Only Fools And Horses

The Yellow Peril

INT. TAKE-AWAY. Del is inside 'The Golden Lotus' Chinese take-away. Behind the counter is a door marked 'Kitchen'. Del So we have a deal then Mr Chin? Chin Yes, we have a deal. Del Good. Chin Do you take Barclaycard? Del (Indicating the till) Do you? No, call me old fashioned or sentimental if you like, but I'm a readies man meself - cash in hand that's my motto! Anyway, we'll see you first thing in the morning right, about 11 o' clock. Chin Can't you do it today? Del Oh, no, no, no, sorry I can't do it today Mr Chin. You see, today is a very special day. Today is the anniversary of my late mother's passing from this immortal curl. And by tradition my brother and me, we always spend the day with her in the cemetery, tending the grave, that sort of thing. Anyway, I must rush, gotta buy some flowers. Chin Yes - I'm very sorry! Del Oh, it's no sweat, I get them cheap of a geezer in the market! Sayonara. Chin Cheerio. As Del goes out to the van he removes an 'out of Order' bag from a parking meter and puts it in his pocket. CEMETERY/GRAVESIDE. A marble-look headstone reads: 'Joan Mavis Trotter. Wife of Reg. Mother of Del Boy and Rodney. Fell asleep March 12, 1964.' The headstone is incorporated within Mum's marble-look 'monument'. The centerpiece is a large cross reaching up to 8ft high. Beneath this is the sculptured face of an old man with a long flowing beard (Del's idea of God). On either side of the cross stand marble-look statues of the Virgin Mary, and gathered all around this are a host of chubby angelic figures. The monument is beginning to show signs of wear, both from the weather and local pigeons. The other graves are all in a terrible condition, uncared for, overgrown with weeds and grass. Del is standing on the grave trimming the grass with a small pair of shears. Rodney is seated on a nearby bench. Del There you go Mum...s'cuse feet. (Admiring) It's the bestest grave in the entire cemetery Rodney. Rodney Yeah, it's mustard. Del Yeah, I mean look at the others - thy all look like monuments to the unknown gypo ...While the others fall and crumble into dust this will stand forever. And do you know why? 'Cos it's the only one in the entire cemetery made of fiberglass. Rodney Del, it's the only one in the entire cemetery that required planning permission! Del That's right... Del joins Rodney on the bench. Rodney It's looking a bit tatty now- adays. Del I don't know, it's not too bad. It's bound to be a bit iffy innit, after 17 years? I mean, so would you after standing there for 17 years of pigeons and diesel fumes and other mourners stubbing their cigarette ends out on you. I dunno, maybe you could be right. It could do with brightening up a bit. If I added some fiberglass models, of say, an apostle and four cherubims with trumpets, do you think it would alter the effect? Rodney If you added fiberglass models of Snow White and the seven dwarfs you couldn't alter the effect of that! Del Oi, oi, oi, don't start getting sacrificial! I don't know what's the matter with you Rodney, really I don't. You seem to have no sense of occasion. You've no...tres bien ensembles, as the French say. I mean look at you now, loafing about round your mother's graveside. Don't you feel any emotion? Rodney Now look Del, I didn't know Mum that well, id I? When she died I was just a little nipperoni, all odd socks and eczema! Now you feel a sense of personal loss - me, I just feel cheated. Del I'm sorry Rodney. I should have realized...Our Mum was a wonderful woman...She had long blonde hair...sometimes. Every night you'd see her sitting at the bar in the Nag's Head with her simulated beaver skin - with her rum and pep in one hand, 20 Senior Service in the other. She looked like a lady - lots of people mistook her for a money lender. Rodney Really? Del Straight up. Oh yes, course I was much younger then and didn't have much money, but every night she used to send me across two or three pints of light bitter, or whiskey if she was flush. That was Mum... Then come about ten o' clock she'd look over where I was sitting and she'd shout 'Come on Del Boy, get off home to bed - school in the morning!' That was the kind of woman she was Rodney, concerned about our welfare. Rodney Where was I then? Del Outside in the pram eating an arrowroot. Rodney Wasn't she worried? Del No, it was only an old pram... No, it's alright, I'm pulling your leg. Course she was worried. No. I like it here though, don't you Rodney. Nice and quiet, away from the crowds and the noise and the traffic. It really is. It's so quiet. Rodney Yeah. Del Tranquil. Rodney Hmmmm. Del You're decorating the kitchen of a Chinese take-away tomorrow. Rodney (Not really hearing) Yeah. Del The sun is shining the birds are singing. Rodney What did you just say? Del Everythin's quiet and tranquil! Rodney No Del, in between it being quiet and tranquil and the sun shining and the birds singing you mentioned something bout a Chinese take-away. Del Chinese ta...Oh, the Chinese take-away. Well the owner's, see, in dead schtuck. He's got the health inspectors coming round and he's got to have his kitchen, you know, painted, you know, brightened up a bit. Rodney So why have I got to paint it? Del Well you're the one that's got the GCE in Art. It's a good earner this is Rodney. I'm charging him 150 nicker. Rodney I don't care. Del Oh come on, I've given him your word now. Rodney Look, I am not painting the kitchen of some grotty Chinese take-away. Alright? Del Alright, if that's the way you want it...Yeah, I remember what Mum said to me on her deathbed. She called me over to her side and she said 'Del Boy...Del Boy. Rodney Stuttered did she...? Del turns on him with a glare that could kill. Rodney had committed a cardinal sin and he knows it. Rodney (cont'd) Sorry Del...No, really, I'm sorry. I don't know why I said it...Sorry. Del 'Look after Rodney for me Del Boy' she said, 'Share everything you've got with him, try to make him feel normal...' And that's what I have done. Half of everything I've got...I mean, fair enough, I've got nothing, but half of it's yours! Rodney You'd give me half of every- thing! You'd nick the hole out of me last polo if I didn't keep my mouth shut. Del That hurts Rodney...That hurts. If I had any kind of wealth I'd give half of it to you like a shot. Rodney Yeah? Say you had two Rolls Royces? Del Well I'd give one to you wouldn't I. Rodney You'd give me one of your Rolls Royces? Del Yeah, course I would. If it was weather like this, I'd give you the one with the sun- shine roof. Rodney If you had two million pounds what would you do? Del I'd give you a million wouldn't I. Rodney Really? Del In cash. Rodney What would you do if you had two of them deep sea diver's watches? Del Now you know I've got two of them deep sea diver's watches...Don't take bloody liberties with me Rodney! Rodney Yeah, that's the real Del coming out! Del Alright, you can have one of me deep sea diver's watches. Alright? Rodney No, no, I've got to draw the line somewhere. I'm fed up with you and your bribery and your emotional blackmail every time you want me to do the dirty work! It's point of principle now Del, you'd better get this straight, I am not painting that kitchen tomorrow, I'm not painting that kitchen in 1,000 years - no way my son!! Del I'll give you a lend of me dirty books. Rodney Yeah, alright then. EXT. DAY. SIDE STREET/TAKE-AWAY. The van pulls up at a parking meter. Del alights from the driver's side, Rodney from the passenger side. Del throws Rodney the 'Out of Order' sign. Del Oi, Rodney, put that on the meter will you. Del opens the back door to reveal a sulking Grandad in among the step ladders and buckets of dust sheets. Del (cont'd) Right, come on, what's that look for? Grandad You can't expect me to paint with me feet Del Boy. Del I don't expect you to paint with your feet. All I expect you to do is sweep up, mix up and hold the ladder for Rembrandt here, alright. Come on. Del walks off towards the take-away which has 'Closed for Redecoration' sign on it. Del approaches the door, opens it and a cat runs out. Del (Calls) Oi, don't let him out...Well that's going to please Mr Chin innit? Rodney Was it his pet? Del No but number 39's off the menu. INT. CHINESE TAKE-AWAY. Del and Rodney enter. Rodney D'you reckon them rumours about these places are true then? Del No, of course not. Rodney Well, that cat looked pretty alarmed about something. THE KITCHEN. The kitchen is a nightmare vision. The kind of kitchen we all fear may exist behind those dirty and greasy, littered with unwashed pots and pans. Lumps of meat and veg lay rotting on the work tops. Del notices the look of horror on Rodney's face. Del Here we are, nice little kitchen innit? Rodney Nice little kitchen? This is the pits Del Boy. This is the bloody pits. The whole place looks like an explosion in a dripping factory. Del This is a working kitchen Rodney. You've got to expect a little bit of fat to spill out of the pan every now and then. Rodney So what period are we going to decorate it in Del? Early bubonic perhaps? Del Yes, if you like, look, don't worry about it, you've had all your inoculations haven't you? Come on. Grandad enters carrying a portable TV. Grandad Is this the kitchen? Del No, this is the mater bedroom, the kitchen's upstairs in the bathroom you wally. Now, listen you two, you should be out of here in a couple of days if you don't do anything stupid like stopping for lunch. Del picks up a cardboard box which is standing next to the stove. He places it onto the table. He opens the box and produces a few small tins of paint with no labels on them. Del Oi, Rodney, come here, down here, look at this. This is yer paint - right, there's yer walls, there's yer ceiling - and now I'll leave it all up to you Michelangelo. Rodney Oh yeah, and just what am I supposed to o with them soppy little tins - look I can't even dip me brush in 'em. Del He can't even get his brush in 'em. He can't even work that little problem out. Tell him how to do it Grandad. Grandad Get a pair of scissors and trim your brush. Del Yeah, no, no. You don't get a pair of scissors and trim yer brush up. Look what you do is get yer little tins open them up and you put them into your big tin. Rodney Oh yeah I'd thought of doing that already...They've got no labels on them, we don't even know what colour they are. Del I know, the owner bought them cheap, he got well taken on, it's a load of rubbish. Rodney You can say that again. Where'd he get 'em from? Del Me. Rodney You? Is this nicked Del? I'm not doing it if they're nicked! Del It's not nicked Rodney. It's bankrupt stock. I bought a couple of gross as a job-lot. Trust me, will you, trust me. Mr Chin enters. Chin Good morning. Del Ah, good morning Mr Chin... Well my men are here as promised - and may I say that these two men are the best in the business. The crème da la menthe of the painting and decorating world. Chin Good. (To Grandad) You are the painter? Grandad No, no, no, he's the painter. I'm his apprentice. Del No, they're the best, the very best. Don't worry about it Mr Chin - in fact, chin up. Chin Have you decided what colour the walls will be? Del Colour... Del looks to the tin of paint which Rodney is desperately trying to open. Del (cont'd) Yes, I mean, you don't leave an important decision like that until the last minute. (Hisses to Rodney) Get that lid off. Rodney I'm trying. Del (Playing for time) Well, Mr Chin, the colour that I thought of - now you may not agree with me, but somehow I think you will. What I thought, and you can shoot me down in flames on this one if you it off yet? Rodney No. Chin Blue. Del What? Chin I like blue! Del Blue, oh blue, Jeux Sans Frontières, that's exactly what I thought of. I thought, why don't we paint these walls a nice subtle shade of blue. Chin What shade of blue? Rodney (Removes lid) Yellow. Del And then I changed my mind. I thought no not the blue - gold. Rodney That is yellow. Del This is gold Rodney, what's the matter with you, are you illiterate or something? (To Chin) I remembered the name of your beautiful restaurant 'Gold for the Golden Locust'. Chin Well Mr Trotter, I'll leave it to you. As long as my kitchen is painted and cleaned up before the health inspector call. Alright? Del Fine. Rodney Sorry, how do you know the health inspector's calling? I didn't think they warned you or nothing! Chin Oh I had a telephone call from a man, he did not give his name, but he tell me, 'Get you kitchen painted or you be in big trouble. John.' Rodney John? Del John, yeah - John. John, you know, John, it's the expression, cockney expression. Alright John and all that. Somebody up there must like him, eh? Rodney I wonder who that anonymous call could have been Del? Del Well, I don't know. Don't think we're ever going to find that one out are we Rodney, eh? Well, come on now, we must now say chow mein and let our men get on with their work. Eh, Mr Chin? Mr Chin exits. Grandad D'you think this anonymous person is likely to ring up any other Chinese Restaurants and tell 'em to get their kitchens painted? Del Well I had to do something, didn't I? Otherwise we would have been lumbered with all this paint. Right, now listen. I'm going to take these boxes with me, right, so Rodney you'll have to water that lot down a bit, you don't want it too thick do you 'cause the plaster's none too kosher. Just remember, a little dab'll do you, right, a little dab'll do you! Grandad Here, what about all this grease and filth Del Boy. You arranged for anyone to clean it up? Del Of course I have, what do you think I am a cowboy or something? There's a tin of Ajax and a rubber glove in that bucket - go easy on the Ajax. See yer! Del exits. THE TROTTERS' LOUNGE. Grandad is turning the TVs on as he sits down. Rodney (Out of view) He's not in. Rodney enters. Grandad P'rhaps he's gone out! Rodney Oh yeah, I never thought of that. You daft old...of course he's gone out, the question is where? This is the second day on the trot that Del's done a complete disappearing act, but when I ask him where he's gone, he always acts sort of evasive. Grandad I thought he told you to mind your own bloody business. Rodney Yeah, that's what I mean, evasive. You know what, I reckon that while I have been imprisoned in that Chinese take-away, he's been out wheeling and dealing on the quiet - making a few bob and cutting us out... Del enters. Rodney (cont'd) Oh you're in. Del You can't pull the wool over this boy's eyes can you, eh Grandad? Yes I am in Rodney... Seven out of ten for observation.. Did you finish that job? Rodney Yeah, about half an hour back. Del Good, give us the money then, give us the mazoola. Thank you. One hundred and fifty pounds - spot on. Well done. Rodney We phoned you to come and pick us up but you weren't in. What have you been up to Del? Del Oh bits and pieces. Rodney Where have you been? Del There and back. Rodney So what you been doing? Del This and that. Rodney Long as I know. Grandad (To Rodney) I thought you'd winkle it out of him in the end. Del Listen Rodney I been doing something...private...Alright so let's just leave it at that. Okay? I think the best thing to do with this money is to split it three way. Here you are Grandad - that's 35 for you. Grandad Oh cheers Del Boy. Del 40 for you Rodney. Rodney 40! Del Yeah, well, you're the crafts- man aren't you? You get the most 'cos you're experienced. Rodney Yeah but over there you said... Del Hang about, hang about. And you also get your diver's watch. There you are. The door bell rings. Del (cont'd) Hello, somebody at the front door. Grandad go and see who that is will you. Grandad Oh, my legs are older than yours. Del I know, that means they've had more experience haven't they? Del (Referring to the watch) D'you like it then? Rodney Yeah, cheers. Del Good. Oh, the bloke said don't get it in the water. Rodney Don't get it in the water? But it's a deep sea diver's watch. Del I know that, but it doesn't mean to say you've got to go deep sea diving in it does it? I mean, I've got a pair of them desert boots but you don't catch me in the Sahara. Look, it tells you how deep you are and everything. Grandad It's Trigger for you, Del. Trigger follows Grandad in, Rodney is at the table trying to get the watch to work. He winds various buttons, holds it up to his ear, shakes it and finally bangs it on the table. Del Oh yeah, hello Trig. Trigger Alright Del Boy? Hello Dave. Del What's up with you then Trig? Trigger I got some more of that paint, interested? Del Oh yeah. Yeah, I'll have some of that. Yeah, what is it - same price or lower? Trigger Same. Del Oi Rodney, don't bang that watch, it ain't shock proof. Trigger (Indicating paint) I won't be getting any more of this for a while. I'm laying low for a spell, we almost got caught the other night. Rodney What do you mean almost got caught? Trigger Yeah, by the railway police. See me and Monkey Harris get this paint from a storage shed down in Clapham Junction. Rodney (To Del) You swore to me it wasn't nicked! Bankrupt stock you said! Del British Rail, same thing innit? Rodney Knocked off railway paint, eh? Well I bet Mr Chin's going to be well leased when he finds he's had his whole kitchen done out in Inter-City yellow. Del I prefer to call it Awayday Gold. Grandad I wondered where I'd seen that colour before. All day long I was whistling 'This is the Age of the Train' and I couldn't think why. Trigger No, this ain't the stuff they paint trains with. They use this for painting signs in tunnels. Rodney It doesn't matter what they use it for Trig, it's still knocked off - and it's still illegal. Del Yeah, but it's good for the country though Rodney, innit? Rodney Come on Del, how can knicking off British Rail be good for Britain? Del (To Trig) He amazes me you know Trig, he's got a GCE in Maths, and he still acts like a total wally-brain. (To Rodney) I'll tell you why this is good for the country, shall I Rodney? 'Cos British Rail have to hire more security guards to protect this paint thus lowering the unemployment figures - plus, their insurance company will need more people to handle British Rail claims that means redundant insurance clerks will be snatched from the dole queues and handed back their dignity. Right? Now these people may very well celebrate their good fortune by buying a car and taking their wife and kids on a touring holiday round Britain. This will result, this will result in a much needed boost to our ailing car industry, higher revenue for North Sea Oil and a vital cash injection into seaside resorts and depressed areas. On the other hand. they may decide to take a holiday abroad, right, thus forcing foreign hoteliers, restaurateurs and bar owners to buy more British beer, food and goods. This will result in higher export drive which, in turn, will be very good for our balance of payments surplus! Soon this country will be rich and famous again - the starving shall be fed - the homeless ill be homed. Right? Rodney is left open mouthed. We can almost hear the figures whizzing around in his brain. Rodney This watch is broke! Del This watch is not broke, it's just that you don't know how to work it properly. Look, see it tells you the time in all the major capital cities of the world. Rodney Yeah look, everyone except London. Look all I can tell by this is that it's nearly chucking out time in Peking and I'm low on oxygen. Del What do you want for nothing? Jam on it? Grandad Tunnels. Del What did you say? Rodney No, he said that. Grandad Trigger said tunnels! He said they use that stuff to paint tunnels. Well how can you see a sign in a tunnel? It's pitch black innit? Trigger Na - this is luminous paint. Del It's luminous paint Grandad, that means you see it in the dark...Luminous? Bloody luminous?? Trigger I thought you knew Del Boy. Del What do you mean you thought I knew, you didn't tell me. What do you think I am, a psychic or something? Trigger D'you still want this box of paint? Del Want it? No I don't want it - you can stick it up... The telephone rings. Del I'm not in Grandad. Grandad Hello...Oh hello Mr Chin. No, no Del's gone out...I'm not sure. (To Del) Where you gone to Del? Del Give it to me you stupid old git. Now sit down before I knock you down. (Takes phone) Hello Mr Chin. How are you? THE CHINESE KITCHEN. The actual lights in the kitchen are out but the walls are glowing bright and eerily. In the centre of the room, three Chinese kitchen hands huddle together fearing for their lives. Chin is talking on the phone. He is wearing sunglasses. We cut back to Del at the flat. Chin Don't you 'Hello Mr Chin' me. What have you done to my walls?? Del (On the phone in lounge) Glowing are they? Now listen tell 'em not to be frightened 'cos this is a new energy saving paint. Yes, it's designed to cut down on the old electricity bills...I get it from a contact Trigger Stockholm. Del Yes - Stockholm. Stockholm?! 'Cos, you see, the Norwegians they lead the world in paint technology...Yes...Yes, I understand, I'll be round to see you in the morning, first thing. Rodney Does he want his money back? Del No, he wants you to go round tomorrow and do his living room out in it...I'll have that other box of paint off you... (Starts to pay Trigger) Oh my God! Trigger Something wrong Del? Del Oh what have I done? It's all your fault. It's your fault, you and your stupid paint. Rodney Oi, what have you done? Del Now, listen Rodney. Listen, you've got to understand right. That I did it in good faith. Grandad Did what in good faith? Del I'll show you. Come on you better get your coats. MAIN ROAD. RAILINGS. The three-wheeled van pulls up at the kerb. Del alights and faces Rodney and Grandad. Rodney Del, what you brought us here for? Del Wait a minute. Del peers tentatively over Rodney's shoulder and turns and cringes at what he sees. Del (cont'd) Take a look at that. Rodney and Grandad turn to look in the same direction. Grandad Oh my Gawd. Over the headstones, on the brow of the hill, Mum's monument is glowing gold in the night sky. It looks radioactive. Rodney Is this where you've been for the last couple of days, painting Mum's monument?? Del It was her favourite colour and we both agreed it needed brightening up. Rodney Brightening?? That's more like a rocket launch! Del Well I didn't know it was going to be luminous did I? Rodney D'you realise our mum's grave is now going to become a beacon for every Satanist and acid-head in England. There's going to be white witches dancing round that on a full Moon - there's going to be chicken blood everywhere! Grandad What worries me is it's on the main flight path to Heathrow! Del I wish you two could see your- selves. There's Mum and her monument - she's fast asleep - the third coat hardly dry and already you're quivering in our shoes! Well, I'll tell you this much, I don't regret that I did it. I will not bow my head to any snotty-nosed town hall clerks at their narrow- minded rules. I shall look them straight in the face and I'll say 'I am the man responsible - and I'm proud of it'. We'll put it down to vandals - let's get out of here before we get our collars felt.

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