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Printed from https://www.Writing.Com/view/2000781
Rated: E · Script/Play · Comedy · #2000781
Actors must entertain him. Or die trying.




















THE COUCH POTATO

By

Courtney E Scholl



Cast of Characters

THE COUCH POTATO:          At least 25. Male. Perhaps slightly overweight; your classic “couch potato” stereotype. The only character that is “real.” He has all of the power of God over the other actors.

ACTOR #1                              Male.

ACTOR #2                              Female.          

ACTOR #3                              Either.

ACTOR #4                              Either.



A Note of Inspiration

Some of the scenes are inspired by actual moments in television.



A Note on ACTORS

All ACTORS should be dressed completely in black or the same shade of gray. Their clothing should be non-distracting, a blank canvas for the many different characters they will portray in a short amount of time. Any props they deal with should just be imaginary, unless otherwise specified.



Scene

The Couch Potato’s Living Room.

Time

Winter, 2005.



Scene 1

(Room is dimmed but not totally dark. There is a chair angled at center stage on stage right. It should preferably be a recliner that has seen better days. There can be a small end table beside it. There should also be a couch towards up center, which has also seen better days and does not necessarily need to match the recliner. Four people lay motionless in the middle of the room on the floor. Enter COUCH POTATO from stage left, stepping over the people to get to it. COUCH POTATO should be dressed in sweats and be barefoot. He may have a drink or chips, slurping and/or crunching loudly. Perhaps scratch his butt. If you can burp or fart on command now is the time to show off that skill, COUCH POTATO. Be as gross as possible, and ready to relax. COUCH POTATO sits lazily in the chair and grabs the remote sitting on the end table.)

COUCH POTATO:

Alright, let’s see what’s on.

(The ACTORS on the floor spring into action briefly glancing at COUCH POTATO, acknowledging his presence. All ACTORS are now NASCAR drivers, running in circles clockwise except ACTOR #3, who is now a NASCAR announcer.)

ACTOR #3 (ANNOUNCER):

NASCAR has never been so exciting, folks! They’re turning LEFT! It’s another astounding left turn!

(COUCH POTATO yawns.)

ACTOR #3 (ANNOUNCER):

Err--Ladies and gentleman, it looks like the rookie might win here! Can the champ pass him in the final lap coming up? Here comes the left turn, they’re turning left!...Err- oh, it looks like the rookie is taking it too fast! WIPE OUT! And…oh, no, I don’t believe it! The champ is caught in the wreck—

Scene 2

(COUCH POTATO changes the channel, lights flicker. The ACTORS wince as though the channel change caused them true pain. They are now on American Idol. Three of them quickly sit on the couch, ACTOR #4 is finishing the last 30 seconds of song a cappella, badly, accompanied by a pathetic dance. Once the audition is over, the judges lay into the performer.)

ACTOR #2 (JUDGE #1):

Well, first off, I thought you had a really strong beginning. Your entrance was great, you were full of confidence...and then you started singing.

ACTOR #1 (JUDGE #2):

You call that singing? What a train wreck! I’ve never seen such a terrible performance in my life. I mean, what did you honestly think we were going to tell you when you came in here? How can you not know how terrible you are as a singer?

ACTOR #3 (JUDGE #3):

Look, I’m sorry, you were just so out of tune. So way off. So way, way off it’s not even close to the song you were trying to go for. You’re just not ready for American Idol 2006, 2007, or 2008.

ACTOR #1 (JUDGE #2):

Or 2009, or 2010.

ACTOR #2 (JUDGE #1):

I’m sure that if you work at it hard enough, you might eventually develop something feasible, but at the moment, I’m sorry, but you’re not really ready to go professional.

ACTOR #3 (JUDGE #3):

No golden ticket, sorry.

Scene 3

(COUCH POTATO changes the channel, lights flicker. All ACTORS leap up in pain, and ACTOR #4 dies and falls to the ground. The others, still in pain, should be horrified that their friend has just perished, but with not enough time to mourn for her. The remaining ACTORS are now on Family Feud. ACTOR #3 (STEVE HARVEY) is in the middle while ACTORS #1 (JEFF) and #2 (TAMMY) are facing each other from opposite families. A projector may be used to simulate the answer board on the blank wall behind the couch.)

ACTOR #3 (STEVE HARVEY):

Alright, we surveyed 100 people, points are worth double, top five answers are on the board.  Name something that you would use as a partner to practice kissing when you were younger.

(Both ACTORS BUZZ, but JEFF is slightly faster.)

ACTOR #3 (STEVE HARVEY):

Jeff

ACTOR #1 (JEFF):

Sister.

ACTOR #3 (STEVE HARVEY):

(laughs) Jeff…do you have a sister?

ACTOR #1 (JEFF):

(with great embarrassment) Yes, yes I do. And she’s never going to forgive me.

ACTOR #3 (STEVE HARVEY):

No, I should say she’s not. Where is your sister right now?

ACTOR #1 (JEFF):

Probably hiding…or looking for a weapon…

ACTOR #3 (STEVE HARVEY):

You know, there’s this thing now. Called YouTube….you’re going to be a star!

ACTOR #1 (JEFF):

Yeah, I probably am.

ACTOR #3 (STEVE HARVEY):

Alright, let’s see if it’s up there…your sister! (DING) Sibling! Number four! 12 other people…(laughs) Okay, Tammy, your turn. Name something that you would use as a partner to practice kissing when you were younger.

ACTOR #2 (TAMMY):

A pillow.

ACTOR #3 (STEVE HARVEY):

A pillow?

ACTOR #2 (TAMMY):

Yes.

ACTOR #3 (STEVE HARVEY):

A pillow?

ACTOR #2 (TAMMY):

Yes. (laughs)

ACTOR #3 (STEVE HARVEY):

A pillow! (DING) Number one!



Scene 4

(COUCH POTATO grabs the remote to change the channel)

ACTOR #2: NOOO!

                   (ACTOR #2 snatches the remote out of his hand before he can press any buttons)

COUCH POTATO:

HEY! (He leaps from his chair) Why do you women always do this?!?

(ACTOR #2 is surprised at herself and is regretting her impulsive decision, but she cannot let him have the remote now that she has done this. The other ACTORS stand in horror and shock as COUCH POTATO and ACTOR #2 struggle over the remote. In the struggle, buttons are pressed…)

ACTOR #2:

No, please don’t! Please! HELP! HELP ME!

ACTOR #3:

(Bravely) Hey wait a minute! Leave her alo—(the mute button is pressed and he can no longer speak).

(The other ACTORS, still muted and trying to shout, rush to help but before they get there, the pause button is pressed in the struggle, stopping ACTOR #2 from fighting him as well.)

COUCH POTATO:

Ha, ha! I win. (He grabs the remote from her still hand). Oh, you’ve done it now. Never try that again, do you understand me? I’m going to make your life hell for that. Your friends will suffer…Maybe even die. And when you die this time, you won’t come back tomorrow like usual. No, you’ll die for good. We’re getting a new tv for Maria’s birthday, and you’re trash. All of you. Unless you can change my mind…(snorts) I hope your replacements have better sense.

(COUCH POTATO takes his time sitting back in his recliner, letting his anger simmer. Finally, he angrily changes the channel rapidly over and over. Lights are flickering like crazy. ACTORS are changing poses and trying to scream but they are still muted).

COUCH POTATO

Oh, yeah…(He unmutes them so that he can hear them scream. Their screams are of those truly in pain. When he decides they’ve had enough, he rests on The Discovery Channel).

(ACTORS cringe in unbearable pain and then glance at each other nervously, relived that they are still alive. They can’t move for a moment).

COUCH POTATO:

I’m WAITING!

Scene 5

(Immediately, two ACTORS are now alligators fighting over territory, while the third is STEVE IRWIN.)

ACTOR #3 (STEVE IRWIN):

Chrikey! These two gators are fighting over territory… and I’m only five feet away! It’s amazing to see this kind of—(notices a snake) Chrikey, look at that! It’s the most poisonous snake in the world… I’m gonna pick it up. Brilliant idea! (STEVE IRWIN jumps over gators to pick up the snake.)

Scene 6

(COUCH POTATO changes the channel, lights flicker. The ACTORS wince at the pain, but quickly spring into a different scenario. They are now in The Jerry Springer Show.)

ACTORS #2 and #3:

(addressing the audience, initiating the “Jerry” chant) JERRY! JERRY! JERRY! JERRY!

ACTOR #1 (JERRY):

Alright, alright. Well, ladies and gentleman, we have two very special guests with us today. Please welcome former couple Bobby and Mary Jo!

COUCH POTATO:

(unenthusiastically) Yay…

ACTOR #1 (JERRY):

(nervously) Alright, now ‘former couple,’ so you guys were together for how long, Mary Jo?

ACTOR #2 (MARY JO):

Two months, off an’ on.

ACTOR #1 (JERRY):

And why did you guys break up?

ACTOR #2 (MARY JO):

He cheated on me!

ACTOR #1 (JERRY):

Ooo, Bobby, not cool, man, not cool. Who’d you cheat on her with?

ACTOR #3 (BOBBY):

All the ladies love me, Jerry, what can I say? Doesn’t really matter who, does it?

ACTOR #2 (MARY JO):

It matters! I knew ever since I saw you in that trailer park that you’d be in my life for always, but I didn’t think you’d go and do this to me, Bobby. My best friend??

ACTOR #3 (BOBBY):

(bragging) And your sister….at the same time.

ACTOR #1 (JERRY):

How many times did you cheat on her, Bobby?

ACTOR #3 (BOBBY):

151 times.

ACTOR #1 (JERRY):

Wait…wait, wait, wait. How long did you say you were dating?

ACTOR #3 (BOBBY):

Two months.

ACTOR #1 (JERRY):

(pausing) You realize there are only 60 days in two months, don’t you?

ACTOR #3 (BOBBY):

Why, yes, Jerry, yes I do.

ACTOR #2 (MARY JO):

See, Jerry? See what a—

ACTOR #1 (JERRY):

Alright, Bobby, so your side of things? Why should she keep you?

ACTOR #3 (BOBBY):

Well you know Jerry, she’s not exactly sunshine and kittens to deal with either. She lets her 14 year old daughter smoke at the dinner table in front of her children.

ACTOR #2 (MARY JO):

THAT’S what you have to complain about? Seriously? Jerry, I came on this show because I wanted you to straighten him out, because my baby needs a better father. (clutches stomach)

ACTOR #3 (BOBBY):

Say what now?!?

Scene 7

(COUCH POTATO changes the channel, lights flicker, and with them, loud pop music comes on. The ACTORS wince in agony, but now they are in a dance exercise class.)

ACTOR #2 (DANCE INSTRUCTOR):

C’mon guys, let’s pick up the pace! Work off those buns! C’mon, people at home, let’s get up off the couch and move! Away from the remote, don’t change that channel! And 1, 2, 3, 4…freestyle it!

(Phone rings. COUCH POTATO pauses the television, music stops and ACTORS freeze in ridiculous poses.)

COUCH POTATO:

Hey, honey. Where are you? Ugh, but I don’t wanna get up and go check and see if we have eggs or not, I’m watching the tv…okay, okay fine. COUCH POTATO puts the phone down momentarily and goes nowhere. He picks it back up. Yes, we have plenty of eggs. Of course they’re still good. Well why is the store so crowded? Well I don’t know either! How should I know? Okay…alright. So the only thing you’re picking up is Maria’s birthday present? Oh, she’ll love that. Yeah, but listen, I was thinking about getting her a tv. Well, I don’t know…we’ll talk about it when you get home. Are you on your way home now? Good, I’m hungry. Pick up some take out will you? Alright, thanks honey. I’ll see you in a bit. I love you. Okay, bye.

Scene 8

(COUCH POTATO changes the channel, lights flicker. ACTOR #3 dies and falls to the ground. The remaining ACTORS nearly double over with pain. They should express worry with not enough time to mourn for their friend and urgently change roles. ACTORS are now in a soap opera.)

ACTOR #2 (FEMALE):

You don’t love me, you’ve never loved me! And ever since I found out the baby was his, that’s when I knew you never will. 

ACTOR #1 (MALE):

You’re not being fair. I can’t forgive you for what you did, but that doesn’t mean I can’t love you.

ACTOR #2 (FEMALE):

You love my sister. She told me so.

ACTOR #1 (MALE):

She’s lying. She’d always wanted me but all I want is you. Why don’t you believe me? Unlike you, I’ve never given you reason not to trust me!

ACTOR #2 (FEMALE):

I thought we’d put that past us. How can you say you love me when you keep bringing that up?

ACTOR #1 (MALE):

I didn’t bring it up, you did!

ACTOR #2 (FEMALE):

I thought you were dead!

ACTOR #1 (MALE):

And you waited a grand total of three days! Yes, we all know the story—

Scene 9

(COUCH POTATO changes the channel, lights flicker. ACTORS cringe, in a great deal of pain now, but quickly compose themselves as they are now hosting an infomercial.)

ACTOR #1 (SALESPERSON):

(takes off his shoes and holds them up) Are you tired of stepping on Legos? Fed up with frequent visits to the doctor for frostbite because the ground is too cold? Well say “Goodbye!” to your frustrations and “Hello!” to Rubber Feet Armour! Rubber Feet Arnour comes with everything you see here! (DING, Projector shows crocs shoe.) Rubber Feet Armour keeps your feet safe and warm and allows you to do things that you’ve never done before! Like go running for example…

(COUCH POTATO gives them a dirty look, but is enticed enough to keep listening).

ACTOR #1 (SALESPERSON):

That’s right, Rubber Feet Armour is a must-have product. Let’s hear what customers are saying about it!

ACTOR #2 (CUSTOMER):

Oh, I just love my new Rubber Feet Armour! They hide my natural smelly feet and everyone is giving me compliments on how great they look on me.

ACTOR #1 (SALESPERSON):

Very fashionable! And when you buy them, we GUARANTEE to include that weird paper stuff stuck inside!

ACTOR #2 (CUSTOMER):

And I used to have such a hard time killing spiders and other bugs. Now, with my new Rubber Feet Armour, it’s easy! No more messy hands!

ACTOR #1 (SALESPERSON):

And Rubber Feet Armour can be yours for only five payments of $19.95! Not convinced? If you order in the next 30 seconds, I’ll throw in the other one for absolutely FREE! You just pay shipping, handling, and several hidden fees!

ACTOR #2 (CUSTOMER):

What a deal! Oh and don’t forget about all the packing peanuts you’ll get absolutely FREE!

ACTOR #1 (SALESPERSON):

That’s right! Use Protection! Rubber Feet Armour! Order now! Call the number at the bottom of your screen. 1-800-RUBBER-FEET-ARMOUR. Or, 1-800-782237-3338-276687! (now speaking more quickly in the low disclaimer voice at the end of commercials) Rubber Feet Armour will probably fall apart after two uses. Product not guaranteed to be leak-proof like you would expect. Rubber Feet Armour Incorporated is not responsible for trips, falls, or injuries of any kind while wearing this product. Your credit card information is also not safe with us and we will probably sell it and you will most likely end up having to cancel your card, but please go ahead and buy Rubber Feet Armour anyway.

Scene 10

(COUCH POTATO changes channel, lights flicker. ACTOR #2 falls to the ground.)

ACTOR #2:

I’m sorry…(she dies).

(The remaining ACTOR, in the worst agony yet from the channel change, scrambles his brain for something to entertain the COUCH POTATO with just himself.)

ACTOR #1 (WEATHERMAN):

(composing himself) Um, weather here. As you can see, today will be sunny with a high of 42. Very windy…

(COUCH POTATO yawns and reaches for the remote.)

ACTOR #1 (WEATHERMAN):

No, wait! (falls to his knees) Um, snow! Snow tonight! Lots of snow!

(COUCH POTATO sits up in his chair.)

ACTOR #1 (WEATHERMAN):

(excited that he thinks he’s finally found what entertains the COUCH POTATO) Yes, it’s going to snow all night! Three feet by morning! Five feet by noon tomorrow!

(COUCH POTATO leans in even closer, clearly mesmerized, finally.)

ACTOR #1 (WEATHERMAN):

And freezing rain! Roads will be very icy! And did I mention it’s going to snow a lot?

(COUCH POTATO quickly leaps up, grabs the remote, and before the lone ACTOR #1 can say anything, he turns off the television. WEATHERMAN (ACTOR #1) falls down dead, and lights go back to original setting, dim but not totally dark.)

COUCH POTATO:

It’s gonna snow! I gotta get to the store! GET THE BREAD, THE MILK, THE EGGS! ….Oh my god, the EGGS! IT’S GONNA SNOW!

(COUCH POTATO rushes off stage left. Lights fade with spotlights on the four dead ACTORS, then total darkness.)



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