Whoosh! Issue 19 - April
1998


Bitter Treat:
A Bitter Suite Parody



ACT TWO



7     EXT. DELUSIA - DAY

Why people who walk in their sleep should wear jammies to
bed.

"Who in Tartarus are your lyricists?"


Xena stands in front of Callisto, who just had her hair cut by Vidalis. Callisto manages to find a funky dress for XENA during the following stanza:

CALLISTO
Xena, be nude.
Xena, be clothed.
Oh, just wear the dress,
though the style you loathed.

Xena, sit down.
Right there on the chair.
Bears may have souls,
and souls may be bare.

XENA
Huh? Who in Tartarus are your lyricists?

ENTER the Poteidaian Chorus.

CHORUS
It was us! It was us!
We're the writers. Your Greek Choral...group...

The Chorus gets very embarrassed because they realize they didn't rhyme, even though it was an easy one.

CHORUS (cont'd)
Something's wrong. We can feel it.
Our patter's changed. Xena, please h--- cure us...

XENA
Bet you meant to say 'heal it', right?

CHORUS
We did! This is tragic!
We've lost our rhyming m-m-ma--hoodoo!

XENA
I think I'm not going to like it here.
Your constant rhymes did not endear.

Realizing that she just rhymed, Xena claps her hands over her mouth.

Callisto is looking rather bored, waiting for her big number.

The Greek Chorus slumps over to the corner, the Land of Delusia having stolen their fantastic rhyming ability (not a word out you readers, hear me? Pretend they were fantastic, okay?).

CALLISTO
Just cue the orchestra, Joe.

Music swells and Callisto leaps up, all cheerful again. She dances around as under:

CALLISTO (cont'd)
(spoken)
Fate is a square,
for those with fake hair.
I don't know why,
nor do I care.

Your little friend,
is really ticked.
She sent you here.
It's why you were picked.

I'll hang around.
I really need the work.
So here I am
stuck in the land of Delusia!

An actress from the L.A. production of RAGTIME stands in the corner, ready to sing, coordinating with Callisto who lip synchs the lyrics as under:

CALLISTO (cont'd)
(singing)
Delusia is wacko,
a place upside down.
It's me being nice,
and you in a gown.
You've dragged GABRIELLE
across half of all Greece.
Yet she's okay with it--

A goldfish in a bowl on the arm of her chair looks at XENA and sings:

GOLDFISH
(singing)
Will miracles never cease?

Callisto pulls out a deck of cards and starts whipping them at the large square portal.

Cher's next Oscar dress.

"Callee, baby, a little to the left."


CALLISTO
(singing)
Jack and a Queen.
Seven and deuce.
I think I'll fold.
Best to quit when you will lose.
Can you get out of this mess?
Hop through the square.
Give it a test.

CHORUS
This sucks. She gets all the good lines and we're just sitting here like a bunch of rhymeless lumps. We're so depressed.

XENA
(to Chorus)
Oh yeah, this is all about you, huh? Your pain? Your depression? What about me? I lost my son and almost killed Gabrielle! If anyone has a right to be depressed, it's--
(to Callisto)
Callee, baby, a little to the left.

                           PULL BACK TO REVEAL:

Callisto is gyrating in Xena's lap, nuzzling her neck while the various flunkies do Xena's nails, give her a massage, etc.

On the magic square, the Jack, Queen, seven and deuce look on, waiting for their cue. The goldfish taps its fin impatiently, while a velvet painting of Elvis looks on soulfully and a pink lawn flamingo next to Xena's chair, sighs.

CALLISTO
Oh, Xena, you are such a babe.

GOLDFISH
Think we could get back to the point of this song, perhaps?

CALLISTO
(pouting)
But I never get to make out with Xena.

GOLDFISH
Tough. We're special effects. Time is money.

The music starts up and the playing card chorus starts to sing.

PLAYING CARDS
(singing)
Fortune is sick of you.
Cal wants a lick of you.
We deal a game
made of skill and of luck.

Gamble the lot of you.
That's all we got of you.
Don't wimp out now,
There's still some songs...
If you don't sing,
this ep will suck.

CALLISTO
(singing)
Your singing ability,
Is quite well-known.
International fame,
of yours has grown.
The ring that Rob bought you,
has brought you to this...

The pink flamingo jumps in Xena's lap, knocking CALLISTO off.

FLAMINGO
(singing)
Surrender your sanity.
This ep is vanity.
A showcase that critics can't miss...

CHORUS
Even the darn bird gets to sing. What do you say we go bug Gabrielle? After all, she's on the Poteidaia set. That's home turf. We'll HAVE to be able to rhyme there.

The Chorus grumpily stalks off.

XENA
Look, I don't know what everyone is singing about. I thought this episode was supposed to deal with Gabrielle and Solan and darkness and hate.

CALLISTO
Yeah, well, that's kind of a downer. We decided to go a different route. Just work with us here. Pretend you're having fun with all these singing special effects, 'kay?

XENA
Whatever. But when do I get to sing?

CALLISTO
Later, babe. Okay, hit it, boys!

VELVET ELVIS
(singing)
Oh, Xena, with song,
there is always a chance.

FLAMINGO
(singing)
To give words a meaning,
with a cute li'l dance.

CALLISTO
(singing)
Delusia is wacko.
We'll guide you through.
But warm up your pipes, girl.
Cuz you've got big solos.
And there's so much you must do...

PLAYING CARDS
(singing)
Fortune is sick of you.
Cal wants a lick of you.
We deal a game
made of skill and of luck.

Gamble the lot of you.
That's all we got of you.
Don't wimp out now,
you soon will sing...
Get nude again, or
this ep will suck.

ALL
(singing)
Delusia is wacko,
a place upside down.
It's Cal being nice,
and you in a...

XENA
Cut the playback!

The music winds down to nothing.


Emote, dear Xena, or I start singing Michael Bolton's
greatest hits...

"But when do I get to sing?"


XENA (cont'd)
All right, Callisto. I've had it up to here with this whole song and dance. Either we get back to the plot or I'm leaving.

CALLISTO
Xena, I only get,
this one chance to shine.
But you're the star,
so I'll chill and not whine.

XENA
Good. As for all you special effects, you're not going to be following me around, are you?

VELVET ELVIS
I'll be hanging around here.
So will the rest.
Good luck to ya, Mamma.
I may be King,
but you're the best.

XENA
Thank you, Velvet Elvis. Now, where the Hades is Gabrielle? I'm still ticked at her. And I brought rope!

Xena holds up a lasso.

CALLISTO
Go up to the square
and punch in your need.
To the central computer,
this info will feed.
Then step through the portal
and close your blue eyes.
What you'll see next
is a great big surprise!

Xena types out "Kill Gabrielle" and the Square sucks her inside.

                                 CUT TO:

8     EXT. DELUSIA - DAY

The Exxon Valdeez cruised down here last week.

"Yeeeha! Momma and I are coming here
on our next vacation!"


Gabrielle is floating nude down a river.

GABRIELLE
Is this Raging Waters? It's kinda fun.

CALLISTO
Strangeness. Aquatic are you as endless rhythms slide to the depths of birth and bardic templates unknown to eternal doubt.

GABRIELLE
(hits some white water)
Wheeee!

CALLISTO
Absorb thy nurturing waves as a fish shall swim and be sushi and get eaten in rice soaked seaweed with chopsticks and unanimous appeal, be it verified.

GABRIELLE
Yeeeha! Momma and I are coming here on our next vacation!

Hanging from a tree, with a noose around his neck, is JOXER. Naturally, he's dead. So the Chorus jumps in the water and pulls Gabrielle out.

GABRIELLE (cont'd)
(notices she's nude)
Wow, Raging Waters has a pretty liberal dress code.

She starts picking bits of old velcro off her skin as she walks around.

Suddenly she spies the Chorus and runs to hide.

CHORUS
(trying to sing, but failing)
We're Chorus, the Rhymey.
We're always in the way.
It's really annoying,
but we've lost all sense of rhyme.
And now we don't know what to do.
Delusia made us sound normal.
We're Chorus! Chorus the Rhymey!

GABRIELLE
That was... immensely lame. Even for you. What's wrong?

CHORUS
Um... This is Delusia and though everyone else appears capable of amazing feats of linguistic wizardry, we've lost all sense of meter and stanza. Oh, we're your guides, but we're sorta depressed, so don't expect much.

GABRIELLE
I'm naked.

CHORUS
We noticed. Gods, not even that cheered us up. We're so lost without iambic pentameter. Here.

The Chorus strips, lending Gabrielle their clothes.

GABRIELLE
Thanks.

CHORUS
Great. Now we're naked. Humiliation is complete.

They pick tufts of grass to cover their unmentionables.

CHORUS (cont'd)
Oh, word to the wise. Sing if you want to be heard here in Delusia.

GABRIELLE
I... can't sing.

CHORUS
Oh.
(calling off stage)
Yo! Stunt voice dept.! Get the chick from LES MIZ, 'kay?

                                 CUT TO:

9     INT. DINING HALL - DAY

And do you, Xena, take these men...

"She's a goddess on the net.
Download all that you can get.
Those who're bi or gay or het
Love Xena!"


Men dressed as warriors crowd around eating mutton, turkey legs, sides of beef, etc. Xena enters. During the following song, Xena passes through the warriors who are shoving photos at her for her to sign, looking up websites, displaying their magazine collections, etc.

WARRIORS
(singing)
Xena! Xena! Xena! Xena!
Look who's here! Man, this is cool.
It's the chick who makes us drool.
She gives meaning to 'You Rule!!'
She's Xena.

Just one look at her blue eyes.
Or a glance at those buff thighs.
Men and women fantasize
'Bout Xena!

She's a goddess on the net.
Download all that you can get.
Those who're bi or gay or het
Love Xena!

WARRIOR #1
(singing)
You're the popular princess.
The darling of E.T.!

WARRIOR #2
(singing)
You're a favorite of People,
T.V. Guide and UTV!

WARRIOR #3
(singing)

Just one smile
and you're on the cover.

WARRIOR #4
(singing)

Say a word,
critics shout "We love her!"

WARRIORS
(singing)
You're the star, Xena, you're the star!

Xena makes it to the front of the room where Ares sits on a throne, dressed like the King in a deck of cards. The warriors are all holding up large cuts of meat that they hide behind, peeking out when they do their "Xena!" whisper.

XENA
Ares. I might have known. Wanted a chance to show America you can sing, did you?

ARES
(singing)

You... look a little hungry,
care to join us, Dear?

WARRIORS
Xena!

ARES
(singing)

We're feasting on a haunch,
a rib, a butt.

WARRIORS
Xena!

ARES
(singing)

And if that's not enough,
I can arrange a better cut.

He leaves his throne, and starts leading Xena around the sumptuous feast.

ARES (cont'd)
(singing)
A starving woman needs
quite a colossal plate.

WARRIORS
Xena!

He hands her a shield.

ARES (cont'd)
(singing)

So use this shield--

WARRIOR #1
(singing)
Just load it while he hums...

WARRIORS
Xena!

ARES
(singing)
There's plenty here to eat.
And for desert there's lots of Tums.

Ares cuts off Xena's clothes.

XENA
Yo, stud! What the Hades do you think you're doing?

ARES
(whispers)
Chill, babe. Just giving you looser clothes so you can stuff your face.

XENA
Oh. Okay, then.

Ares puts a muumuu on Xena while the warriors hold up a cooked, wild boar with an apple in it's mouth and pass it around while they all take bites out of it.

WARRIORS
(singing)
You and me love boar.
It's the meat we most adore.
Nice and gamy, it's true!
Nothing's better for you!
Give us boar, boar, boar.
Then fill our plates with more...

Xena takes a bite out of the boar, loving it. Ares holds a basket of French bread.

WARRIOR #1
(singing)
Epicureans have said:

ARES
(speaking)
Boar is best with crispy bread.

WARRIORS
(singing)
Warriors love boar, boar, boar!

Xena is thrilled with the feast, her shield piled high with meat, with a huge helping of boar.

                                 CUT TO:


10     EXT. DELUSIAN POTEIDAIA - DAY

Pre-Mycanaean mixers: Spot the Bacchae!

"Wow, you really go all out
to get a story, don't ya?"


Gabrielle enters the town, looking around in awe, recognizing landmarks. The Chorus follows her, still looking very depressed.
GABRIELLE
What is this place? It seems vaguely familiar. That scroll shop over there, and that mean woman yelling at her kids -- this is Poteidaia! Amazing that I actually had to think about this, isn't it?

CHORUS
Yeah, yeah, Poteidaia. And here we are in disgrace. Spent all that time hounding you and Xena, then died -- bet our wives have missed us, though! Darlings? We're home...!

A group of Poteidaian women turn their backs on the Chorus, their arms around a bunch of handsome young bucks.

CHORUS (cont'd)
Great. Isn't that just the capper to a perfect day? Bet they can rhyme...

The Chorus slinks away to an unobtrusive corner while Gabrielle is smilingly greeted by a variety of entertainment reporters in costume.

GABRIELLE
Wow, you really go all out to get a story, don't ya?

REPORTERS
(whispering)
Shhh! We're pretending to be villagers.

GABRIELLE
So are you going to interview me later?

REPORTERS
Of course not. We're going to talk to Xena.

GABRIELLE
Oh. Okay! I understand, you know. I mean, Xena is... Xena!

REPORTERS
Don't worry -- we hear they booked you on a cable access show next time you visit the States. Of course, you'll have to be hypnotized and talk about sex, but it should be okay.

GABRIELLE
Splendid!
(to the villagers)
Hi, everybody! I'm home!

The music swells, flower petals rain down on Gabrielle and the village erupts in song.

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Gabrielle...
Gabrielle...
Gabrielle...
Though she gets no interview.
And appearances are few.
It's no bother, nothing new.
Gabrielle!

Xena's always been the star.
Known to millions near and far.
Things are just the way they are,
Gabrielle!

VILLAGER #1
(singing)
You're a sweet and gentle bard.
Not flamboyance and flash.

E.T. REPORTER
(singing)
You can cook and write and talk.
And can bargain with cash.

VILLAGER #2
(singing)
Though your fame is never growing.

VILLAGER #3
(singing)
We'll pretend that you're worth knowing.

VILLAGERS
(faking excitement)
Oh, it's you, Gabrielle! Oh, it's you!

GABRIELLE
Wow... I'm... mildly insulted.

The Chorus is watching as their wives make out with the studs.

CHORUS
(sarcastically)
Poteidaia. Such a great place. Makes you wonder why you ever left it, huh?

Gabrielle spots Lila coming toward her.

Trust me -- dump the ET chick or she'll try to get your
gig!

"Sorry. In Delusia, we're contracted to sing."


GABRIELLE
Lila! My sister -- the sister I left behind and haven't seen for quite awhile!

LILA
Why are you explaining everything?

GABRIELLE
Backstory for newbies. Are you gonna sing, too?

LILA
Yup. Ready?

GABRIELLE
Not really. Just tell me instead of singing. I'm getting a headache from all these bright colors, cheerful faces and vague put-downs.

LILA
Sorry. In Delusia, we're contracted to sing. I'm breaking every rule just having this chat with you now. Rules are rules. It's kind of like Disney employees at the theme parks not being allowed to grouse about their mean bosses, nasty tourists, etc. They're supposed to smile like idiots.
(she smiles like an idiot)
Gabrielle!

Lila and Gabrielle hug. Gabrielle's stomach growls.

LILA (cont'd)
(singing)
I guess you haven't eaten for awhile now.
Perhaps you'd like to join us for a bite.
Let me just arrange a heaping pile of homemade chow.

Lila leads her to a table filled with fruit and vegetables. There's no meat in sight. Picking up a huge bowl of fresh peas, Lila waves it under Gabrielle's nose as everyone sings:

VILLAGERS
(singing)
You and me love peas!
Eat 'em plain or dripping cheese.
They're so round and small.
Like a tiny greenish ball.
We love peas, peas, peas.
Made with honey from the bees.

VILLAGER #1
(singing)
Simply put, they are the best!

VILLAGER #2
(singing)
Our little secret you have guessed:

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Villagers love peas, peas, peas!

                                 CUT TO:


11     INT. DINING HALL - DAY

Xena and Ares are gnawing on a haunch of boar as they're pulled in a chariot.

ARES
(singing)
Carnivores adore
a really tasty meat...
Juices flowing,
teeth tearing through red flesh.
Xena, when you chew,
your wondrous beauty can't be beat.

WARRIORS
(singing)
You and me love boar.
It's the meat we most adore!

WARRIOR #3
Let's go hunting!

WARRIOR #4
Get your sword!

ARES
Just be careful you're not gored.

WARRIORS
(singing)
Warriors love boar, boar, boar!

                                 CUT TO:

12     EXT. DELUSIAN POTEIDAIA - DAY

Gabrielle is riding in a cart full of peas, with Lila right beside her.

LILA
(singing)
Vegetarians are very peaceful foes.
We don't believe in killing with a blade.
Take these peas.
Shove them in Xena's ears and up her nose.

VILLAGERS
(singing)
You and me love peas.
Eat 'em plain or dripping cheese!

LILA
(singing)
There's no finer way to die...

VILLAGER #2
(singing)
Than a pea shoved in your eye!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Villagers love peas, peas, peas!

SLAM CUTS:

There are a series of slam cuts between the Warriors and Villagers. Xena walks through a gauntlet of warriors with Ares looking on. She carries a huge haunch of boar meat, her expression deadly, while warriors cross and raise chunks of boar in front of her.

Gabrielle walks through a gauntlet of villagers, carrying a gigantic bowl of peas, her expression intense while villagers cross and raise bowls of peas in front of her.

Everyone sings as the two women walk through the gauntlets, up some stairs and to a door. They each reach for the handle at the same time.

WARRIORS
(singing)
We love boar, go choke
Gabrielle.
She's a vegan joke!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
We love peas, now go kill
Xena, please!
We know you will!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Think of Solan as you tote
That meat for Gabby's throat!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
You're gonna need more peas!

Things are REALLY tense now.

Hi ho, Hi ho, it's off to work we go....

"BOAR!!!!!"


VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

Really fast cuts now.

Poteidaia High Drama Class of '98

"PEAS!!!!"


VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

VILLAGERS
(singing)
Peas!

WARRIORS
(singing)
Boar!

The doors open from both sides and Xena and Gabrielle stand in front of each other. They wait for a moment, Xena holding her haunch of meat, Gabrielle with her bowl of peas.

GABRIELLE
Hey, Xena! Want some peas?

XENA
No thanks. Care for some boar?

GABRIELLE
Nah.

They stand there for a second, not quite sure what to do. The chorus sidles up to Gabrielle and whispers in her ear.

CHORUS
You're, um, supposed to shove peas in her nose to kill her. Couldn't you make out the lyrics?

GABRIELLE
Oh yeah, right.

Ares slithers up to Xena.

Ever hear of 'Breathsavers'?

"C'mon already. Make her choke on a piece of gristle!"


ARES
(whispering)
C'mon already. Make her choke on a piece of gristle!

XENA
Ewww.

Finally, with nothing else to do, Gabrielle shoves a pea up Xena's nose. Snorting to dislodge it, Xena puts her finger over her other nostril, and blows the pea at Gabrielle, beaning her on the head. Gabrielle falls over dead.

END OF ACT TWO


Act One
Index
Act Three
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