Grass in the Mist Two is a sequel to Grass in the Mist, filmed for many reasons, but mainly because Semi-National Films felt that they didn’t make enough money out of the first film.
Daybreak. Morning dew sparkles on the grass as a woman slowly walks up to a grave. She stares down at it, agony on her face, and dissolves into tears. The cameraman timidly approaches her.
NARRATOR: Here she is, Nancy Leadwell, the sister of nature enthusiast Skippy Leadwell, who is now dealing with the indescribable devastation of her brother’s untimely demise.
NANCY: (pauses in her sobbing to turn to the camera) Uhm…who the hell are you?
NARRATOR: Oh…uh…I’m the narrator.
NANCY: Narrator? Narrator of what?
NARRATOR: We’re filming a sequel to Grass in the Mist.
NANCY: (Sniffling) Why? My brother’s dead!
NARRATOR: Yeah, I know. So it’ll be fairly hard to pull off, won’t it? We were originally gonna make the movie “GRASS IN THE MIST:RETURN TO AFRICA,” in which we’d take your brother’s body and fly it out to Africa, and then dump it in Skippy’s old grass patch and film it decomposing. But an obvious lack of car chases, heartrending emotional scenes, and nudity made that idea pretty much impossible.
Nancy starts crying again.
NANCY: OH, WHY?!?! WHY, SKIPPY, WHY?!?!?!? (she pulls a knife out of her pocket and cuts one of her wrists, howling in misery)
NARRATOR: OH!!! OH OH!!! Could you do that again, I don’t think I got it on camera! And this time…do you think you could…you know...bend over a bit? While you’re bleeding? It would make for a great shot of your cleavage that I’m sure would boost the sequel’s ratings!
NARRATOR: NO!!!! WAIT!!! I’VE GOT A BETTER IDEA!!! (The camera wobbles and an arm extends from behind it, handing her a gun) Do you think you could shoot yourself for me? It would make for a really good shot, I know it, and would perfectly capture the essence of your misery! Be sure to bleed a LOT!
NANCY: Uhm…no…no thanks...I’m not really that upset…no, I shouldn’t have cut myself…I think I’ll go to the hospital now…
NARRATOR: NO!! WAIT!!! Couldn’t you…just shoot yourself a little?
NANCY: No way man!
NARRATOR: Alright, we’ll compromise. In the foot.
NARRATOR: OKAY, FINE! But at least can I have an interview?
NANCY: Okay, but then I should really get to the doctor’s office to have them take care of this bleeding.
NARRATOR: So…here you are. On the grave of your dead brother. How do you feel? Do you miss him?
NANCY: No, not particularly.
NARRATOR: ...oh. Are you feeling…shocked? Distressed? Anguished?
NARRATOR: Then…for God’s sake, why were you crying?
NANCY: Because the stupid bastard didn’t leave me anything in his will! He left all of his possessions to some blade of grass called “Humphrey.” (She looks at the pistol that the narrator handed her, as if she is reconsidering. After a moment, she holds the pistol to her forehead and pulls the trigger. Nothing happens.) Whoops! I missed! (She does it again. This time, she shoots herself directly in the head, and falls to the ground.
NARRATOR: Oh! Wait, dammit! The camera wasn’t pointed at you! JESUS, that could have been SUCH a great shot!
Nancy gasps for breath as she lies on the ground, starting to go limp. The narrator crouches down beside her, and puts the gun back in her hand.
NARRATOR: (gently, soothingly) Just relaaaax…take deeeeep, easy breaths…now…do you think you might have ‘’just’’ enough energy in you to…you know…shoot yourself in the head, one last time? This time, maybe with a little more splurting blood? Maybe you could ‘’aim’’ some at your brother’s grave, for dramatic effect? Oh, and if you screamed more loudly, and did a backflip as you died, that would be kind of neat too…
NARRATOR: Oh well. At least I can get my cleavage shot. (He sticks the camera down her shirt)
A man is sitting on a plane, pointing a camera at himself. He appears to be deep in thought.
NARRATOR: This man you are seeing on your screen is Zippy Leadwell, the loyal brother of Skippy Leadwell. He is on a mission, along with Skippy’s father Paul, to travel to Africa and collect the blade of grass Skippy referred to as Humphrey. Their mission is to inform Humphrey that Skippy Leadwell left Humphrey all of his possessions in his last will and testament.
Zippy points the camera at himself.
ZIPPY: Ah…yes. Hello. I’m Zippy Leadwell, brother of the late Skippy Leadwell, here to document—
PAUL: Aw, would you shut up? I’m trying to take a nap!!
ZIPPY: Aw come on dad, I’m trying to document our voyage!
PAUL: What voyage? The goddamn plane hasn’t even taken off yet! And anyway, the only reason I wanted to bring the damn video camera was so I could try to indiscreetly take videos looking up the flight attendents’ skirts!
ZIPPY: (Ignoring his father) ANYWAY, our voyage is about to begin, an adventure that will surely take us through many perilous situations, and may even lead to a struggle that could mean the difference between LIFE AND DEATH!!!!
PAUL: We’ve only been on the plane for five minutes!
ZIPPY: Don’t you have to masturbate to the women in the L.L. Bean catalogue, or something?
PAUL: Oh yeah! I nearly forgot! (He grabs one of the vomit-stained magazines from the rack on the seat in front of him and unzips his pants)
ZIPPY: NOT HERE, DAD!!!
PAUL: Why not?
ZIPPY: Because, we didn’t get first class seats! You’re only allowed to masturbate in first-class seats, it says so right here in the plane’s rulebook, right under “Please don’t urinate on the pilot while the plane is in motion!”
PAUL: Oh, my mistake. I’ll go in the toilet, I suppose. (He stands up) Okay…now…I wonder which of these doors is the bathroom entrance? (He sees an emergency exit, and promptly opens the door, plummeting out of the plane to the runway below)
FLIGHT ATTENDANT: OH MY GOODNESS!!!
ZIPPY: Never mind my father, ma’am, we can just leave him. As a matter of fact, I could give you an extra five dollars if you run him over on the way out!
FLIGHT ATTENDANT: I’m sorry sir, our minimum fee for killing people is 15 dollars.
ZIPPY: Eh, forget it.
The plane is taking off, beginning its voyage to Africa
ZIPPY: Oh boy! Look at all the grass!!!
He points the camera out the window at the lawn of the airport.
ZIPPY: What a miraculous site! This grass has become so accustomed to the overwhelming noise of airplanes taking off, it can suppress it’s evolutionary urge to run away from loud noises! What a miracle of evolution! Ah, if only Skippy was here to see this, instead of being lying seven feet under the ground somewhere, with worms crawling around in his head! Ah, but at least he left behind a journal for us to remember him by!
Zippy pulls a book out of his pocket and starts reading aloud
ZIPPY: I kissed him with a passion unlike any sensation I had ever experienced on Earth, then I handed him the cucumber and turned my back to him, gently lowering my pants and my underpants down, down over my thighs, to reveal my open... (Zippy stops reading, looking highly embarrassed) ...whoops, wrong book! (He throws the book over his shoulder, where a ninety year old woman catches it and starts reading it intently.)
Zippy reaches into his pocket again, and pulls out another book, this time thoroughly checking the front cover before beginning to read.
ZIPPY: I’ll turn to the last page in the entry, to see if I can pick up any clues about his murder, along with where I might find this “Humphrey.” Here we go: “Today, things seem to be fairly ominous. I can tell by the way the wind is blowing, by the general sense of unease I’m picking up in the grass, and by the large box labeled “A GUN INTENDED TO KILL SKIPPY LEADWELL” that a hotel employee just carried into the hotel. I don’t think they really intend to shoot me, but in the event that I do meet an untimely death here, I’d like to leave all my possessions to my favorite blade of grass, Humphrey. Hmm, a large man is pressing a gun to my forehead now. My keen, naturalist ability to sense danger is tingling.”
Zippy puts down the book, looking thoughtful.
Zippy walks off the airplane into an airport, pointing the camera at himself all the while. He darts behind a garbage can.
ZIPPY: I’ve got to hide, who knows what fiends the government has sent out to locate me, and intercept me in an attempt to get their own greedy hands on Skippy's possessions. I suppose I should also be on the lookout for indiginous African wildlife...WHOA! LOOK AT THAT!!!
He points at an empty bottle on the ground.
ZIPPY: What a remarkable creature! It looks like some sort of undocumented species of obese, transparent snake! (He slowly approaches the bottle) It seems to bear an extremely odd marking on its back resembling the word "sprite." Perhaps this "sprite" marking is a warning, telling predators to "STAY AWAY!!!"
A police officer in the background sees Zippy, and starts walking towards him, glaring at him suspiciously.
ZIPPY: Now...I’m going to attempt to capture this beast...but it will be dangerous. I’ll have to move quickly to grab it and pin it down, so that it won’t bite me. Who knows what dangerous defensive mechanisms it possesses.
Zippy pauses and looks up as the policeman approaches him.
POLICEMAN: What on earth are you doing to that bottle?
ZIPPY: What? Who are you? Are you some disguised agent sent after me by some big business who wants to prevent Skippy's possessions from getting to where they belong?
ZIPPY: "Uh...what"...is that some secret code symbol you use to summon your fellow agents? (Looks around nervously)
POLICEMAN: (Rolling a garbagecan towards Zippy) Whatever, man. Just throw away the damn bottle.
ZIPPY: YOU BASTARD!!! This is a groundbreaking discovery, a revolution of science, perhaps...dare I say it...THE ONLY CREATURE LEFT OF ITS KIND!!! And you want me to throw it away like it's a piece of common litter, like...say...THAT? (He points to a small lizard that's scurrying along the ground)
POLICEMAN: Is this some kind of a joke, or something?
ZIPPY: Does this look like a joking face to you?
POLICEMAN: (Looking in Zippy's face) Well, I don't know, that clown nose you're wearing...
ZIPPY: Oh, did I forget to take that damn thing off? (He pulls of the nose and throws it across the room). Anyway, I'll NEVER throw out this scientific discovery! NEVER!!!
Zippy scoops up the bottle in his arms, pulls out a knife, and stabs the policeman. Another policeman comes up.
OTHER POLICEMAN: HEY! Why did you stab that policeman without filling out the proper paperwork?
ZIPPY: GET AWAY FROM ME, POACHER!!! (Zippy stabs the other policeman, then runs screaming from the airport, eventually running straight into a tree and passing out).
NARRATOR: Many hours passed, and Zippy lay in the middle of the field next to the airport, unconscious. By a miracle of good fortune, the policemen who were searching for him failed to notice him lying twenty feet away from the airport exit, mistaking him for a grotesquely shaped lawn ornament. Eventually, he woke up, and was able to continue documenting his voyage.
ZIPPY: Well, here I am. I'm certainly fortunate that this tree allowed me to shelter under it, I'd always thought of African trees as hostile and violent. Perhaps this one is ill. (Zippy pulls a band-aid out of his backpack and sticks it to the tree). Now, I've got to find out where this Humphrey is, so I can gently uproot him, put him in a pot, and bring him back to the United States so we can transfer ownership of Skippy's possessions to him.
Zippy glances down at the bottle, and picks it up again.
ZIPPY: This appears to be a very docile creature. It hasn't shown the slightest hint of aggression towards me whatsoever. Perhaps I'll adopt him as a pet. (An airplane flies overhead). What is that? Some government sponsored airplane, set out to prevent me from achieving my mission? TAKE THAT, YOU BASTARDS!!! (He throws a rock at the plane. It only flies about 5 feet, but Zippy appears not to notice. He stands up and looks around.)
NARRATOR: This is an intermission. It's our movie studio's way of saying "Go out and buy popcorn and support your local movie theater." Unfortunately, this movie's too long already, so you'll really only have time to stand up, possibly scratch your ass, then sit back down.
END OF INTERMISSION
The camera fades in on the same tree, which now has eight band-aids attached to it. Zippy is underneath it, with a small beard. He looks exhausted.
ZIPPY: Well, I'm three weeks into my voyage now, and what an adventure it's been so far! I spent the first two days trekking in one direction, until I realized that I was trekking towards the ocean, which is about thirty feet away. I didn't notice until I was up to my neck. I spent the next two days trekking back to this tree. I decided to establish a base camp here, and spent the next week gathering sticks to build a shelter out of using rope to hold it all together. Of course, I eventually realized that I didn't have any rope, so I gave up on that idea. Of course, by this time, I was nearly dying of thirst. I was completely exhausted. I could barely move. My throat was parched. JUST as I was mere inches from death...I remembered I was right next to an airport, and I went inside to get a drink from the water fountain.
He reaches into his pocket, and pulls out the sprite bottle.
ZIPPY: Harvey has been adjusting quite nicely to captivity. I've also managed to collect another specimen, though it attempted to instinctively defend itself by giving off a foul odor. (He reaches into his pocket and pulls out a juicy-looking diaper.) I collected it at great risk from a public restroom. An elderly janitor attempted to drug me, and doubtlessly rape and rob me, though of course he merely said "Hey man, you look sick, want some coffee?" I saw right through this treachery, of course, and ran away, bellowing.
Several drops of stale feces dribble out of the diaper
ZIPPY: Oh, my goodness! Fascinating! It's some sort of secretion, or a pus of some sort! Oh, and look, it's produced a bunch of larvae! (He points excitedly to the group of flies that are buzzing around the putrid diaper) I must take note of this!!!!
Zippy pulls out a notebook and starts scribbling frantically, until he suddenly stops.
ZIPPY: DAMMIT! OUT OF PAPER!!! (He sees a bird perched on a nearby branch. He grabs it and strangles it, and starts writing on it instead) I shall name this newest specimen Boris, and I shall take him with me on my voyage across the desert.
Zippy takes Boris and Harvey and stands up.
ZIPPY: Now, off I go!!!
Zippy starts trudging off, away from the camera which he has set on the ground. The camera sits on the ground for 45 minutes, pointing at the grass in the field blowing fascinatingly. Then Zippy finally runs back.
ZIPPY: OOPS! Forgot the camera!
A Desert. Zippy is limping through it, still holding the diaper (which has now turned a nasty brownish color, and has several pieces of greenish mold growing from it) and the sprite bottle.
ZIPPY: I've...*pant*...been walking...*pant*...for weeks. I've seen nobody...not a soul...except for the manager of a small convenience store I found along the way...and the manager of that burger king who asked me if I wanted to stop for a cold drink...I of course refused him...he probably wanted to kidnap me and take Skippy's possessions for himself...
He puts the camera down, and sits in the sand facing it.
ZIPPY: Well, an interesting note on Boris here, he appears to have changed colors, and the odor he is emitting has greatly intensified. Perhaps the intense odor is his way of attracting a mate. Or perhaps he's still convinced I'm a predator, and he's attempting to repel me. Either way, the smell is really getting intense, and it's getting more and more difficult for me to resist the urge to drop-kick him.
He holds up the bottle.
ZIPPY: Harvey, on the other hand, is in fine shape, hasn't changed color, and doesn't smell at all. (He starts stroking Harvey in an affectionate way). I tried teaching Harvey sign language, but he doesn't seem to have picked any of it up after eight hours of lessons. Apparently his is not the most intelligent of species. As a note of personal health, I am getting increasingly dehydrated which means that on the negative side, I'll probably keel over dead pretty soon, but on the positive side, I can prolong my masturbation for a practically infinite amount of time.
The camera fades out, and fades back in on a shot of Zippy marching along through the scorching desert, looking much worse.
NARRATOR: As time passed, Zippy's health continued to deteriorate. He was in trouble. He was, anyway. We, in our studio eight thousand miles away, watching his live footage on our TV screens and drinking orange soda, were rejoicing because a man dying of thirst in the desert is great cinema. But I'm getting sidetracked. Anyway, he was getting increasingly desperate.
ZIPPY: (Coughing violently) Jeeze...it's been so long, and I've seen no sign of water...apart from those eight hundred water fountains. I ignored all of them, simply because I knew they were all poisoned...traps set by government conspirators in an attempt to catch me off guard. But anyway, I'm getting dehydrated. In hindsight, maybe it wasn't such a good idea after all to ignore that 500 foot high billboard back there that said "DON'T GO THIS WAY, YOU IDIOT, THERE'S NO WATER!!!" Oh well. It's too late to turn back now. Wait! What's that!!
Zippy points the camera ahead of him, and uses the "zoom" feature on it to zoom in and reveal a large building.
ZIPPY: IT'S A GAS STATION!!! I'M SAVED!!!
Zippy runs up to the station. An obese man with a nametag of "STEVE" walks out of the station.
ZIPPY: STEVE!!! I NEED WATER!!!
STEVE: Listen, buddy. What kind of store do you think this is, anyway? We sell GAS!
ZIPPY: What? I don't need gas! I don't even have a car!!!
STEVE: If you're not buying gas, then get out. We don't sell anything else!
Zippy sighs, and keeps walking. Then, he sees another building up ahead, and starts sprinting towards it.
ZIPPY: Is it? ..IT IS!!!!
He points the camera gleefully to the building, which has a large sign outside that says "BILL'S ICE COLD DRINKS." Zippy runs up to the building, then lets out a bellow of despair. A sign outside the building reads, "Closed for the weekend."
Zippy is limping now, stumbling every several feet or so.
ZIPPY: It's been....so long...since I last had something to drink...I don't know how much longer I can go on carrying my backpack, this dead bird that I've been taking notes on, Harvey, Skippy's old journal, AND Boris. I think I'll need to get rid of all unnecessary weight.
He unzips his backpack, removes several bowling balls, and dumps them all on the ground.
ZIPPY: I imagine that should help...a little...*COUGH!!!*
He stumbles on for several more minutes, then reaches a gigantic waterhole.
ZIPPY: HOORAAAAAY!!! WATER!!!!!!! Can you see that, Harvey? Look, Boris! It's WATER!!!! HAHAAAHAHAHAH! Okay, you two can have first dibs. Animals always come first!
He dips both the sprite bottle and the filthy diaper into the water. The diaper oozes brownish slime into the pond, and several dead fish float to the surface.
ZIPPY: Have you had your fill, guys? Good! Now I'll have a turn!
Zippy bends down over the water, but just before he's about to drink, he notices a nearby blade of grass. Its roots extend into the water. Zippy pauses.
ZIPPY: Think, Zippy, what would Skippy have done? Would he have selfishly had this water himself, or would he have left it to the grass he loved so dearly? Or would he have pulled his pants down, stuffed worms in his ears, and started singing in Polish? Come to think of it, he probably would have done that last thing...but if that wasn't an option, I'm sure he would have sacrificed himself for the grass he loved so much. And so will I. COME ON!!!
He theatrically heaves the diaper and the sprite bottle onto his back, and starts trudging away from the pond.
Dramatic music plays. Actually, the music isn't very dramatic at all, it's "Ring around the Rosy." (The execs at Semi-National Films who make the soundtrack decisions are a little eccentric). Zippy is crawling on all fours.
ZIPPY: I must...go...on....I must...not...give up...I must...aw, fuck it. I'm DOOMED!!!!
He collapses, his face pressed in the dirt.
ZIPPY: I never thought it would end this way...HARVEY!
Zippy pulls the sprite bottle off his back and pushes it ahead of himself.
ZIPPY: HARVEY, you must finish my quest! You must pick up where I left off! You must find Humphrey the grass, and fly him back to America! That should be fairly difficult to accomplish without hands, but I'M SURE YOU CAN DO IT!!! *COUGH!!!!!!!* Well....this...looks...like....the....end....for...me...
Suddenly, a phone rings. Zippy reaches into his pocket and answers the phone.
ZIPPY: Hello? No, I'm afraid I can't renew my subscription at the moment...I'm dying...what? For half price? Hmmm...how many pictures will the next issue have? Ooooh...really? And she'll be doing it with a baseball bat? Okay, alright, that sounds too good to miss. If I die before that issue comes out, be sure I'm buried with it. Thank you. (He hangs up the phone)
ZIPPY: Anyway....*cough*...it looks...like...this...is...the...en-
MAN'S VOICE: Hey! Hey you! Can't you read, you MORON?!?
ZIPPY: What? Am I hallucinating?
MAN'S VOICE: NO! You're not hallucinating, now GET UP!!!
Zippy slowly rises to his feet. A janitor is glaring at him, looking fairly upset.
ZIPPY: What's the matter?
The janitor points to a nearby sign that clearly says, "NO DYING ON HOTEL PREMISES"
JANITOR: Yeah! Welcome to the Holiday Inn, Bangui!
ZIPPY: Oh, this is fantastic!!! Skippy was right near a hotel, wasn't he? I'M HERE!!! I MADE IT!!! HAHAHAHAHA!!!
Zippy runs over to the location behind the hotel described in Skippy's journal. But then, Zippy freezes, pointing the camera at the spot.
ZIPPY: Where...where...where the hell is all the grass?
JANITOR: Oh, that! We had it all ripped out to make room for some astro-turf for a new hotel minigolf course.
Zippy falls to the ground, devastated.
ZIPPY: Wha-...you KILLED the grass? You KILLED Skippy's grass?
JANITOR: What's the matter? We've got astro-turf!
ZIPPY: YOU BASTARDS!!!
JANITOR: Who are you, anyway?
ZIPPY: Zippy Leadwell, the loyal brother of Skippy Leadwell!
JANITOR: ...oh...Hi! (He awkwardly shifts in front of the large sign reading "WE KILLED SKIPPY LEADWELL!!! YAAAAY!")
ZIPPY: All the grass is DEAD!!! Humphrey's DEAD!!! Oh God, this is horrible! Who's going to get all of Skippy's possessions now?
ZIPPY: Oh! That's right! Skippy didn't have any possessions! HA, silly me!!!
Zippy turns to the camera
ZIPPY: Well folks, it looks like my big adventure is at an end. I'm off to a nearby field where the local pebbles are supposed to have the most fascinating social patterns. See ya!
Zippy wanders into the sunset, his soda bottle in one hand and his dirty diaper in the other.