Presently in the works, Doctor Who & The Trodos Ambush is a novelization of the TV Comic strip adventure of the same name published in 1967. You can read the first two chapters here.
When I first approached this edit, I wanted to try and make it appear like Ten did not go through the “he will knock four times” scenario and thus would not have to regenerate. I don’t think the final product was all that stellar, with terrible music cues leading to poor transitions and a rather dodgy narrative in places…so when remounting the project for inclusion on FE.Org, I thought it ought to be a simpler, less radical omnibus edit…which resulted in a much smoother product.
Gone is most of Part One, which has been reduced to just 45 minutes, and we open on Ten and Wilf talking in the cafe, with Ten (channeling RTD) rambling on about how regeneration/leaving the show feels like dying (thus preparing a whole generation of “woke” plebs to write off the show or grow to hate it instantly upon RTD and Tennant’s departure) , all you need to know is that Ten’s been on Earth for a while, and the mysterious connection Wilf has to him drew the two together….and we follow the scene through to it’s impactful conclusion with the reveal of Timothy Dalton’s Rassilon…and then the titles.
After that, we, like the TARDIS, take a step back through time and space to The Doctor being summoned to the Ood sphere and being informed of The Master’s resurrection…only we evade The Doctor and The Master’s encounters with homeless men and Minnie The Menace, and cut straight to The Doctor confronting the energy wielding Master in the quarry.
Three more edits after this, the first a simple joining of part one’s cliffhanger to Rassilon entering his chambers to discuss the perils of the Time War at the start of part two, followed by us skipping him learning about The Doctor and The Master locked in their struggle and learning of Earth. The reason for this is to tighten up the continuity ever so slightly, as it can be rather jarring that we go from Rassilon talking about how The Master would achieve glory for the Time Lords, only to then have their next scene be a flashback to how they learned precisely why. Luckily, I didn’t need to cut so much out of the war room meeting.
After this, it’s all of part two up to when The Doctor leaves Wilf at the church having given Donna Geoffrey Noble’s winning lottery ticket.
I never liked the idea of Ten going back to visit Rose in 2005, even if he kept to the shadows, it was one companion revisit too many and I don’t think The Doctor would want to reopen that void in his hearts knowing he got cucked by her and his doppelganger in “Journey’s End”
There is only one minor plot hole in the whole thing, and that was when Ten talks to Wilf about losing The Master at the quarry..but you can easily explain that away with what you didn’t get to hear at the cafe scene in the opening scene as the two got caught up on things.
In preparation for release on Fanedit.org/IFDB, my Day of the Doctor edit Gallifrey Falls is once again available for download on this very blog. Head on over to the Gallifrey Falls article, click on the link, and enjoy
Expect some existing edits to be revisited as well as some news ones, these include
-Shada: A Serial In Five Parts (couldn’t stretch it to six)
-Doctor Who: The End of Time (mostly an omnibus edit)
-Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home…But Everything Goes Right
STEAMED HAMS BUT IT’S AN IN-RING PROMO
ADAPTED FROM “22 SHORT FILMS ABOUT SPRINGFIELD”
“Welcome to the longest running weekly episodic program in television history, this is Monday Night RAW” said Micheal Cole as he opened the latest edition of World Wrestling Entertainment’s
“As you can see, Miz TV is set up in the ring” observed Corey Graves.
“You just know the a-lister has got what’s sure to be a critically acclaimed plan for dealing with Roman Reigns tonight” said Booker T.
The Miz headed to the ring accompanied by his Miztourage. All three of them stepped into the squared circle and welcomed the large capacity crowd to the event.
“Welcome one and all to the most must-see show on any brand, RAW is the home of Miz TV and I have come with a peace offering for Roman Reigns, one might say this will be an unforgettable luncheon” he said, snapping his fingers so as to alert his Miztourage to their next course of action.
They unveiled in the center of the ring a small oven, smoke was slowly pouring out of it.
“Hmm, yes, it’s coming along nicely, you can tangibly taste the smell of that roast cooking in that oven. Yes, succulent delights await Roman when he arrives, or rather if he arrives, I hear he’s taken a slight detour. All the more for us I guess” said The Miz, confident that he would be able to help himself to the meal if Roman couldn’t make it.
Suddenly, Roman Reigns music hit and the crowd came alive.
“The big dog has made it Miz, despite your directions” said Cole on commentary.
Bo Dallas checked the oven and found the chicken was significantly burnt, he relayed this information to his employer.
“What do you mean my roast is ruined?” The Miz whispered back.
Curtis Axel suggested that he head over to a recently reopened fast food joint near the arena so he could purchase something and disguise it as their own cooking.
“Delightfully devilish Axel” The Miz said.
Just as Curtis was about to exit the ring and head towards an exit in the area, Roman stepped into the ring and glared at him.
Miztourage with their crazy explanations
Roman Reigns is gonna need his adulation
When he hears the fans negative reactions
There’ll be trouble in town tonight
“Axel” Reigns yelled as the crowd booed and jeered him.
“You can tell the WWE Universe is having fun” said Cole.
“Oh Roman, I was just stretching my calves on the ring apron, isometric exercise, care to join me?” said Axel, who already had leg positioned on the side of the apron.
Roman noticed the smoldering contents of the oven.
“Why is there smoke coming out of your oven?” he asked.
“Oh, that isn’t smoke, it’s steam, steam from the steamed clams we’re having. Hmm, steamed clams” replied Bo.
Reigns was swiftly distracted by the arrival of Samaoa Joe, who had come to taunt Reigns for losing his Wrestlemania clash with Brock Lesnar.
Curtis seized the opportunity and bolted from the ring and to the fast food joint.
“The only things steaming up in this arena is the heat between you and me Roman. Your failure to conquer the beast only fuels the fire necessary in me to put you out to pasture permanently at Backlash” taunted Joe.
“At Backlash, you’ll find this is still my yard, and this dog still has a lot more bite left in him” promised Roman.
After a few additional back and forth exchanges, each promising to take down the other in an assortment of unpleasant ways, Joe took his leave, Roman turned around to find Curtis had returned
“Roman, I hope you’re ready for mouth watering hamburgers” said Curtis, holding a stunning dish serving the meal.
“What are you feeding me here? I thought you said we were having steamed clams?” said Roman
“No, no, we said steamed HAMS. That’s what we call hamburgers” said Bo with a swift and assuring confidence.
“You call hamburgers steamed hams?” said Roman, clearly not buying it.
“Yes. It’s a regional dialect” said Bo
“Uh-huh… uh, what region?” said Roman.
“Uhh… upstate Florida?” Curtis said.
“Really? Well, I’m from Pensacola, and I’ve never heard anyone use the phrase “steamed hams.”
“Oh, not in Florida, no. It’s an Albany expression” remarked Bo
Roman nodded in agreement I see.
Roman took a handful of the burgers from the plate. The Miz quietly hid the burning oven beneath the ring while he was distracted. The Miztourage joined in on eating the burgers.
“You know, these hamburgers are quite similar to the ones they used to have at The World” said Roman
“Oh ho ho ho… no, patented Miztourage burgers. Old family recipe” assured Curtis
“For steamed hams?” Roman asked.
“Yes” Bo replied
“Yeah, so you call them “steamed hams” despite the fact they are obviously grilled” said Roman.
Bo suddenly noticed the smoke was starting to intensify beneath the ring.
“Ye- hey- you know, the- one thing I should- excuse me for one second” he said, clambering out of the ring and conversing with The Miz as they checked under the ring. Bo stepped back into the ring stretching his arms. The Miz whispered instructions to Curtis.
“Well, that was wonderful. A good time was had by all, I’m pooped” Bo said.
“Yeah, if you think this is going to pacify me after the way you cheated me out of the intercontinental title, you’re very mistaken. It’s payback time” said Roman, pumping up his fist for a swift superman punch.
Suddenly, he noticed the smoke rising from the ring.
“Just what is happening down there” he said.
“Aurora borealis?” said The Miz.
The crowd booed.
“Uh- aurora borealis!? At this time of year, at this time of day, in this part of the country, localized entirely beneath the ring?” barked Roman.
“Yes” said The Miz
“May I see it?” Roman asked.
“No” said The Miz.
“This house is on fire” said Cole as the crowd broke into a “Miztourage” chant.
“No Micheal, it’s just the northern lights” joked Graves.
“Quiet, quiet, when my hand goes up, your mouth goes shut” said The Miz as he raised his arm to silence the audience
“Well Miztourage, you are odd fellows, I must say you steam a good ham…but I throw a good haymaker” said Roman, and took out the entire group with a barrage of superman punches and spears, all as the crowed jeered him, rejecting the latest attempt of getting him over.
NOT THE CORPSE
“Come on Bob, it’s starting” Linda Belcher commanded as her husband continued to snooze.
She rocked his body back and forth, urging him to snap his eyes open and make an appointment with the television
Bob stirred, and stared at the clock, alarmed at how early it was in the morning, the world was still cloaked in darkness, but for today the world was alive.
Linda excitedly wandered into her children’s rooms, each stirring them awake.
“Up and at ’em, none of you are missing this” said Linda.
“Who died?” asked Louise as she got up, Linda dragged her into the living room.
“Please don’t be a whale, please don’t be a whale” pleaded Tina to whatever God oversaw everything above.
Linda switched the television on to receive the breaking coverage of the royal wedding.
“Oh for Pete’s sake, not this” said Louise.
“What? It’s the most heartwarming thing you’ll see all year” said Linda.
“I don’t know Mom, I’ve seen the end to Babylon 5” said Gene.
“Sweetie, that was heartwrenching, learn the difference” Linda insisted.
“Louise calls that a different kind of happy, and I’m inclined to believe her” retorted Gene, looking to Louise for validation.
“Whatever, I’m making a call” said Louise, picking up the phone and dialing in a number
Soon enough, the receiver picked it up.
“Hey Rudy” she said
“You feeling alright Louise?” said Rudy as he picked up the phone.
“Yeah, just doing my part in the vocal minority contributing as little to the royal shenanigans as possible” Louise replied
“Me too” said Rudy
“Oh nuts, sorry Rudy, I didn’t stop to think…weddings remind you of your parents don’t they? Sorry about that buddy” she said.
“No, it’s fine I’m good…more than good, I’m above the norm” said Rudy
“Really? What’s stuck your head in the clouds?” she said.
“You would know, I heard when you got on that bike, you just took off” said Rudy
“Totally, wish I’d had your ramps so I could have achieved that literally” replied Louise with a devilish laugh
“I’m proud of you Louise, but more so, I’m proud of myself…it took me a while to come to terms with it, but with how special those cops made me feel, I’m willing to come to school tomorrow in full acceptance of who I am…maybe I can help others accept who they are too” Rudy replied.
“And what are you exactly?” asked Louise.
“I’m still trying to figure that out myself…maybe God has the answer, he’s seen me in action, this is how he wants me to see him…by answering that question” Rudy explained.
“Rudy, I hope you know this is just because I had to convince those cops to clear the alleyway and allow us to play with the ramps” Louise revealed
Rudy pondered this for a minute, then resumed talking
“You mean you know what kind of man I am?” he said.
“Sure, you’re a cupcake, I’ve said as much before” said Louise.
“I’m as cool as the icing on top, but I’m not quite a cupcake any longer, I’m fly like an eagle, that’s what those cops were getting that, they were in awe of me”
“Hearing this ego trip is awe-ful Rudy, come on, come down to Earth a little, you know, for me?” Louise asked.
“I’ll touch down if you promise me another benefit” Rudy requested.
Louise knew at this point he was just playing with her, having figured out her deception was all to keep the lady with the van at bay and allow the kids to play in peace.
“Oh very coy Rudy, that wasn’t even all for you you know” Louise replied.
“You can’t take it back, you said you threw a benefit for me, your own words, just letting you know I appreciate it so much I demand an encore performance” Rudy continued, teasing her
“Ok, first, it was totally a lie, at least you know that now, secondly, If we kept pulling one off, it’d look less and less special. What do we want to do? Recruit the whole police force to come down next time? The magic all depends on circumstances Rudy” Louise revealed
“Maybe you can arrange my wake next time then?” said Rudy.
“Getting a little ahead of yourself buddy” Louise replied.
“Yeah, maybe you’re right…still, it was nice of you to at least make up a charitable event in my name Louise, It’s just everyone is buzzing about the wedding and I’d much prefer the kind of attention it’s getting from everyone in the neighborhood” Rudy revealed.
“You’re the man Rudy, while some people are annoyed they’re not the bride or groom, you’re annoyed that you’re not the corpse” Louise concluded, smiling affectionately, though Rudy could not see it.
SLIDING (ANNOYED GRUNT)
(A rewrite of “I Love Lisa”)
Submitted for your consideration, a young girl on her way home from school. She is about to be met on her journey by a young boy that she gave a valentine’s day card to out of what she believed to be pity.
You may have seen one version of these events play out already. A most tragic outcome, where one child’s inability to bring herself to order led to public humiliation and rejection of the young lad.
That version of events you may know…this is not that version.
In your reality, the little girl you know as Lisa Simpson often asked herself the burning question ”what would have happened if I’d went about things different?”, here, for your enjoyment, is one possible answer out of millions.
Lisa is only a few miles away from her house when Ralph Wiggum accompanies her, still on a high after reading her valentines’ card.
He tries to make small talk as best as his mental prowess can allow, but he is finding difficulty conveying anything of interest to Lisa.
” … and my doctor said I wouldn’t have so many nose-bleeds if I kept my finger out of there” he said.
“That’s a little graphic Ralph” said Lisa.
“I don’t remember drawing any graphics, we did’nt do computing or art today” replied Ralph in a confused state.
“No, no, there are two different meanings for ‘graphic'” Lisa replied.
Lisa spent the majority of the walk home conveying to Ralph the differences between graphic design and graphic, and grotesque, physical acts, and why it grossed her out so much.
She didn’t seem to make much progress on this front either.
“So if I eat my mom’s nail polish, that’s not me painting my insides the way they paint the inside of the house?” Ralph asked.
Lisa tutted and tried her best not to look Ralph in the eye. Something inside of her was tempted to emit a vocal, and mocking, laugh, the kind of laugh that compels you to say things at school of the encounter the next day, but a saner, softer side to her rose to the occasion this day, making her understand the boy’s condition more.
Lisa instead opted to head towards her house as it came into view
“Well, here’s my house” she said, creeping ever so delicately towards the front lawn.
Ralph remained transfixed on her with a dream like gaze, he gently waved to her as she began to rush to the door.
Once safely inside, Lisa went to the window and stared outward. Ralph hung around a minute or so more, skipping a little down the lane lost within himself.
Lisa felt something in her stomach that made her uneasy, she tried to calm her nerves, but they sprang up once more just as she began to settle.
She could not understand where this sensation was coming from, it wasn’t quite clear to her just yet.
She walked past her older brother Bart and Homer, her father, who were watching television. It was another episode of Itchy and Scratchy. A valentines themed episode.
Itchy gave Scratchy a heart shaped box, Scratchy was confused as to why it was empty. Itchy took out a sharp edged kitchen knife and carved Scratchy’s chest open, taking his heart out of it’s compartment and depositing it in the box. Scratchy shed a small tear as part of him appreciated the gift given to him, until the lack of a vital artery ultimately resulted in him crashing to the floor in a lifeless heap.
Bart, who had laughed a great deal at the violent act, was left slightly annoyed afterwards by Scratchy’s reaction.
“What’s your malfunction boy?” asked Homer.
“It’s one of those darned sentimental episodes they make to remind everyone that, though it appears they be enemies, there’s a caring, sensitive side to the characters. That blows man” said Bart.
“Well it’s a little more tolerable than the public information film with those two involving the kite and the phone lines above the train tunnel, those shorts are real scary” Homer replied
“Dad, that wasn’t an Itchy and Scratchy short” Bart replied.
“Then who was the cat and the mouse then?” said Homer.
“That was Snowball II trying to catch a rodent in front of the tv” answered Bart.
“Oh yeah, I was wondering if that was non-canon considering the cat killed the mouse” said Homer.
Krusty the Clown, the children’s entertainer, appeared on the screen in a tuxedo.
“Hey, kids! Don’t forget to watch my 29th Anniversary Show, featuring clips like this one of Sideshow Mel wacked out on wowie-sauce”
Krusty showed a preview of what to expect, showing a clearly drunk and disorderly Cecil giving Krusty a piece of his mind.
“And you shall be informed, forthwith, you clueless clam, that I, nor my compatriots to the right and left of me…or in whatever direction they are in that happens to fit my present vision, that you can take this job and shove it right between your…”
The clip stopped and Krusty reappeared.
“…Peak prime time viewing hours, that’s totally what he was going to say right kids? At least, for the purpose of this segway anyhow. Find out what he was really talking about and so much more…when you turn 15 years old. In the meantime, come to my special at your current age and let the magic grow with you until then” Krusty continued.
“I’d do anything to go to that show” said Bart.
“I’d sell my first-born son” said Homer
“That’s cold man, you’re way too old for Krusty anyway” Bart angrily retorted.
“Hey, you forgetting that time I filled in for that clown?” Homer replied.
“I’ve tried with every rerun from that era” snapped Bart.
Lisa chose not to partake in this latest of family squabbles, and went to the kitchen to see her mother, little knowing tempers had cooled down in the living room as Bart chose to go outside to lose a little steam, leaving Homer to eavesdrop on the conversation between mother and daughter.
Deciding to intercede, Homer walked into the kitchen with the apparent intention of taking a beer out of the fridge, but he hung around the general area with his head lost in the chilled container picking up every trace of what Lisa had to say about Ralph.
Finally, Lisa asked the million dollar question which sprang Homer into action
“What do you say to a boy to let him know you…you’re not…well…” Lisa began, but trailed off
“…A woman yet?” Homer replied, trying to finish her sentence
“Homer!” Marge retorted, telling him off with just the sheer pronunciation of his name.
“I was going to say ‘interested'” said Lisa.
“Oh honey, a girl is always interested when a boy starts to show a little curiosity in them…what you mean to say is you’re not ready yet” said Marge.
“Yeah, just rattle off these little fireworks” Homer said, checking his fingers.
“Let’s seem, you should give him something to fight for, so say I’ve met someone, or I’ve met someone who looks like you, I know this boy, he’s dumb as a rock, just give him a photo of himself to show what his ‘rival’ looks like and he’ll attack the photo thinking it’s literally him”
“I won’t be that cruel Dad” Lisa replied.
“Sometimes you have to be kind to be cruel to be kind dear” Homer said
“Homer, you just laid out a scenario where Lisa would just be cruel for cruelty’s sake” said Marge.
“Ok Marge, for your sake, since you’re so hell bent on us giving little Lisa heaven sent advice, let me try again…Lisa, try these six simple words: I’m not gay, but I’ll learn”
“Heavens above” Marge replied.
“My advice was that good?” Homer responded, in a vein hope his latest contribution had struck some sort of divine pay-dirt.
Lisa took her mother’s advice to heart more so than her fathers’, and the next day at school made her intentions clear to Ralph.
“Sorry Ralph, but I’m just not ready for this level of interest yet from you or any boy. I hope you understand” she said.
“I guess so” Ralph replied, taking his time to not only comprehend Lisa’s words, but to also decode their meaning.
It was a thought that would pester him all the way to his own abode, and well into dinnertime.
Ralph approached his father, Chief Clancy Wiggum.
“Dad, my friend Lisa doesn’t want me interested in her, but she also said she wasn’t interested in boys YET” Ralph revealed, believing he had pinpointed a subtle clue in the delivery of Lisa’s speech turning him down.
“Just shows she’s playing hard to get, the key to a woman’s heart is persistence, keep at it and before you know it, you’ll clip that lovebird’s wings and she’ll fall graciously into your arms”
“Is that how you met Mom?” asked Ralph.
“Persistence is one thing, but seeing a man in uniform? That’s an entirely different kettle of fish” Wiggum replied, giving Ralph a cautionary look.
“I hope you know my saying that in no way permits you to fill my uniform with boiling hot water and trout again, am I clear?” he asked.
Ralph laughed and nodded.
As another week ticked by, the days leading to Krusty’s big anniversary bash drew closer, and Krusty was in a reflective mood as he talked of the show’s history to his audience, with Bart and Lisa watching on television at home.
“The executive bigwigs…woo boy, and I mean that litterally, they were as bald as a ball-point cucumber, said we would’nt last six weeks on air when we started. We did’nt, we got picked up by another network which had crashed and burned marketing telenovellas to the public. We remain their savin’ grace”
“Oh if only we could nab tickets to that show, but our parents would have to be pretty high in society to be able to afford them” Lisa said anxiously.
Homer walked by the living area and overheard this, he looked quite down afterwards.
“Why am I so addicted to eavesdropping. Hmm…if I’m around Flanders, does it mean I’m adamandevesdropping?” Homer continued.
The doorbell rang, Lisa wandered over to the window to catch a glimpse of who was waiting for them on the other side of the door. She froze.
“What’s the sytch sis?” asked Bart.
“It’s Ralph, oh this is’nt good” said Lisa, clutching her stomach as it became a tense knot once more.
“I thought you told him to take his ball and go long with it” Bart asked.
“I did, but maybe he thinks I’m being difficult to attain on purpose…oh Bart, if he’s not willing to listen I don’t know how I’ll be able to rid myself of him” Lisa said in a helpless state.
She opted to hide, and urged her father to make up an excuse as to why she could not come and see Ralph.
Homer answered the door and greeted Ralph.
“Hi Mr. Simple, is Lisa here?” Ralph said.
“It’s that time of the month, come back later” said Homer.
“No dad, we want him gone for keeps” whispered Bart.
“Can I help her? I’d do anything for Lisa” said Ralph.
“Really now? Well, I think she said something about the roof needing some re shingling…” Homer replied, seizing an opportunity to make the most out of Ralph’s lovesick obsession with his daughter.
“I’d be glad to help with your roof dingaling, could you give Lisa this from me in the meantime? ” he said, handing out a package.
Homer took the package, and walked over to the closet where Lisa was hiding
Lisa gently stepped out of the closet and accepted the package, she headed back over to the living room and opened it up with Bart watching.
“Oh, the latest in the Malibu Stacy convertible range, I hadn’t planned on getting this until sometime in the summer with my holiday money” Lisa said.
“Look, there’s a note attached” Bart said, taking out the note
“Look in the tunk” he said, reading it aloud.
“Aw bless his heart, he means trunk” said Lisa.
Lisa opened the trunk of the convertible and found two tickets to Krusty’s anniversary show.
“Oh that slow little devil, he’s only gone and booked the two of you in the front row” Bart said furiously.
“How was he able to afford this?” Lisa replied,.
“It’s not fair, I’m ten times the fan you are, I even have the autographs of all his ex-girlfriends” said Bart.
“Bart, I’m not sure going with Ralph to this is such a great idea” Lisa said.
“Precisely my point, you don’t even like him, and if you go with him, he’ll just assume you’re ok with whatever he’s willing to do for you” said Bart.
“Well, it’s not exactly that I don’t like him, what’s not to like about a gift like this? It’s just I don’t want to leave him with a broken heart…” Lisa said.
“Look, if you’re this wound up, I’m behind you all the way, I’ll even go in your place disguised as you” Bart said
“Bart, what if he wants to…you know…hold hands? or Kiss?” Lisa asked anxiously.
“Hey, you’ve seen me in high heels, if I walk like a vixen, I can sure kiss like one” said Bart.
“That sounded more enthusiastic than someone of your sexuality is known for” said a despairing Lisa.
The two suddenly heard a thud, they walked over to the window to find a dazed and confused Ralph lying on the lawn.
Homer came through the front door to assure the two everything was ok.
“Not to worry kids, Ralph was getting to work on the roof and passed out inhaling the tar fumes” he said.
“What on earth was he out there doing that for?” said Lisa, rushing out of the door and towards Ralph’s hands as he remained disoriented.
“I told him a little white lie about you wanting some work done on the roof, he leapt at it…no really, prior to me fetching a ladder, he tried leaping Six Million Dollar Man style onto the roof, couldn’t get anywhere but a few inches, you should have seen it, it was a hoot”
“Maybe he’ll die before the special comes on tv” Bart said, which further annoyed Lisa.
“He’ll live Bart, and I’m definitely going now” said Lisa as she helped Ralph to his feet.
“Dad, talk to her, stop her, she’s only going out of guilt” whispered Bart.
“What’s she got to feel guilty about? Her Christmas presents have come so early, I may as well just stick Ralph in a Kris Kringle beard and keep him around for the rest of the year” said Homer.
The big day soon came, the night of Krusty’s anniversary show, and Chief Wiggum had offered to drive Lisa and Ralph to the event personally.
Lisa stared at herself in the mirror, admiring the dress her mother had provided for her.
Marge stepped into the bedroom and was taken aback by how beautiful Lisa looked.
“Oh my little starlet, Ralph’s a very lucky person” she said.
“Easy for him I guess, I feel my luck’s completly run out” said Lisa.
“Oh honey, just focus on having a good time, I’m sure Ralph won’t say something too out of line, or nothing too exotic” assured Marge.
“Mom, Bart thinks I’m going to this show out of guilt, or obligation, but a part of me is really very appreciative of what Ralph did for me…I just don’t want him to think it’s more than that” Lisa admitted.
“Oh dear, it’s not like he’s going to proclaim his undying devotion for you in front of millions. Go in as friends and seize the night” said Marge.
The doorbell rang, Lisa and Marge gave each other a reassuring hug and went downstairs to greet the visitors.
Ralph was dressed in a striking and swanky grey coat and shirt , he was looking his best.
“Hi Lisa, wow, you look like a looker” he said.
Lisa smiled, but something was different this time, she didn’t feel so anxious, she instead felt her mood lifted considerably by the compliment.
Chief Wiggum chauffeurs Ralph and Lisa to the anniversary show in the back seat of a police car.
“Mr. Wiggum, how were you able to afford the tickets?” Lisa asked
Wiggum proceeded to tell her of an encounter with Krusty at an adult movie theatre, Lisa cut him off before he could get further into it.
“This isn’t very appropriate Mr. Wiggum, I’m only nine” said Lisa.
“I’ve been telling stories like this to Ralph since he was seven” Wiggum replied, shocking Lisa.
“Is this true Ralph?” she asked. Ralph nodded.
“Usually at bedtime, Dad says so long as he helps the town sleep at night, the stories should help me sleep too” Ralph replied.
“And do you?” said Lisa.
“I have lots of exciting dreams about nabbing robbers and protecting people, I get so excited about them I play them out at night” Ralph said beaming with positivity as he reflected on his adventures.
“So you don’t sleep for long then?” said Lisa.
“Sleep is for cats, I read that was a saying somewhere, my cat’s name is Mittens” Ralph said.
“I have a cat too, it’s called Snowball II” Lisa replied, now most interested in Ralph’s choice of pets.
“You have a sequel as a pet, that’s funny. I own Empire Strikes Back, but it doesn’t react to me” said Ralph.
“Alright kids, this is your stop, play nice” said Wiggum as the car pulled up at the studio. Lisa and Ralph disembarked and made their way to their seats.
Lisa looked at the teeming mass of youthful humanity pouring into the studio sound-stage, she was relieved to find not so many were from her class.
Some caught a glimpse of the two and began making small chatter among themselves, Lisa sat in her seat besides Ralph, who waved at her innocently. Lisa waved back, she felt surprisingly calm considering all that was conspiring against her in the back.
The show began. In the audience were Bill and Hillary Clinton.
“Hey, Ms. Clinton! I campaigned for the other guy, but I voted for you” Krusty said as he made his way onto the set.
Krusty introduced a clip of Robert Frost in 1963 reading one of his poems. Krusty made some faces at the camera before depositing a large load of synthetic snow on Ford, who continued to read out his poem regardless.
The next clip was from 1973,`’Kroon Along With Krusty”. A rocking and rolling Krusty sang, back-dropped by psychedelic Laugh-In colors.
“I think this is one of those instances where I have to ask myself what I was literally smoking” Krusty said aloud as the clip came to an end.
Ralph had decided around this time to indulge in some refreshment, and took a pair of chocolate ice creams out of a miniature container that he had carried into the studio with him, he offered Lisa one, but as she reached out for it, Chief Wiggum’s hand snatched it from her.
“Mind if I confiscate that son?” said Chief Wiggum. Ralph nodded.
The chocolate, however, slipped from the top and dripped down onto Wiggum’s lap.
“Oh great, excuse me a moment kids, I gotta go wipe this off” he said.
Lisa giggled at the calamity that had just occurred, but soon noticed Ralph himself was getting apprehensive without his father around.
“Ralph, what’s wrong?” she said.
“People are talking about me, I can hear them. I need an adult” Ralph said, his eyes beginning to slightly water.
Lisa held his hand tightly.
“Everything’s alright Ralph, you don’t need to worry about what they say, just focus on what I think of you” she said.
“Your brother said you only came because you felt bad for me” Ralph revealed.
“Maybe that’s how it started, but I’m having a great time, you’re good company Ralph, you’re generous and you’re interesting, I don’t think many of the kids in our class can measure up to that” Lisa said reassuringly.
“Now for my favourite part of the show…interacting with the audience” proclaimed Krusty.
Ralph’s eyes widened with joy, Lisa was a little more nervous, but was steadily finding it easier to maintain her composure
She knew Bart was at home recording the program, she knew more of the kids in her class were watching at home. The kids in her class that were attending the event continued to make chat among themselves, taking little bets that the camera would soon be trained on Ralph Wiggum and whatever mad thing would emit from his lips at the expense of anyone associated with him.
Sure enough, Krusty approached Ralph and asked him what he was doing there.
“I’m on a date” he said
Lisa could hear faint bursts of laughter coming from behind her.
“A date huh? I take it the person sitting next to you is the lucky lady right?” Krusty said.
“Yes, her name is Lisa Simpson, she’s the kindest girl I’ve ever known and when I grow up, I’m going to marry her”
All of the young audience’s eyes were swiftly trained on Lisa, she gulped, realizing the worst fears had come to pass, now the ball was in her court
In your reality, Lisa let her anxiety overtake her, she told Ralph in a fit of unparalleled frustration and rage that she had only given him that card out of pity, that she never loved him, and that she would never be his bride. The humiliation shattered a very tenuous link that Ralph had to the world and for a time he retreated into himself.
This is not that reality.
Here, Lisa opts instead to bring herself to order, this was such a special occasion for Ralph, a proud moment for him, and she was not about to ruin it for her own sake.
Besides, she no longer felt guilty, or apprehensive, or resentful. Those feelings had been purged from her system upon taking into consideration all the things Ralph had done for her over the last few days.
This was not guilt motivating her, nor was it bravery.
This, perhaps, was love.
“I, well, look Mr. Krusty, Ralph’s sweet and everything, but we’re just friends at the moment, would I like it to be something more than that? Maybe when we’re older we could give it a go, but for now I’m just glad to be here with someone who wants to make himself and one other happy” she said.
“Sounds like you got friend zoned live on air kid, I feel for ya” Krusty said, nudging Ralph in the arm and resuming his show.
Ralph looked at Lisa, who stared back at him with sincerity in her eyes.
“You still just want to be friends?” Ralph asked, disappointed.
“Please don’t be mad at me Ralph, it’s just too soon for us” she said.
Ralph sighed, resigned to the knowledge his persistence had not paid off, now he had to respect Lisa’s wishes.
“I’ll be ok I guess” he said, before latching, once more, onto something she had said.
“Did you mean that? Will you be my girlfriend one day?” he asked.
Lisa smiled, and clutched his hand even tighter.
“Ralph, you never know how we feel about someone as you get older, but with luck, if you can stay true to who you are, and I can stay true to who I am, you’ll always be someone I consider in the future” she said.
Ralph beamed and the two gave each other a warm embrace.
Back at home, Bart was watching the events unfold on television.
“Aw, and I was so looking forward to recording the precise moment his heart broke in half” he said aloud in despair.
THE POWER BEHIND ME
It can take a good few years for some to prepare a speech.
Some take longer to rehearse it.
Thus it fell to Louise Belcher, now older and wiser in her years, and in the quickest manner of time, to write and prepare something for her best friend Rudy on the eve of his big town hall meeting where he would speak on the importance of keeping to a strict approach in power point presentation.
After putting together something she hurridly raced to where he’d parked his car outside of the restruant and fastend the speech to the front of the car.
Rudy stared at her out of the window coldly
“What the hell is this?” he said.
“Your speech, you can rehearse while you drive” Louise replied.
“How in the hell can I see where I’m going” Rudy said.
“That’s the meta context of the speech talking right?” said Louise.
“No, it’s reality about to take me on a ride before a good hard crash” snapped Rudy, before clutching his chest in pain.
“Oh Rud Dog, you’re the only dweeb I know who lets his jitters give you the willes” said Louise, handing him his inhaler.
Rudy took a deep breath. Louise rolled her eyes.
“Right, I might as well look over this now” he said, getting out of the car and reading the speech fastened to the front of the wind screen wipers.
“Power has a point
Do you think I’m serious?
Do you think I’m serious?
Do you think I’m serious?
Power has a point
I may just be very serious
I’m suddenly a new kind of man”
Louise crossed her fingers.
Rudy glanced at her with a cold and icy glare
“Louise, this is’nt a speech, it’s an entrance theme, you’ve even written the musical notes above it all”
“Oh, sorry, I forgot to give you the original manuscript for when you have to read it” said Louise, making Rudy wait an extra five minutes while she searched her room for it and handed it back to him.
“Louise, this is in japanese” he said
“Yeah the whole song is in japanese, I recently came off a crash course on it as part of home university. The english version is to be photocopied and handed to everyone in the meeting so you know what to say when you read off the original manuscript”
“You want me to make my presentation singing Japanese?” said Rudy.
“I keep telling you, the presentation is all there, you just have to show them what’s on there while singing, it’ll prove a hit don’t worry. I suggest you let Gene bring his keyboard along, he’s got the right mix of tracks, you’ll do great, and you can record everything on a selfie stick attached to your microphone” she said, handing Rudy the item.
Rudy was tempted to take another breath of his inhaler.
“I always thought this job would be too much”
“Hey, you signed on for it” said Louise
“I did’nt mean the presentation” argued Rudy.
“Oh, it’s me is’nt it? I’m the job to you all of a sudden” exclaimed a cross Louise.
“I’m just mad it is’nt 9 to 5” said Rudy, stroking her hair gracefully and picking her up in his arms.
Louise smiled and rubbed her nose on his before taking a bite of it.
“All those sleepless nights lately with that Australian flu really made you miss this huh?” Louise remarked.
“Considering you’re the one I contracted it from, you sure did make me feel like your body wanted some space from mine” Rudy joked.
The two twirled around the spot where they stood before Rudy realized he was two minutes late. He gave Louise an impactful kiss on the lips, Louise responded with a tender sting of a slap before Rudy got back into the car with the Japanese version of the manuscript. He refused to take the English version.
Louise was impressed at the choice.
“You sure you won’t need it?” she said.
“I know a thing or two about the langauge, they don’t, I’m going to look like Mr. Yakuza to them, nothing but the rising sun in my attitude and the power behind me”
Rudy touched Louise’s nose with his finger
“Which also happens to be what’s currently in front of me” he said.
Rudy kissed her one more time before driving down the edge of the warf.
Lousie watched him go, and took a look at the english manuscript, humming the bars of the japanese music to herself as she ventured back inside.