(a radio play)
Dan Harvey Pedrick
The Carswell Family:
Donny Carswell - a boy of seven years
Darla - his sister, twelve years
Delfie (Mom) - the mother
Delbert (Daddy, Dad) - the father
Donald (Granpa, Dad) - the grandfather
Elementary Teacher - a mature woman
Norbert - the neighbour
Delivery Man - a young man
Scene One: The Carswell family home at dinnertime
1. MUSIC: THEME ("SCMALTZY WALTZ" played on Hammond B-3
organ) ESTABLISH, FADE UNDER
2. SOUND: CLATTERING OF DISHES AND SILVERWARE
3. MOM: Darla! Donny! It's dinnertime! Have you washed
your little hands and faces?
4. KIDS: Yes, Mommy! Com-ing!
5. SOUND: MORE CLATTERING AND KNOCKING OF CHAIRS, UNDER
6. MOM: C'mon, Darling! C'mon, Dad.
7. DARLA: Mommy, Donny didn't wash his ha-ands.
8. DONNY: I did too!
9. DARLA: He didn't use soap. He just stuck them under the
water for about one second!
10. MOM: Alright, young man. C'mon, now! Show them to
your Daddy. [BEAT]
11. DEL: Hmmmph. [BEAT] Show them to your mother.
12. MOM: Open them up. Let me see your fingies... Oh, no.
You go right back and wash them with soap, little
man, or no Lone Ranger tonight.
13. SOUND: DONNY STOMPING AWAY
14. DONNY (Whines).
15. MOM Now, none of that, or--
16. DONNY: (Screams furiously from down the hall) ...and I
don't want any of that cheese on my spaghetti!
17. MOM: Well! I think I know a grouchy bear who better
go to bed early tonight.
18. DARLA: ...at seven-thirty, right when the Lone Ranger
comes on the radio. Right Mommy?
Scene one (cont.)
1. MOM: ...if he doesn't come right back in here and mind
his P's and Q's...
2. SOUND: DINNERTIME CLATTERING, CONTINUE UNDER
3. GRANPA: Aw, pshaw!
4. MOM: Del, help Dad with his napkin, will you? Darla!
Don't do that! Donny doesn't want more cheese on
his spaghetti! [BEAT] How was your day dear?
5. DEL: Hmmph. Fine.
6. MOM: And how about you, Dad? Did you see some of your
old friends downtown?
7. GRANPA: Eh? Old friends? What old friends? My old
friends are all dead and gone.
8. MOM: Oh, Baloney. Now let's see those hands,
Donny. Ah! That's better!
9. GRANPA: I was born in 1865, the same day Lincoln was shot.
There aren't many people left who can say that.
10. MOM: Yes, we know, Dad.
11. DONNY: Why did Lincoln get shot, Granpa?
12. SOUND: DOG YELPS
13. MOM: Oops! Out you go, Toby!
14. SOUND: DOG WHINES
15. SOUND: DOOR OPENS, CLOSES
16. MOM: Now, then...
17. GRANPA: The rebels shot him, son, just like they shot Uncle
18. KIDS: (Giggle.)
19. MOM: Oh, Dad! You and your Uncle Rexford! Pass the
butter, Del, please. [BEAT] Thank you, Dear.
20. SOUND: DINNERTIME CLATTERING, FADE
Scene Two: Carswell children's bedroom
1. SOUND: BOUNCING BEDSPRINGS, CONTINUE UNDER
2. DARLA: ...twenty-six... twenty-seven... twenty-eight...
3. DONNY: I'm the Lone Ranger tonight!
4. DARLA: ...thirty... No you're not. You're Tonto.
5. DONNY: (At the top of his lungs) I am not!
6. DARLA: ...thirty-six... Yes you are! Anyway, Lupita
Mendez told me at school what Tonto means...
7. DONNY: What?
8. DARLA: ...forty-two... forty-three... It means "dumb",
and that's you, Donny. Forty-five... forty-
9. DONNY: (At the top of his lungs) I am not!
10. DEL: (Shouts from other room) If I have to come in
there...! And stop that infernal jumping, do you
11. DARLA: ...forty-nine... fifty! (Stops, shouts) What
time is it, Mommy?
12. MOM: Almost seven-thirty, just about time to listen
to the Lone Ranger, but only when you've got your
13. DARLA: I've got mine on, but Donny doesn't! [BEAT]
14. SOUND: MOM'S APPROACHING FOOTSTEPS
15. MOM: Now, then. Get into these jammies, Donny. [BEAT]
OK, I'll turn the radio on--until I hear any more
shenanigans in here. Then, it goes off.
16. KIDS Yes, Mommy.
Scene Two (cont.):
1. ANNOUNCER: We interrupt our regular program to bring you
this special bulletin. Please stand by...
2. DONNY: Awww! What the...
3. DARLA: I'll get Mommy!
4. SOUND: FOOTSTEPS RUNNING DOWN THE HALL
5. DARLA: (Shouts) Mommy! Mommy! (Returns) Daddy!
Granpa! Come! Listen!
6. SOUND: TELETYPE MACHINES, UP [BEAT]
7. ANNOUNCER: Ladies and gentlemen, word has just been received
from our NBC newsroom in New York that Joe Stalin
is dead. We will bring you further bulletins as
they become available. We now return to our
regularly scheduled program.
8. DEL: Hurray! That dirty bum is gone!
9. MOM: Oh my goodness, what a relief!
10. DARLA: Yaaay! Stalin's dead!
11. SOUND: DARLA CLAPPING
12. GRANPA: Who is it? See? There's another one gone!
13. DONNY: Who the hell is Joe Stalin?
14. MOM: Donny!
15. SOUND: LONE RANGER PROGRAM RETURNS
16. TONTO: Be careful, Kimo-sobby. Geronimo... him heap bad
17. RANGER: I know, Tonto, but whatever happens to me, he'll
never get away with this, because we have the Law
on our side.
18. TONTO: You right, Kimo-sobby...
19. SOUND: OVERTURE, FADE UP & OUT
Scene Three: School classroom
1. SOUND: SCHOOL BELL
2. SOUND: CHILDREN STIRRING
3. TEACHER: Wait! Get right back in those seats! [BEAT]
Sitting straight... Hands folded in front of
you... [BEAT] That's better. Alright. Row
three may go...
4. SOUND: FOOTSTEPS OF SIX STUDENTS QUIETLY LEAVING
5. TEACHER: Alright. Row one may go...
6. SOUND: FOOTSTEPS OF SIX STUDENTS QUIETLY LEAVING, FADE
Scene Four: Schoolyard
1. SOUND: SCHOOLYARD NOISE, VOICES, UNDER
2. DARLA: C'mon, Donny. You know I have to walk you home.
3. DONNY: Why?
4. DARLA: Mom said... 'cause your too little to cross the
highway. Now gimme your hand.
5. DONNY: I'm coming! But I'm not holding your hand like
some girl !
6. DARLA: Well keep up, then, or I'm telling. [BEAT]
7. DONNY: Lone Ranger tonight, boy!
8. DARLA: Tomorrow night. But I'm not listening. I'm invited
to Cathy's to see their new television.
9. DONNY: What's a television?
10. DARLA: It's like the movies, silly, 'cept it's right in
11. DONNY: Oh... yeah...
12. DARLA: Oh yeah, he says. You don't even know what it is!
Do you, Numbskull? [BEAT]
13. DONNY: Yes I do! [BEAT] Uh, is it like the radio?
14. DARLA: Sort of, but there's pictures, too. It has a
little screen and everything. [BEAT]
15. DONNY: ... Wow! [BEAT] [BEAT] Darla, we gotta get one!
16. DARLA: Yeah, I know. We better start asking Daddy.
Scene Five: Carswell family yard
1. SOUND: CAR ENTERING DRIVEWAY, STOPS, DOOR OPENS & CLOSES
2. SOUND: PUP'S HAPPY BARKING, UNDER
3. KIDS: Daddy! Can we get a television? Can we? Huh?
4. DEL: Arghhh! Not now! I just got home from work, OK?
5. DONNY: C'mon, Daddy.
6. DARLA: The Johnsons have one, Daddy. It's real neat!
7. DEL: Hmmm. They do, do they?
8. KIDS: Yeah, they do! C'mon, Daddy. Please?
Scene Six: Carswell family dinner table
1. SOUND: DINNERTIME CLATTER, UNDER
2. MOM: Donny, macaroni noodles are food, not tinkertoys.
And use your fork.
3. DARLA: Mommy, can we get a television like the Johnsons
4. MOM: Well, that's a pretty big decision, dear.
Better ask your father about that.
5. DEL: (A deep sigh.)
6. MOM: Is that all you have to say, Darling?
7. DEL: They're a couple hundred dollars. And where
would we put it?
8. MOM: Well, if we move that old table of Dad's..
9. GRANPA: Move what?
10. MOM: (Louder) I say, move your old table. I mean,
wouldn't you rather have it in your room anyway?
11. GRANPA: Well, it was Uncle Rexford's table. Why do you
want to move it?
12. MOM: Because we're getting a television.
13. DEL: We Are?
14. KIDS: Yaaay!
15. GRANPA: What in the hell are you talking about?
16. MOM: Dad, please! The children!
17. KIDS: Yaaay! We're getting a television. Mom sa-aid!
18. GRANPA: Aw, Pshaw!
19. MOM: Del, Dad's napkin...
Scene Seven: The Carswell home
1. SOUND: DOORBELL
2. KIDS: It's here, everybody! It's here! Oh, boy!
3. SOUND: RUNNING FEET
4. MOM: Now you kids just hold your horses! I'll get it.
5. SOUND: DOOR OPENING
6. MOM: Hello.
7. TV MAN: Hello, Mrs. Carswell. We have a brand new
Sylvania television set here for you.
8. KIDS: Yaay! Yaay!
9. MOM: Now you two hush! Yes, bring it right in. We're all
ready for it. My husband is just now up on the
roof mounting the antenna.
10. TV MAN: OK, that's swell, Mrs. Carswell. Could you just
hold the door open for us? It's pretty big and
heavy, and all.
11. MOM: Of course. Children, go tell Daddy the
television's here. And don't startle Granpa--he's
holding the ladder.
12. KIDS: OK! Let's go!
13. SOUND: FEET STAMPEDING AWAY
14. KIDS: Dad! Granpa! The television's here!
15. TV MEN: (Puffing) OK, watch out. It's just gonna make
it. [BEAT] Oof! It's heavy! Right down here all
16. MOM: Perfect! Oh, it's lovely! Such a beautiful
cabinet! Thank you so much. Um, would you like to
stay and watch when we turn it on?
17. TV MEN: Well, uh, sure, Mrs. Carswell. Thanks! I mean,
if you're sure it won't be no trouble.
Scene Seven (cont.):
1. MOM: Oh, certainly not. I'll put on some coffee. Oh,
here comes Del. Did you get it all hooked up,
2. DEL: Yeah, I just have to pass the cable through the
window and attach it, right here I think.
3. TV MAN: That's right, Mr. Carswell. It don't matter
which way it goes on but you might have to move
the antenna 'round some to get the best picture.
4. DEL: Right. Well, That's it. Let's plug it in and
5. KIDS: Oh, Boy! Here we go!
6. SOUND: CLICK [BEAT]
7. SOUND: STATIC, UNDER
8. TV MAN: There you go. Now just tune the converter to
9. SOUND: UHF CONVERTER CLUNKS
10. DEL: There's something. Presto!
11. KIDS: It's too fuzzy!
12. GRANPA: It's no better than the dad-blasted radio!
13. DEL: Hang on! I'm going up and turn the antenna.
Shout up to me when it's right, OK?
14. SOUND: FOOTSTEPS HURRYING AWAY
Scene Eight: On the roof
1. SOUND: NEIGHBOR'S LAWNMOWER IN DISTANCE
2. SOUND: FOOTSTEPS ON ASPHALT SHINGLES
3. SOUND: SIGHS OF EXERTION
4. DEL: There! Now, let's see...
5. SOUND: LAWNMOWER OFF
6. NORBERT: Hey, Delbert! Whattaya doin' up there? You got
a leaky roof or sumpthin?
7. DEL: ( Sotto voce ) Geez, Norbert. Not now. (Shouts)
Oh, Hi Norbert. No, uh, the roof's fine. Just
adjusting this antenna for the television.
8. NORBERT: Ah! So, you got one of those, did you? I guess
we won't be seeing you all that much anymore then.
9. DEL: Huh? Whattaya mean, Norbert ? I don't get it.
10. NORBERT: Well, since Phil and Ethel got theirs, they never
come out of the house. Just sit inside, starin'
at the screen all the time.
11. DEL: (Sighs.) ( Sotto voce ) What a jerk! They're
probably just trying to get away from you.
(Shouts) Yeah, OK Norbert. Thanks for the tip.
12. MOM: (Shouts from below) Are you turning it, Del?
13. DEL: Yeah, OK... I'm turning it...
14. MOM: ...other way!
15. SOUND: LAWNMOWER STARTS UP, UNDER & FADE
16. DEL: OK... How's that?
17. MOM: That's it! C'mon down. Quick!
18. DEL: OK! Hold that ladder tight, will you Dad? I'm
19. GRANPA: I've got it, kiddo!
Scene Nine: Living room
1. SOUND: KITCHEN DOOR SLAMS
2. SOUND: FOOTSTEPS HURRYING INTO ROOM
3. DEL: Hurry!
4. GRANPA: I'm hurryin'!
5. SOUND: STATIC UP, ANNOUNCER VOICE BECOMES CLEAR
6. ANNOUNCER: ...from Yucca Flats, New Mexico, less than a
minute away now from this first ever live
7. MOM: That's it! Look! It's clear!
8. DEL: What is it?
9. MOM: Shhh!
10. ANNOUNCER: ...to unleash an explosive force of over sixty-
thousand tons of TNT, in history's first ever
Hydrogen-atom bomb... Mr. Molotov, Mr. Kruschev,
We hope you are watching.
11. GRANPA: Eh? What'd he say?
12. MOM: Dad! Please!
13. DONNY: I'm scared, Mom.
14. DARLA: Me too!
15. MOM: It's OK, children. Don't worry!
16. ANNOUNCER: ...now the countdown... nine, eight, seven, six,
five, four, three. two, one, ZERO!
17. DARLA: I can't look!
18. DONNY: What's Happening! It's going all snowy again!
19. DEL: Good God!
20. GRANPA: What in the blazing hell is that supposed to be?
21. MOM: It's a new kind of atom bomb, Dad, like the one
they dropped on the Japs, only better.
22. GRANPA: Aw, pshaw!
Scene Nine (cont.):
1. SOUND: STATIC AND RUMBLING UP, UP, AND SLOW FADE
Scene Ten: The Carswell Family Yard
1. SOUND: CAR ENTERING DRIVEWAY, STOPS, DOOR OPENS & CLOSES
2. SOUND: PUP'S HAPPY BARKING, UNDER
3. DEL: Hey, Toby! Where is everyone on such a beautiful
4. SOUND: PUP'S WHINING
5. DEL: ...and your water dish is empty? (Sighs.)
Scene Twelve: Inside the Carswell home
1. SOUND: FOOTSTEPS ON PORCH STAIRS
2. SOUND: HOUSE SCREEN DOOR OPENS
3. DEL: Hi, Honey... I'm home... Hello?
4. SOUND: FOOTSTEPS ACROSS KITCHEN FLOOR
5. SOUND: CARTOONS SOUNDTRACK FROM LIVING ROOM, LOUDER
6. DEL: So! Here you all are!
7. SOUND: CARTOON SOUNDTRACK, GROTESQUE NOISES
8. KIDS: (Laughing.)
9. MOM: Sorry, Dear. I was just getting ready to start
10. GRANPA: I tell you, the human body can't move like that!
11. KIDS: It's just a cartoon, Granpa. (More laughter.)
12. GRANPA: Aw, pshaw!
13. MOM: C'mon, Dear. I'll start dinner now. Come into the
kitchen and tell me about your day.
14. SOUND: CARTOON SOUNDTRACK, FADE UNDER
15. SOUND: KITCHEN RATTLING, POTS & PANS, UNDER
16. MOM: What's the matter, Del? You look worried.
17. DEL: It's that television. I come home from work and...
it's like nobody lives here. I'm afraid we're all
becoming slaves to the damn thing...
18. MOM: Nonsense, Dear. We're just enjoying it, that's
all. Why, even Granpa likes it... in his own way.
19. DEL: Mm-hmm. And how about Toby... Does he like it
too? He doesn't even have any water.
Scene Twelve (cont.):
1. MOM: Oh, Del! [BEAT] Look. It's Friday night. Why
don't we go and visit Alice and George up at their
cottage this weekend, just the two of us. They've
been after us to come for a long time. It's so
quiet and peaceful there. They don't even have
electricity, much less a television. We'll get a
sitter to stay with the kids and Granpa. What do
2. DEL: (Sighs.) All right, I'm game. We better take
Toby, too. He needs some attention.
3. MOM: Now you're talking! We'll start packing right
4. DEL: I'll start right now. Where' all my fishing stuff?
5. MOM: In the garage, right where you left it last fall.
6. DEL: Oh, Right!
7. SOUND: KITCHEN DOOR OPENS AND CLOSES
8. SOUND: KITCHEN DOOR OPENS AGAIN
9. MOM: Now what?
10. DEL Honey, I just wanted to say... you're an angel.
11. SOUND: KISS
12. MOM: How sweet, Dear. But hurry up, now. I'm busy.
13. SOUND: COOKING SOUNDS, UNDER
14. DEL: OK! Here I go.
15. SOUND: KITCHEN DOOR CLOSES [BEAT] [BEAT]
16. SOUND: KITCHEN DOOR OPENS AGAIN
17. MOM: (Deep sigh) Really, Del! If you're feeling so
romantic, maybe we should have dinner at a
restaurant or something... (Alarmed) Hey! What's
Scene Ten (cont.):
1. DEL: I can't go!
2. MOM: What do you mean you can't go? Why not?
3. DEL: The Sugar Ray Robinson fight! It's on tomorrow night!
4. MOM: Del! What are you saying? [BEAT]
5. DEL: Honey... I can't miss that! [BEAT]
6. SOUND: TELEVISION SOUNDTRACK - BOXING MATCH - FADE UNDER
7. SOUND: TELEVISION SOUNDTRACK - CARTOONS - FADE UNDER
9. SOUND: - COLLAGE OF PERIOD TELEVISION THEMES AND SOUND CLIPS - FADE
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