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The Merry Widow. A TV SIT COM. (Now that's different!)  Rate Topic 
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 Posted: Wed Oct 14th, 2009 08:57 pm
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castlecat7
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Mana: 
Right. Thats it. I've had enough! I've trolled the TV studios and had great letters of encouragement and praise for the novel situation of my sit-com but no takers ......yet! (That's my optimistic side!)

So, guys and gals, over to you. Now I know it's not exactly a play in the strict theatrical sense but try to think you're watching it on TV.

I've just listed a sample from the beginning of the first episode. I'm quite prepared to post it all (in episodes) if I get asked to. Five in all!

As usual, open season on comments. My skin is rude proof!

So, take aim and .............



The Merry Widow.
The year 2008.

Episode 1.

‘SURPRISE’
By Paul Tumilty.



Cast.

Georgina Trent
Michael Trent
Kevin Trent
Julia Trent
Sara Courtney
Janet Simms
Claire Robinson
Detective Inspector Hughes
Detective Sergeant Frank Mills
Sam Menzies
Jack Fielding
‘Cynthia’











The scene is the approach to a large country house. In the driveway is a new Jaguar. Inside the house which is elegantly furnished, we find Georgina Trent, talking on the telephone.

Georgina:

...yes Vicar, Michael is fully aware that the village Fete committee meeting is this evening. Yes, 7.00pm sharp at the vicarage. Yes, he is a very busy man Vicar, but you know the annual Fete is one of his favourite ways of being a helpful part of the village community. He wouldn’t miss it for the world I assure you. No, he won’t be late Vicar.
I shall pack him off personally! Yes Vicar. Bless you too. Goodbye.

She replaces the telephone and moves off to the kitchen where we find three of her friends sitting around the kitchen table drinking coffee. The three women are all obviously ‘wives of successful men’ and all resident in the village. They are:
Sara Courtney, Janet Simms and Claire Robinson.


Sara:

Vicar huh? Checking up on Michael again?

Georgina:

That’s the third time today! I’m sure it’s a sin to wish bad things on the clergy, but if that bloody man rings again, I swear I shall kill him!

Janet:

(Laughing) Well you know how important Michael is to the poor man. Although the Vicar is the chairman of the committee, everyone knows its Michael who organizes everything. If it wasn’t for Michael, there wouldn’t be an annual village Fete! And being an accountant, he prepares all the vicar’s accounts for the Bishop for free! No wonder he wants to make sure he’s coming.



Georgina:

Yes, well. Whatever his ‘good intentions’ are, I can live without him calling me every five minutes! Anyway. What were we talking about before we were ‘divinely’ interrupted?

Claire:

I was just saying that I was up in town yesterday to meet a girlfriend for lunch and a spot of shopping, but she phoned and cancelled at the last minute. I was about to head back home when I realized I was just around the corner from Michael’s office. So I thought I’d pop in and surprise him and see if he was free for a quick lunch.

Georgina:

Oh what a sweet idea. He didn’t mention that he’d seen you yesterday.

Claire:

Well. He wouldn’t you see as I didn’t get to see him. In fact I couldn’t actually find his office. 31A, St. Simon’ Street isn’t it? I found 31 and 33 but no 31A. That’s what I was going to ask you Georgie. How do you get to it?

Georgina:

Actually, I don’t know myself. I’ve never been to Michael’s offices. Firstly, he’s an accountant and the thought of musty rooms piled high with stacks of old invoices and clients accounts books just isn’t inviting and secondly Michael is a totally different person when it comes to business. Here he’s ‘good old Michael’, life and soul of the party and always willing to help anybody with anything, but as far as work is concerned, he becomes very serious and rarely discusses it at all. I suppose the good side to that is that he never brings it home with him. Keeps home life and work totally separate.




Sara:

Ooh! I wish Jonathan would do that! He does nothing but tell me how the Dow or the Nicki or even the Footsie have all gone up or down several points and how that has made him have a good day or a bad day. After twelve years of marriage I still don’t understand a word he says or what he actually does for a living. It’s a language all of its own.

Janet:

(Laughing) Well you’re not on your own kiddo. Richard is a barrister. When you’re married to a man that wears a black robe and powdered wig all day, who wonders around muttering ‘Yes, M’lud’ then you know you’re in trouble.

Claire:

My poor Humphrey sounds so inadequate compared to your lot. I understand him completely. The only problem we have is that because he’s the local GP everyone wants a free consultation. In the pub, at the supermarket, at the petrol station! Last week we were held up in traffic when that house caught on fire on the edge of the village. I swear it burnt to the ground because the firemen were too busy asking Humphrey about their various aches and pains!

Georgina:

Well. That makes me feel better! I’ll stick to boring old Michael. Hooray for stuffy accountants!


Scene changes to: Inside a pole dancing club. Strippers are performing on stage as we view ‘Michael’ standing by the bar and watching. Passer-by says to Michael:

Passer-by:

Afternoon Michael.

Michael acknowledges the passer by. Turning back towards the stage we have close up of Michael obviously having a heart attack. He collapses on the floor and the scene fades to the sounds of ambulance sirens.


We return to the Trent’s home in the country. It is late afternoon / early evening. We watch as a police car enters the driveway and a police woman in uniform and a policeman in plain clothes exit the car and approach the front door. We view them as they ring the bell.

Det. Inspector Hughes:

I hate doing these. ‘Especially in cases like this. They’re always the last to know you know. Wives. Always the last to know.

The door is opened by Georgina Trent. She only sees Inspector Hughes first.

Georgina:

Good evening. How may I help you…..oh (as she sees the policewoman)…er…officers?

Det. Inspector Hughes:

Good evening madam. Mrs. Trent?

Georgina:

Yes. That’s correct.

Det. Inspector Hughes:

Det. Inspector Hughes and Policewoman Markham. Micklesham CID madam. May we come in? I’m afraid we have some bad news to impart.

Georgina:

Oh my God! Yes of course. Please come in.

They all enter the house. Georgina leads them to the sitting room. She sits.

Georgina:

Please sit down. What’s all this about? Is my husband alright?

Det. Inspector Hughes:

Your husband being Mr. Michael Trent madam?

Georgina:

Yes.

Det. Inspector Hughes:

I’m afraid to inform you Mrs. Trent, that a gentleman, with a Mr. Michael Trent’s driving license in his wallet, showing this address, had a massive heart attack at an establishment in Soho this afternoon at approximately 3.00pm. I am afraid he was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital a little later. I’m so sorry.

Georgina sits stunned at the news. The policewoman offers a sympathetic ‘hug’. Georgina politely waves her away.

Georgina:

Are you sure it’s my husband?

Det. Inspector Hughes:

That’s why we’re here Madam. We’ll need the next of kin to officially identify the body. I have to warn you that from our investigations it does appear that it is the body of your husband Michael Trent. Until a formal identification is carried out I suppose there’s always hope, however, it is unlikely as he was found at his place of work where several of the staff indicated who he was.




Georgina:

At his office? His office is nowhere near Soho. He has a small office in Kensington. St. Simon’s Street. Number 31A. Michael is an accountant.


The two police officers look knowingly at each other.

Det. Inspector Hughes:

An accountant. A small office in Kensington. (He looks around the expansive and lavishly decorated room.) I take it that is your Jaguar outside madam?

Georgina:

Yes, but what’s my car got to do with it?

Det. Inspector Hughes:

And your husband drives a Maserati does he not? Do a lot of business from that ‘small office in Kensington’ does he? As an accountant?

Georgina:

I don’t quite know what you are implying Inspector, but I’m afraid I don’t like your tone.

Det. Inspector Hughes:

Oh I’m sorry if I sound a little skeptical madam, but there’s no point in being embarrassed in front of me. I’ve seen it all in my job.

Georgina:

Seen what? Embarrassed? What on earth would I have to be embarrassed about?



Det. Inspector Hughes:

Mr. Michael Trent was found dead this afternoon at the ‘Peppermint Walrus’ striptease club in Soho. It is the largest pole dancing establishment in the inner London area. It happens to be one of a chain of establishments, of the same name, spread throughout the country, second in size, only to McDonalds. The Corporation that owns these establishments also operates hundreds of ‘sex phone lines’, several soft porn magazines and for some unaccountable reason, three private ‘retirement’ homes for the elderly. Mr. Michael Trent is, or was, the sole proprietor, owner and Managing Director. I suspect that with his demise, it now means that you are the sole proprietor, owner and Managing Director of the largest ‘legalized’ pornographic Company in the country. I’d say you might be a tad embarrassed!

Georgina is totally shocked at this revelation. The scene fades out.

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 Posted: Thu Oct 15th, 2009 08:18 pm
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Kurt
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Mana: 

Last edited on Sat Dec 12th, 2009 01:44 pm by Kurt

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 Posted: Thu Oct 15th, 2009 08:39 pm
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castlecat7
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Mana: 
Hi Kurt,
Spookily enough I had thought about the title when I decided on it. I thought that as nothing had been entitled The Merry Widow since 1934 I thought enough time had passed.
But you could very well be right.
C7

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 Posted: Sun Oct 18th, 2009 10:36 am
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muncy
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Mana: 
Hi Paul.

This is fun and has great potential.

From the very beginning I thought I was in for a version of Keeping Up Appearances (woman on the telephone to the vicar discussing the arrangements for the village fete) and I wonder if TV execs reject it without reading beyond the first few lines. I think the other problem is that it is a sitcom with an adult theme and I don't know if there is much of a market for that. Admittedly I don't watch all that much TV but I think post watershed sitcoms are rare with the exception of one or two (The IT Crowd, Peepshow) that have a surreal element to them.

However, the concept of a middle class lady who finds herself the proprietor of the biggest sex industry business in the country is too good to go to waste and I wonder if you might be better writing this as a play. Theatre audiences are very receptive to traditional style situations with a risqué element - ask Alan  Ayckbourne!

What ever you decide, don't give up on it.

All the best.

David

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 Posted: Tue Oct 20th, 2009 04:10 am
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castlecat7
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Mana: 
Hi David,

Sorry for not responding earlier. Been traveling. In Boulder Colorado for the next six months!

I agree with you about trying to make a play out of this and may very well attempt it! Would have to figure out stage setting, Would be a nightmare but give me time and a bottle of rum!

Cheers!

Paul T

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 Posted: Fri Oct 23rd, 2009 11:17 pm
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castlecat7
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Mana: 
Kurt,

I have taken your advice and changed the Title to 'Peppermint Walrus'.

Thanks for the input.

Regars,

Paul T

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 Posted: Mon Nov 2nd, 2009 03:13 pm
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in media res
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Mana: 
castlecat,

Finally got around to reading this delightful piece. I had some good snickers and some knowing laughs. The writing moves straight through from beginning to end of the post. I worry that they all introduce themselves so patly, and I wonder if they did not know all this stuff before among themselves. But, hey, it is television and you gave the information in a snappy, cheery way.

I loved this point in it because I went out loud "uh oh."

Claire:

Well. He wouldn’t you see as I didn’t get to see him. In fact I couldn’t actually find his office. 31A, St. Simon’ Street isn’t it? I found 31 and 33 but no 31A. That’s what I was going to ask you Georgie. How do you get to it?

So, I wondered how much trouble are we in for? Well, when we see what happens to Michael...it is a lot!

I agree with muncy, and I qualify it with saying I do not watch much series television, either. I wonder whether the subject may be too much for them. I have no problem with the subject matter, but will TV Execs? See ing somewhat of what is on TV, I can't not imagine why they would...but...? But the right producer with a deft touch could do it. Find that one.

To bring a ring of truth into this for you, several years ago, a dear elderly woman friend of mine who was in poor health noticed some strange large charges on her credit card bill. It was some odd, undefinable name on the the bill. To shorten the story, it took forever to locate what the name was, but eventually I did and got the phone number. It had a professional generic name with "Communications" in the title. Anyway, it was a gay/lesbian porno and phone chat and hook-up company out of Pennsylvania.

The website was as professional as it could be, with no mention of what it was about. The just extolled the founder's resume' which was quite legit and extensive. He had been head of a division the largest technology companies in the world and opened this business... as well as others in the same field. The charges were something $125 per hour. The credit card company said they had been having problems with them, and they were helpful. Also, I talked a woman who was veeeerrrry professional as a business woman, who kept trying to defend the charges. I told her I don't care what kind of business she is in, I just care about the illegality of the charges. When I was able to prove to her over phone the illegality of the charges, she got very nervous. I told her a 78 year old woman who is half blind and can hardly hear is not going to be calling your number. Also, when I added I had inside and direct access to the Attorney General in Illinois, they backed off and refunded the money. I did contact the AG's office and my State Rep at the time, whose family and my family go back for almost a hundred years. What they did, I do not know.

So reality is as strange as fiction.

It was fun to read.

Wasn't Judi Dench in a movie in the last several years where she ran a nightclub in London during WWII? It was wonderful.

best,

in media res


P.S. Spelling is "Nikkei."

Last edited on Mon Nov 2nd, 2009 03:16 pm by in media res

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 Posted: Thu Nov 5th, 2009 05:03 pm
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castlecat7
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Mana: 
Hi IMR,

Thanks for the kind comments. Sorry I took so long in replying.

Loved your story about your friend receiving the charges from the porno site!

Hopefully, my lot wouldn't do such a thing!

Just for fun I've sent you the episode where Georgina discovers how her chat lines work separately. Let me know what you think.

Kind regards,

Paul T

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