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A bit of Fry and Laurie

Parent Power (S01E01)


Stephen, a headmaster, is sitting behind a desk. Hugh enters with Michael, a small boy. Stephen Hugh Stephen Hugh Stephen Hugh Ah good morning Michael, good morning Mr Smear. Yes, we'll dispense with the good mornings if you don't mind. I haven't got time for good mornings. As you wish. You wanted to discuss something, I believe? I think you know why I'm here. I don't think I do. (To Michael) Tell him.

Michael looks embarrassed. Stephen Hugh Michael Stephen Hugh Stephen Hugh Stephen Hugh Stephen Michael Tell me what? Tell him what you told your mother last night. Sexual intercourse can often bring about pregnancy in the adult female. Yes? You heard that, did you? Yes? Well I'd like an explanation, if it's not too much trouble. An explanation of what? An explanation of how my son came to be using language like that in front of his mother. Well I imagine that this is something that Michael learnt in his biology class, isn't that right? Yes, sir. 1

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Yes I thought so. With Mr Hent. Glad to see some of it's sinking in, Michael. Thank you sir. Well I must say this is a turn-up and no mistake. What is? I didn't imagine that you'd be quite so barefaced about it. About what? I came here today to make a complaint about my son being exposed to gutter language in the playground. I am frankly staggered to find that this is something that he's actually been taught in a classroom. I mean what is going on here? We're trying to teach your son ... Oh are you? Are you indeed? Yes. What? How to embarrass his parents? How to smack himself with heroin? I assure you Mr Smear, we have no intention ... Call yourself a school? I don't actually call myself a school, no. You ought to be ashamed of yourself. Filling a young lad's head with filth like that. Well let me tell you something. About the real world. You're here to provide a service. Quite right. Quite right, yes, well I'm not happy with it. I'm not happy with the service you're providing. Would you rather that Michael didn't attend the biology course? Certainly I would, if those are the kind of lies I 2

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can expect to hear repeated at the dinner table. Stephen Hugh Stephen Hugh Stephen Hugh They're not lies, Mr Smear. Oh aren't they? Pregnancy is brought about by sexual intercourse? Yes? Oh Lord save us. So you agree with that? Of course. It's true. True my arse. It's nothing more than a disgusting rumour put about by trendy young people in the sixties. Trendy young people in their sixties? The sixties. In the sixties. That's when it all started. People like you. Mr Smear, sexual reproduction has been part of the biology syllabus for many years. I don't care about your blasted syllabus. What good is a blasted syllabus out there? Out where? There! The Arkwright Road? Arkwright Jungle, I call it. Well, what would you rather we taught your son, Mr Smear? I would rather ... I would rather you taught him values, Mr ... Casilingua. Casilingua. Values. Respect. Standards. That's what you're here for. You're not here to poison my son with a lot of randy sextalk. So Michael is definitely your son, is he, Mr Smear? 3

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Stephen

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Certainly he's my son. Then it's safe to assume that at some stage you and your wife have had sexual intercourse? (Pause) Right. (Hugh starts to take off his jacket) That's it. I'm going to knock some sense into you myself. You're going to fight me now, are you? Yes I bloody well am. I'm not going to stand for this. Do you mind if I do? (Rises to his feet) Talking like that in front of the boy. You're a bloody disgrace. Mr Smear, let me ask you this. How could Michael be your son, if you haven't had sexual intercourse? Michael ... Yes? Michael is my son in the normal way. In the normal way? Yes. And what is the normal way to have a son, in your opinion? If you're trying to trick me into sexy talk ... I'm not. The normal way to have a son is ... to get married. Yes? Buy a house and get properly settled in. Yes.

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Furniture and so on, and then ... wait for a bit. Ah. Make sure you eat properly. Three hot meals a day. So Michael just sort of turned up, did he? Er ... well of course it's a few years ago now, but yes I think one day he was just there. And you and your wife have never enjoyed sexual intimacy of any kind? Yes, it's very hard for you to believe isn't it, that there are still some people left who can bring a son into this world without recourse to cannabis and government handouts? Well I really don't know what to say. I bet you don't: It's not every day a consumer stands up to you and makes demands is it? Not of this nature no. Yes, well. Welcome to the harsh realities of the market-place, Mr Casilingua. OK. Well, what would you like me to do? It's obvious isn't it? If I go into Littlewoods and tell them I'm not satisfied with a cardigan, say, they'll change it for me. And gladly. You want another son? Certainly I do. Mine is soiled now. Well I'm afraid we haven't got any spare sons here, just at the moment. Well what have you got of equal value? Um - there are some locusts in the biology lab. Locusts, hmm. Do I have your assurance that one of these locusts will not embarrass Mrs Smear at table with foul language? 5

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I think I can go that far. Well that's something. How many of them are there? Two ... at the moment. What d'you mean, "at the moment"? Well, it's just that these locusts are married, they've bought the cage, and some furniture, and they're having three meals a day. Hot meals? Warmish. So Mrs Smear might be a grandmother one day? Very possibly. (Pleased) She'd like that.

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VOX POP Stephen A good smack in the face. She deserves it.