A Fairy Tale

Narrator: (John Cleese) Once upon a time, long, long ago, there lived in a valley far, far away in the mountains, the most contented kingdom the world had ever known. It was called 'Happy Valley', and it was ruled over by a wise old king called Otto. And all his subjects flourished and were happy, and there were no discontents or grumblers, because wise King Otto had had them all put to death along with the trade union leaders many years before. And all the good happy folk of Happy Valley sang and danced all day long. And anyone who was for any reason miserable or unhappy or who had any difficult personal problems was prosecuted under the 'Happiness Act'.

(Sounds of laughter and giggling. A hammer strikes a gavel. Giggling continues throughout)

Prosecutor: (Terry Jones) (Not giggling) Gaspar Sletts, I put it to you that on February the Fifth of this year, you were very depressed with malice aforethought, and that you moaned quietly contrary to the Cheerful Noises Act.

Gaspar Sletts: (Michael Palin) (Also not giggling) I did.

Defense: (Eric Idle) (Not giggling, too) May I just explain, m'lud, that the reason for my clients behavior was that his wife had died that morning?

(This elicits big laughs. Judge bangs gavel again)

Judge: (Graham Chapman) (laughing) I sentence you to be hanged by the neck until you cheer up.

(More laughter)

Narrator: And whilst the good folk of Happy Valley tenaciously frolicked away, their wise old king, who was a merry old thing, played strange songs on his Hammond Organ up in the beautiful castle where he lived with the gracious Queen Syllabub, and their lovely daughter Mitzi Gaynor, who had fabulous tits and an enchanting smile, and wooden teeth which she had bought at a chemist's in Augsburgh, despite the fire risk. She treasured these teeth, which were made of the finest pine and she varnished them after every meal. And next to her teeth, her dearest love was her pet dog, Herman. She would take Herman for long walks and pet and fuss over him all day, and steal him tasty tidbits which he never ate, because sadly, he was dead. And no one had had the heart to tell her, because she was so sweet and innocent, and knew nothing of gastroenteritis or plastic hip joints, or even personal hygiene. One day, while she was pulling Herman round the lawn, she suddenly fell in love with the most beautiful young man she had ever seen, naturally assuming him to be a prince. Well, luckily he was a prince. So she looked him up in the Observer's Book of Princes, learned his name, and went and introduced the subject of marriage. And, in what seemed like the twinkling of an eye, but was in fact a fortnight, they were on their way to her father's court to ask his permission to wed.

King Otto: (Terry Jones) (accompanied by Hammond organ) Yowtie buggetty, rum fing f-tooo, Ni! Ni! Ni! Yow-oooo!!


King Otto: Thank you, thank you, thank you...

Princess Mitzi: (Carol Cleveland) Daddy?

King Otto: Yes, daughter?

Princess Mitzi: This is Charming, who wants to marry me.

King Otto: Is he a prince?

Princess Mitzi: Yes!

King Otto: Is he in the book?

Princess Mitzi: Yes!

King Otto: Oh, very well. Before I can give my permission, young man, I must set you a task, which, if you succeed, will prove you worthy of my daughter's hand.

Prince Charming: (Michael Palin) Yes, sir, I accept.

King Otto: Good. At nine o'clock tomorrow morning, armed only with your sword, you must go to the highest tower in the castle, and jump out of the window.

Narrator: And so, early the next morning, the young Prince Charming, dressed in a beautiful white robe, and gripping his magic sword, plummetted to a painful death.

(terrifed scream, followed by a squish then laughter)

Princess Mitzi: Can we get married now, Daddy?

King Otto: No, my dear, he wasn't worthy of you.

Princess Mitzi: Oh, will he have to go into the ground like all the others?

King Otto: Hmm, that's a good idea for a song, er... (accompanied by Hammond organ) Yum-yum, yum-yum-dee buggetty, rum fing f-tooo, Yi! Ni! Ni! Yow-oooo!!

(the king is joined by a chorus of singers)

Chorus of Singers: (accompanied by Hammond organ) Yowtie buggetty, rum fing f-tooo, Ni! Ni! Ni! Yow-oooo!!

Narrator: One day, when Princess Mitzi was out hopefully kissing frogs, she spotted a flash of gold beneath a weeping willow tree, and there, sure enough, was a prince. He was rather thin and spotty, with a long nose and bandy legs, and nasty unpolished plywood teeth, and bad breath, and a rare foot disease, 'But', thought Mitzi, 'a prince is a prince,' and she fell in love with him without another thought and rushed into his arms. And after a time, or a few times anyway, he too fell in love with her, and very soon they were on their way to ask King Otto's permission to wed.

King Otto:(accompanied by Hammond organ) Yowtie buggetty, rum ting f-tooo...

Princess Mitzi: Hello, Daddy!

King Otto: Ni! Ni! Ni!

Princess Mitzi: Hello, Daddy!

King Otto: Yow...oh, hello Mitzi!

Princess Mitzi: This is Prince Walter, who wants to marry me.

King Otto: Is he in the book?

Princess Mitzi: And in the foreword.

King Otto:(in a low, grumbling voice) Oh, Hello, Walter.

Prince Walter: (Michael Palin) PRINCE Walter!

King Otto: You little...

Queen Syllabub: (Graham Chapman) Otto!

King Otto: Oh, sorry! So, you want to marry my daughter, do you?

Prince Walter: Perhaps. (sniffles loudly)

Princess Mitzi: Oh, say you do, Walter!

Prince Walter: Yeah, all right.

King Otto: Well, in that case, I must set you a task, so that you can prove yourself worthy of my daughter's hand.

Prince Walter: Why?

King Otto: Because she's a fucking princess, that's why! I'm sorry. Before you can marry my daughter, you must go to the highest tower...

Queen Syllabub: Otto!

King Otto: Uh, oh, you must, oh... go down to the town and get me twenty Rothmans.

Prince Walter: What, now?

King Otto: No, tomorrow morning!

Narrator: And so, early next morning, single-handed, armed only with 40p, Prince Walter set out for the tobaccanist's. Yard after yard he walked. Minute after minute ticked by. His body breathed in, and breathed out. Until...

(door bell jingles)

Prince Walter: Twenty Rothmans, please.

Tobaccanist: (Graham Chapman) Certainly, sir.

(cash register bell rings)

(crowd cheering)

Narrator: How all the happy residents of Happy Valley cheered Prince Walter as he walked back up the hill in triumph. But just as he was approaching the castle, he was run over by a London bus, which only goes to show.

(sound of brakes screeching, Prince Walter's last gasp)

Narrator: And the moral of the story is... Smoking can ruin your health. The End.