copyright © 2007 Adam Burton


by Adam Burton (11/30/07)


ANNOUNCER (a professional who's nevertheless an excited, enthusiastic fan-geek): In sci fi news, script problems with the Star Trek film now in production have, in light of the current writers' strike, forced executives to search far and wide to find someone willing to cross picket lines and lend a hand, or a pen as it were, to help out. And find him they did! You'll recall episode 89 of Star Trek: The Next Generation titled "Galaxy's Child"? Uncredited second assistant writer Frank Farfelmann penned the original draft of several scenes in that episode, one of which we've re-enacted to share with you a glimpse of his unique talents.

DATA (in his pseudo-Vulcan way): This space creature appears to have attached itself to the shield and is now draining our energy.

CAPTAIN PICARD: Almost as if it were …. [blatant mug to the audience to emphasize significance of her line] …suckling at a teat for sustenance!

RANDOM ENSIGN (acting like a goody two-shoes brown-noser): SOUR THE MILK!

CAPTAIN PICARD: Excuse me, ensign?

RANDOM ENSIGN: I'm sorry, captain. I've just realized this is like when we would try to wean cattle back home [aside to audience] my family had cattle [back to captain] so we would get them to drink out of bottles instead and then we would slowly sour the milk till they quit wanting it!

CAPTAIN PICARD: An excellent solution, ensign! But I believe our problem with the shields is more pressing.

RANDOM ENSIGN: Don't you see, captain? We can modulate the frequency of the shields to "sour the milk" [mime the quotes] so that the creature leave to find other food!

CAPTAIN PICARD: Brilliant! How did you ever think of that? [meaningful look and raised eyebrow to the audience]

[Voyager performers disperse]

ANNOUNCER: And so, with the venerable assistance of Mr. Farfelmann (who has agreed to come out of retirement to work on the project), the latest installment in the Trek movie franchise is able to move forward without delay! He was in fact thrilled to be asked, having felt he could never truly express himself as a second assistant writer under layer upon layer of supervision. Having outlived his supervisors, however, he can finally share his unfiltered vision with fans around the world — no, the whole universe! Mr. Farfelmann had only one condition — that he be included in the movie. And, just our luck, they're rehearsing his big scene today! So, watch now as we visit Kirk, Spock and friends back in their days at the academy, right after a party of Klingons has landed in the dorms!

SPOCK: Jim, it would appear that the Klingons intend to imbibe alcoholic beverages and cavort with the co-eds here in the dormitory residences.

KIRK (overacting): What do you mean, Young Spock? Are you telling me that it's a Klingon party party?

OTHER STUDENT: Captain Kir– er, Jim, what should we do?!!?

KIRK: I don't know, fellow Starfleet Academy student! Young Spock?

SPOCK: Sometimes uninvited guests simply need encouragement to exit. Encouragement [mugging to audience to stress the significance] from behind…

KIRK: I'm not really sure what you —

FRANK (shuffling in old-man style, looking kinda senile, raising a hand with index finger up idea-style, exclaiming in old man voice): DRIVE THE BUTT!

KIRK (hasn't seen Frank yet): Excuse me, ensi– [breaks off, seeing that Frank is way too old to be an ensign] …er, Grandpa… [FRANK glares at KIRK] …uncle?


KIRK: What do you mean?

[FRANK stands there looking doddering and blank. Pause.]

OTHER STUDENT (trying to rescue the scene): Um, you know! Drive the butt! Back at home when we needed the cattle to go from one pasture to another [aside to audience] my family had cattle [back to Kirk] we would hit them on their rear ends to get them to move! [demonstrates with who's-your-daddy bottom-smacking gesture. Then, looking hopefully to FRANK] Is that what you meant?

[FRANK stands there looking doddering and blank. Pause.]

KIRK (picking it up): So you're saying that if Klingons are Klingons, and cows are cows, we need to —

FRANK (jutting idea finger into the air): CULTIVATE THE BUTT!

KIRK: What?

FRANK (frustratedly insistent): CULTIVATE THE BUTT!!!

OTHER STUDENT (playing along to keep things on track): Oh, like in the garden back on the farm [aside to audience ] we had a farm [back to Kirk] when we would lay down manure to… [floundering] um… grow the, uh…

KIRK: You lost me, fellow student.

FRANK (almost desperately): FUCK THE BUTT!!!

SPOCK (breaking character): Seriously. Seriously?? I can't work like this.

KIRK (still in character, overplaying): WHAT do you MEAN, uncle??

OTHER STUDENT: You know! Fuck the… fuck-- oh, fuck it… (gives up)

[Two people from offstage come on and drag FRANK away]

FRANK (from the moment they touch him, till his voice recedes into the distance off-stage): FUCK THE BUTT! FUCK THE BUTT!! FUCK THE BUTT!!!

ANNOUNCER: And so, fellow trekkers, that's a glimpse of the magic in store for we, the diehard fans of the franchise that just won't quit. Until next time!



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