Editor’s note: What follows is as close a reconstruction of the “lost” Brian Powell Story as we could manage under these difficult circumstances. Reader discretion is advised.
[THE NEIGHBOR, played by David Leisure (aka “Joe Isuzu” from that memorable series of commercials), is IN THE DOORWAY TALKING.]
THE NEIGHBOR – It’s just the music and it’s constant and (with illustrative hand gestures) … I mean, it’s just constant. And if it’s not the music it’s the shouting or the pacing or the coughing… it’s gotten so we can’t even sleep at night.
[THE CAMERA PANS OUT and THE REDNECK SHERIFF, as played by John Goodman, is SEEN for the first time. HE is CHOMPING a MATCHSTICK and WEARING AN ACAPULCO SHIRT and SUNGLASSES and SIPPING from a MASON JAR of TEA.]
THE REDNECK SHERIFF – We, suh?
THE NEIGHBOR (nodding) – Yes, my sister lives with me.
THE REDNECK SHERIFF (sipping his tea, pinky extended) – Ah see.
Brian Powell was convinced that they’d test his urine if he flushed it down the toilet so he just emptied the toilet bowl with his mouth.
THE NEIGHBOR – He doesn’t get up until about 5 o’clock post meridiem, near as we can figure. (lighting a cigarette) Then he starts in with the music and we can even smell the smoke.
THE REDNECK SHERIFF – Mmm-hmm. What’d you say this fella’s name is?
THE NEIGHBOR – Powell. Brian Powell. I (proudly) took the liberty of stealing and reading some of his mail. Turns out he’s created some fictional identity called “Oscar Berkman” whom he (quotation fingers) “corresponds” with.
THE REDNECK SHERIFF – Ah-huh. You did the right thing, sir. I’m’a get my deputies and go check this Mr. Powell at. Y’all have a nice evenin’ now.
[THE NEIGHBOR and HIS SISTER SMILE and WAVE. When THE REDNECK SHERIFF is out of sight, they START “SLAMMING IT OUT” EVEN MORE PASSIONATELY THAN BEFORE.]
2. [RICHARD KARN, as played by himself and dressed in his womansuit with a sewed-on tumescent cock, HOLDS a GUN to BRIAN WILSON’S HEAD.]
RICHARD KARN (snapping his fingers) – A-wunee-and-a-twoey-and-a-threey…
BRIAN WILSON (singing as well and good and true as he can, under the harrowing circumstances) – I may not always love you/But long as there are stars above you/You never need to doubt it/I’ll make you so sure about it.
[KARN CHAINS WILSON to the RADIATOR and then TURNS and CARESSES THE GOOD VICE PRESIDENT, BEARDLESS AL GORE’S (as played by a bearded Al Gore on account of director Brian Powell’s obsession with the tenets of “cinéma vérité” and “Dogma 95” &c.) HEAD and then CORNHOLES HIM in his DRY ASS.]
RICHARD KARN (harmonizing with Brian as he grabs Al’s arms and sticks it in and Al screams) – God only knows what I’d be without yooooou!
[KARN STARTS with the HARD THRUSTS/THRUSTING and GORE SCREAMS. THEN HE SCREAMS MORE AND MORE.]
BRIAN WILSON (trying to keep his eyes closed; tears are streaming down his chubby cheeks) – If you should ever leave me/Though life would still go on, believe me/The world could show nothing to me/So what good would living do me?/God only knows what I’d be without you/God only knows what I’d be without you!
RICHARD KARN (turning back toward Wilson briefly) – You better keep it up with those “ba ba ba bas” and “bahm-buh-bum-bums,” you son of a bitch. I don’t want you resting those pretty lips for one split second!
[WILSON DOES as he’s TOLD. KARN, meanwhile, wraps WRAPS his ARMS around GORE’S WAIST and STICKS the SEWED-ON TUMESCENT COCK DEEPER into the THE GOOD VICE PRESIDENT’S NOW-BLOODY ASSHOLE.]
RICHARD KARN (cackling) – I’ve never seen one bleed this much!
[GORE PASSES OUT. KARN CONTINUES A-FUCKIN’.]
BRIAN WILSON (singing, but pretty much breaking down) – G-God… only knows what I’d be without you/If you should e-e… ever leave me/Though life would still go on, believe me…
[WILSON BREAKS DOWN and FALLS to the FLOOR. KARN STOPS THRUSTING and PULLS OUT. He STOMPS over to WILSON and BEGINS BEATING HIM with his PISTOL and SEWED-ON TUMESCENT DICK.]
“I feel so broke up…” Wilson sobbed, his head in his hands. “I wanna go home.”
Karn grabbed Wilson by the nape and brought him to his feet. “Do you realize what you’ve done?” he hissed before whipping Wilson in the face with the barrel of his pistol.
3. Big Cheese finished reading Brian Powell’s latest version of the script and tossed it on his desk, shaking his cheese head. “No, no, no.”
“No?” Powell, racoon-eyed as a fucking raccoon, said with the strength of a million-man march on Washington, DC.
“No?” Powell, raccoon-eyed as a fucking raccoon, said weakly.
“No,” Big Cheese said, kicking up his Velveeta feet and letting them fall on top of his desk. “No, no, no. This is all wrong, kiddo. You’re approaching this project all wrong.”
“I… wh… what do you mean?” Powell asked, his whole body trembling. He hadn’t injected heroin into his eye in an hour, though, so what do you expect?
“This doesn’t have any resonance. That’s the only way I know how to put it. This script?” he knocked on it with one of his knuckles. “It stinks. It stinks like moldy gorgonzola, kid, and what I need from you is fresh imported buffalo mozzarella — the good shit. Muenster, at least.”
4. [THE REDNECK SHERIFF, as played by John Goodman, GRABS BRIAN POWELL, as played by himself, by HIS THROAT and SLAMS HIM against THE DOOR.]
THE REDNECK SHERIFF – Boy, I got half a mind to split’cho skull with mah bare gatdamn hands.
[BRIAN POWELL, now played by a slimmed-down Jeremy Piven, KNEES THE REDNECK SHERIFF in THE GROIN and RUNS INTO HIS APARTMENT. THE REDNECK SHERIFF DROPS TO ONE KNEE TEMPORARILY, but not for long — HE’S UP in A FLASH, moving with a GRACE THAT BELIES HIS BULK!]
THE REDNECK SHERIFF – Oooh, you gohm pay fuh dat, bawh!
[THE REDNECK SHERIFF STORMS THROUGH THE TINY KITCHEN, KNOCKING DISHES and SO FORTH onto the FLOOR. HE TURNS into the ONE LARGE ROOM of THE EFFICIENCY APARTMENT and GRABS POWELL, who is ATTEMPTING to SALVAGE SOME of HIS RECORDS. He THROWS POWELL on THE BED.]
THE REDNECK SHERIFF – You ain’t nothin’ but a citified, punk-ass carpetbagger.
[He SLAPS POWELL. POWELL KICKS HIM IN THE GROIN AGAIN. THE REDNECK SHERIFF GOES DOWN. POWELL LEAPS to HIS FEET and SPRINTS OUT THE APARTMENT and DOWN the FIRE ESCAPE.]
He said he would wipe the shit out of his ass, but he never did. That was the problem.
“Ya nay-buhz said you was whee-uhd, boy,” The Redneck Sheriff, now played by some combination of Treat Williams and Tom Berenger, said loudly. “Kept to yaself, kept pec-yoo-luh ow-uhz… No friends, no job… what gives, boy?”
Powell smoked his unfiltered Black Death cigarette nervously. “What am I being arrested for, then? Being unpopular?”
“That don’t concern you any more than the culluh uhya mama’s pussy does, boy” The Redneck Sheriff answered.
“I… I have rights! I have the right to know what I’m being arrested for!” Powell stuttered and stammered, looking around nervously.
The Redneck Sheriff threw his matchstick against the wall. “Fuck yo rights! The only rights you got is lefts!” he shouted in his powerful southern baritone, leaping to his feet and smashing Powell in his prominent proboscis with a big ruddy left hand. He then held Powell’s bleeding head to the table and leaned in close, waving his finger in Powell’s eye as he said, “You know damn well what I’m talkin’ about and if you wanna see what these arms of mine can do…”
“Murder? I didn’t murder anybody!” Powell shrieked girlishly.
“Somebody YOU told YOU wanted to see dead — two people, actually — are DEAD, BOY. You got a great big guilty sign hangin’ around yo neck,” said the African-American Sheriff, as played by Laurence Fishburne. He finished off his mason jar of tea and set the empty jar on the table. “Better fer yo sake if you jes fess up right now.”
“Wait, so it’s my fault every time somebody dies in a car wreck?” Powell asked, beside himself with fear.
“Cute, boy,” the African-American Sheriff said, shaking his head. “It is yo fault if they’s brake-lines is cut, which they was.”
Powell trembled nervously.
“I know you didn’t pull this yoself. I know you had somebody witchee,” the African-American Sheriff said, sticking a new matchstick into his mouth and chewing it. “That one… she had to hadda been about 200, 300 pounds. Scrawny little fucker likeww? No way you done thatch yo own self.”
“I don’t even know what you’re talking about!” Powell screamed, clawing at his own chest even as his mirror image did the same.
“The only thing I’m guilty of is being white! You filthy racist! All of you Atlanta cops are racist!” Powell screamed.
The Mixed-race Sheriff, as played by Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, unholstered his revolver and shoved it in Powell’s mouth. “One in six, boy,” he said, pulling the trigger three times afterward. Powell wet his pants and began sobbing. The Mixed-race Sheriff pulled the gun from the scrawny, blubbering wimp’s mouth and said sternly… tersely, “Gimme a name, jabronie.”
5. [BRIAN POWELL, as played by a drunk Brad Dourif, is ON STAGE in FRONT of TELEVISION CAMERAS and various HEADS IN THE CROWD. He is SMOKING a FAG and LOOKING STRUNG-OUT.]
BRIAN POWELL – I say hey, you want to knock on my door ‘cuz I’m listening to fucking Indian sitar music at 4 AM? That’s my fucking schedule, man, that’s my fucking shit. You knock on my door, you’re fucking with my shit. I don’t fuck with your shit, you know? I don’t come knock on your fucking door when you’re fucking yourself with a crucifix to a grainy VHS copy of that “The Today Show” episode where Matt Lauer got jacked off by fucking Al Roker, you know? Fuck.
6. Karn was looking dapper as ever in his womansuit (which, truth be told, was beginning to rot and stink). So dapper was he, in fact, that he stuck a clip-on bowtie in the dead, greening neck-flesh of the womansuit. “You’re a handsome devil,” he said to his reflection, pointing at the handsome fellow with the thick beard and the woman body and sewed-on tumescent cock who stood before and so forth and so on and on.
“What?” Karn’s reflection barked. “Handsome? I’m a lady, you ugly fucker!” and with that roared to life and sliced his throat with a piece of broken glass. “A LAAAAAADY!”
7. “Been a real good while, h’ain’t it?” said the Redneck Sheriff, as overacted by an aging Orson Welles channeling his “Will Varner” character from the Long, Hot Summer. He lit a cigar and flicked the match aside.
Jack Chaser, Detective Death, didn’t answer at first. What could he say?
“What’s the matter, boy?” the Redneck Sheriff asked, his fat lips stretching to a grin. “Cat got yo tongue?”
In fact, the Redneck Sheriff’s deputy, as played by NFL legend and notorious “juicer” Lyle Alzado, had Chaser’s tongue. He was rubbing it all over his face and bare, bear-like chest.
“Ghhhh… ghhhhhhhhh!” Chaser screamed unintelligibly.
The Redneck Sheriff took the severed tongue from his deputy, who pouted afterwards, and then put his cigar out on it.
“That hurt? Or do it taste good?” he asked, laughing.
7. Richard Karn hoped what that fortune cookie had told him was true. Otherwise he’d feel kinda bad about kidnapping the mother and son from the grocery store parking lot and driving them out to the trailer home on the outskirts of Anytown that he’d rented for purposes and times such as these.
“Big things await you,” Karn read the fortune cookie’s message aloud to his captives. “Don’t you see what that means?” he asked, touching the boy’s cheek and rubbing it with his thumb. “Don’t you seeeeeee?” he said in a serpent’s voice, his completely white eyes as wide and affrighting as humanly/inhumanly possible.
The theme song from “Cheers” began to play. It was time to kill again.
“It meeeeeaaaaaaaaans,” Karn said in a giddy sing-song-y way that a girl who loves her boyfriend might speak, “That my dreams of becoming a giantess are about to become a reality.”
Karn grabbed the boy and shook him, laughing a big belly laugh as the child whimpered and cried.
“It meeeeeeaaaaans,” Karn said in the same sing-song-y voice, “That in order for that to happen I have to bathe in innocent blood. It meeeeeeeeeaaaaaans that your blood is going to be that innocent blood.”
The mother and son began to sob and weep and scream more violently and primevally and so forth.
“And since there’s nothing more innocent than a rape victim,” Karn continued, “It meeeeeeeeeaaaaaans,” uh-huh,” uh-huh, “That I’m gonna rape you nice folks and cut you and make you bleeeeeeeeed!”
8. “The only rights you got is lefts,” Dr. Jonas Ruggleteapot read to the respectful, captivated graduate students in the audience. “Does anyone know what Brian Powell meant when he wrote this?”
No one answered the good professor. Not that it would’ve been their place to do so, since the audience was forbidden to participate in order that Ruggleteapot might look more intelligent when he asked these questions. No one could answer them, it would appear, save Dr. Jonas Ruggleteapot!
“I thought not,” he said, smirking in a very condescending sort of way. “What he means,” he said, stepping away from the podium and gesturing with a crooked finger, “Is that everything he — read: Powell — holds to be right is, in fact, the opposite of right — read: left or, more accurately, wrong. Some scholars have argued that the line is a comment on the lack of rights afforded to those held in police custody, but this is most assuredly a minority view. I’ll direct you to page 912 of The Brian Powell Story for evidence against that argument. The second sentence of the first paragraph reads as follows…”
9. “Hmm?” was Brian Powell’s flummoxed response.
“It’s… I mean, it’s definitely unusual,” the studio executive chuckled, still shaking his head. “But, my goodness… we can’t possibly use this.”
“What? I don’t understand,” Powell said, well and truly bemused by this news.
“There aren’t any spaces between any of the words!” the studio executive shouted, though he was more confused than angry. “Half the ‘words’ are just lumped-together consonants! The only scenes that make any sense within the context of the ‘story’ feature children and Beach Boys being raped by the host of ‘Tool Time’ and politicians eating body parts!”
Powell still had a confused expression on his hollow, sunken face.
“We can’t release this,” the executive said, walking around the room in his birthday suit while he smoked a cigarette and gesticulated wildly with his hands. “And even if we could, it wouldn’t make any money. It doesn’t make so much as a Tootsie-pop lick of sense.”