from a Monty Python sketch, about Mr Neutron - the most dangerous man in the world. Echoes of this today, with H5N1 as supposedly the most dangerous disease (for man) on the planet; though terrible for poultry, and poultry farmers.
Voice Over: But soon this quiet pattern of life was to change irrevocably. The commonplace routine of a typical Monday morning would never be the same again, for into this quiet little community came ... Mr. Neutron!
A train stops at the station. The train doors open and out steps Mr. Neutron. He looks like an American footballer, with enormous shoulders, tapering to a thin waist. He has very regular features and piercing eyes and is most impressive. He stands at the door of the train for a moment. The words 'Mr. Neutron' are written in bold diagonally across his chest. He carries a Sainsbury's shopping bag.
Voice Over: Mr. Neutron! The most dangerous and terrifying man in the world! The man with the strength of an army! The wisdom of all the scholars in history! The man who had the power to destroy the world. (animation of planets in space) Mr. Neutron. No one knows what strange and distant planet he came from, or where he was going to!... Wherever he went, terror and destruction were sure to follow.
Cut to Neutron's garden. He has three little picnic chairs out and is having tea with Mr. and Mrs. Entrail, a middle-aged couple. The lady, a little overdressed dominates. Mr. Entrail sits there rather sourly.
Voice Over: Mr. Neutron! The man whose incredible power has made him the most feared man of all time... waits for his moment to destroy this little world utterly!
Mrs. Entrail: Then there's Stanley ... he's our eldest ... he's a biochemist in Sutton. He's married to Shirley...
Mr. Neutron: (in a strange disembodied voice, grammatically correct but poor in intonation) Shirley who used to be the hairdresser? .....
Commander: What is it?
Carpenter: Mr. Neutron is missing, sir!
Commander: Mr. Neutron! Oh my God! OK - Surround the entire city! Send in four waves of armed paratroopers with full ground-to-air missile support! Alert all air bases! Destroy all roads! We'll bomb the town flat if we have to!
Carpenter: Sir! Sir! He's not in Washington, sir.
Commander: OK! Hold everything! Hold everything! Hold it! Lay off! Lay off... Where is he?
Carpenter: We don't know, sir ... all we know is he checked out of his hotel and took a bus to the airport.
Commander: All right! I want a full-scale Red Alert throughout the world! Surround everyone with everything we've got! Mobilize every fighting unit and every weapon we can lay our hands on! I want... I want three full-scale global nuclear alerts with every army, navy and air force unit on eternal standby!
Carpenter: Right, sir!
Commander: And introduce conscription!
Carpenter: Yes, sir!
He slams the intercom button down and sits there. Silence again. His eyes look from side to side then slowly he goes back to smelling himself.
Voice Over: So the world was in the grip of FEAR! A huge and terrifying crisis generated by one man! (zoom into Neutron in his front garden, weeding; behind him the group of GPO people are sitting opening another box fifty yards further down from the first one; a line of six recently opened boxes stretches up the road)... easily the most dangerous man the world has ever seen, honestly. Though still biding his time, he could strike at any moment. Could he be stopped in time?
Voice Over: While precious time was being lost in Canada, the seconds were ticking away for the free world...
Jarring chord. Cut to Neutron's house. He is hanging flowery print wallpaper in his sitting room. Helping him is the quite enormously vast Frank Smailes who stands rather helplessly looking up at Neutron who is on a plank between two ladders.
Voice Over: Already Neutron - who, you will remember, is infinitely the most dangerous man in the world, he really is - was gathering allies together.
Mr. Neutron: Try having an omelet for your evening meal... perhaps with yogurt and grapefruit.
Commander: OK. We'll bomb Neutron out. Get me Moscow! Peking! and Shanklin, Isle of Wight!
Cut to stock film of B52s on a bombing raid.
Voice Over: And so the Great Powers and the people of Shanklin, Isle of Wight, drew their net in ever-tightening circles around the most dangerous threat to peace the world has ever faced. They bombed Cairo, Bangkok, Cape Town, Buenos Aires, Harrow, Hammersmith, Stepney, Wandsworth and Enfield... But always it was the wrong place.
Cut to an area of smoking rubble. A van with the words 'US Air Force' on the side trundles through the rubble. It has a loudspeaker on the top of it.
Loudspeaker: Sorry Enfield!... We apologize for any inconvenience caused by our bombing... sorry...
Voice Over: But what of Mr. Neutron, the most fearfully dangerous man in the world! The man who could destroy entire galaxies with his wrist, the man who could tear fruit machines apart with his eyeballs... He had not been idle!
Meantime we have mixed through to Neutron's suburban sitting room. He is standing in the doorway gazing at something off camera. He holds an envelope which he has just opened and a letter.
Voice Over: In fact he had fallen in love... with the lady who 'does' for Mrs. Entrail...
Post edited by: martin, at: 2006/04/05 09:31