16Two Minute Comedy

"Give us Two Minutes... We'll Give You Too"

A Series of Two Minute Comedy Sketches for short attention span theatre

Central D’ Saster 4
A Two Minute Comedy

Regular full cast with:
Bucky - the erstwhile team leader
Bunny - dark, brooding female
Biff - dark, brooding male

All are seated around the conference table.  Bucky is pacing, upbeat.

Bucky: Good news people!  Incidents of reported depression, ADD, and bipolar disorder have increased dramatically!   It’s the sort of benefit that we strive for and it’s just another example of how the B-A-D can do us G-O-O-D!  Who can tell me why?

Benny: (bright) ‘Cause when people look bad… We’ve done good, right boss??

Bucky: And, we can keep ‘em locked up!  So today we have some special guests to report on some of our latest communications trends.  These are the very latest in techniques used to bring out despair in our readers.  Without further delay let’s welcome Bunny and Biff!!

Applause from the team.  Bunny and Biff stand up.  They both wear dark hooded sweatshirts hiding their faces.

Bunny & Biff:  (solemnly) Good Evening…

Bucky: Ah, still daylight guys… So what’s new and B-A-D??

Bunny: Well, boss, I am hard at work on the visual imagery used in each of our stories.  We’ve recently introduced the image manipulation technique I call “Waffletecture.”

Bucky: “Waffletecture??”  What in the world would that be Bunny?

Bunny: “Waffletecture” is a graphical algorithm that automatically converts pleasant looking architectural structures into miserable, ominous-looking waffle-like facades.

Bucky: (perplexed) Waffle-like façade??  How ‘bout an example, Bunny?

Bunny: Sure. 

She makes the cutthroat sign and lights suddenly go out.  A collective GASP, then a slide appears displaying a curved glass office building.

Bunny: Here you see a pleasant looking office building.  I think we can all agree that there’s nothing B-A-D about this image.  (clicks remote) But once enhanced by “Waffletecture” the building morphs into a dark, brooding design of repeated black squares on a dingy fortress-like façade…

The slide dissolves and the office building façade becomes a  desultory wall of black square holes where windows once gleamed.

Bucky: (impressed) Now that’s positively depressing Bunny! 

Bunny: We can apply “Waffletecture” to any architectural structure in film, video or still imagery.  It’s entirely automatic, able to work in real-time and boasts ninety-seven percent efficacy in making viewers feel B-A-D. 

Benny: Wow, chief!  Talk about wiz-bang technology!  I’m totally creeped out!

Buffy: (skeptical) What about non-standard structures like the Taj Mahal or the Eiffel Tower?

Bunny: I’m glad you asked that question Maam…

Buffy: (annoyed) My name is Buffy.

Bunny: Terrible, sorry Buffy… But I just happen to have the Eiffel Tower in my database…(clicks remote furiously)

A quick series of Bunny vacation snaps flash across the screen: hooded Bunny at Disneyland, Bunny at funeral, Bunny at a guillotine, etc.  Finally the Eiffel Tower appears, towering splendidly in the sunlight.

Bunny: The Eiffel Tower looking uncommonly attractive.  But with the application of our “Waffletecture” digital process… Voila!!  We use color subtraction, igneous texture maps,  deep shadow maps and other tricks we aren‘t at liberty to...

The sunny image devolves into a dark, brooding image, overcast, shadowed, depressing.

Bucky: (very impressed) Bunny, you have got a sure fire homerun winner with this “Waffletecture.”   We may have to change our slogan from “When People Look Bad…” to “When the World Looks Bad, We’ve Done Good!”  Great work!  This is what I’m talkin’ about people!  Creative, thoughtful, misery.  (signals lights on) Biff, what have you got for us?

Biff: (solemnly) Well, Buck, I’m working the multimedia content.  What that means is whenever there’s a song, music or a sound effect, I make sure it’s just as dark and brooding as my eyes you can’t see.

Bucky: (frowns) Okay… And how exactly do you make that work Biff?

Biff: For one thing Buck, I make sure that certain positive lyrics in a song are changed.  Our goal is to tamper…er, temper optimism and play up the more solemn and serious tone of a song or musical passage. 

Bucky: Do you have an example for us Biffster?

Biff: (solemn) Glad you asked Buck.  I have here an example of a song “Only the Lonely”  first recorded by the kink, er, king of rock and roll Elvis Presley in 1959.  While the lyric is strong for our purposes we’ve changed the Doo Wop background vocals to send a subtle message to the listener…

Biff presses the button on a remote and the song begins to play. 

Biff: If you listen carefully to the background lyrics they originally sang “Down, Down, Down Dom De Doo Ah…” Typical, non-threatening Doo Wop sound of the era.  But we have altered them to better match our goal of instilling B-A-D feelings in our readers.

He presses remote again and song repeats section with background vocals turned up.

Biff: Our background now as singing, “Down Down Down, Dumb You Are…”  and “ Dead, Dead, Dead, You Will Be…”  

Bucky: (impressed) That’s not… Good is it Biff?  I gotta say I’m damned impressed!

Biff: We do it now as a matter of course Buck.  Every song, lyric, musical passage that’s transmitted to our readers is screened for what I call the “M-Factor.”

Bucky: What in the world would the “M-Factor” be Biff?

Biff: That’s short for the “Melancholy Factor,” boss.  Me and Bunny are charged with making the reader feel as low and as melancholy as possible.  So, whenever there is music, my job is to make sure the lyrics, and in some cases the music itself reflects the dark, somber tones of melancholic depression. 

Bobby: (matter of fact) That’s an un-benevolent bummer, Biff.

Biff: Thank you.

Baker: Clearly the idea of forced introspective analysis would depress almost any person chief.   It’s just amazing how much B-A-D we can sew with only pictures and music! 

Bucky: One question Biff.  Any legal or rules ramifications to changing the creation of others?

Biff: Absolutely not Buck.  Remember, these days change is good.  We operate under the doctrine of immaculate appropriation.  Entitles the elevated - us for example - to take and change whatever we want.  Music, lyrics, culture. 

Bucky: No exposure to liability on our part?

Biff: Next to none.  Like Leona Helmsley once said: “Only the little people pay taxes.”  We appropriate what we want and damn the little people.

Bucky: Well, I’m damned impressed Biff… and Bunny!  With you on our team and these crack reporters spinning sobering stories we should pretty much rule the world with our B-A-D ability!

Biff: Just doing our part to reap the rewards…

Biff gestures to Bunny and they stand stiffly together.

Biff: That’s why we prepared this little jingle for you chief… (hums a pitch)

Biff and Bunny : (in minor harmony) 

                  “We’re here to dampen and darken your mood,
                   When people look bad, we know we’ve done good!”

Bucky and Cast smile.  FREEZE as each character morphs into a perfect waffle-like square.