DOCUMENTARY ON BOXER
Film of a boxer (J.C.) in training, running along a country road. All this is shot in 'Man Alive' style: plenty of hand-held documentary work. Sound of boxer's feet on the leaves and heavy breathing.
Voice Over: (M.P.) This is Ken
Clean-Air Systems, the great white hope of the British boxing world. After three
fights - and only two convictions - his manager believes that Ken is now ready
to face the giant American, Satellite Five.
Cut to manager being driven in Rolls.
Superimposed Caption: 'MR ENGLEBERT
HUMPERDINCK - MANAGER'
The great thing about
Ken is that he's almost totally stupid.
Cut back to Ken jogging, the early
morning sun filtering through the trees.
Voice Over: Every morning, he jogs
the forty-seven miles from his two-bedroomed, eight-bathroom, six-up-two-down,
three-to-go-house in Reigate, to the Government's Pesticide Research Centre at
Shoreham. Nobody knows why.
Cut to Ken's wife (a young glamorous married), hanging out the washing in a council estate.
Caption: 'MRS CLEAN-AIR SYSTEMS'
Mrs. CAS: (E.I.) Basically Ken is a
very gentle, home-loving person. I remember when one of his stick insects had a
knee infection. He stayed up all night rubbing it with germoline and banging its
head on the table.
Cut to Ken's mother - an old lady in
a wheelchair. Hand-held big close-up against the sky.
Caption: 'MRS NELLIE AIR-VENT,
Mother: (T.J.) Oh he was such a
pretty baby, always so kind and gentle. He was really considerate to his mother,
and not at all the kind of person you'd expect to pulverize their opponent into
a bloody mass of flesh and raw bone, spitting teeth and fragments of gum into a
ring which had become one man's hell and Ken's glory.
The wheelchair moves away and we see
that it is on top of a car. Cut to exterior of a semi-detached house. Night.
Voice Over: Every morning at his
little three-room semi near Reading, Ken gets up at three o'clock (light goes
on) and goes back to bed again because it's far too early.
Light goes out. Close-up alarm clock
at 7.05. General shot of room, Ken coming out of bathroom pulling his track-suit
Voice Over: At seven o'clock Ken gets
up, he has a quick shower, a rub-down, gets into his track-suit, and goes back
to bed again. (shot of trainer running) At 7.50 every morning Ken's trainer runs
the 13,000 miles from his two-room lean-to in Bangkok and gets him up.
General shot of room to show his
trainer standing over the sleeping Ken. He holds a large mallet and a steel peg.
I used to wake Ken up
with a crowbar on the back of the head. But I recently found that this was too
far from his brain and I wasn't getting through to him anymore. So I now wake
him up with a steel peg driven into his skull with a mallet.
Cut to the empty kitchen, shot from
ground level. The camera pans across to show plate of food under an upright
chair, and then pans across the room to the kitchen cupboard; Mrs. Clean-Air
Systems at the sink.
Voice Over: For breakfast every day,
Ken places a plate of liver and bacon under his chair, and locks himself in the
Cut to gym. Manager standing beside
ropes of the ring. Again a hand-held 'Man Alive' type interview, with camera
noise and all.
Manager: Well, he's having a lot of
mental difficulties with his breakfasts, but this is temperament, caused by a
small particle of brain in his skull, and once we've removed that he'll be
perfectly all right.
Close-up alarm clock. Hands at 8.30.
Voice Over: At 8.30 the real training begins. (General shot of room. Ken asleep in bed) Ken goes back to bed and his trainer gets him up.
The door bursts open but we don't stay to see what happens. We cut immediately to outside of the house. His trainer pushes Ken out. Trainer goes back into the house (obviously to Ken's wife). Cut to Ken jogging through town. Hand held. Ken finds his way blocked by a parked car. He stops and looks very puzzled, then instead of going round it turns and runs back the way he has come.
At 10.30 every morning Ken arrives at what he thinks is the gym.
Sometimes it's a sweetshop, sometimes it's a private house. Today its a
Ken turns into the gates of a
hospital. There is a slight pause, and a white-coated doctor arrives at the door
and points right up the street.
Doctor: (G.C.) Urn, straight down
there. Straight down there.
Ken follows his finger and looks very
hard in that direction. When he is satisfied that Ken has understood where he is
pointing, the doctor retires back inside. Ken turns and watches him as he does
this, then turns and sets off in the opposite direction. Cut to a shot of a
Voice Over: For lunch Ken crouches
down in the road and rubs gravel into his hair. (Pan down to roadside to reveal
Ken just finishing rubbing gravel into his hair; he stands up and hops over a
railing to a riverside where a bed stands) But lunch doesn't take long. Ken's
soon up on his feet and back to bed. (Ken hops into the bed) And his trainer has
to run the 49,000 miles from his two-bedroom, six-living-room tree-house in
Kyoto to wake him up. (Trainer runs into shot, pauses by bedside and turns to
camera. He has large plumber's bag.)
Trainer: Hello. When Ken is in a
really deep sleep like this one, the only way to wake him up is to saw his head
Cut to stock close-up of punch bag
and glove smashing into it. Continual hitting and impact-bang-bang-bang-bang
Voice Over: What is he like in the
ring, this human dynamo, this eighteen-stone bantam weight battering-ram? We
asked his sparring partner and one-time childhood sweetheart, Maureen Spencer.
Cut to medium close-up of Maureen,
very busty in boxing gear and sparring helmet.
Well, I think that if
Ken keeps his right up, gets in with the left jab and takes the fight to his man
- well, he should go for a cut eye in the third and put Wilcox on the canvas by
She goes back to sparring and we see
it is she who is hitting the punch bag. Remaining on her we hear the voice over.
Voice Over: Ken's opponent in
Tuesday's fight is Petula Wilcox, the Birmingham girl who was a shorthand typist
before turning pro in 1968. (Cut to typical teenage girl's bedside. Pin-ups of
pop stars on the walls. Teddy bears on the bed and gonks. Petula Wilcox is
sitting up on the bed knitting.) She's keen on knitting and likes Cliff Richard
records. How does she rate her chances against Ken?
Petula: (Connie Booth) Well, I'm a
southpaw and I think this will confuse him, particularly with his brain problem.
Cut to the ring. Floodlight. The
night of the big fight. Murmur of a huge crowd. Excitement, cigar smoke rising
in front of the camera. Bustle of activity all around. In medium close-up the
master of ceremonies walks out into the middle of the ring, and takes the
Master of Ceremonies: (M.P.)
lords, ladies and gedderbong... On my right, from the town of Reigate in the
county of Kent, the heavyweight... (unintelligible) Mr Ken Clean-Air Systems!...
(applause, cut to Ken's corner; Ken raises his arms above his head) and on my
left! Miss Petula Wilcox.
Superimposed Caption: ROUND 1
For the first time we see Petula
dance out into the middle of the ring, frail and lovely in a white muslin dress,
with a bow in her hair and boxing gloves. The referee brings them together,
cautions them and then they separate. The bell goes. As speeded-up as we can
manage and with the same stupendous sound effects as for all-in cricket, Ken
belts the hell out of Petula. While this goes on, we hear a few voice overs.
Colonel Type: (J.C.)
(voice over) I
think boxing's a splendid sport - teaches you self-defence.
(voice over) Obviously
boxing must have its limits, but providing they're both perfectly fit I can see
nothing wrong with one healthy man beating the living daylights out of a little
schoolgirl. It's quick and it's fun.
Boxing match is still in full swing
as we cut away to the Grillomat snack bar. A dim light; the announcer has gone.
There is only the waitress setting chairs on the tables, and cleaning. She looks
up as the camera comes on her.
Waitress: (G.C.) Oh, no, he's gone.
But he left a message. Jack! Where's that note that fellow left?
Jack: (E.I.) Oh, here you are.
Waitress: It says sorry, had to catch
the last bus. Am on the 49b to Babbacombe.
Cut to the top of an open-top bus driving along.
Announcer: (J.C.) Oh, er, there you are. Hello. You got the note, jolly good. Well, um, that's all the items that we have for you this week and er, what a jolly nice lot of items too, eh? Um...well, the same team will be back with you again next week with another menu full of items. Um...I don't know if I shall be introducing the show next week as I understand my bits in this show have not been received quite as well as they might (start to roll credits over this) but er, never mind, the damage is done - no use in crying over spilt milk. (miserably) I've had my chance and I've muffed it. Anyway, there we are. I'm not really awfully good with words. You see, I'm more of a visual performer. I have a very funny - though I say so myself - very funny funny walk. I wish I'd been in that show. I'd have done rather well. But anyway, there we are - the show's over. And...we'll all be - they'll all be back with you again next week... (starting to cry) Sorry. I do beg your pardon. I don't like these...displays of emotion...I wish it would say the end.
Caption: 'The End'.