20060521

Dead or Alive


The curtain rises revealing another packed auditorium. Both audiences state at each other expectantly until you apologise to me about what you said last night in the car on the way home from Wimpy. You had absolutely no right to say that to me, especially in front of Rita.

Once you say sorry the curtain drops, lifting again on the third cough. Bruce Willis tumbles onstage, evading security by disguising himself as a rope and swinging in on a rope. He pulls a gun out and squints up into the harsh show-business lighting. Bruce then takes aim and begins shooting at a tiny brown mouse which is paragliding onto the stage from the circle. The mouse has an eye patch on and a cutlass in his teeth. Bruce shoots the lights out accidentally and the theatre is plunged into darkness.

Eventually a candle is lit. There is just enough light to make out that Bruce is dead. A second candle is lit and we can see that the stage is crawling with rats. They all wear tiny hats, very bright colours, fantastic styles. Rock star Jon Bon Jovi is jerkily lowered down from the rafters on some string. He looks bemused, with candyfloss shoes, a nosebleed and frizzy-piccalilli hair.

A JCB nosily trundles out onstage, scoops up some rats and then falls into the orchestra pit. The driver clambers out and takes her helmet off.

Judi: Oops.
Jovi: It’s Judi Dench everyone!
Judi: Thanks. (Nodding to crowd) Thank you.
Jovi: Hey Judi, look at me! Look! I’m up here.
Judi: Oh!
Jovi: Put all of your trust in me Judi.
Judi: Fine.
Jovi: (Turns aggressive) Everything! Every last ounce, every last grain of trust! Twist and tense every muscle in your body until it points in my direction, with my likeness!
Judi: You silly little man, why on earth should I? Who are you anyway and how dare you speak to me like that?
Jovi: (Calming down) I am Jon Bon Jovi. (Wild anger again) You may have heard some of my (pause, takes a breath, then screams through grating luminous white teeth) MUSIC!!!
Judi: Can’t say I have. What sort of thing is it?
Jovi: (Berserk) ROCK!
Judi: Oh. I can’t say I’m…
Jovi: I’M A COWBOY! ON A STEEL HORSE I RIDE!
Judi: (Quietly sings) And I’m wanted.
Jovi: WAAAAAAAAANTED!
Judi: (Deep voice) Dead or alive.


The audience hiss, boo and throw sweet-corn.
The curtain falls and falls, filling the whole auditorium, packing material
into every nook and cranny until a crack appears in the theatre’s white brickwork.


 
Tiny Finger Point