["Zoo Station" by U2 cues up as images of action by KEW's finest flash upon the screen.
KEW PRESENTS...WAR CRIES!!!
Slow...slower than usual actually...dissolve from the graphics as we fade up into our modest studio. "Big" Al Lieberman sits behind his trusty desk, a serious expression on his face for a change. Still, he smiles nervously and clears his throat.]
BAL: Welcome again, KEW fans and pardon our dust! Rumors have been flying about possible changes in our little organization and hopefully we'll have word from the Commissioner later on in the show. Meanwhile, I would like to PERSONALLY tell Phil Anderson that if he ever leaves me alone with Danny Daniels again, he'll be lacking a spleen soon afterwards!
[Static crackles and the picture rolls a little. Al pays it no heed.]
BAL: Referee Rob Morton is still out on medical leave due to the events from last Lion's Den. Our throughts and prayers go with him for a speedy recovery. We here at the KEW would like to take this time out to now welcome Robby Watts to our officiating staff. Robby, I'm confident you'll have the skills to go far! Just don't let the guys walk over you and you'll be all set!
[There's a pot and kettle comment that can be made here, I'm sure. Another burst of static crackles and the video wiggles a tad.]
BAL: We here at the KEW would also like to take time out to welcome our special guest interns from the West Virginia Northern Community College who are working in the production department for this edition of War Cries for college credit! Nothing to be nervous...I'm sure things will run fi--
[*BZZT* Picture suddenly is cut.]
BAL VO: Wh--?! --ry camera o-- Nothi--?
[A long drawn out sigh can be heard in the darkness.]
BAL VO: --ust roll the fir-- fil--
[Camera fades up on body shot of Motown. The NEW KEW banner readable behind him. Fade up on background music: Marvin Gaye - Baby Don't You Do It]
MOTOWN: I don't know Stonecutter, my opponent in Saturday's KEW match in Huntington, West Virginia. Never met him. I can't tell you if he's a good man or bad.
But what I do know is that every time I enter the ring I stand proud and do my best to honor the spirit of Detroit, the dedication, the work ethic and the soul. With every inch of my seven foot, 300 pound body. I've been fighting since I was this high. [Motown mimes knee height] I had to. I grew up in a tough neighborhood and learned first hand
about places even tougher.
I've broken bigger men than him who've gotten into the arena with me. I've ruined men who thought my size made me slow or stupid. I've fought guys who've brought out baseball bat, chains even knives and guns. I've fought 12 men at the same time in back alleys and in abandoned buildings. I'm still here and some of them aint.
That's what I'm walking into the Arena with on Saturday Night.
So you have to ask yourself if what you're bringing is gonna save your skin.
[Motown lifts up an aluminum ladder from off screen. Grasping it firmly he folds it in half with a wrenching sound. Drops it and walks off screen.
Fade to black. Fade music.]
[The entire thing is shot in black and white, and the camera seems to be shaking. Kratos, a fresh-faced muscular young man, looks into the camera smoothly.]
K: I'm not an inhuman monster. I don't believe I'm God's gift to wrestling. I'm not an ethnic stereotype, and I'm not royalty of any kind. I'm not rich, and I don't have "connections". I don't have a pretty girl to help me win my matches, or a scuzzy manager.
[Kratos pounds a punching bag.]
K: I'm not here for revenge. I'm not here for fame. And I don't give a damn about money.
[Close-up on Kratos's face.]
K: So why am I here? Well, that's simple.
[A photo of a younger Kratos posing with a high school wrestling trophy.]
K: I love to wrestle.
[Switch to police mugshots of a smiling, uninjured Kratos and some other guy who looks like he's been through hell and back.]
K: I love to fight... maybe too much.
[Back to Kratos, looking straight into the camera.]
K: And I love to win. And there isn't much that can stop me from doing what I love.
[Back to static. Slowly, things get back into focus. Big Al takes a deep breath and sighs in relief.]
BAL: Everything's all set? *phew* Both Motown and Kratos look eager to start here in KEW and here's hoping a long career for both men! Coming up next, our tag team champions have FINALLY been ordered to defend their belts properly against the Jaq of Diamonds and the Jax of Clubs this coming Lion's Den. Here's Le--
[*BZZT* There goes the studio video again. Al sighs loudly.]
BAL VO: --gion.
[The scene opens in a lightly wooded area. It's twilight or early morning, it is difficult to say. Lounging in a nearby tree is Nightdruid, and Brimstone is nearby, leaning his massive back against a large oak. Both are in their usual street clothes. Big Al walks in front of the camera.]
BAL: I got a bad feeling about this...what? We're on? Why didn't you tell me! [Quickly he adjust his shirt and begins]. Big Al here to interview the KEW Tag Team Champions, Legion! Excuse me, Nightdruid, Brimstone.
[Both men look over at Big Al, almost with disgust. ND sighs, and then hops down from his perch, and Brimstone walks over.]
BAL: Brimstone, I must first congradulate you on your victory over Jack Taylor.
Brim: Jack was just another stepping stone. A footnote in my career. Jacks showed us nothing. Just another team of wanna-bes unworthy of a shot at our titles.
BAL: But Jack did almost win the match... [he trails off when he notices Brimstone's glare.]
ND: Almost doesn't cut it in this business.
BAL: If I remember right, it was your interferance, ND, that ultimately cost Jack the match.
ND: Oh please. Can we help it if the Twits are incapable of acting as a team? Tell me, Al, why exactly are we being forced into the ring with the Jack-offs?
[Al has a bit of a confused look on his face.]
BAL: You mean Jak of Clubs and Jaq of Diamonds of the Four Jacks?
ND: Is that what they call themselves? Its so hard to recall that exactly. They don't exactly have a stellar win-loss record.
Brim: Hell, the Gunslingers have had more wins than the entire quartet of Jacks combined!
BAL: Well, they did have a recent win over the West Coast Wild Boyz.
ND: Big deal. One win does not make them worthy of stepping in the ring with champions. Hell, it takes four guys and gals to do the work of two men. Not impressed in the least.
BAL: I should note that they do a lot of training and practicing.
ND: Yes, they do indeed practice a lot. Practice being...
Brim [finishing ND's thought]: real wrestlers. Because...
ND: that's about all...
Brim: they're good at.
BAL [under his breath]: I hate it when you do that.
Brim [With an evil glean in his eye]: Maybe we should...educate...the Jacks?
[Those words send an obvious chill down Big Al's back!]
BAL: Oh gawd, no...you're not going to...blow up yet another car?!?!
[Both men burst out in laughter.]
ND: Please. They're not worth the effort.
Brim: No. See, the Jack-off of Diamonds thinks he's some kind of prettyboy. We hate prettyboys. And he won't be so pretty after I'm done with...
ND: Whoah, whoah, hold up there, Brim. You are NOT going to maim the fairy...
[A bit of a confused look crosses both Big Al's and Brimstone's face.]
ND: before me, that it. *I* am going to be the one who make him not so pretty.
Brim: Oh no, I called maiming him first!
ND: Wanna make a friendly wager on that? On who scars the Barbie-man first?
Brim: You're on!
BAL: You can't be serious! Making bets on who gets to permanently disfigure Jaq of Diamonds?!?!
Brim: Have you known us to be anything BUT serious?
ND: Tsk, tsk, Al. You know us better than that!
BAL [turning a bit pale]: Yes, well, thank you, Brimstone, Nightdruid, for your time!
[Legion walks off laughing and hammering out the details of their "bet".]
BAL: You know, I wouldn't want to be the Jaq of Diamonds come Lion's Den...
THE FOUR JACKS
[Fade in on a night sky. The stars are twinkling in a carpet of blackness, and the sounds of crackling flames slowly drift into the listener’s ears. Camera pans down to reveal a fire on a stretch of sand with the Atlantic Ocean gently lapping the shore a few feet away. Sitting around the bonfire are four figures – the camera passes over the faces of The Four Jacks.
Jack of Spades is staring moodily into the fire, like he’s trying to divine some sort of message from the flames; Jak of Hearts is feeding twigs into the fire, occasionally throwing JoS a worried look. The dashing Jaq of Diamonds is sitting cross-legged, slightly away from the fire, typing diligently away at a state of the art laptop computer, while his tag team partner, the burly Jax of Clubs is dividing his time between staring up at the stars and taking swigs from a bottle of Stolichnaya vodka. Jacks finishes the bottle, puts it down, and looks at his partners, a puzzled frown on his face.]
Jax of Clubs: Um, did I miss a meeting or something? What’s everybody lookin’ so down in the mouth for? Me and him [gestures over at Diamonds, who doesn’t look up from the laptop] won our last match… AND have a shot at the tag team belts come the next Lion’s Den!
Jak of Hearts [Leans over and gives Clubs a playful shove on the arm.]: We know Jax, and we’re proud of guys, you know that. You guys are gonna make great tag team champs!
JoC: Then why is Fearless Leader over here actin’ like his dog just died? [He jerks his thumb at Jack of Spades.]
JoH: Oh, he’s just worried about my match against Girly Ray.
Jack of Spades: [Still gazing into the fire] You didn’t have to take it. You shouldn’t have to do this. Gamma Ray’s just showing what a coward he really is by demanding to fight you instead of me. [He turns and looks over at Clubs]. I’m worried. Okay, you wanted to know what was bugging me, that’s it. [He turns and looks Hearts in the face.] I’m worried about you, Jakie.
JoH: [Smiles at Spades, and takes his hand.] You’ve always watched out for me, Jack. You’ve watched out for all of us. But don’t worry – I can handle myself.
JoS: All the same, I’m staying out there with you. [Both Diamonds and Clubs open their mouths] Just me, you two. She’s right; you’ve got a match of your own to worry about, and some belts to bring home. But I trust Gamma Ray about as much as your average rattlesnake – he might act like a fool, but that doesn’t convince me he is one.
Jaq of Diamonds: Are you sure?
[JoS nods curtly.]
[Diamonds and Clubs look at each other. Clubs shrugs.]
JoC: You’re the boss.
JoH: Jack, I can HANDLE this myself…
JoS: I’m going out to the ring with you. That’s. Final.
[Hearts sighs; she knows when she’s not going to win this argument. Running her right hand through her strawberry-blonde locks, she leans over and peers at the laptop screen.]
JoH: Wow, you’re really pulling out all the stops! This is an AWESOME scouting program; stats, videos, the whole nine yards!
JoC: [Looks over as well – the camera shows some very detailed training reports on both Brimstone and Night Druid] And here I thought he just got that laptop to talk to all the woman that put up all those fan sites about him. [Grins snarkliy at Jaq of Diamonds] Who knew he was such the computer genius under that pretty face?
JoD: Very funny. Ha ha, it is to laugh. [He looks over at Clubs] This is not going to be an easy match, you know. There’s a reason that Brimstone and Night Druid have kept those belts.
JoC: And that reason is ‘cause they cheat like mad.
JoD: Well, yes. So how do you plan to combat that strategy, partner of mine?
[Clubs looks up into the night sky again, then grins at his partner, showing of his rather long, wolf-like teeth.]
JoC: Don’t give them an opening, then beat on ‘em until they give up the belts… or sit back and watch you make ‘em tap out, whichever comes first. Although, we may need to invest in some extra ring gear.
JoD: [Raises an eyebrow?] That being?
JoC: Some noses plugs – have you even been downwind of Brimstone?
JoD: [Shudders] Not when I can avoid it.
[The four friends look at each other, and Jak is starts to laugh softly. She leans against Spades, who puts his arm around her in a brotherly hug.]
JoH: Whatever happens, I have a feeling that West Virginia is in for a night it’s never gonna forget.
[Fade to black.]
[A few dozen feet behind BAL, inner-city kids are playing hoops in a decrepit court surrounded by brick buildings whose crumbling walls are covered by various tags and graffiti. Next to KEW's resident reporter stands a sour-faced Gamma Ray. We know he isn't a happy camper because we can see it on his face. His face that we can see. Because it's not concealed by a mask. It's not an especially handsome face to begin with, and a deep frown doesn't help matters much.]
BAL: Folks, I'm here with-
GR: I'm rather displeased, Lieberman, so cut the crap, for once.
BAL: Err, ok. I admit I was expecting you to be a little angry about losing your mask and-
GR: Indeed. The situation is deplorable, but it's not my main grievance.
BAL: Right, because the secret- Wait... It's not your main grievance?
BAL: But for months and months you've been going on and on about your mask and preserving your secret identity! And it's not your main grievance?
GR: That's what I said, Lieberman. Maybe you should make an appointment with your otologist.
BAL: My what?
GR: Being robbed of my mask won't bring a smile to my face, Lieberman, and it will earn some retribution. But as one of the KEW's enlightened fans aptly pointed out to me, in this new age of DNA identification and finger print databases, a mask doesn't offer as much protection as it once did. Our government, no matter how corrupt, probably knows exactly who I am already. It's part of the things a modern superhero has to accept.
BAL: So... you're still a superhero.
GR: Of course!
BAL: One could have hoped that...
GR: A mask doesn't make the superhero, Lieberman! The superpowers do!
BAL: [sighs] Right.
GR: Superpowers, heart, and moral rectitude!
BAL: [coughs and chokes]
GR: Those are the innate traits that make the superhero. Either you have 'em, like me, or you don't. The mask is mostly there for the look. And since justice is blind, the look doesn't really matter.
BAL: Heh! You're almost making sense, here. It's like an episode of the Twilight Zone! So, if it's not the mask thing, what are you mad about this time?
GR: Oh, I'm mad about the mask debacle, Lieberman, make no mistake about that. But the root of the whole problem is the lack of respect people have for their betters!
BAL: Here we go...
GR: There was an era where people were polite, respectful, and knew their place in society. NOW, though, they have NO respect, NO manners, NO moral compass, and the worst of the lot somehow manage to buy themselves wrestling tickets. Once there, the biggest losers yell out the loudest boos, and cheer when a hero teeters on the brink of doom, because that's what they hope to see. They want to see one of the very few men that can redeem the human race fall and become as worthless as they are!
GR: Well they'll never see me fall, Lieberman! Never! Because I ALWAYS-
BAL: ... Save the day, yes, we know, we know...
GR: And you better remember that! This permeating cloud of insolence and disrespect has spread across the land like a pandemic, Lieberman. Even KEW's wrestlers are getting infected!
BAL: [sighs] Let me guess. The worst of the bunch are the Four Jacks?
GR: AH! Even YOU see it, Lieberman! And you're usually blind as a bat! For once, you know exactly what I'm talking about. A gang of insolent, loud-mouthed thugs whose impudent effrontery has just landed them in a big pile of trouble! You think I've never handled street gangs before? Dismantling gangsters is what I do everyday! Hoodlums and ruffians, they're rotting America from the inside!
BAL: Hold on, now, the Four Jacks are most assuredly not a street gang!
GR: Open your eyes, Lieberman! Strength in numbers? They all dress the same way? In leather? And the gambling? I know a gang when I see one!
BAL: That's ludicrous! Sure, they're a group of four, but they always fight a fair fight! They're not a street gang, they're childhood friends!
GR: Ah, but that's always how it starts, Lieberman. Growing up together in the 'hood, be it Los Angeles, Chicago, or New Jersey. The gang leaders are always childhood friends. Look in the court behind me! It's happening again as I speak!
BAL: What? Those are kids! Playing basketball!
GR: Charles Manson started out as a kid, too, you know!
BAL: The Four Jacks are not a street gang! For one thing, the fans are taking a liking to them!
GR: How clueless can you possibly be, Lieberman? They're sucking up to the masses so they can recruit more members!
BAL: Oh, come on!
GR: If somebody doesn't stop them now, suddenly, King of Bling will appear. And then, I don't know, Queen of Drag, and Ace of Base!
BAL: [Rolls his eyes]
GR: But don't worry, Lieberman. I know how to deal with gangs!
BAL: Are you telling me you're going to fight them all?
GR: Don't be stupid! That's not how you handle a problem like this! You have to approach it step by step. [darkly smiles] First, I'll take care of that impudent and presumptuous trollop, Jak of Hearts. There's a strumpet who'll learn to keep her brazen mouth shut!
GR: Shut up! I'm talking! I've dealt with promiscuous tarts before!
BAL: Stop calling Jak of Hearts a whore! She's been nothing short of an exemplary young woman, and a role-model to young girls across the country!
GR: Why are you so naïve, Lieberman? Some chick who's perpetually hanging out with three guys? That's a bordello on wheels!
GR: The second step, of course, is to eliminate the ring leader.
BAL: Jack of Spades?
GR: The fiend himself. Take out the head, so to speak, and you're left with just a disorganized band of delinquents. If he's lucky, he'll wake up in a hospital bed wondering where his teeth are, and wondering why he started messing with Gamma Ray! And if things go my way... [an evil smile crosses GR's face]
BAL: Err... and the third step?
GR: Save the day, of course!
[Fade up into the studio, where surprisingly (or perhaps not) Al is missing from his desk. Better show footage from our two teams battling for Number One Contendership to the tag team titles until he gets back!]
[Camera is focused on a large elevator door. It appears almost like a freight elevator, but upon closer inspection, is in fact a old-style elevator (one where you pull down the door from above). Sound of the elevator is coming closer.]
Male voice: "I think this might be him or both of them."
[Door is lifted and Dam, in his street gear carrying a gym bag on his shoulder, steps out.]
BAL: Dam! Got time for some questions?
[Dam turns, looking surprised to see Al here.]
Dam: What the hell Al? You psychic or something?
BAL: Heh, um, no. I got my sources. How about some questions?
[Dam closes the elevator door.]
Dam: Alright, you get three, I'm already running late, JR is prolly waiting already.
BAL: Only three questions?
Dam: Well, two to go.
[Dam's face remains stoic, perhaps showing a slight desire to get rid of Al.]
BAL: Hey, that's not fair!
[Dam breaks his serious demeanor for a moment and laughs.]
Dam: Just blowing smoke at you Al! But make it snappy!
BAL: Um, uh, okay. The Firewalkers are scheduled to face the Taylor Twins for the #1 tag title contendership. Your thoughts about your opponents, seeing as how you've not faced them before?
Dam: Neither had we faced the 'Geeks, but we won. And now there is even more incentive for us to win. Winner gets to take on the Legion.
Dam: Yeah, yeah. You really think Brim and Druid won't be the champs come Defiance? Get real! Those two don't know an honest fight if it hit them over the head. They'll find a way to wuss-out and keep the titles against the Jacks.
BAL: Well, you seem certain, I'll take your word for it. About those Twins?
Dam: They've been impressive, I'll give them that.
[Elevator starts heading back down.]
BAL: Um, well, you and JR on the same wave length now?
Dam: You bet your goldtooth we are!
BAL: I don't have...
Dam: Not only did we defeat the 'Geeks, we are one more match away from getting our hands on the Legion. You think we lack motivation?
BAL: Hey! I never said...
Dam: One more question.
BAL (ponders for a moment): Why the Firewalkers and not the Twins? I mean, what makes you more worthy to face the Legion?
Dam (visibly irritated): Twins may think they've been screwed by the Legion in that last match. I say they haven't even scratched the surface of what me and JR have had to put up with from Smelly and Hairy.
BAL: Well, I won't keep you any longer.
[Dam turns and takes a a few steps, before turning back.]
Dam: Al? You take a message to the Twins from me?
BAL: Um, sure
[Dam looks straight into the camera, through gritted teeth he delivers his message.]
Dam: Taylor Twins! JR and me... (Dam has his hand in a fist, with the thumb pointing at himself)
[Dam turns away again, heading down the corridor, finally entering the door at the far end. The sound of the elevator coming up again can be heard. Jrollins steps out of the elevator and he sees Big Al right there. Al comes over.]
Jrollins: Hey Al, you seen Dam by chance?
BAL: Yeah, he just went that way. You got a second J?
Jrollins: I am in a hurry but for you, Al, I can make a moment. But let’s be quick cause the Firewalkers need to train.
BAL: Okay I’ll be quick. So how is Firewalkers as a team? I mean after all is there stress between you two?
Jrollins: Al, come on. Why would there be stress? We are now more focused and closer as a team then we have been in a very long time. We have a spirit that hasn’t been broken and that has been strengthened by the adversity. [Jrollins looks at his watch] But I’ve gotta go Al, Dam is waiting.
[Jrollins walks off in the direction Dam went as Al tries to object]
THE TAYLOR TWINS
[Fade in on the usual KEW backdrop and Big Al Lieberman. He is there with The Taylor Twins. Jimmy is dressed in jeans and a black T-shirt, while Jack wears jeans and a white polo shirt.]
BAL: The Taylor Twins will be facing the Firewalkers on the upcoming Lion's Den and the winner will go on to face Legion at Defiance for the tag team championship... and last Lion's Den, we all know what happened when Jack Taylor faced Brimstone and how Legion cost him the match... Jack, anything to say about that match?
[Jack opens his mouth, but the words don't come out right away.]
Jack: Well... ah...
Jack: I... you know... things... didn't...
[Another pause... he clearly is unsure what to say.
One person is never unsure what to say, though.]
Jimmy: Big Al, my brother Jack had Brimstone beat... everybody saw it with their own two eyes and everybody knows that Brimstone couldn't beat my brother without NightDruid helping him out... this is why the whole deal of Legion insisting somebody beat them one-on-one to earn a title shot is so ridiculous... because they know... they know... I tell you, they _know_ that they can't handle a one-on-one match, so they sneak in their partner when the referee's not looking to turn the tide in their favor! But after this Lion's Den, there will be a team they will have to face team to team, if you will, and Jack and I are determined that it's going to be the two of us who get Legion in that ring!
[Al, figuring he'll get most of the commentary from Jimmy, turns to him.]
BAL: But you are aware that the Firewalkers believe they have issues to settle with Legion as well.
Jimmy: Who doesn't have issues to settle with Legion... the way those two have been operating, the whole KEW tag team roster may as well be coming for their heads... but only one team is guaranteed that shot at Defiance, and Jack and I are gonna do whatever it takes... so long as we stay within the rules, of course, because it's so much better when you earn your way to the top than it is to take short cuts, even if Legion seems to think otherwise... but like I said, Jack and I are going to go all out and get ourselves that tag team title shot and our chance to get Legion in the ring, two on two like it should be, and prove to everyone here who is the best tag team in the KEW.
BAL: What about the fact Legion has a title shot that night... it could very well be Jak of Clubs and Jaq of Diamonds who end up becoming the new champions.
[Jimmy does something unusual for him...
Jimmy: You know...
[...but not for that long.]
Jimmy: You are right, Big Al, it may not be Legion walking out with the tag team titles and it would certainly serve them right if they lost the belts, considering every dirty, rotten trick they've been pulling since they won those belts. But regardless, there's a tag team title shot at stake when we face the Firewalkers and that's not gonna change whether or not Legion holds those titles. Now, granted, Jack and I would love nothing more than to see Legion at Defiance as that would be our opportunity to bring them down for good, but just as we are gonna earn that right to get a tag team title shot at Defiance, so we are gonna sit back and watch Legion face Jak and Jaq and see what comes of that, because while we may rather face Legion, we want that match to be determined fair and square... of course, when you are talking about Legion, that may not happen, but we're certainly not going to add to the problem.
You know what I'm talking about, right, Jack?
[Jack pauses... and pauses for much longer than Jimmy just did.]
Jack: Well... yeah... you're... um... right.
[He then nods as Jimmy goes right back to talking.]
Jimmy: Now, again, I want it to be clear that we have no problem whatsoever with the Firewalkers and we understand that they have things they gotta address with Legion... but like I said, this is our big opportunity, our big chance, our big moment for us to claim that top contender spot and show the KEW fans just who is the best tag team around these parts! So we're gonna come at the Firewalkers from all sides and earn our way to that tag team title shot, then follow it up by earning our way to the tag team titles, something Legion never learned how to do! And then, that will prove to the KEW fans just who ranks as the best tag team here.
Now, Big Al, I still like you, but there's tapes to watch and matches to prepare for, so let's go, Jack!
[He quickly walks off camera as Jack looks at Big Al for a moment.]
Jack: Yeah... thanks, Al... it's been... ah... cool.
[He shakes Al's hand as the shot fades out. Fade back...well, an attempt to fade back to the studio.]
BAL VO: --ever agai-- No more int--!!
BAL VO: --t's ju-- hear from our mai-- event --participa--
BAL VO: *sigh*
[Camera opens in a movie theatre lobby. A pair of large doors appears in front of the camera. Above the doors lies a small, lighted marquee with the words “SUPERMAN RETURNS” on it. Suddenly, the doors swing open and a crowd of people begins piling out. It’s an eclectic group, full of kids, parents, teenagers, etc. Finally, the last of the crowd makes its way out of the theatre and off-camera. After a brief pause, the final two moviegoers finally come through the doors. Who else? It’s BRAD and BLAKE, the ÜBERGEEKS! Each one is wearing a t-shirt with the Superman emblem emblazoned on the front. The two happy-go-lucky geeks are all smiles, obviously excited from having just seen the movie.]
BRAD: Dude, that was AWESOME!
BLAKE: Superman is BACK, baby! That was cooler than “Serenity”!
BRAD: Wasn’t that great when Superman was flying around and landed on the roof to-…
BLAKE: [Cutting Brad off] DUDE! Don’t give away spoilers. Some people haven’t seen it, yet.
BRAD: Oh, right… [Waves and grins sheepishly at the camera] Sorry.
BLAKE: Hey, but you know what’ll be even MORE awesome than Superman returns? When we team up with Rook to take on Ravi Kapoor and those two oversized ass-hats, the Problem Solvers!
BRAD: You got that right! I mean, just think about it. We, the two BIGGEST comic book fans in the KEW will be standing there side by side with real, honest-to-goodness superhero!
BLAKE: Yeah, with a mask and everything!
BRAD: [Rubs his chin and looks ponderous] Say, Brad, have you ever noticed how there’s never been ANOTHER superhero in the KEW besides Rook… Not EVER?
BLAKE: [Rubs his chin, too] Yeah, y’know, you’re right. Try as I might, I just can’t think of any instance where the KEW had another superhero besides Rook.
BRAD: [Shrugs] Well, anyway, we know that with a superhero like Rook in our corner that Ravi Kapoor shouldn’t give us any trouble.
BLAKE: Yeah, I mean, what super-powers does HE have? The incredible ability to run a 24-hour convenience store and make you feel guilty about eating beef?
BRAD: [Smacks BLAKE on the arm] Dude, that’s not cool! Look, just go get your guitar, okay?
BLAKE: [Sighs] Okay, okay, I’m going…
[BLAKE walks off, leaving BRAD to face the camera, an angry _expression etched upon his face]
BRAD: As for YOU, “Mr. Halliburton”… You’ve been a thorn in our sides, a mote in our eyes and a tribble in our grain-stores since the VERY BEGINNING! You and your “Problem Children” just can’t seem to get off our backs. Well, if that’s the way you want it, bub… Then there’s obviously just one thing to do… And THAT…
[BLAKE returns holding an acoustic guitar, a bright smile on his face, which BRAD promptly imitates]
BRAD: Is to SING a FILK!
[BLAKE begins strumming the tune of “Hello, Dolly!” surprisingly well, in an amateurish way, upon the guitar, while BRAD provides vocals]
BRAD: Well Halliiiiii- BURTON, Yes Halliiiiii- BURTON…
You just couldn’t leave the Übergeeks alone.
So Halliiiiii- BURTON, Now Halliiiiii- BURTON…
You’ll be carried on a gurney all the… Way back home!
You’re gonna beeeeee… HURTIN’ when your blooooood’s… SPURTIN’…
You’ll experience a whole new world of pain!
Say your prayers, Hally…
Even though God won’t care, Hally…
Let’s see how well you show some class…
When we shove that cane up your ass…
And Hally… You’ll never be the same agaaaaain!
[BLAKE stops playing the guitar and smiles for the camera]
BLAKE: And that, Hally, was a filk written just for you!
BRAD: Courtesy of the Übergeeks… The-
BRAD & BLAKE: BEST… TAG-TEAM… EVER!
[BRAD and BLAKE flash the “Live long and prosper” sign as the camera fades out]
Big Al: Hello KEW Fans, I'm Big Al Lieberman. Today we are in Columbus, Ohio where the fifth Toro's Gym and Community Center opened earlier today. The masked luchador has done it again, bringing civil services to those in need.
[Al walks backwards through the halls of the community center pointing out the different areas]
BAL: Here's the free clinic....the legal office....down that hall is the continued education classes. And here we have the main community hall where we find Rook sitting with several children from the neighborhood. Let's see what they're up to.
[Al walks up to the table where Rook and 5 children from age 7 to 12 are playing a game of some kind.]
Child: Cyclops will attack Ultron with ranged combat...rolled a 7 plus 11 to hit. I hit an 18!
Rook: Ah, you got me! How many clicks of damage?
Rook: Dang! That takes me out. You kids keep playing I'll be back later.
Kids: Okay! Thanks Rook!
Rook: No problem. [Rook stands and turns to face Al and the camera] Hola, Al! How are you my friend?
BAL: I'm well Rook. Thanks for having Kenny and I at another opening. It never get's old seeing deserving people getting the help they need.
Rook: How true Al. I'm sure number 50 will be just as exciting as this opening is. I would like to thank the community leaders for welcoming us into their neighborhood and I would like to send out a special thank you to the Ubergeeks.
BAL: The Ubergeeks? What for pulling the Problem Solvers off of you at the Lions Den?
Rook: Well, yeah. They save my butt there, but really I want to thank them for their donations to the Center. Brad and Blake donated games like Heroclix that these children are playing as well as a library of RPG books for older kids and the entire Dragon Ball Z anime series for our video room. The guys really came through.
BAL: That's impressive.
Rook: That's the Geeks. They are great guys.
BAL: Speaking of the Geeks, you are teaming up with them in a six man tag team against the Problem Solvers and Ravi Kapoor. How do you think that will go.
Rook: Better than the last time I got teamed up with someone.
BAL: You're referring to the team up with Gamma Ray.
Rook: Exactly. This time I know I have someone in my corner I can count on. The Geeks are the premiere tag team in KEW and it's an honor to be going into the ring with them.
BAL: But what about the Problem Solvers, those guys are both heavy weights. How do you think your wrestling style will match up against them?
Rook: Yeah, they're big. No doubt, but I'm pretty fast. They'll have to get their hands on me before they can hurt me and I don't plan on standing still or getting stuck in their corner. The Geeks and I have been working on some tag moves that I think will blow the minds of our fans.
BAL: Really? Anything you can share?
Rook: No can do mi amigo. You'll just have to wait and see at the Lions Den.
BAL: Fair enough. So Rook, we've talked about the Geeks and the Problem Solvers, now let's talk about the co-number one contender for the KEW Championship belt, Mr Ballywood, Ravi Kapoor. What are your thoughts on what a win or loss before the Pay-Per-View would mean?
Rook: I focus on one match at a time Al. I'll talk about the PPV after the...
Maureen: Hey Rook! We need to get going.
BAL: Maureen? Ladies and gentlemen, it's our very own Ring MC Maureen Carter! So Maureen, what are you doing here?
Maureen: Oh, hey Al. I'm just picking up Rook.
BAL: Is this another date?
Rook: What do you mean by another Al?
BAL: uhm, well, you know there's talk on the KEW boards that say the two of you are...
Maureen: Believe what you what Al. Rook and I have a plane to catch.
BAL: Oh? Where are you off to?
Rook: Maureen and I were invited to the premiere of the new Jack Black movie “Nacho Libre” in LA tonight.
BAL: I love Jack Black!
Rook: Me too, apparently he became a lucha fan while making the movie. So he invited me and Maureen out.
BAL: Well, I guess we should let you go then.
Rook: Thanks for coming out again Al. Can't wait to have you and Kenny at the next opening.
BAL: Any last words for the fan?
Rook: Sure, Al. Remember kids, be true to your faith, true to yourself, true to your family and true to your country. Viva la Vida!
BAL: Thanks Rook. Maureen. And to you our KEW fans. I'm AL Lieberman.
[Al watches Rook and Maureen walk out of the community center]
BAL: Damn that Rook is a lucky son of a ....
[screen goes to black]
RAVI KAPOOR & THE PROBLEM SOLVERS
[Four men are standing, waiting for a cue, in front of what is obviously a blue screen. Off to the right, with his arms folded across his chest, is one of the two top contenders to be the first ever KEW Heavyweight Champion of the World, Ravi Kapoor. Kapoor has a cocky grin on his face, and behind him we can see a logo written in a stylized, almost Sanskrit like script. It is in green letters on an orange background, and reads “Mister Bollywood” in large print, and “Ravi Kapoor” in smaller letters centered under that.
The left side of the screen is dominated by the imposing presence of the Problem Solvers, Pete Davidson and Dan Muldoon. Front in centre ahead of the two big men is the always impeccably dressed Mister Haliburton. Haliburton holds an ornate cane in his left hand, and simply sneers at the camera, while his two men adopt the pose of nasty looking bouncers. They look more than ready to kick someone’s ass… anyone’s ass… for any reason they or Haliburton feels like. Even though you can’t see their eyes behind the sunglasses they wear, you can just tell they’ve got a nasty look on their faces. Behind the tag team is a different background from the other side… it’s a faded photograph of the interior of a jewelry shop. Over the background, in white lettering with a dark black border to highlight it, appear the words “Problem Solvers”.
Now that our scene is set, just sit back and enjoy the ride, folks. Ravi Kapoor uncrosses his arms, looks right at the camera, and starts to rant.]
RK: Rook! Geeks! Do you know what you’re doing? Do you know what’s going on at the next Lion’s Den? I’ll tell you… it’s more than just a six man tag. What’s happening is that you three wanna-bes are hitching a ride. That’s right, you’re sneaking your way into somewhere you don’t belong, the main event! And you’re doing it on the backs of true superstars like myself and like the Problem Solvers here.
[Kapoor points a thumb over to the huge tag team on his left, and the huge Dan Muldoon flexes one bicep to emphasize the point and his strength.]
RK: Now Rook, I know you think you belong there, given your number one contendership to the World title. But let me explain something to you. Just because you’ve hitched your wagon to my rising star, it doesn’t mean anything… sure, you get some extra attention until I’m done beating you to within an inch of your life, but the spotlight won’t stay on you once I’ve moved on. You get that, Rooky?
Let me put it this way. Everyone remembers Babe Ruth calling his shot in the World Series. Does any remember the name of the pitcher who gave that homer up? Everyone remembers Wilt Chamberlain scoring a hundred points in one game, but does anyone remember who was guarding him? That’s the kind of thing that’s in store for you, Rook. Yes, you get to be there, front and centre, when I make history. You get a great story to tell the grandkids some day. But you also get to be one little footnote in the seven book volume that will be Ravi Kapoor’s wrestling legacy. You get to be the answer to an obscure trivia question.
[Kapoor grins widely, pausing a bit in an effort to rub in the insult even more.]
RK: Now, I understand you may be bitter about your stardom coming to an end. I understand you may want to take one last chance to get some cheap shots in on me. And I understand you’ve dredged up a couple of nerds to help do your dirty work. Well, Rook… Ubergeeks… if you three decide to cause problems for me this week, on my way to the KEW World title, I’ve got two guys watching my back who make a living out of solving problems.
[Mr. Haliburton takes front and center, shaking his head.]
Mr. Haliburton: First you Ubergeeks attack my car. Now you go after our business decisions… What you are doing, boys, is building up a tab to me. A tab that will paid in pain and suffering. Your tab will be paid in full, and there will be interest. So go ahead with your chants, and your games, and your weird costumes. Because your game is ending, very very shortly.
[Dan Muldoon and Pete Davidson give menacing stares into the camera.]
Mr. Haliburton: Now, Mister Rook… I don’t know you personally. I don’t particularly care to, either. My good friend Ravi Kapoor here felt that you were a Problem, and made a convincing case to me that you needed to be dealt with. We weren’t able to finish the job last week, so Mr. Kapoor gets a two for one deal. At some point, you’re going to have to compete against my Problem Solvers…
[Mr. Haliburton sighs and takes off his glasses.]
Mr. Haliburton: Now, Mister Rook, take a good look at Misters Muldoon and Davidson. Specifically, note that both men are about twice your size. Each one of them. Now, I know you’ve heard all that stuff about “It’s not the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” Well, anyone who believes that is a sucker. You’re going up against them, and you’re going to get squashed. Why? Because they are bigger and stronger than you are.
[If Mr. Haliburton has noticed that Ravi is even smaller than Rook, he hasn’t commented on it yet.]
Mr. Haliburton: So here’s what will happen. Mister Rook will get hurt because I told my good friend Ravi Kapoor that we’d take care of him. The Ubergeeks will get hurt because… well, we don’t like them. Do we, boys?
[He looks behind his shoulder at the Problem Solvers, who shake their heads in stereo.]
Mr. Haliburton: And in the end, we’ll end up with the winner’s share. And you three will end up with a lot of aches and pain.
[Fade back --FINALLY-- to Big Al back in the studio.]
BAL: All right, it looks like we've got all those "technical difficulties" out of the way and-- [He pauses, hearing a few comments off camera.] What?! We're out of time?! [He sighs, clearly exasperated...and really, can you blame him?] Folks, looks like we'll have to wait until Lion's Den to here the Commissioner's announcement. See you there!