No animals were harmed in the writing of this script.

SN25: Pigeon-toed
Occurs while the straitjacketed one is 'resting' from injuries received in a previous episode, so he only appears as a news bulletin TV flashback. Instead we introduce a new, ill-fated 'superhero' who will have an impact in the Ninja's life.

Page ONE
A boring man with a comb-over on a soapbox ranting on about something ignorantly. There are BNP (Boring Natter Party) banners and signs, and a small crowd of mostly uninterested bystanders.
[ What makes a person go public with their convictions? ]
Boring man: "They are the ones that are doing this to you. They are responsible for everything that is wrong with our society today."

The boring man drones on ...
[ What makes a person proclaim judgment on others? ]
Boring man: "They are the ones making our street unsafe, taking our jobs, lowering our house values."

A strange man in a badly put together homemade superhero outfit jumps up next to the speaker clutching a terrified pigeon in one hand. He is a superhero known as The Pigeonholer, and this is his origin story.
Boring man: "They are all around us ... what do you want?"
Superhero (Pigeonholer): You, sir, are a pathetic, ignorant, arrogant windbag!
[ What makes a person stand up for what they think is right? ]

The strange homemade superhero shoves the pigeon, bum first, into the mouth of the boring speaker with appropriate expressions from both the speaker and pigeon.
Superhero (Pigeonholer): "... and you have been pigeon-holed!"
[ What makes a person shove a pigeon into someone's mouth? ]

Page TWO
Large title frame. Another reaction shot of the boring man with the pigeon now flying free of his mouth, but leaving behind presents. A couple of the bystanders look on, with one commenting about the action.
Bystander: The words that came out of his mouth always were shit and feathers.
TITLES: Pigeon-toed!

Smaller frame showing the Pigeonholer running off, leaving behind chaos in his wake.
[ In the case of Nigel Francis Shumaker, the reasons are simple enough ... ]

Focus on the deranged face of the Pigeonholer ... he is middle-aged man who has had a simple, boring life ... but has suddenly altered his life to become the champion of justice and good taste ... the Pigeonholer!
[ ... if somewhat convoluted and disturbing. ]

Large frame of the guy in the bad superhero costume, but this time as a boring filing clerk dressed in a sleeveless sweater. He has a comb-over, and generally looks like a boring kind of guy. He is sorting mail into a wall of pigeonholes in an office; that is a wall of square boxed shelves large enough for mail and other items to be put into them. The boxes all have a name label below, although we don't need to read them all.
[ Shumaker was employed as a filing clerk for a legal firm, Richardson, Norse and Button. He sorted mail, collated papers, and filed it all efficiently. ]

Nigel (aka the Pigeonholer) still sorting, but turned to talk to a business-suited man with hat and brolly who has arrived at the wall of pigeonholes to get his mail.
[ He knew everyone, and they knew him. ]
Man in business suit: "Morning, Nigel. Anything for me today?"
Nigel: Just the usual, Mr Button.

Close up on Nigel, who isn't as boring or well-adjusted as his looks might suggest.
[ He knew them all a little too well. ]
Nigel (thinks): "The usual perfume-dowsed love letters from your mistress, threats from your creditors, and balance statements from your illegal offshore accounts."
[ All their little foibles, corruptions and crimes. ]

Nigel looking horrified as a large box labelled "Sort-o-matic 2000" is handed to him.
[ Then came the day they replaced him ... ]
[ ... with a machine. ]

Nigel looking bored, sitting at home with his wife visible in the background talking at him. Nigel isn't listening.
[ He didn't know what to do with himself. ]
[ His wife suggested a hobby. ]

Nigel getting frustrated with postage stamps and losing it a little.
[ He tried stamp-collecting, but it reminded him of his old job, and when he thought of his old job he became bitter and angry. ]

Nigel staring out the window. Have a pigeon or two roosting nearby.
[ He stared out the window. ]
Pigeon: Coo!

Nigel watching a TV report on Straitjacket Ninja. A headline like; Nutty Ninja kicks crime!
[ He watched the news channels. ]
[ He liked the man who kicked bad guys. ]

[ Because Nigel knew there were bad guys everywhere.]
[ Bad people who just went about their bad lives as if all their bad actions were normal. ]

Nigel making his costume.
[ Nigel didn't tell his wife about his new hobby. ]

Nigel putting on pieces of his costume.
[ She didn't ask. As long as it kept him busy. ]

The wife not looking as our costumed Pigeonholer goes out the door. She is busy doing something, such as dishes, or reading a book, or making a cup of tea, or something.
[ When he told her he was going out she was actually relieved. ]
Wife: "It'll do you good to get out and about, dear."

Our hero, Nigel, hiding in the upper shadows on a pigeon populated building, looking down on the street below. We see Mr Button from page three walking with his annoyed wife.
[ It didn't take him long to find bad people. ]
Button: "You've got it all wrong, baby. She means nothing to me."

Page SIX
Button and his wife, still talking and walking. He is winning her over with his sly charm. In the foreground, ahead of the walking couple, have a puzzled pigeon being held held in the hand of the off panel Pigeonholer.
Button: You're the only one I love. Besides, you really don't want to divorce me. I'm broke. You'd get nothing.
Pigeon: coo?

The pigeonholer confronting a perplexed looking Mr Button, a confused pigeon ready in one hand.
Pigeonholer: You, sir, are a lying, cheating, fraudster who speaks out of his nether regions.
Pigeon: coo?

The payoff panel, larger than the rest, of the Pigeonholer shoving a pigeon where the sun don't shine. Mr Button has a very uncomfortable and surprised look on his face. I'd suggest drawing this so that while it is obvious where the pigeon is going it isn't actually shown.
Pigeonholer: Feel the pigeon of justice!
Pigeon (off): Coooooo!!!

Smaller frame of the pigeon flying away in the foreground (so we can see it's safe), and the Pigeonholer running away in the background. In the middle ground you can have Mr Button clutching at his backside in pain.

NEXT: Legging it

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