copyright © 2002 Todd Ristau

By Todd Ristau

(Lights up on two men, drinking beers and watching the television. It would be great if it were the ABC news clip of Buzz Aldrin hitting Bart Sibrel, but it's not necessary for the scene. A Bartender listens while washing glasses. There is a phone behind the bar.)

JIM: "Did you walk on the moon?" Christ. I'd have hit the son of a bitch too.

BUD: Why? It's a fair question.

JIM: Well, look at it this way, Bud, you're Buzz Aldrin.

BUD: Ok.

JIM: You're 72 years old, an honest to god American Hero, the second person to ever walk on the moon--

BUD: Allegedly.

JIM: What the fuck is wrong with you? Of course he walked on the moon.

BUD: That's what he says.

JIM: That isn't what he says, itís a fucking historical fact.

BUD: So why won't he swear on a Bible that it happened?

JIM: Why the hell should he have to?

BUD: Because people would believe it then, like they believe you when you swear on it in court or something. The fact that he hit the guy for asking him to swear on the bible that he walked on the moon makes me doubt that he walked on the moon.

JIM: Then you're a god damned idiot.


JIM: Oh, for Pete's sake, Pete, you're not on his side, are you?

BARTENDER: If he's such a hero, why's he punching a guy holding a Bible. It's all I'm looks--

BUD: Suspicious.

BARTENDER: Yeah, suspicious.

JIM: He walked on the moon, ok! They got proof. They got pictures, and rocks and movies and all kinds of crap.

BUD: They coulda faked all that.

JIM: Why the hell would they fake landing on the moon? It was the greatest achievement in the history of mankind!

BARTENDER: Maybe we weren't gonna beat the Ruskies, so we faked it to give ourselves some lead time. The space race was political, not scientific or military.

BUD: Or maybe, just maybe we did try and land on the moon, but it got fucked up and those real astronauts died out there--that would have been a publicity nightmare so they faked a landing that worked.

JIM: I watched the damn thing on television.

BARTENDER: That's right, and everything on TV is real.

BUD: Jim, you gotta admit some of that moon stuff is a bit...well, hard to swallow.

BARTENDER: Yeah, like how there aren't any stars in the photos of them when they're on the moon--

BUD: Yeah, and how the Earth isn't the right size in them pictures--

BARTENDER: And if you look at them photos, the shadows on the "moon" are going in all different directions--They converge at a point BELOW the horizon, not above it.

BUD: Yeah, and daytime on the moon is 14 earth days, but the shadows have different lengths during the same photo session on the moon.

BARTENDER: And did you ever notice how on that lunar lander you can see the flag decal even though it's on the dark side of the module?

BUD: Jesus, no--you're kidding, right?

JIM: I don't fucking believe you people!

BARTENDER: Occam's Razor, pal.

JIM: What the fuck are you talking about now?

BARTENDER: The easiest explanation is the one most likely to be be true.

BUD: That's a fuckin' fact, dude.

BARTENDER: Here, this one's on the house.

JIM: What about me?

BARTENDER: (places another beer on the bar) That'll be $2.50.

JIM: For fuck's sake.

BUD: Did you see that one rock that had a "C" written on it?

BARTENDER: Yeah, that's so the set dresser and the continuity editor could make sure that everything is in the right place--they did those photo shoots over about a week. I got a brother who is on Days of Our Lives, that's how they do it.

BUD: Makes sense.

JIM: It doesn't make any fucking sense at all! You don't call smart people rocket scientists for no reason. They are fucking smart! Smart enough to not get caught if they were pulling a major hoax like this.

BUD: Sure, but remember, half them mother fuckers were Nazis brought over during Operation Paperclip after the war. They knew the only way to keep the funding and keep themselves out of Spandau was to produce results.

BARTENDER: Word. You gonna trust some Nazi puppet like Aldrin or your own eyes?

BUD: The evidence was leaked by honest Americans--

BARTENDER: Whistle Blowers--

BUD: Who made sure the clues were there for us stupid people to figure it out eventually, through direct observation.

BARTENDER: You ask me, that God Damned Aldrin and all them other phoneys should be put in jail for taking money for something they never did.

JIM: Come on--it would be nice to think the government was smart enough to pull off a conspiracy, but they are lousy at it. Look at Watergate. Look at Monica's dress. There is no way that the government could keep any real secret this long.

BARTENDER: Tell me where Kennedy's brain is, Mister Smarty Pants.

BUD: They just leak the little secrets so people like you will discount that they can keep any secret.

BARTENDER: Don't believe anything until itís officially denied.

BUD: That's right. Bush ain't the President. They got George Senior down in a room in Mount Weather and he's been running the show since the towers went down.

BARTENDER: That's right. You hear today how Senator Leahy is saying West Nile is a Bin Laden bio weapon?

JIM: Oh, for fuck's sake!

BUD: No, he's right--Leahy is one of the guys who got the Anthrax, you can't blame him for wondering about West Nile.

BARTENDER: You always got to ask yourself, coincidence or weapons testing?

JIM: Itís a fucking natural outbreak of a natural disease!

BUD: That's what they'd want you to think, don't you think?

JIM: I don't believe this.

BARTENDER and BUD: You're not supposed to!

BARTENDER: Bottom line is, in these uncertain times, if you can't swear on a bible that itís true, why the hell should anyone believe you.

BUD: And that fucking Aldrin is just like Saddam Hussein.

JIM: What?

BUD: You feed him, you clothe him, you train him, and then he fucking turns on you. Asking Aldrin to swear on a Bible ain't one bit different than asking Saddam to allow those inspections. If he won't do it, he's hiding something. And I for one am not willing to give Saddam a chance to throw a punch at me because he thinks its impolite for me to ask for some fucking proof he did what he said he fucking did.

BARTENDER: Brother, you earned another beer for that one. (hands him a beer)

BUD: The thing that's wrong with this fucking country today is we're so damned soft we think we need to get hit before we can take any action to defend ourselves. That don't cut it anymore. You got to weight the possible consquences of action versus the consequences of inaction.

BARTENDER: Too fucking right.

JIM: That guy with the bible should have hit Aldrin first. On Principle.

BUD: Now you're talking.

BARTENDER: You want another one? On the house this time.

JIM: No. I don't think I can stomach much more of this. Why not have George Junior swear on a bible that he was elected president? Why not have him swear on the Bible to uphold the constitution, and to defend the rights and freedoms of EVERY American? Oh, yeah, he already DID do that and what the fuck did that mean? Pick up a bible and swear you're not a pin headed idiot willing to believe whatever you hear that makes you feel like you're superior to the pin headed idiot sitting next to you who wore the wrong shirt, had the wrong song in his head, or....Oh, just forget it. Here's $10 bucks, that ought to cover you and the tip.

(Jim exits. Bartender and Bud look at each other for a while.)

BARTENDER: You know what his licence plate number is?

BUD: Yeah, ACU 7556.

(Bartender picks up the phone, starts dialing.)

BUD: Too bad--I never would have figured him to be an enemy combatant.

BARTENDER: You can't tell these days. You can't be too careful. You got his address? It's ringing.

(Lights fade out, end.)


"BUZZ" debuted September 13, 2002, performed by Todd Ristau as Bud, Gregory Hays as Jim, and Brandon Allison as Bartender.

This script was inspired by news reports such as Did Buzz Aldrin Deliver a Punch on the ABC news website. A google search of keywords "moon landing hoax" will bring up lots of interesting reading.

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