Saturday, 8 December 2012

Blackadder IV, Episode 4 - Private Plane

Black Adder IV, Episode 4

Private Plane


Scene 1: BA's Dugout

[BA is listening to his phonograph.  Artillery firing outside is causing the
 record to skip frequently.  Annoyed, BA storms outside.]

Scene 2: In The Trench

[Lt. George is in the trench, peering through a pair of binoculars across
 No Man's Land.]

BA               Oh, God, why do they bother?

George           Well, it's to kill Jerry, isn't it, Sir?

BA               Yes, but Jerry is safe underground in concrete bunkers.
                 We've shot off over a million cannon shells and what's
                 the result?  One dachshund with a slight limp!

[BA yells at the artillery.]

BA               Shut up!

[Artillery ceases.  George looks bemused.]

BA               Thank you!  Right, I'm off to bed where I intend to
                 sleep until my name changes to Rip Van Adder.

[BA goes into his dugout.]

Scene 3: BA's Dugout

[The phonograph is still playing.  BA stops it and lies down on his cot.
 An instant after his head touches the pillow there is the sound of
 aircraft and gunfire from outside.  BA rises from his cot.]

BA               Oh, God!  Bloody Germans!  They can't take a joke, can
                 they?  Just because we take a few pot-shots at them,
                 they have to have an air-raid to get their own back.
                 Where are our airforce?

[BA moves over to the table.  A field-telephone sits on the table]

BA               They're meant to defend us against this sort of thing.

[Noise outside continues.  BA puts on steel helmet, picks up telephone and
 dives under the table.]

BA               Right, that's it!

[Picks up receiver.]

BA               Hello?  Yes, yes, I'd like to leave a message for the
                 head of the Flying Corps, please.  That's Air Chief
                 Marshall Sir Hugh Massingburg-Massingburg, VC, DFC and
                 bar.  Message reads "Where are you, you bastard?"

[Private Baldrick enters the dugout.]

Baldrick         Here I am, Sir.

[BA puts down the receiver.]

BA               For God's sake, Baldrick, take cover.

Baldrick         Why's that, Sir?

BA               Because there's an air-raid going on and I don't want to
                 have to write to your mother at London Zoo and tell her
                 that her only human child is dead.

[Baldrick moves under the table with BA]

Baldrick         All right, Sir.  It's just that I didn't know there was an
                 air-raid on.  I couldn't hear anything over the noise of
                 the terrific display by our wonderful boys of the Royal
                 Flying Corps, Sir.

BA               What?

[George enters the dugout.]

George           I say, those chaps can't half thunder in their airborne
                 steeds, can't they just?

[George notices BA and Baldrick cowering under the table.]

George           Oh, hello, what's going on here?  Game of hide and seek?
                 Excellent!  Right now, I'll go and count to a hundred.
                 Er, no.  Better make it five, actually . . .

BA               George . . .

George           Er.  Oh, it's sardines.  Oh, excellent!  That's my favourite
                 one, that.

[BA rises from under the table.]

BA               George . . .

George           Yes, Sir?

BA               Shut up, and never say anything again as long as you live.

George           Right you are, Sir.

[BA removes helmet.  George is quiet for a few seconds.]

George           Crikey, but what a show it was, Sir.  Lord Flasheart's
                 Flying Aces.  How we cheered when they spun.  How we
                 shouted when they dived.  How we applauded when one chap
                 got sliced in half by his own propeller.  Well, it's all
                 part of the joke for those magnificent men in their
                 flying machines.

[Sound of plane plummeting, then crashing outside.]

BA               For `magnificent men', read `biggest showoffs since Lady
                 Godiva entered the Royal Enclosure at Ascot claiming she
                 had literally nothing to wear'.  I don't care how many
                 times they go up-diddly-up-up, they're still gits!

Baldrick         Oh, come on, Sir!  I'd love to be a flier.  Up there where
                 the air is clear.

BA               The chances of the air being clear anywhere near you,
                 Baldrick, are zero!

Baldrick         Oh, Sir.  It'd be great, swooping and diving.

[Baldrick starts his impression of a Sopwith Camel.]

BA               Baldrick . . .

[Baldrick drones on . . .]

BA               Baldrick . . .

[Baldrick stops droning on as BA interjects a third time.]

BA               Baldrick, what are you doing?

Baldrick         I'm a Sopwith Camel, Sir.

BA               Oh, it is a Sopwith Camel.  Ah, right, I always get confused
                 between the sound of a Sopwith Camel and the sound of a
                 malodourous runt wasting everybodys time.  Now if you
                 can do without me in the nursery for a while, I'm going
                 to get some fresh air.

[BA leaves the dugout, picking up his pipe on the way out.]

Scene 4: In The Trench

[As he emerges from the dugout BA sighs and prepares to light his pipe.
 Squadron Commander Lord Flasheart jumps down from his crashed plane.]

Flasheart        Ha!  Eat knuckle, Fritz!

[Flasheart knocks BA to the ground with his pistol, then puts a foot on
 BA's chest.]

Flasheart        Aha!  How disgusting.  A Boche on the sole of my boot.
                 I shall have to find a patch of grass to wipe it on.
                 Probably get shunned in the Officers' Mess.  Sorry about
                 the pong you fellows, trod in a Boche and can't get rid
                 of the whiff.

[BA rises.]

BA               Do you think we could dispense with the hilarious doggy-do
                 metaphor for a moment?  I'm not a Boche.  This is a British

[Flasheart puts his pistol away.]

Flasheart        Is it?  Oh, that's a piece of luck.  Thought I'd landed
                 sausage-side!  Ha!

[Flasheart picks up the receiver of a field-telephone lying by the dugout

Flasheart        Mind if I use your phone?  If word gets out that I'm
                 missing, five hundred girls will kill themselves.  I wouldn't
                 want them on my conscience, not when they ought to be on
                 my face!  Huh!

[Flasheart kicks the phone into action.]

Flasheart        Hi, Flasheart here.  Yeah, cancel the state funeral, tell
                 the King to stop blubbing.  Flash is not dead.  I simply
                 ran out of juice!  Yeah, and before all the girls start
                 saying "Oh, what's the point of living anymore", I'm talking
                 about petrol!  Woof, woof!
                 Yeah, I dumped the kite on the proles, so send a car. Er,
                 General Melchett's driver should do.  She hangs around with
                 the big nobs, so she'll be used to a fellow like me!  Woof,

BA               Look, do you think you could make your obscene phone call
                 somewhere else?

[Flasheart is still on the phone and ignores BA.]

Flasheart        No, not in half an hour, you rubber-desk johnny.  Send the
                 bitch with the wheels right now or I'll fly back to
                 England and give your wife something to hang her towels on.

[Flasheart throws down the receiver.]

Flasheart        Okay, dig out your best booze and let's talk about me
                 'til the car comes.  You must be pretty impressed having
                 Squadron Commander the Lord Flasheart drop in on your
                 squalid bit of line.

BA               Actually, no.  I was more impressed by the contents of my
                 handkerchief the last time I blew my nose.

Flasheart        Yeah, like hell.  Huh, huh.  You've probably got little
                 piccies of me on the walls of your dugout, haven't you?

[Flasheart tickles the front of BA's trousers.]

Flasheart        I bet you go all girly and giggly every time you look at

[Flasheart twists BA's John Thomas.  BA (naturally) screams.]

BA               I'm afraid not.  Unfortunately, most of the infantry think
                 you're a prat.  Ask them who they'd prefer to meet:
                 Squadron Commander Flasheart and the man who cleans out
                 the public toilets in Aberdeen, and they'd go for Wee Jock
                 "Poo-Pong" McPlop, every time.

[Flasheart laughs, then belts BA, knocking him to the floor.]
[Flasheart goes into the dugout.]

Scene 5: BA's Dugout

[George and Baldrick are discussing the Flying Aces.]

George           . . . so when that fellow looped-the-loop, I honestly
                 thought that, that, that . . .

[Flasheart enters, saluting.  George sees him.  BA enters behind Flasheart.]

George           My God!

Flasheart        Yes, I suppose I am.

George           Lord Flasheart, this is the greatest honour of my life.
                 I hope I snuff it right now to preserve this moment

BA               It can be arranged.

Baldrick         Lord Flasheart, I want to learn to write so I can send a
                 letter home about this golden moment.

Flasheart        So all the fellows hate me, eh?  Not a bit of it.  I'm
                 your bloody hero, eh, old scout?

[Flasheart playfully scuffs up Baldrick's hair, then notices that this
 action has left something unpleasant on his glove.]

Flasheart        Jesus!

[Flasheart wipes his glove on BA's shirt.]

Baldrick         My Lord, I've got every cigarette card they ever printed of
                 you.  My whole family took up smoking just so that we could
                 get the whole set.  My grandmother smoked herself to
                 death so we could afford the album.

Flasheart        Of course she did, of course she did, the poor love-crazed
                 old octogenarian.

[Flasheart moves to hug and kiss Baldrick, then thinks better of it.]

Flasheart        Well, all right, you fellows.  Let's sit us down and yarn
                 about how amazingly attractive I am.

BA               Yes, would you excuse me for a moment?  I've got some
                 urgent business.  There's a bucket outside I've got to be
                 sick into.

[Flasheart takes the mickey out of BA's holier-than-thou attitude.]

Flasheart        All right, you chaps, let's get comfy.

[Flasheart sits down in chair.  George sits down on BA's cot.  Flasheart
 turns to Baldrick.]

Flasheart        You look like a decent British bloke.  I'll park the old
                 booties on you if that's okay.

Baldrick         It would be an honour, my Lord.

[Baldrick kneels down on all fours in front of Flasheart.]

Flasheart        Of course it would!  Ha!

[Flasheart rests his feet on Baldrick's back and sighs.]

Flasheart        Have you any idea what it's like to have the wind
                 rushing through your hair?

George           No, Sir.

[Flasheart breaks wind in Baldrick's face.]

Flasheart        He has!

Scene 6: BA's Dugout

[Some time has elapsed.  Flasheart is regaling an enthralled George with
 stories.  BA is reading a copy of `King and Country' at the table,
 uninterested in what Flasheart has to say.]

Flasheart        . . . so I flew straight through her bedroom window,
                 popped a box of chocs on the dressing table,
                 machine-gunned my telephone number into the wall, and
                 then shot off and shagged her sister.

[As George creases up, Bobby Parkhurst enters the dugout.]

Bobby            Ahem.  Driver Parkhurst reporting for duty, my Lord . . .

Flasheart        Well, well, well.  If it isn't little Bobby Parkhurst--
                 saucier than a direct hit on a Heinz factory.

Bobby            I've come to pick you up.

Flasheart        Well, that's how I like my girls--direct and to my point.

Bobby            Woof!

[Flasheart removes his feet from Baldrick,  grabs Bobby and puts her across
 his lap and begins to snog her.  During the snog BA sarcastically checks
 his watch.]

Flasheart        Ah!  Tally ho, then!  Back to the bar.  You should join
                 the Flying Corps, George.  That's the way to fight a war.
                 Tasty tuck, soft beds and a uniform so smart it's got a
                 PhD from Cambridge.

[Flasheart gestures at Baldrick.]

Flasheart        You could even bring the breath monster here.  Anyone can
                 be a navigator if he can tell his arse from his elbow.

BA               Well, that's Baldrick out, I fear . . .

Flasheart        We're always looking for talented types to join the
                 Twenty Minuters.

BA               . . . and there goes George.

[Flasheart rises from the chair, lifting Bobby in his arms.]

Flasheart        Tally ho, then, Bobby.  Hush, here comes a whizz-bang and I
                 think you know what I'm talking about!  Woof!

Bobby            Woof!

[Flasheart and Bobby leave.]

BA               God, it's like Crufts in here!

[Baldrick and George stand.]

George           I say, Sir.  What a splendid notion.  The Twenty Minuters.
                 Soft tucker, tasty beds, fluffy uniforms.

Baldrick         Begging your permission, Sir, but why do they call them the
                 Twenty Minuters?

George           Ah, now, yes, . . .

[George moves across the dugout to get his card album.]

George           . . . now this one is in my Brooke Bond `Book of the Air'.

[George returns to the cot and sits down.]

George           Now, you have to collect all the cards and then stick them
                 into this wonderful presentation booklet.  Er . . .

[Baldrick sits down next to George.]

George           Ah, here we are: Twenty Minuters.  Oh, damn!  Haven't got
                 the card yet.  Ah, but the caption says `Twenty minutes is
                 the average amount of time new pilots spend in the air.'

BA               Twenty minutes.

George           That's right, Sir.

BA               I had a twenty hour watch yesterday, with four hours
                 overtime, in two feet of water.

[George, then Baldrick, rise from the cot and move to the table.]

George           Well then, for goodness sake, Sir, why don't we join?

Baldrick         Yeah, be better than just sitting around here all day on our

BA               No thank you.  No thank you.  I have no desire to hang
                 around with a bunch of upper-class delinquents, do twenty
                 minutes work, and then spend the rest of the day loafing
                 about in Paris drinking gallons of champagne and having
                 dozens of moist, pink, highly-experienced young French
                 peasant girls galloping up and down my . . .  Hang on!

Scene 7: Captain Darling's Office

[Captain Darling is writing at his desk.  There is a knock at the office door.]

Darling          Come!

[BA enters the office.]

Darling          Ah, Captain Blackadder.

BA               Good morning, Captain Darling.

Darling          What do you want?

BA               You're looking so well.

Darling          I'm a busy man, Blackadder.  Let's hear it, whatever it is.

BA               Well, you know, Darling, every . . . every man has a
                 dream . . .

Darling          Hmmm . . .

BA               . . . and when I was a small boy, I used to watch the marsh
                 warblers swooping in my mothers undercroft, and I remember
                 thinking `Will men ever dare do the same?'  And you know . . .

[Darling rises from his desk.]

Darling          Oh, you want to join the Royal Flying Corps?

BA               Oh, that's a thought.  Could I?

Darling          No, you couldn't!  Goodbye!

[Darling sits back down.]

BA               Look, come on, Darling, just give me an application form.

Darling          It's out of the question.  This is simply a ruse to waste
                 five months of training after which you'll claim you can't
                 fly after all because it makes your ears go `pop'.  Come on,
                 I wasn't born yesterday, Blackadder.

BA               More's the pity, we could have started your personality from
                 scratch.  So, the training period is five months, is it?

Darling          It's no concern of yours if it's five years and comes with a
                 free holiday in Tunisia, contraceptives supplied.  Besides,
                 they wouldn't admit you.  It's not easy getting transfers,
                 you know.

[Darling returns to his work.]

BA               Oh, you've tried it yourself, have you?

[Darling breaks his pencil.]

Darling          No, I haven't.

BA               Trust you to try and skive off to some cushy option.

Darling          There's nothing cushy about life in the Womens Auxiliary
                 Balloon Corps.

[BA raises his eyebrows at this.]

Darling          Ah . . .

[The door to General Melchett's office opens and the General and George
 enter.  BA and Darling snap to attention.  BA salutes.]

George           . . . and then the bishop said "I'm awfully sorry, I
                 didn't realise you meant organist."

[Melchett chortles.]

Melchett         Thank you, George.  At ease, everyone.  Now, where's my
                 map?  Come on.

Darling          Sir!

[Darling hands Melchett his map.]

Melchett         Thank you.

[Melchett unfurls the map the wrong way.]

Melchett         God, it's a barren, featureless desert out there, isn't it.

Darling          The other side, Sir!

[Melchett turns the map over.  BA turns to George.]

BA               Hello, George.  What are you doing here?

George           Me, Sir?  I just popped in to join the Royal Flying Corps.

[Melchett looks up from his map.]

Melchett         Hello, Blackadder.  What are you doing here?

BA               Me, Sir?  I just popped in to join the Royal Flying Corps.

Darling          And, of course, I said . . .

Melchett         Bravo, I hope, Darling.  Because, you know, I've always had
                 my doubts about you trenchy-type fellows.  Always suspected
                 there might be a bit too much of the battle-dodging,
                 nappy-wearing, I'd-rather-have-a-cup-of-tea-than-charge-
                 stark-naked-at-Jerry about you.  But if you're willing to
                 join the Twenty Minuters then you're all right by me and
                 welcome to marry my sister any day.

Darling          Are you sure about this, Sir?

Melchett         Certainly, you should hear the noise she makes when she eats
                 a boiled egg.  Be glad to get her out of the house.  So,
                 report back here 09:00 hours for your basic training.

Scene 8: Captain Darling's Office

[It is the next morning.  Darling's office has been set out with chairs and
 there is a blackboard with a chalk picture of a Sopwith Camel on it.  BA and
 George are in the front row of seats.  There are three other trainees.
 Darling is at his desk at the back.]

George           Crikey!  I'm looking forward to today.  Up-diddly-up,
                 down-diddly-down, whoops-poop, twiddly-dee, a decent scrap
                 with the fiendish Red Baron, a bit of a jolly old crash
                 landing behind enemy lines, capture, torture, escape and
                 then back home in time for tea and medals.

BA               George, who's using the family brain-cell at the moment?
                 This is just the beginning of the training.  The beginning
                 of five long months of very clever, very dull men looking
                 at machinery.

[Flasheart is heard in the corridor.]

Flasheart        Hey, girls!  Look at my machinery!

[The sound of screaming women is heard from the corridor.  Flasheart enters
 Darling's office, zipping up his flys.  He is carrying a stick.  All present
 rise to attention.]

Flasheart        Enter a man who has no underwear.  Ask me why.

All except BA    Why do you have no underwear, Lord Flash?

Flasheart        Because the pants haven't been built yet that'll take the
                 job on.

[Flasheart performs a groinal thrust.]

Flasheart        And that's the type of guy who's doing the training around
                 here.  Sit down!

[All sit.  Flasheart notices BA.]

Flasheart        Well, well, well, well, well.  If it isn't old Captain
                 Slack Bladder.

BA               Blackadder.

Flasheart        Couldn't resist it, eh, Slack Bladder?  Told you you thought
                 I was great.  All right men, let's do-oo-oo it!  The first
                 thing to remember is: always treat your kite . . .

[Flasheart taps the picture of the Sopwith Camel with his stick.]

Flasheart        . . . like you treat your woman!

[Flasheart  whips the air with his cane.]

George           How, how do you mean, Sir?  Do you mean, do you mean take her
                 home at weekends to meet your mother?

Flasheart        No, I mean get inside her five times a day and take her to
                 heaven and back.

[George smirks.]

BA               I'm beginning to see why the Suffragette Movement want the

Flasheart        Hey, hey!  Any bird who wants to chain herself to my railings
                 and suffer a jet movement gets my vote.  Er, right.  Well,
                 I'll see you in ten minutes for take-off.

[Flasheart begins to leave.]

BA               Hang on, hang on!  What about the months of training?

Flasheart        Hey, wet-pants!  This isn't the Womens Auxiliary Balloon
                 Corps.  You're in the Twenty Minuters now.

[Darling stands up.]

Darling          Er, Sir . . .

Flasheart        Yes . . .

Darling          . . . Sir!

Flasheart        . . . Prat at the back!

Darling          I think we'd all be intrigued to know why you're called the
                 Twenty Minuters.

George           Oh, Mister Thicko.  Imagine not knowing that.

Flasheart        Well, it's simple!  The average life expectancy for a new
                 pilot is twenty minutes.

Darling          Ah . . .

[Darling sits.]

BA               Life expectancy . . . of twenty minutes . . .

Flasheart        That's right.  Goggles on, chocks away, last one back's a
                 homo!  Hurray!

[Flasheart runs out of the room.]

Trainee Pilots   Hurray!

[Trainee Pilots run after Flasheart.]

BA               So, we take off in ten minutes, we're in the air for twenty
                 minutes, which means we should be dead by twenty five to ten.

George           Hairy blighters, Sir.  This is a bit of a turn-up for the
                 plus fours.

[Darling rises and moves to the door.]

Darling          I shouldn't worry about it too much, Blackadder.  Flying's
                 all about navigation.  As long as you've got a good navigator
                 I'm sure you'll be fine.

[Darling sniggers as he opens the door to reveal Baldrick in flying gear.
 Baldrick enters.  Darling leaves.]

Scene 9: In The Air

[BA and Baldrick are flying in a Sopwith Camel.  George is another Camel.]

BA               Actually, they're right.  This is a doddle.

Baldrick         Careful, Sir!

BA               Whoops, whoops, a little wobble there.  I'll get the hang
                 of it, don't worry.  All right, Baldrick, how many rounds
                 have we got?

Baldrick         Er, five hundred, Sir.  Cheese and tomato for you, rat for

George           Tally-bally ho!

Baldrick         What's this?

[Baldrick climbs out of his seat.]

BA               Baldrick!  Baldrick!  Will you stop arsing about and get back
                 in the plane!

Baldrick         Ooh, ooh, ooh!  Hey, Sir, I can see a pretty red plane from
                 up here.  Ha ha!  Woo woo!

von Richthoven   Schnell!  Da unten!  Ha ha ha!

[von Richthoven shoots out one of the wing-supports on Blackadders aircraft.]

BA               Oh no!  Watch out, Baldrick, it's stood right on our tail.
                 Yes, now this is developing into a distinctly boring
                 situation, but we're still on our side of the line so I'll
                 crash-land and claim my ears went `pop' first time out.

Baldrick         Ooh, let's hope we fall on something soft!

BA               Fine.  I'll try and aim between General Melchett's ears!

Scene 10: A German Prison Cell

[BA is pacing about the cell.  Baldrick is seated.]

BA               I don't believe it.  A German prison cell.  For two and a
                 half years the Western Front has been as likely to move as a
                 Frenchman who lives next door to a brothel, and last night the
                 Germans advance a mile and we land on the wrong side.

Baldrick         Ooh, dear, Captain B, my tummy's gone all squirty.

BA               That means you're scared, Baldrick, and you're not the only
                 one.  I couldn't be more petrified if a wild rhinoceros had
                 just come home from a hard day at the swamp and found me
                 wearing his pyjamas, smoking his cigars and in bed with his

Baldrick         I've heard what these Germans will do, Sir.  They'll have
                 their wicked way with anything of woman-born.

BA               Well, in that case, Baldrick, you're quite safe.  However,
                 the Teutonic reputation for brutality is well-founded: their
                 operas last three or four days; and they have no word
                 for `fluffy'.

Baldrick         I want my mum!

BA               Yes, it'd be good to see her.  I should imagine a maternally-
                 outraged gorilla could be a useful ally when it comes to the
                 final scrap.

[Footsteps are heard outside the cell.]

BA               Prepare to die like a man, Baldrick.

[Baldrick stands.]

BA               Or as close as you can come to a man without actually
                 shaving the palms of your hands.

[The door opens and Oberleutnant von Gerhardt enters.]

von Gerhardt     Good evening.  I am Oberleutnant von Gerhardt.  I have
                 a message from the Baron von Richthoven, the greatest living

BA               Which, considering that his competition consists entirely
                 of very fat men in leather shorts burping to the tune of
                 `She'll Be Coming Round The Mountain', is no great

von Gerhardt     Quiet!

[von Gerhardt slaps Baldrick across the face.  Baldrick falls against the

BA               And what is your message?

von Gerhardt     It is: Prepare for a fate worse than death, English flying

BA               Oh.  So, it's the traditional warm German welcome.

von Gerhardt     Correct.  Also, he is saying: Do not try to escape or you
                 will suffer even worse.

BA               A fate worse than a fate worse than death?  Sounds pretty bad.

Scene 11: Captain Darling's Office

[George and Darling are arguing loudly, there is confused chatter.]

George           Yes well, you see, it's all very well for you, isn't it,
                 sitting here behind yer, behind yer, behind yer comfy desk.

Darling          Don't you take that tone with me, Lieutenant, or I'll have
                 you on a charge for insurbordination.

George           Well, I'd rather be on a charge for insubordination than on a
                 charge of deserting a friend.

Darling          How dare you talk to me like that!

George           How dare I . . .?

[General Melchett, attracted by the noise, enters from his office.]

Melchett         Now, then, now then, now, now, then, now then, now then,
                 then now, now, now then.  What's going on here?

Darling          That damn fool Blackadder has crashed his plane behind enemy
                 lines, Sir.  This young idiot wants to go and try rescue him.
                 It's a total waste of men and equipment.

George           He's not a damn fool, Sir, he's a bally hero.

Melchett         All right.  All right, all right, all right.  I'll deal with
                 this, Darling.  Delicate touch needed, I fancy.

[Melchett takes George over to the fireplace.]

Melchett         Now, George.  Do you remember when I came down to visit you
                 when you were a nipper for your sixth birthday?  You used to
                 have a lovely little rabbit.  Beautiful little thing.  Do you

George           Flossy.

Melchett         That's right.  Flossy.  Do you remember what happened to

George           You shot him.

Melchett         That's right.  It was the kindest thing to do after he'd been
                 run over by that car.

George           By your car, Sir.

Melchett         Yes, by my car.  But that too was an act of mercy when you
                 would remember that that dog had been set on him.

George           Your dog, Sir.

Melchett         Yes, yes, my dog.  But what I'm trying to say, George, is
                 that the state young Flossy was in after we'd scraped him off
                 my front tyre is very much the state that young Blackadder
                 will be in now.  If not very nearly dead, then very actually

George           Permission for lip to wobble, Sir?

Melchett         Permission granted.

[George's lips wobble.]

Melchett         Stout fellow.

George           But surely, Sir, you must allow me to at least try and save

Melchett         No, George.  It would be as pointless as trying to teach a
                 woman the value of a good, forward defensive stroke.  Besides,
                 it would take a superman to get him out of there, not the
                 kind of weed who blubs just because somebody gives him a slice
                 of rabbit pie instead of birthday cake.

George           Well, I suppose you're right, Sir.

Melchett         Course I am.  Now let's talk about something more jolly,
                 shall we?  Look, this is the amount of land we've
                 recaptured since yesterday.

[Melchett and George move over to the map table.]

George           Oh, excellent.

Melchett         Erm, what is the actual scale of this map, Darling?

Darling          Erm, one-to-one, Sir.

Melchett         Come again?

Darling          Er, the map is actually life-size, Sir.  It's superbly
                 detailed.  Look, look, there's a little worm.

Melchett         Oh, yes.  So the actual amount of land retaken is?

[Darling whips out a tape measure amd measures the table.]

Darling          Excuse me, Sir.  Seventeen square feet, Sir.

Melchett         Excellent.  So you see, young Blackadder didn't die horribly
                 in vain after all.

George           If he did die, Sir.

Darling          Tch!

Melchett         That's the spirit, George.  If nothing else works, then a
                 total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face
                 will see us through.

Scene 12: A German Prison Cell

[BA is seated.  Baldrick is sitting on the floor.  There is a jangling of
 keys, the cell door opens and the Red Baron enters.]

von Richthoven   So!  I am the Red Baron von Richthoven and you are the two
                 English flying aces responsible for the spilling of the
                 precious German blood of many of my finest and my
                 blondest friends.  I have waited many months to do this.

[von Richthoven kisses BA on both cheeks.]

BA               You may have been right, Balders.  Looks like we're going
                 to get rogered to death after all.

Baldrick         Do you want me to go first, Sir?

[von Richthoven laughs.]

von Richthoven   You English and your sense of humour.  During your brief
                 stay I look forward to learning more of your wit, your
                 punning and your amusing jokes about the breaking of the wind.

BA               Well, Baldrick's the expert there.

Baldrick         I certainly am, Sir.

[von Richthoven laughs.]

von Richthoven   How lucky you English are to find the toilet so amusing.
                 For us, it is a mundane and functional item.  For you, the
                 basis of an entire culture.

[Baldrick laughs, von Richthoven slaps him in the face.]

von Richthoven   I must now tell you of the full horror of what awaits you.

BA               Ah, you see, Balders.  Dress it up in any amount of pompous
                 verbal diarrhoea, and the message is `Squareheads down for
                 the big Boche gang-bang'.

von Richthoven   As an officer and a gentleman, you will be looking forward
                 to a quick and noble death.

BA               Well, obviously.

von Richthoven   But, instead, an even worse fate awaits you.  Tomorrow, you
                 will be taken back to Germany . . .

BA               Here it comes!

von Richthoven   . . . to a convent school, outside Heidelberg, where you will
                 spend the rest of the war teaching the young girls home

BA               Er . . .

von Richthoven   For you, as a man of honour, the humiliation will be

BA               Oh, I think you'll find we're tougher than you imagine.

von Richthoven   Ha!  I can tell how much you are suffering by your long

BA               We're not suffering too much to say `thank you'.  Thank you.
                 Say `thank you', Baldrick.

Baldrick         Thank you, Baldrick.

[von Richthoven laughs.]

von Richthoven   How amusing.  But now, forgive me.  I must take to the skies
                 once again.  Very funny.  The noble Lord Flasheart still
                 eludes me.

BA               I think you'll find he's overrated.  Bad breath and . . .
                 impotent, they say.

[von Richthoven laughs.]

von Richthoven   Sexual innuendo.

[von Richthoven laughs.]

von Richthoven   But enough of this.  As you say in England, I must fly.

[von Richthoven laughs.]

von Richthoven   Perhaps I will master this humour after all, ja?

BA               I wouldn't be too optomistic.

von Richthoven   Oh, and the little fellow, if you get lonely in the night,
                 I'm in the old chateau.  There's no pressure.

[von Richthoven starts to leave.  As he moves up the steps to the cell door
 he prat-falls and laughs.]

von Richthoven   Prat-fall!

[von Richthoven leaves the cell, laughing as he goes.]

Baldrick         Is it really true, Sir?  Is the war really over for us?

BA               Yup!  Out of the war and teaching nuns how to boil eggs.
                 For us, the Great War is finito.  A war that would be a damn
                 sight simpler if we'd just stayed in England and shot fifty
                 thousand of our men a week.  No more mud, death, rats, bombs,
                 shrapnel, whizz-bangs, barbed wire and those bloody awful
                 songs that have the word `whoops' in the title.

[BA notices that the cell door has been left ajar.]

BA               Oh, damn!  He's, he's left the door open.

Baldrick         Oh, good!  We can escape, Sir.

BA               Are you mad, Baldrick?  I'll find someone to lock it for us.

[BA opens the door to find George standing there.]

George           Ssh!  Keep-ee!  Mum's the word!  Not 'arf, or what?

[BA shuts the door in George's face.]

Baldrick         Sir, why did you just slam the door on Lieutenant George?

BA               I can't believe it.  Go away!

[George pushes the door open and enters the cell.]

George           It's me.  It's me.

BA               But what the hell are you doing here?

George           Oh, never mind the hows, and the whys and the do-you-mind-

BA               But it would have taken a superman to get in here.

George           Well, it's funny you should say that, because as it
                 happens I did have some help from a rather spiffing bloke.
                 He's taken a break from some crucial top-level shagging.

[Flasheart smashes through the cell door, swinging on a rope.  As he lands,
 he trumpets his own arrival.]

Flasheart        It's me.  Hurray!

George and Baldrick

[Flasheart smashes Baldrick in the face.  Baldrick falls to the floor.]

Flasheart        God's potatoes, George.  You said noble brother friars were
                 in the lurch.  If I'd known you meant old Slack Bladder and
                 the mound of the hound of the Baskervilles, I'd probably
                 have let them stew in their own juice.

[Baldrick rises.]

Flasheart        And let me tell you, if I ever tried that, I'd probably

[Baldrick laughs.  Flasheart laughs and smacks Baldrick in the face.
 Baldrick wings floor-ward again.]

Flasheart        Still, since I'm here, I may as well do-oo it, as the
                 Bishop said to the netball team.  Come on, chums!

[Flasheart runs out of the cell, followed by George and Baldrick.  BA sits
 down and begins to moan, faking an injury.]

BA               Aah!  Ow!  Aah!

[Flasheart runs back into the cell, followed by George and Baldrick.]

Flasheart        Come on.

BA               Yes, yes.  Look, I'm sorry, chaps, but I've splintered my
                 pancreas.  Erm, and I seem to have this terrible cough.

[BA fakes a couple of coughs.]

BA               Coff-guards!  Coff-guards!

Flasheart        Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait a minute.  Now I may be
                 packing the kind of tackle that you'd normally expect to find
                 swinging about between the hindlegs of a Grand National
                 winner, but I'm not totally stupid, and I've got the kind of
                 feeling you'd rather we hadn't come.

BA               No, no, no, I'm very grateful.  It's just that I'd slow you

Flasheart        I think I'm beginning to understand.

BA               Are . . . are you?

Flasheart        Just because I can give multiple orgasms to the furniture
                 just by sitting on it, doesn't mean that I'm not sick of this
                 damn war: the blood, the noise, the endless poetry.

BA               Is that really what you think, Flasheart?

[Flasheart whips out his pistol and threatens BA.]

Flasheart        Course it's not what I think.  Now get out that door before
                 I redecorate that wall an interesting new colour called
                 `hint of brain'.

BA               Excellent.  Well, that's clear.  Let's get back to that
                 lovely war, then!

Flasheart        Woof!

George           Woof!

Baldrick         Bark!

[As the group moves to leave, von Richthoven appears at the cell door.]

von Richthoven   Not so fast, Blackadder.

BA               Oh, damn!  Foiled again!  What bad luck!

[von Richthoven enters the cell.]

von Richthoven   Ah, and the Lord Flasheart.  This is indeed an honour.
                 Finally, the two greatest gentleman fliers in the world meet.
                 Two men of honour, who have jousted together in the
                 cloud-strewn glory of the skies, face to face at last.  How
                 often I have rehearsed this moment of destiny in my dreams.
                 The panoply to encapsulate the unspoken nobility of a

[Flasheart shoots von Richthoven.]

Flasheart        What a poof!  Come on!

[All exit the cell, cheering.]

Scene 13: Captain Darling's Office

[Darling is dusting the office door.  BA opens the door in Darling's face.]

BA               Hello, Darling.

[Darling retreats backwards towards his desk as BA enters.]

Darling          Good Lord.  Captain Blackadder.  I thought, I thought you
                 were . . .

BA               Playing tennis?

Darling          No.

BA               Dead?

Darling          Well, yes, unfortunately.

BA               Well, I had a lucky escape.  No thanks to you.  This is a
                 friend of mine.

[Flasheart is standing on Darling's desk.  Darling turns around and finds
 himself staring at Flasheart's crotch.]

Darling          Argh!

Flasheart        Hi, creep.

BA               Flasheart, this is Captain Darling.

Flasheart        Captain Darling?  Funny name for a guy, isn't it?

[Flasheart jumps down from the desk.]

Flasheart        Last person I called `Darling' was pregnant twenty seconds
                 later.  Hear you couldn't be bothered to help old Slacky

Darling          Er, well, it . . . it wasn't quite that, Sir.  It's just
                 that we weighed up the pros and cons, and decided it wasn't a
                 reasonable use of our time and resources.

Flasheart        Well, this isn't a reasonable use of my time and resources,
                 but I'm going to do it anyway.

Darling          What?

Flasheart        This!

[Flasheart head-butts Darling.  Darling groans and falls backwards across his

Flasheart        All right, Slacky!  All right, Slacky!  I've got to fly.
                 Two million chicks, only one Flasheart.  And remember, if
                 you want something, take it.  Bobby!

[Bobby enters the office and salutes.]

Bobby            My Lord!

Flasheart        I want something!

Bobby            Take it!

Flasheart        Woof!

[Bobby starts to unbutton her top as she leaves the office, followed by

BA               Git!

[General Melchett enters from his office.]

Melchett         Ah, Blackadder.  So you escaped.

BA               Yes, Sir.

Melchett         Bravo!

[Melchett notices the unconcious Darling.]

Melchett         Don't slouch, Darling.

BA               I was wondering whether, having been tortured by the most
                 vicious sadist in the German army, I might be allowed a
                 week's leave to recuperate, Sir.

Melchett         Excellent idea.  Your commanding officer would have to be
                 stark raving mad to refuse you.

BA               Well, you are my commanding officer.

Melchett         Well?

BA               Can I have a week's leave to recuperate, Sir?

Melchett         Certainly not!

BA               Thank you, Sir.

Melchett         Baaaaaa!

                           Captain Edmund Blackadder
                                ROWAN ATKINSON

                             Private S. Baldrick
                                TONY ROBINSON

                           General Sir Anthony Cecil
                               Hogmanay Melchett
                                  STEPHEN FRY

                           Lieutenant the Honourable
                         George Colthurst St. Barleigh
                                  HUGH LAURIE

                             Captain Kevin Darling
                                 TIM McINNERNY

                               Squadron Commander
                                 Lord Flasheart
                                   RIK MAYALL

                              Baron von Richthoven
                                ADRIAN EDMONDSON

                             Lieutenant von Gerhardt
                                 HUGO E. BLACK

                               Driver Parkhurst
                              GABRIELLE GLAISTER

                                 Title Music
                           Composed and Arranged by
                                HOWARD GOODALL

                                  Played by
                        The Band of the 3rd Battalion
                         The Royal Anglian Regiment
                              (The Pompadours)

                             WOI TIM PARKINSON

                       P/Br. 647989 Libotte, J

                       Vis/E. 110143 Turner, R

                       Tech/Co. 364007 Chislett, M

                       C/Dgr. 368807 Hardinge, A

                       M/U Dgr. 862641 Noble, C

                       G/Dgr. 121587 McCallum, G

                       V/M 420372 Abbott, C

                       VTE. 614981 Wadsworth, C

                       Cm/S. 841842 Hoare, J

                       S/Svr. 733731 Deane, M

                       L/Dr. 988212 Barber, H

                       P/Mgr. 323476 Cooper, D

                       P/Att. 114209 Sharples, V

                       AFM 529614 Kennedy, J

                       Dgr. 404371 Hull, C

                       Dir. 232418 Boden, R

                       Prd. 597602 Lloyd, J

                       (c) BBC tv MCMLXXXIX


  1. I can feel Flash's charisma even when reading his lines.

    Poor Darling. Lol.

  2. "von Richthoven Prat-fall!"

    The real expression would be "Prachtvoll!" (Splendit (the exclamation mark is important!))

    And we do habe a word for fluffy. But the thing with our Operas is true...

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  4. Regarding 'conchy' reference. It was usually written conchie (short for conscientious objector (to the war)). A pacifist, in other words, and quite controversial at the time.