Weekend Post

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  • Weekend Post

    I get a lot of requests for reprints of Levine/Isaacs scripts. So here is a portion of one of our SIMPSONS, “Dancin’ Homer”, dated 6/05/90. Notice that we had to be very detailed in our descriptions so the artists would have some sense of what we envisioned.

    **********

    EXT. STADIUM – EVENING

    We open on a large stadium marquee that reads:

    “SPRINGFIELD WAR MEMORIAL STADIUM, “ ‘TONIGHT BASEBALL, SPRINGFIELD ISOTOPES VS. SHELBYVILLE SHELBYVILLIANS, “ “NUCLEAR POWER PLANT FAMILY NIGHT, “ “SUNDAY AFTERNOON – COHEN BAR MITZVAH.”

    A bus driven by OTTO comes roaring by the screen as it enters the stadium parking lot and screeches to a stop. We hear a blaring police car go by.

    OTTO
    Oooh, well, I think we lost ‘em. (LOOKING AROUND) Hey, and we’re at the ball park. All right! Two birds with one stone. Okay, everybody out!

    There’s a loud CHEER from the bus.

    INT. BUS – CONTINUOUS

    It is crammed with excited NUCLEAR POWER PLANT EMPLOYEES AND THEIR FAMILIES, all with hats, pennants, thermoses, flasks, gloves, etc. THE SIMPSONS are jammed into two rows. Everyone starts to disembark.

    ON THE SIMPSONS

    As they cross with other fans to the front gate. BART has a mitt, LISA a transistor radio; MAGGIE wears a little baseball cap and uniform jumper. They pass souvenir stands and PROGRAM VENDORS. All the EMPLOYEES who work at the ball park are rundown and toothless.

    HOMER
    You know, boy, some of the players you see tonight may make it to the big leagues, one day.

    BART
    What? Aren’t we going to see any washed-up major leaguers?

    HOMER
    Sure, we get a nice mix here.

    LISA
    I can’t think of a better place to spend a balmy summer’s night than the old ball yard. There’s just the green grass of the outfield, the crushed brick of the infield, and the white chalk lines that divide the man from the little boy.

    HOMER
    (CHUCKLES) Lisa, honey, you’re forgetting the beer. It comes in seventy-two ounce tubs here.

    MARGE
    I hope you’ll space out the tubs this year, Homer.

    HOMER
    (DEFENSIVE) What are you getting at?

    MARGE
    Well, last year you got a little rambunctious and mooned the poor umpire.

    HOMER
    Marge, (HOLDING UP THE TICKET) this ticket doesn’t just give me a seat, it also gives me the right – no, the duty, to make a complete ass of myself.

    ENTRANCE TO STADIUM

    MR. BURNS and SMITHERS, who holds 3x5 index “prompt” cards, are perched at the gate, greeting the employees and their families, including THE GAMMILLS from “No Disgrace Like Home”.

    BURNS
    Ah, the Gammills. Good to see you.

    GAMMILL
    You’re an inspiration to all of us in waste management, sir.

    BURNS
    (CHUCKLES) Well, take your mind off contaminates for one night and have a hot dog. (LAUGHS)

    Gammill and his brood kow tow and move on.

    BURNS
    (TO SMITHERS) Put a little smile on his card, Smithers.

    SMITHERS
    Already there, sir.

    Burns spots the Simpsons as they approach. Smithers grabs a card and whispers in Burns’ ear.

    SMITHERS
    The Simpsons, sir.

    BURNS
    Ah, well, if it isn’t the Simps.

    HOMER
    Uh… Simp-sons, sir.

    BURNS
    (CONSULTING CARD) Hmm, oh , yes… Homer and Marge Simpson. Oh, and these must be Bart, Lisa, and “Expecting”.

    SMITHER
    (SOTTO) The card needs to be updated, sir.

    Burns grumbles.

    HOMER
    Oh, that’s okay. The baby’s name isn’t important. Let’s go, Marge.

    BURNS
    Very well. (CHUCKLES) Take your mind off contaminates for one night and have a hot dog. (LAUGHS)

    The Simpsons enter the park.

    EXT. PARK – CONTINUOUS

    It’s a typical wooden bandbox minor league ball park, seating maybe five thousand. Ringing the outfield wall are the usual billboards filled with local advertisements: “Springfield Savings – Safe from 1890-1986, 1988-“; “His Royal Majesty Clothing for the Obese or Gangly Gentleman”; “Moe’s Tavern – Hit this sign and win a free well drink”.

    The only concession to the modern era is the JumboVision board in left field, which dwarfs the rest of the stadium. The PLAYERS are on the field, leisurely taking batting and infield practice as the stadium organist plays “ALEXANDER’S RAGTIME BAND”.

    BART
    Oh, wow – there’s Flash Bailor! I gotta get his authograph! He used to be a star.

    FLASH BAILOR

    He is playing catch. He’s 45, arrogant, and terribly out of shape. He looks like a giant pear. Bart leans over the railing, holding out a ball and a pen.

    BART
    Hey, Flash! Will ya sign my ball?

    FLASH
    No.

    Bart rejoins the family.

    BART
    (MUMBLING) Lousy, washed-up, broken-down… old tub of guts… who does he think he is anyway?

    HOMER
    What’s the matter, boy?

    BART
    He wouldn’t sign my ball.

    MARGE
    Well, he’s a fine role model. Bart, give me that ball!

    Bart flips her the ball and, with great resolve, she marches down the aisle to the field.

    PLAYER #1
    Hey, Flash, check out the mature quail heading this way.

    FLASH
    Hey there, little lady. What can Flash do for ya?

    EXT. PARK – STANDS – A LITTLE LATER

    Marge rejoins the family, holding the ball.

    MARGE
    Here you go, Bart.

    She hands the ball to Bart.

    BART
    (READING) “Springfield Kozy Kort Motel, Room 26… How ‘bout it? – Flash.”

    HOMER
    Wow! Flash Bailor came on to my wife! (IMPRESSED) You’ve still got the magic, Marge.

    MARGE
    (SMALL GIGGLE)

    EXT. BALL PARK – MOMENTS LATER

    The plant employees are positioned way down the right field line in the bleachers. There’s a filled section of them… and just a mere sprinkling of other fans throughout the park. There are two empty seats next to the Simpsons. Lisa is holding up Maggie.

    HOMER
    (TO LISA) What are you doing?

    LISA
    Trying to get Maggie on the JumboVision.

    SERIES OF QUICK CUTS – GRANDSTAND

    We see that HUNDREDS OF BABIES are being held up.

    BART
    (POINTING) Hey, Dad, look!

    Homer glances up.

    HOMER
    Whoa!

    ON JUMBOVISION BOARD

    Homer fills the screen. He stands up and waves with both hands.

    HOMER
    Hey, everybody! How you doing? Look at me! I’m Homer Simpson! Heh… heh.

    Bart leans into frame and raises two fingers behind Homer’s head. The JumboVision camera starts to pull in on Homer’s open fly.

    MARGE
    (QUIETLY) Homer… Homer.. X.Y.Z.

    HOMER
    Examine my zipper? Why? (HOMER LOOKS DOWN) Whoops!

    Homer, still on the screen, turns away, zips up his fly and receives a nice OVATION from the crowd.

    P.A. ANNOUNCER (V.O.)
    (HEAVILY ECHOED) Ladies and gentlemen, throwing out tonight’s first ball, the man whose name is synonymous with our nations’ safest and cleanest energy source, Mr. Montgomery Burns!

    Burns and Smithers drive up to the mound in a golf cart that looks like a big baseball. Burns waves to the crowd. There is a slight SMATTERING OF APPLAUSE. As the golf cart brakes, divots of turf fly.

    SMITHERS
    Ah, they love you, sir.

    BURNS
    Heh, heh. As well they might. You know, Smithers, when I was a young buck, my patented fadeaway pitch was compared by many to the “trouble ball” of the great Satchel Paige. Spit on this for me, Smither.

    Burns hands Smithers the ball.

    SMITHERS
    One hocker coming up, sir.

    Burns rocks into his wind-up.

    ON THE SIMPSONS

    Who are heckling Burns from their very safe distance.

    HOMER
    Hey, Burns! Hey, “Rag Arm”!

    BART
    You throw like my sister, man!

    LISA
    Yeah, you throw like me!

    They LAUGH conspiratorially.

    BACK TO BURNS

    He wheels and deals. He loses his balance and the ball goes maybe six feet before trickling to a stop.

    SMITHERS
    I think I could actually hear the air being torn, sir.

    BURNS
    Oh, shut up.

    Homer and Bart are roaring with LAUGHTER. They can barely contain themselves.

    BART
    What a lame-o!

    P.A. ANNOUNCER (V.O.)
    Ladies and Gentlemen:, to honor America, will you please rise for our National Anthem…

    Homer quickly composes himself.

    P.A. ANNOUNCER (V.O.)
    …sung tonight by Springfield’s rhythm n’ blues sensation, “Bleeding Bums” Murphy.

    BLEEDING GUMS MURPHY steps up to the microphone at home plate. We see the scoreboard clock behind him reads 7:30. Bleeding Gums launches into a wildly improvisational version of the National Anthem.

    BLEEDING GUMS
    (SINGS) “O-oo-hhhhhhhhh… Oh Saaaaayyyyyy can you…” -- I’m askin’ – “Can you s-e-e-e? … by the d-a-a-a-a-a-wn’s”

    DISSOVLE TO:

    EXT. BALL PARK - NIGHT

    Bleeding Gums is still singing. The clock on the scoreboard now reads 7:46.

    BLEEDING GUMS
    (SINGS) “…and the rocket’s red glareeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee …the bombs burstin’ … shoot it out… poppin’way up in the air… rrrrrrrrrrr.”

    At this, there is mild SCATTERED APPLAUSE from the crowd.

    BLEEDING GUMS
    (SINGS) “And.. the home.. of the-e-e-e-e-e-e-e-e-e-e-e … brave-e-e-e-e-e-e-e-e!”

    We see the Simpsons amid the crowd. Exhausted the flop into their chairs.

    INT. PRESS BOX - CONTINUOUS

    DAN HOARD, wearing a loud multi-colored jacket, is at the mike.

    DAN HOARD
    Hi-de-hi, Springfield! Dan Hoard, mikeside. Tonight – our Isotopes take on the pesky Shelbyville Shelbyvillians. The ‘Topes are looking to snap that darn twenty-six game losing streak, longest in professional baseball. How ‘bout that? -- Our sleepy town is in the record book!

    ************
    Trivia note: I played the voice of “Dan Hoard”. Dan Hoard was my broadcast partner in Syracuse when I was a minor league announcer. He's now the voice of the Cincinnati Bengals and the University of Cincinnati football and basketball.

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