Act 1, Scene 1 - Behind the Scenes

- Stage: The Castle's Main Hall
- Setting: all in Black and White
- Section: A, B
- Puppets: Lord(Lynx), James(Border Collie), Inspector(Coon), Priscilla(Persian Cat), Jasper(Snow Leopard), Thomas(Sheepdog), Director(Black Wolf) , Reporter(Cheshire cat)
- Props: Camera with operator (Labrador Puppy)
- Music: "Murder Music", "Raumpatrouille Orion"


AMB-01 - Main Hall

Lights out

SFX-0101 - Opening Music
SFX-0101 - Narrator: "Inspector Fritz Fritham had decided that this would be the last case he would ever investigate. Still, it turned out to be one of the most intricate kind. Even after weeks of strainful investigation, Mr. Jasper Fetherston still remained dead. When the sun began to set on this cold November afternoon, the inspector returned once more to the halls of Blackwhite Castle, where he found Lord Molesworth-Houghton and his daughter Priscilla, who were just about to have their afternoon tea."

Lights on

Scene from the TV show, all in black and white, curtains only reveal the middle part of the stage, equipment and cameras are hidden for now

Mrs. Priscilla Molesworth and Lord Moleswoth-Houghton sitting at the table

Dead body of Jasper Fetherston (huge knife in the chest)

SFX-0102 - knocking

Lord: "Who is it? James? Could you please check the door?"

James (offstage): "Yes, sir!"

SFX-0103 - door opens

James: "It's Inspector Fritham, my lord. He says, he needs to talk to you."

Lord: "So, he still hasn't given up on this hopeless case? Very well, bring him in."

James: "Yes, my lord."

SFX-0104 - footsteps on floor arrive

Inspector Fritham enters from the left.
Butler James enters from the left (behind Inspector)

James: "My lord, Inspector Frits Fritham."

Inspector: "Good afternoon, my dear lord Molesworth-Houghton."

Lord: "Good afternoon, my dear inspector. We were just about to have our afternoon tea. So why don't you have a seat and join us. James! Could you please bring another cup for our guest?"

James: "Yes, my lord."

James leaves to the right while the Inspector 'sits down'.

Lord: "I gather you have not come for your mere amusement, Sir. So how can I be of service?"

Inspector: "My lord, I came to tell you, that I have decided to lay down my investigations on this case."

Lord: "Oh, I see. Well, that is all too understandable. All these weeks of relentless research and questioning, and still not the faintest clue about who might have killed the poor Mr. Fetherston. On one hand, I must admit I'm quite relieved, for finally I will be able to dispose of his rotting body in my living-room."

James brings in a cup of tea and puts it down

Lord: "But on the other hand I sympathize with you. It must be hard to realize that the murder of Mr. Jesper Fetherston will forever remain a mystery. Too bad. Still, I wish to thank you, for your exemplary commitment regarding this case, and I also wish to-"

Inspector: "Excuse me to interrupt you, my lord, but I think you have misunderstood what I have been trying to say. Understand this, I mean to arrive at the truth. The truth, however ugly in itself, is always curious and beautiful to those who seek after it. I am much aged, my powers may not be what they were. In all probability this is the last case I shall ever investigate. But Fritz Fritham does not end with a failure. Ladies and Gentlemen, I tell you, I mean to present the murderer. And I will - in spite of you all."

All gasp in shock

SFX-0105 - Dramatic Music Jingle

Lord: "What an amazing speech, my dear inspector. But you will have to present us with some evidence. And you don't seem to have any."

Inspector: "Wrong, my lord!"

Inspector prances up and down the stage, looking at the people WHILE TALKING:

Inspector: "Let's see ... Who might have done it? When a murder is committed within the ties of a family, everybody is a suspect. It could have been ... you, Miss Priscilla Molesworth!"

Priscilla: gasp! "Why me?"

Inspector: "Because I found evidence, that Mr. Jasper Fetherston was your secret lover!"

All gasp in shock

SFX-0106 - Exaggerated Dramatic Music Jingle

Inspector: "Yes, my lord, it's the truth. Priscilla is supposed to become your principal heir, and she knew that she would face certain disinheritage if you would find out about their little secret. Mr. Fetherston however, soon began to grow an urge to relieve his conscience ... and she could not let that happen, could she?"

Lord (angry): "What? A secret affair? You are hereby disinherited!"

Priscilla cries

Inspector (to the Lord): "So it seems, Miss Priscilla has a very convincing motif. But does that mean she is the murderer? No! The knife was thrust into Mr. Fetherston's chest in a steep downward angle. Miss Priscilla however is much too small for that. So she cannot possibly be the murderer. She's innocent."

Priscilla (cries): "But I'm disinherited!"

Inspector (to Priscilla): "Oh, please, don't take it personally ... "

Inspector walks up to the Lord

Lord: "Inspector, stop wasting our time by telling us who didn't do it. If you already know, who the murderer is, speak now or leave me and my family alone! If you ask me, the murderer has certainly run away, and is now far beyond our reach."

Inspector: "Au contraire, my Lord, au contraire. The murderer is still in this house!"

All gasp

SFX-0107 - Extremely Exaggerated Dramatic Music Jingle, suspense music

Inspector: "Truth be told, the murderer of Mr. Jasper Fetherston is-"

Thomas (off): "Right behind you!"

Thomas Thatchem (Gardener, Murderer) enters the scene behind the inspector, bearing a gun.

Inspector turns.

Inspector: "Thomas Thatchem!"

Priscilla: "The gardener?"

Lord: "I knew it!"

Thomas: "Yes, it's me! And now I'm going to put an end to it all!"

Inspector: "You thought you had committed the perfect crime, but Fritz Fritham will never let himself be circumcized!"

Priscilla starts to giggle

Inspector turns around

Inspector: "Huh?"

The Lord drops his head onto the table and sighs

James nudges the Inspector

James (whispering): "Circumvented!"

Inspector (dropping out of character): "What?"

James (aloud, groans): "It's circumvented!"

Inspector: "What did I say?"

Priscilla (laughing): "You said: circumcized!"

Priscilla breaks down with laughter

Inspector: "What?"

All start laughing, even the lord and the dead body of Mr. Jasper Fetherston

Director (off, furious): "Cuuuuut!"

SFX-0107 OFF

SFX-0108 turntable spin

AMB-02 - Studio Ambience

Curtains open, revealing the film crew and equipment, the F8kTV Reporter is standing there

Director growls in anger, waving a piece of paper around.

Director (scolding): "You! You blew it again! This was take number twenty-five, and it was perfect! It was brilliant! It was the best take we had in the entire show, until you blew it! Again! When will you ever learn to read the god-damn script?"

Director throws the script to the floor.

Director (still scolding): "Are you doing this to me on purpose? You moron! I need a break! I need a fucking break! Everyone out! Get out of my sight!"

SFX-0110 bell rings, loudspeaker shouts "shooting break!"

Priscilla and James leave the stage, giggling

Mr. Fetherston struggles, being pinned to the floor by the knife

Mr. Fetherston: "Hggggn ... hrrrrrrn ... hrrrrrmf!"

Spotlight on Reporter

F8kTV gobo upper right lights up

Reporter guy (F8ktv-News) comes on stage:

Reporter: "Good evening Ladies and Gentlemen and thank you for tuning into F8kTV: The station that takes you behind the scenes.

Reports startles, distracted by Mr. Fetherston.

Reporter: "We're on the set of ... the set of ... uhm ..."

Filmcrew member runs back in, pulls the knife out of Mr. Fetherston's body, and runs out again

SFX-0111 - flupp

Mr. Fetherston stretches a little, and leaves

Reporter: "Eh, where was I? Ah, yes, we're on the set of the world-famous murder mystery show, 'The hounds of blackwhite castle' ... where the conclusion to the final episode is being filmed right now, looking for an answer to the question why a show like this, at the pinnacle of its popularity, is suddenly being canceled."

Reporter turns to Director

Reporter: "Mr. Toby Winterbottom, you've been directing this show since day one. Is it true that the episode being filmed today is going to be the last episode ever?"

Director (still angry): "Yes, it's true. And good riddance! This show is eating me up!"

Reporter: "Is that the reason for the cancellation?"

Director: "I may have given up on this show and its cast long ago, but I'm not stupid. You don't quit on the most successful show on the network. If you're looking for someone you can feed to the mob of fans, go find the Producer, Lord Hesketh-Fortescue, and the moron who plays the Inspector, Freddy Pomeroy. Now get out of my way!"

Director turns away, and walks off stage

Director: "Jack? Jack! Get me a fucking cup of coffee! Now!"

Reporter turns to the Lord

Reporter: "Lord Hesketh-Fortescue, you are the producer of this show and at the same time the owner of Thrumpton Castle, known to us all as 'Blackwhite Castle'. Is the cancellation related to the fact that the series is being shot on your own private property?"

Lord: "I'm indeed looking forward to having a home again that I can retire to one day, but that is not the reason. It's rather that, during the last few weeks, Freddy and I came to realize that we had differing creative aspirations for 'The Hounds of Blackwhite Castle'. Rather than waste time arguing with a friend and trying to unify our points of view, we decided amicably to go different ways."

Reporter: "Thank you very much, Mr. Hesketh-Fortescue."

Lord: "You're welcome!"

Reporter turns to the inspector

Reporter: "Mr, Pommeroy, I'm sure your fans would like to know why you are turning your back on 'The Hounds of Blackwhite Castle'."

Inspector: "Well, at first, playing Inspector Fritham was a lot of fun. But over the years I came to realize that this show is a dead-end for me. I reached a point when I was no longer able to make any artistic progress. The money was enough to pay the bills, but now it's time to move on."

Reporter: "So what are your plans for the future?"

Inspector: "I've already signed a new contract for a show that will provide ways to express myself as an artist that Blackwhite Castle could never offer. It's just too old-fashioned for a young actor like me. But wait for the new show! They call it 'science fiction'. It's the latest craze! The fans will love it!"

Reporter: "What is going to be the name of the new show?"

Inspector: "I'm going to be ..."

Inspector disappears and reappears as commander

SFX-0112 - cheesy fanfare (inspector keeps talking !!)

Inspector (reverb): "Cliff Allister McLaine, Commander of Starship Orion! Protecting earth from the dangers lurking in outer space! Exploring new galaxies! Finding new civilazations! To the stars, and beyond!"

SFX-0113 - rocket blast

Inspector flies off on rocket boots, leaving a trail of smoke.

Reporter looks after him, totally dazzled.

Lights out

MUS-01 "Raumpatrouille Orion"