THIS RESPONSE TO ELEMENTS OF ‘TWELFTH NIGHT’ IS BASED ON AN ORIGINAL SCRIPT FOR THE TV SHOW ‘FRIENDS’.
A SIX-HANDER FOR THREE ACTORS, WITH ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS TO MARTA KAUFFMAN & DAVID CRANE.
WHAT FOLLOWS IS THE ENHANCED VERSION OF THE EARLIER EDITED ORIGINAL ‘FRIENDS’ SCRIPT IN WHICH NON-ORIGINAL LINES ARE BULLETED: •
ALL FEMALE PARTS ARE SHARED BY JUDE BARRINGTON AND KATIE ROBERTS. ALL MALE PARTS ARE PLAYED BY CHRIS NEWLAND.
A LAUGHTER TRACK IS PLAYED INTERMITTENTLY THROUGHOUT THE SHOW, MORE AND MORE INAPPROPRIATELY AS THE SHOW PROGRESSES. SOME, BUT BY NO MEANS ALL, CUES FOR LAUGHTER ARE GIVEN BELOW. THERE WILL ALSO BE CONVENTIONAL LAUGH CUES THROUGHOUT (TO BE PLOTTED IN REHEARSAL).
SHORT SNAPPY MUSICAL INTERLUDES WILL BE PLAYED BETWEEN EACH SCENE. AS THE PIECE PROGRESSES THEY WILL BECOME MORE UNSETTLING.
THE SET FOR THIS PRODUCTION CONSISTED OF A SITTING ROOM ENTIRELY UPHOLSTERED IN ONE FABRIC.
INTRODUCTORY CAMEO SHOTS:
EACH OF THE THREE ACTORS IS VERY BRIEFLY SEEN AS IF IN THE MIDDLE OF A SCENE OF SOME SORT. TIGHT SPOTS FLASH ON AND OFF TO REVEAL HEAD AND SHOULDERS ‘SHOTS’ OF THE ‘CHARACTERS’ LAUGHING, GESTURING, LOOKING SURPRISED AND OTHER FABULOUS EXPRESSIONS (TO BE DETERMINED IN REHEARSAL).
Scene 1: RIFT’S RESTAURANT. JOEY AND CHANDLER ARE THERE.
URSULA BUFFAY, PHOEBE’S IDENTICAL TWIN SISTER, IS WAITING ON TABLES IN HER INIMITABLE MANNER.
Joey: There’s the waitress. Excuse me, Miss. Hello, Miss?
URSULA SPINS AROUND LOOKING PUZZLED, QUITE UNABLE TO TELL WHERE THE SOUND IS COMING FROM.
Chandler: It’s Phoebe! Hi!
URSULA NOTICES JOEY WAVING HIS HAND, AND COMES OVER.
Ursula: Hi. Okay, will that be all?
Chandler: Wait, wait! Wh-what are you doing here?
Ursula: Yeah, um, I was over there, then you said, “Excuse me, hello Miss,” so now I’m here.
Joey: No, no… how come you are working here?
Ursula: Right, yeah, ’cause its close to where I live, and the aprons are really cute.
Chandler: Can we start over?
Ursula: Yeah. Okay great. I’m gonna be over here.
SHE WANDERS AWAY.
Chandler and Joey: No, no, no!
Scene 2: CENTRAL PERK. ALL THREE GIRLS ARE PAYING COURT TO ROSS.
Ross: I don’t know whether he’s testing me, or just acting out, but my monkey is out of control. But, he keeps erasing the messages on my machine, “supposedly” by accident.
Rachel: No, yeah, I’ve done that.
Ross: And then, like three days in a row he got to the newspaper before I did, and peed all over the crossword.
Rachel: I’ve never done that.
JOEY AND CHANDLER ARRIVE, HOVERING AT THE EDGE OF THE SPACE. THEY PEER ACROSS AT PHOEBE.
Chandler: All right, now look at her and tell me she doesn’t look exactly like her sister.
Joey: I’m sayin’ I see a difference.
Chandler: They’re twins!
Joey: I don’t care. Phoebe’s Phoebe. Ursula’s… hot!
LAUGH TRACK: TOO LOUD
Chandler: You know that thing, when you and I talk to each other about things?
Chandler: Let’s not do that any more.
THEY APPROACH THEIR FRIENDS
All: Hey guys! Hey!
Joey: Hey Pheebs, guess who we saw today.
Phoebe: Ooh, ooh, fun! Okay… um, Liam Neeson.
Phoebe: Morley Safer.
Phoebe: The woman who cuts my hair!
Monica: Okay, look, this could be a really long game.
Chandler: Your sister Ursula.
Phoebe: (Her face dropping) Oh, really.
LAUGH TRACK: TOO LOUD
Chandler: Yeah, yeah, she works over at that place, uh…
Phoebe: Rift’s. Yeah, I know.
Chandler: Oh, you do? Because she said you guys haven’t talked in like years.
Phoebe: Hmmm? Yeah. So, um, is she fat?
Joey: Not from where I was standin’.
Phoebe: (Turning to Chandler) where were you standing?
Rachel: Um, Pheebs, so, you guys just don’t get along?
Phoebe: It’s mostly just dumb sister stuff, you know, I mean, like, everyone always thought of her as the pretty one, you know… Oh, oh, she was the first one to start walking, even though I did it… later that same day. But, to my parents, by then it was like “Yeah, right, well what else is new?”
Scene 3: MONICA AND RACHEL’S. ROSS, CHANDLER, AND THE GIRLS ARE DIVIDING SOME CHINESE TAKEOUT. THE TV IS PLAYING.
MUSIC: A FAINT BUT THREATENING GROWLING DRONE IS MIXED UNDER THIS SCENE.
JOEY ENTERS, LOOKING EXTREMELY PLEASED WITH HIMSELF.
Chandler: Hey, where you been?
Joey: I went back to Rift’s. I think Ursula likes me. All I ordered was coffee, she brought me a tuna melt and four plates of curly fries.
Joey: She is so hot!
MUSIC: GROWL TRACK VOLUME INCREASES BY A CLICK
Chandler: Yeah, listen. Okay, before you do anything Joey-like, you might wanna run it by err… (HE INDICATES PHOEBE, WHO IS HELPING ROSS UNDERSTAND THE REMOTE CONTROL.)
Phoebe: (JUMPING UP) Yeah?
Joey: You think it would be okay if I asked out your sister?
Phoebe: Why? Why would you wanna… do that? Why?
Joey: So that if we went out on a date, she’d be there.
• Phoebe: Of course she’d fucking be there, Joey.
LAUGH TRACK: TOO LOUD
•Phoebe: If you fucking ask my fucking sister out she’ll be fucking there. Isn’t that fucking right?
LAUGH TRACK: TOO LOUD
•Joey: Uh, yeah. That’s right..
•Phoebe: I fucking thought so, you fucking dick.
Joey: Cool, thanks.
MUSIC: GROWL TRACK VOLUME FADES TO PREVIOUS SETTING
JOEY HAPPILY GESTURES AT CHANDLER THAT THERE WAS NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT, THEN EXITS. RACHEL AND MONICA ARE CONCERNED FOR POOR PHOEBE, WHO SLIDES BACK DOWN NEXT TO ROSS.
Ross: You okay?
Phoebe: Yeah I’m fine.
LAUGH TRACK: TOO LOUD
Rachel: So Pheebs, what do you want for your birthday?
Phoebe: Well, what I really want is for my mom to be alive and enjoy it with me.
Rachel: Okay… Let me put it this way. Anything from Crabtree and Evelyn?
Phoebe: Ooh! Bath salts would be nice.
Rachel: Ooh, okay… good.
JOEY ENTERS, CARRYING A SHOPPING BAG FROM WHICH HE PRODUCES A NICE CARDIGAN.
MUSIC: GROWL TRACK VOLUME INCREASES BY A CLICK
Joey: Phoebe, could you do me a favour? Could you try this on? I just wanna make sure it fits.
Phoebe: Ooh, my first birthday present… (DELIGHTEDLY EXAMINING THE CARDIGAN IN HER LAP) ..oh, this is really…
Joey: Oh, no no no. It’s for Ursula. I just figured, you know, size-wise.
•Phoebe: Ohhh… Sure, yeah…Yeah. You want me to put it on my body then take it off then you’re going to put it on her body, yeah?
•Phoebe: Do you want to watch?
•Phoebe: Do you want to watch me take off what I’m wearing so that my breasts have touched where my sister’s breasts are going to go?
•Joey: (UNDECIDED – IT DOESN’T SOUND THAT BAD) Well…
•Phoebe: Before you lick them? (PHOEBE SEIZES THE GARMENT AND TEARS IT TO PIECES) Okay, it fits.
THE OTHERS HAVE BEEN TAKING ALL THIS IN.
Rachel: Are you seein’ her again tonight?
Joey: Yep. Ice Capades.
Chandler: Wow, this is serious. I’ve never known you to pay money for any kind of capade.
Joey: I don’t know. I like her, you know. She’s different. There’s uh, somethin’ about her.
Phoebe: That you like, (SNAPPILY CONFRONTING JOEY OVER THE HEADS OF THE KNITTING CIRCLE ) we get it. You like her. Great!
THE CIRCLE FREEZES IN APPREHENSION.
Joey: Hey, Phoebe, I asked you, and you said it was okay.
Phoebe: Alright, well, maybe now it’s not okay.
Joey: Okay… Well maybe now I’m not okay with it not being okay.
•Phoebe: Okay. CUNT!
•Rachel: You don’t know, do you, Joey?
•Joey: What don’t I know, Rachel?
•Rachel: If you touch her, never touch me, right?
•Joey: Who? Who’m I touching, Rache?
•Rachel: Phoebe is my fucking sister!
•Joey: What? Her fucking sister is Ursula!
•Rachel: (ROARING) DON’T FUCK AROUND WITH ME!
AN EMBARRASSED SILENCE
Scene 4 : CENTRAL PERK, THE GANG IS GATHERED AROUND MONICA COMFORTING HER BROTHER WHO, IN A SLIGHT STATE OF SHOCK ,IS CUDDLING A CUSHION FOR SECURITY.
Ross: I’m gonna be a father.
Rachel: This is just occurring to you?
Ross: I always knew I was havin’ a baby, I just never realised the baby was having me.
Rachel: (SHE COMFORTS HIM TOO) Oh, you’re gonna be great!
Ross: Aw, how can you say that? I can’t even get my monkey to stop eating the bath mat. How am I gonna raise a kid?
Chandler: You know, Ross, some scientists are now saying that, that monkeys and babies are actually different.
JOEY TIRES OF THIS, SO HE GETS UP TO LEAVE.
Phoebe: Where’re you going?
Joey: (SPREADING HIS ARMS WIDE) Yes.
Phoebe: Alright, could I just ask you one question?
JOEY NODS HIS HEAD.
Phoebe: Have you two, you know… like… you know… you know… yet?
Joey: Well, not that it’s any of your business, but, no, we haven’t, okay?
JOEY WALKS TOWARD THE DOOR, THEN HESITATES AND TURNS BACK.
Joey: You meant sex, right?
•Phoebe: I meant: did you get with my sister, my identical sister who looks identically like me, like we’re both naked on our backs and you’re standing there with your stupid dick out…
•Joey: It’s not stupid. My dick is not stupid.
•Monica: You fucking wish! Your dick is your brain, Joey!
•Joey: Get off me, Monica.
•Phoebe: …and you’re standing there and you think ‘Hey, which one is which? Which one do I pump? Hey – does it matter?’ And you fucking pump me, you piece of shit!
•Rachel: You can’t turn back after that, Joey! There’s no going back! You might as well put your fucking eyes out!
•Joey: But it’s her sister, Rachel!
•Rachel: (ROARING) NO…FUCKING…DIFFERENCE!
Scene 5 : MONICA & RACHEL’S. ALL THE WOMEN AND CHANDLER AND ROSS
Monica: Are you alright?
Phoebe: Yeah. It’s just, you know, it’s this whole stupid Ursula thing, it’s…
Rachel: Okay, Pheebs, can I ask? So, he’s going out with her. I mean, is it really so terrible?
Phoebe: Um, yeah. Look, I mean, have you ever had a boyfriend who was like your best
Monica and Rachel: (WISTFULLY SHAKING THEIR HEADS) No.
•Phoebe: Well, that’s what Joey is for me. I mean, he’s not my boyfriend. Obviously!
•Monica and Rachel: Obviously!
•Phoebe: More like a brother.
•Monica: That’s how I feel!
•Phoebe: You don’t fuck your brother, right?
•Chandler: No! No way!
•Chandler: Like never! You’d turn to stone…or whatever.
•Monica: Right, I would never fuck Ross.
•Ross: Jeez, Monica. I guess that’s a compliment, right?
•Phoebe: Okay. Just checking.
Monica: Hon, you gotta talk to Joey.
Phoebe: Yeah. Okay.
Ross: No, come on, he doesn’t know this stuff. If he knew how you felt.
Phoebe: But he’s falling in love with her.
Rachel: Oh please, they’ve been going out a week. They haven’t even slept together yet, I mean, that’s not serious.
Phoebe: Okay… Okay.
•Monica: Do it now.
Phoebe: Oh, okay, oh.
Scene 6: THE HALLWAY BETWEEN JOEY’S AND MONICA & RACHEL’S.
PHOEBE GETS UP AND WALKS ACROSS THE HALLWAY, BUT THE DOOR TO CHANDLER AND JOEY’S APARTMENT IS SHUT. SHE KNOCKS, AND ANXIOUSLY WAITS FOR JOEY TO COME, BUT INSTEAD HER IDENTICAL TWIN SISTER EMERGES WEARING ONE OF JOEY’S SHIRTS.
PHOEBE REELS BACK IN SHOCK, WHILE URSULA DEFIANTLY LEANS AGAINST THE DOORPOST AS THOUGH SHE OWNS THE PLACE.
Ursula: (Surprised) Oh. Yeah, um, may we help you?
Scene 7: CENTRAL PERK. JOEY, ROSS AND CHANDLER ARE CHATTING.
Joey: I’m takin’ Ursula out tonight. It’s her birthday.
Ross: Wo-wo-whoa. What about Phoebe’s birthday?
Joey: When’s that?
Joey: Oh, man. What’re the odds of that happening?
JOEY BEGINS TO CONTEMPLATE HIS ILL FORTUNE.
Ross: You take your time.
JOEY LOOKS AT HIS FRIENDS, THINKS A BIT MORE, THEN REALISES.
Chandler: There it is! So what’re you gonna do?
Joey: What can I do? Look, I don’t want to do anything to screw it up with Ursula.
Chandler: And your friend Phoebe?
Joey: Well, if she’s my friend, hopefully she’ll understand. I mean, wouldn’t you guys?
•Ross: Well, I would certainly never fuck Monica.
•Joey: Being she’s actually your sister, right?
•Chandler: Well, actually, no. I would never fuck Monica.
•Joey: (SURPRISED) No?
•Chandler: That’s nothing personal, Ross.
Scene 8: MONICA & RACHEL’S. THEY’RE ALL THERE EXCEPT FOR ROSS AND PHOEBE.
THERE IS A KNOCK AT THE DOOR. PHOEBE ENTERS.
A BIRTHDAY CAKE IS VISIBLE.
The Whole Party: (Jumping up) SURPRISE!!!
Phoebe: Hey, what’s going on? (DELIGHTED) Oh, oh, oh! This is so great! Oh my god! This was not at all scary. Hi everybody. Oh my god! (HUGGING PEOPLE) This is great. Everybody I love is in the same room. (STILL HAPPY) Where’s Joey?
THE PARTY FALLS FLAT.
Scene 9: CENTRAL PERK
Joey: (ENTERING QUIETLY) Hey.
Ross and Chandler: Hey!
Joey: Your sister stood me up the other night.
Phoebe: Oh, no. Don’t you hate it when people aren’t there for you?
Ross: Well did you try calling her?
Joey: I’ve been trying for two days. When I called the restaurant, they said she was too busy to talk. I can’t believe she’s blowin’ me off.
PHOEBE WANTS TO BE ANGRY WITH JOEY, BUT AS SHE WATCHES HIM SHAKING HIS HEAD IN PAIN AND DISBELIEF, SHE KNOWS THAT IT ISN’T HIS FAULT.
Scene 10: RIFT’S RESTAURANT
PHOEBE IS ENTERING. URSULA RETURNS WITH TWO PLATES OF CHICKEN, BUT SHE ONLY HAS TIME TO SET ONE ON THE TABLE, WHEN…
URSULA TURNS IN SURPRISE.
Phoebe: Ursula, you got a minute?
Ursula: Um, yeah, I’m just… (WAVING DISMISSIVELY AT THE CONCEPT) ..working.
URSULA POINTS OUT A VACANT TABLE, SO THE TWINS WALK OVER, SIDE BY SIDE, TO SIT DOWN.
Phoebe: How’d you know I was coming?
Ursula: Um, yeah, um, twin thing.
Phoebe: So… What’s the deal with umm, you and Joey?
Ursula: Oh, right. He is so great. But that’s over.
URSULA RESUMES EATING HER LUNCH.
Phoebe: Does he know?
Phoebe: Joey. You know, um, he’s really nutsy about you.
Ursula: He is? Why?
Phoebe: You got me.
Scene 11: CENTRAL PERK
PHOEBE ENTERS, BUT NOT AS HERSELF, FOR SHE HAS CHANGED THE STYLE OF HER HAIR AND MAKE-UP TO MATCH THAT OF HER TWIN SISTER. (DESIGNERS: WE NEED URSULA/KATIE TO WEAR SOMETHING DISTINCTIVE IN HER HAIR IN THE PREVIOUS SCENE SO THAT PHOEBE/JUDE CAN WEAR IT IN THIS SCENE.) NERVOUSLY, SHE APPROACHES JOEY.
Phoebe: (AS URSULA) Hey.
PHOEBE NODS AS HE STANDS UP IN DELIGHT.
Joey: ..ah, what’re you doing here? I’ve been trying to call you.
Phoebe: (AS URSULA) Listen, um…I’m sorry.
Joey: I don’t get it. What happened? What about everything you said under the bridge?
PHOEBE IS ALMOST THROWN BY THIS.
Phoebe: (AS URSULA): Yeah, um… (nervously clears her throat) You know you, you should just forget about what I said under the bridge, I was talkin’ crazy that night, I was so drunk!
Joey: You don’t drink.
Phoebe: (as Ursula) That’s right, I don’t… But I was, I was drunk on you!
Joey: Oh, Urse… (He tries to take her in his arms, but she fends him off.)
Phoebe: (AS URSULA) Okay, yeah, so it’s not gonna work.
Joey: Why? Is it because I’m friends with Phoebe?
Phoebe: (AS URSULA) If it was, would you stop hanging out with her?
Joey: (THINKING CAREFULLY) No. No, I, I couldn’t do that.
Phoebe: (AS URSULA) Um, then yes, it’s ’cause of Phoebe! So, you know, it’s either her or me.
Joey: Then, uh, then I’m sorry.
HE SINKS TO THE SOFA, SADDENED BY URSULA’S ULTIMATUM, WHILE PHOEBE FOLLOWS, TOUCHED BY JOEY’S GOOD HEART.
Phoebe: (AS URSULA) You know… (UNCONSCIOUSLY PUTTING A HAND ON HIS KNEE) You’re gonna be really, really hard to get over.
•Joey: You’re so like Phoebe.
•Phoebe: (AS URSULA) I guess you’d…you’d go with Phoebe if it wasn’t for me.
•Joey: Like ‘go’?
•Phoebe: (AS URSULA) Like…you know…
•Joey: Would I fuck Phoebe? Yeah? Sure. I’d fuck her.
•Phoebe: (AS URSULA) She said you were like brother and sister.
Joey: That’s completely right.
JOEY TAKES HER FACE IN HIS HANDS AND KISSES HER. THE KISS INCREASES IN INTENSITY. THINGS GET HOT.
•Phoebe: (ECSTATIC) Joey!
•Joey: (ECSTATIC) Phoebe!
THE LAUGH, THE SCREAM AND THE GROWL TRACKS GROW LOUDER AND LOUDER TO MAX. SFX OF THUNDER AND LIGHTNING. THE LIGHTS FLICKER.
SNAP CUT OF ALL SOUND AND LIGHT.