(Opening Scene: Singer in spangly jacket sitting on high
stool with guitar.)
Singer: (singing to the
tune of Jerusalem) And did those teeth in ancient time...
(CAPTION: 'LIVE FROM THE CARDIFF ROOMS, LIBYA')
Singer: ... walk upon England's mountains green.
(he stops playing) Good evening and welcome ladies and
gentlemen. At this time we'd like to up the tempo a little, change the
mood. We've got a number requested by Pip, Pauline, Nigel, Tarquin,
and old Spotty - Tarquin's mother - a little number specially
written for the pubescence of ex-King Zog of Albania, and it's
entitled 'Art Gallery'. Hope you like it.
(Interior of art gallery. Two figures
enter. They are both middle-aged working mothers. Each holds the
hand of an unseen infant who is beneath the range of the camera.)
Janet: 'Allo, Marge!
Marge: Oh hello, Janet, how are you love?
Janet: Fancy seeing you! How's little Ralph?
Marge: Oh, don't ask me! He's been nothing but
trouble all morning. Stop it Ralph! (she slaps at unseen infant)
Janet: Same as my Kevin.
Janet: Nothing but trouble ... leave it alone!
He's just been in the Florentine Room and smeared tomato ketchup all
over Raphael's Baby Jesus. (shouting off sharply) Put that
Baroque masterpiece down!
Marge: Well, we've just come from the Courtauld
and Ralph smashed every exhibit but one in the Danish Contemporary
Janet: Just like my Kevin. Show him an
exhibition of early eighteenth-century Dresden Pottery and he goes
berserk. No, I said no, and I meant no! (smacks unseen infant
again) This morning we were viewing the early Flemish Masters of
the Renaissance and Mannerist Schools, when he gets out his black
aerosol and squirts Vermeer's Lady At A Window!
Marge: Still it's not as bad as spitting is it?
Janet: (firmly) No, well Kevin knows
(slaps the infant) that if he spits at a painting I'll never
take him to an exhibition again.
Marge: Ralph used to spit - he could hit a Van
Gogh at thirty yards. But he knows now it's wrong - don't you Ralph?
(she looks down) Ralph! Stop it Stop it Stop chewing that
Turner! You are ... (she disappears from shot) You are a
naughty, naughty, vicious little boy. (smack; she comes back into
shot holding a copy of Turner's Fighting Temeraire in a lovely gilt
frame but all tattered) Oh, look at that! The Fighting Temeraire
- ruined! What shall I do?
Janet: (taking control) Now don't do a
thing with it love, just put it in the bin over there.
Janet: Yes take my word for it, Marge. Kevin's
eaten most of the early nineteenth-century British landscape
artists, and I've learnt not to worry. As a matter of fact, I feel a
bit peckish myself. (she breaks a bit off the Turner) Yes...
(Marge also tastes a bit.)
Marge: I never used to like Turner.
Janet: (swallowing) No ... I don't know
much about art, but I know what I like.
(Cut to a book-lined study. At a desk in front of the shelves
sits an art critic with a mouthful of Utrillo. SUPERIMPOSED CAPTION:
'>AN ART CRITIC')
Critic: (taking out stringy bits as he
speaks) Mmmm... (munches) Well I think Utrillo's
brushwork is fantastic... (stifles burp) But he doesn't
always agree with me ... (belches) Not after a Rubens, anyway
... all those cherries ... ooohh ... (suddenly looks down)
Ur'gh! I've got Vermeer all down my shirt...
Wife: (bringing in a water jug and glass on a
tray and laying it on his desk) Watteau, dear?
Critic: What a terrible joke.
Wife: But it's my only line.
Critic: (rising vehemently) All right!
All right! But you didn't have to say it! You could have kept quiet
for a change
Critic: Oh, that's typical. Talk talk talk.
Natter natter natter!
(Cut back to singer.)
Singer: (singing) Bring me my arrows of
desire ... Bring me my spear oh clouds unfold ... Bring me my
chariot of fire.
(A sexy girl (Katya ) enters and starts fondling him.)