The Tale of Sir Launcelot From Monty Python and the Holy Grail THE TALE OF SIR LAUNCELOT A

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*** The Tale of Sir Launcelot *** *** From Monty Python and the Holy Grail *** THE TALE OF SIR LAUNCELOT As Sir Launcelot, the boldest and most expensive of the knights, lost his way in the Forest of Ewing, at nearby Swamp Castle, a celebration was underway. Setting: A small garret room in the Tall Tower of Swamp Castle. The King and his son the Prince. King: (gesturing expansively out the window) One day, lad, *all* this will be yours. Son: What, the curtains? King: No, not the curtains, lad! All that you can see, stretched out over the 'ills and valleys of this land. That'll be your kindom, lad. Son: But, Mother... King: Father, lad, Father. Son: But, Father, I don't want any of that. King: Listen, lad: I built this kingdom up from nuthin'. When I started here, all of this was swamp! Other kings said it was *daft* to build a castle in a swamp, but I built it all the same, just to show 'em! It sank into the swamp. SO, I built a second one! That sank into the swamp. So I built a *third* one. That burned down, fell over, *then* sank into the swamp. But the fourth one......stayed up. And that's what you're gonna get, lad: the *strongest* castle in these islands. Son: But I don't want any of that! I'd rather... King: Rather what? Son: I'd rather...just...sing!...... King: Stop that! Stop that! You're not going into a song while I'm here! Now, listen, lad. In twenty minutes you're gettin' married to a girl whose father owns the biggest *tracts* of open land in England. Son: But I don't want land! King: Listen, Alex... Son: 'Erbert... King: 'Erbert. We live in a bloody swamp! We need all the land we can get!! Son: But... but I don't *like* 'er! King: don't like 'er?!? What's wrong with 'er? She's... beautiful, she's... *rich*, she's got... HUGE............. tracts o' land... Son: Ah...ah know. But I want the girl that I marry to have... a certain...*special*...something... King: Cut that out!! Cut that out.... You're marryin' Princess Lucky, so you'd better get used to the idea! GUARDS!!! Make sure the prince doesn't leave this room until I come and get 'im. Guard 1: Not to leave the room, even if you come and get 'im. Guard 2: *Hic* King: Nono.... *Until* I come and get him. Guard 1: Until you come and get him, we're not to enter the room. King: Nono, no... You *stay* in the room, and make sure *he* doesn't leave. Guard 1: And you'll come and get him. Guard 2: *Hic* King: Right. Guard 1: We don't need to do anything, apart from just stop him, entering the room. King: Nono. *Leaving* the room. Guard 1: Leaving the room, yes. King: All right? Guard 1: 'Right. King: Right. Guard 1: Oh! If if if uhhhh.... if if uhhhhh.... If if if we...... King: Yes, what is it? Guard 1: Oh. I-if....... Oh.... King: Look, it's quite simple. Guard 1: Uh..... King: You just stay here, and make sure 'e doesn't leave the room. All right? Guard 2: *hic* Guard 1: Oh, I remember! Uhhhh, can he leave the room with us? King: No...nono, no. You just keep him in 'ere, and make sure... Guard 1: Oh yes, we'll keep him in here, obviously, but if he *had* to leave, and we *were* with him... King: nononono just KEEP HIM IN HERE Guard 1: ...Until you or anyone else... King: No, not anyone else, just me... Guard 1: ...Just you... Guard 2: *hic* King: Get back. Guard 1: Get back. King: All right? Guard 1: Right, we'll stay here until you get back. Guard 2: *hic* King: And, uh... make sure 'e doesn't leave. Guard 1: What? King: Make sure 'e doesn't leave! Guard 1: The prince?????? King: Yes, MAKE SURE 'E DOESN'T LEAVE... Guard 2: *hic* Guard 1: Oh, yes, of course!! I thought you meant him! You know, it seemed a bit daft me having to guard him when 'e's a guard... King: Is that clear? Guard 1: Oh, quite clear, no problems! Guard 2: *hic* King: Right. Where are *you* going? Guard 1: We're coming with you! King: Nono, I want you to *stay* here and MAKE SURE 'E DOESN'T LEAVE! Guard 1: Oh, I see, right! Son: but father... King: Shut your noise, you! And get that suit on. AND NO SINGING! Guard 2: *hic* King: Oh, go and get a glass of water. (leaves) The Prince looks at the guards. They look at him. He smiles. They smile back. He gets a pen a paper out. He smiles at them. They smile back. He scribbles something on it very fast, not looking at it. He smiles at the guards. They smile back. The Prince gets a bow and arrow from the wall. He sticks the note on the arrow. He smiles at the guards. They smile back. He side-steps to the window. He smiles at the guards. They smile back. He shoots the arrow with the note out the window. He puts down the bow. He smiles at the guards. They smile back. Guard 2: *Hic* Meanwhile, at a nearby stream, Sir Launcelot approaches. We hear horse's hooves in the distance. Sir Launcelot appears, behind Concorde, who is banging two coconut halves together to make the noise of a horse. Launcelot: Ho! Well taken, Concorde! Steady there, boy! Concorde: (as he falls) Message for you, sir. (he falls) Launcelot: Concorde!! (spying the arrow) A note! "To whomever finds this note. Help. I am being held prisoner by my father who wishes me to marry *against my will*!! Please please please please rescue me. I am in the Tall Tower of Swamp Castle." A quest! A damsel in distress! Oh, Concorde, noble Concorde, you shall not have died in vain! Concorde: I'm not quite dead yet, sir! Launcelot: (a bit put off) Well...you shall not have been...mortally wounded in vain! Concorde: I think I could pull through, sir. Launcelot: (a bit more put off) Concorde, maybe you'd better stay here and rest a bit, eh? Concorde: Oh, I think I could come with you, sir... Launcelot: No, no, Concorde, brave soul, you shall stay here, and I...I shall undertake a perilous quest to win freedom for a maiden and eternal fame for myself. Farewell, Concorde!! Scene: The drawbridge of Swamp Castle. Two guards standing here looking very bored. Off in the distance, they see Launcelot running towards them waving his sword in the air. They look at each other, then back at Launcelot. They seem confused. He does not get any closer, though he he keeps running. The guards look at each other again. One taps his forehead. They lean on their pikes and idly watch Sir Launcelot still running towards them and getting nowhere. They look at each other. Suddenly Launcelot appears right next to them and runs them both through. They die, considerably surprised. Launcelot runs through the castle, slicing, dicing, grating, mincing, and otherwise generally killing the entire populace. He fights his way up to the Tower through the throngs of bewildered wedding guests. He reached the Tower and throws open the door. Guard 1: Hello! Urggh. Guard 2: *Hic* Launcelot: Milady, here kneels the humble Sir Launcelot of Camelot, Knight of the Round Table, and I stand ready to deliver you from-- Oh, I'm terribly sorry. Son: You got my note! Launcelot: Well, I got *a* note...let's not jump to conclusions... Son: I *knew* some one would read it and rescue me! I've got a rope all ready! Let's climb down! King: What's all this!?! Are you the one who killed all my guests? Son: He's come to rescue me! King: Shut your noise, you. Well, what about it? Launcelot: Well, I suppose I may have got...a bit... carried away with the moment... King: Carried away?!? Look, whoever you are, you not only ruined my wedding reception, and caused me great mental anguish, but you killed the bride's father and kicked the bride in the chest! Now what sort of behavior is that??? Who are you, anyway? Launcelot: Well, I am Sir Launcelot of King Arthur's Court, and I-- King: King Arthur?? King-of-England Arthur? And you're one of his Knights of the Round Table? Son: I'm ready, Sir Launcelot! Launcelot: Well...yes...and I'm awfully sorry about the fuss... King: Fuss? Nonsense!! Why, Sir Launcelot, consider yourself my honored guest, please! (quietly) Lots of land up by Camelot, eh? Launcelot: Well, I'm terribly sorry about killing all those people...and kicking the bride... Son: Hurry, Sir Launcelot! King: Don't worry about a thing, sir. Just come downstairs with me, will you? I want to introduce you to everyone. Launcelot: Well, thank you....Thank you very much... King: I won't be a minute, Sir Launcelot.... Son: (from outside) Are you coming, Sir Launcelot? Aaaaaaaahhhhhhh!!!!! (thump) King: (liltingly) Coming, Sir Launcelot... Sir Launcelot goes down the stairs. Upon recognizing him as the one who caused all the damage, the remaining guests shout such things as, "There he is!" and, "He's the one!" and, "Get him!" Launcelot draws his sword and goes beserk again. King: Oh, bloody hell. Launcelot is at last subdued before causing too much damage, save only kicking the bride again, and the King prepares to make a speech. King: Ladies and gentlemen. This man whom you see beside me is my own honored friend, Sir Launcelot of Camelot. He has come all this way just to see my son married to Princess Lucky. Unfortunately, my son Herbert has just fallen to his death from the Tall Tower. (gasps) But, I like to think of myself, not as having lost a son, but as having gained a daughter. For, since the father of the bride perished in most untimely circumstances.... Voice: He's not quite dead yet.... King: (thrown) Er...since her father has come so close to death as to be considered dead... Voice: I think he's coming 'round! King: Since her father, who, when it seemed he was just on the verge of recovery, suddenly felt the icy hand of death upon him... (thump) Voice: He's kicked off! King: Right...I should like the Princess to think of me as her own Dad. In the firm and legally binding sense. And, as this is meant to be a wedding day, I would like to welcome Sir Launcelot into my family, and give him the hand of my new daughter in earnest token of my esteem for him and his title. Launcelot: Well, really, I must be going, I don't think-- King: Going? Nonsense! Why, how could you leave me at a time like this, so recently bereft of my only son? Concorde: He's not quite dead yet! (general reaction) King: Oh, bloody hell. Voice: But, how on earth did you survive the fall from the Tall Tower? Son: Well, I'll tell you... King: No! Wait! Stop that! Guests: He's going to tell, he's going to tell, he's going to tell, he's going to tell! He's going to tell, he's going to tell, he's going to tell, he's going to tell! Concorde: Quick, sir, let's get out of here. This way. Launcelot: No, no. I need something more...more... Concorde: Dramatic, sir? Launcelot: Dramatic! Right! This bell pull will do... Launcelot: Err...could someone give me a push?

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