Jack and the Genetically Modified Bean Stalk

by Stephen Wass

For information about performing this play please contact old.mettle@btinternet.com

SCENE ONE - The Village

[ Enter Jack, stumbling, Ben rushes in after him.]

Jack: [Looking back over his shoulder.] Sorry I didn't mean to knock it over.

Villager: [Shouting from off stage] Why don't you look where you're going? I had you right up to here!
[The boys peer.]

Ben: Oooh, stressy.

Villager: I heard that.

Ben: Come on let's go and get that shopping your mum asked for. What does she want you to get?

Jack: Oh, there's loads! Um,[Looking at the list] half a carrot, one potato, a slice of bread, eight grains of rice and er... a hundredweight of best English Beef!

Ben: How much?

Jack: Well you know how cheap beef is these days what with Brexit and everything.

Ben: Can you eat them? Hang on, what's going on over there?

There's a crowd of angry Frenchmen! Watch out they're coming this way. 

[Enter crowd of angry Frenchmen brandishing bread sticks.]

French: We do not want your filthy British meat. Take it away you ugly swine!

Jack: There's nothing wrong with our pork.. or is it lamb?

Ben: Actually it's the beef.

Jack What's the difference? They're all meat aren't they?

Ben: The difference? The difference is they come from different animals: pigs, sheep, cattle.

Jack: Animals! Meat is made from animals? That's... that's... carnage!!

Ben: I'd never thought of it that way before, it's almost as bad as being a cannibal.

Jack: I know what a cannibal is... someone who goes into a restaurant and orders a waiter.

Ben: This is hard, very hard. Jack, my very dear friend, what you need is a good education. I've heard of this place called ( Insert name) School. It's very good,.

Jack: Well I need a good education, but there's one thing I must do before that.

Ben: Um?

Jack: Finish this pantomime.

Ben: Well let's get on with it then. [He turns to the Frenchmen. ] You lot, push off, you're wanted on the six o'clock news, go on! [Exit the Frenchmen]
Oops, here comes trouble. It's Baron Hardup and his three ugly thugs and two beautiful daughters.
[Enter baron and his retinue]

Jack: Which are which?

Ben: Try counting them! [Jack does so!]

Baron: [Sneering at Jack.] Well if it isn't little Mr. Einstein. How does it feel to have less intelligence than a milk bottle you stupid boy.

Jack: Look, I may be stupid but I'm no boy.
[He thinks about that for a moment.]

Louise: [Looking at Jack] Is that a very grubby boy or something the cat sicked up?

Louisa:[Looking at Ben] I don't know but I've seen nicer looking manure heaps that this one.

Baron: Now girls, girls if there is any insulting to be done I'll do it. [Turning to Jack and Ben]. You pair of turnip headed clods!

Jack: Hang on, I'm not having that! I'm the hero and you're the villain, at least that's what it says in the script, so you can stop threatening me you gargantuan misery.

Ben: Er Jack, that was quite clever, I er.. don't think you are allowed to say witty things like that.

Jack:[Suddenly sounding very clever.] Oh, I am most terribly sorry, won't let it happen again, promise.

Ben: Right, [turning to the Baron] So what's the problem? We've paid our bills, there isn't anything else we owe.

Baron: Wrong, I've decided to double the rent.

Jack: Since when?

Baron: Since thirty seconds ago.

Ben: Jack, you're in deep trouble.

Jack: Since when?

Ben: Since  ten seconds ago.

Jack It doesn't matter, I know how we can double our money.

Ben: How's that?

Jack: [Brightly] Fold it in half
[Everyone groans.]

Ben: Oh no!  Here comes Lucy.

[Enter Lucy Locket looking supremely sensible]

Lucy: Hello boys, in trouble again?

Baron: [rudely] You keep out of this little Miss Sensible.

Lucy: [Sweetly] I beg your pardon?

Baron: [Less certainly] You keep out of this.

Lucy: Keep out of what?

Baron: er.. this um..

Lucy: Do you mean this on-going conflict situation  bought about by an over reliance on out dated feudal methods of resource management?
Baron: I um...

Lucy: Well?

Baron: I er... think I need to go and lie down.

Lucy: [Very sweetly] With a dictionary perhaps.

[Exit baron and his thugs.]

Jack: Wow thanks Lucy, you really sorted him out
Just  how did you do that.. exactly?

Ben: It doesn't matter, come on Jack we need to get back to your mother to tell her what's happened.

[Exit all]

SCENE TWO- Jack's Cottage

[Enter Jack with Ben. His mother seems to be knitting a Wellington Boot!]

Jack: Mum?

Mum: [Not really listening] Yes.

Jack: [A little impatiently] Mum!

Mum: [Still not listening] Yes

Jack: [Exasperated]  Mum!!

Mum: [Oblivious] Yes

Jack; Mum, there's an alien space craft on the lawn.

Mum:  [Not interested] Yes

Jack: Mum, there's a giant  stomping on your marigolds!

Mum: [Distantly]Yes

Jack: [Nudging Ben] Mum can I have ( Name of current popular compurer game)?

Mum: [Still not appearing to listen] No.

Jack: Oh mum...  why not?

Mum: Well for a start we haven't got an Internet connection..

Jack: But...

Mum: And we have not got a computer either, in fact they haven't been invented yet, and even if they had we haven't got electricity, that doesn't come along for another 300 years or so.

Jack: So that's a definite no is it?

Ben: Jack Isn't there something you have to tell your mum?

Jack: Was there? Oh yes, there were these Frenchmen and..

Ben: No! About the baron and the rent.

Jack: Oh that, well we had a bit of a run in with the baron and his thugs and they've, well they've e.. doubled our rent!

Mum: [Really reacting for the first time] What!

Ben: Now don't panic Mrs. Jack's Mum

Mum: [Shrieking] I'm not panicking but we have no money, none, not any, zero , zilch, nothing!

Jack: So that's not very much then?
[There is a knock on the door]
Ben: It's the Baron and his thugs!

Mum: You'll have to delay him while I think of a plan, sit him down and be nice to him while I pop out the back.

Jack: But, but [Mum exits, Ben opens the door to the Baron.]

Ben: Ah Baron so nice to see you, do come in.

Jack: Er.. yes baron doooo come in and take the weight off your feet.

Baron: What!

Ben: Er.. Baron, nice Baron, kind Baron

Jack: Cuddly wuddly barony warony

Ben: Alright, don't over do it. Would you like some tea your Baron ship while Mrs. Jack's Mum comes up with a  er.. the money I mean.

Baron: That's more like it, treated with a bit of respect
now eh?

Ben: Would you like a cup of tea your highness?

Jack :..and something to eat?

Baron: Yes I'd like a er.. tasty toasted tea cake I think.

Ben and Jack: [Together] Right away sir.

[They exit to a corner of the stage to talk with Jack's Mum.]

Ben: Come up with anything yet?

Mum: No, I'm still thinking.. keep stalling!

Ben and Jack:[Together] What?

[Looking each other] What shall we do?

Ben: I've got it! [Turning back to the baron] Ah sir, you wanted a Toasty teested taycake?

Baron: No I said a 'tasty toasted tea cake'.

Jack [Catching on] Oh, a teesty tasted toecake?

Baron: No I said a 'tasty toasted tea cake'.

Ben: I thought you wanted a toothy tested tie cake.

Baron: No. no. no I want a... [there is as knock on the door, Ben opens it. Enter Lucy]

Lucy: Hi everyone, having fun?

Ben: having a nervous breakdown more like?

Lucy: Can I help?

Ben: No we can have our nervous breakdowns all by ourselves thank you.

Lucy: I mean with the  Baron. [Ben shrugs helplessly]  Baron, o Baron.

Baron: [bad temperedly] What is it now?

Lucy: How are you going to calculate the interest?

Baron: Interest?

Lucy: You know the extra money they owe you.

Baron: [Sitting Up] Eh?

Lucy: Well they've owed you the extra rent for what, about 23 minutes now. So let's say your charging them interest at say 17.5 percent per annum well that would be 17.5 percent of the total loan divided by 365, divided by .. well let's call it half an hour, that will be 48, unless you want to compound it of course... by the minute.

Baron: [Perplexed] Does that all mean more money?

Lucy: Uh huh.

Baron: I've got to go somewhere quiet and work this out. [He gets up to leave] But I'll be back. [Exit Baron]

Lucy: Now we've got time to think up a real plan. Mrs. Jack's mum. you can come out now!

Mum: Phew, thanks for helping out Lucy but what are we going to do?

Lucy: Well you'll just have to sell something.

Ben: [Looking around] yes you must have something that is always getting in the way, you know something that's generally useless, a waste of space, a total loss..[Gradually they all turn to look at Jack.]

Jack: What? [suddenly understanding] No way!

Mum:[Regretfully] No... we wouldn't get anything for him.

Lucy: Well in that case it's got to be Buttercup.

All: [Shocked] Not Buttercup! [There is a 'moo' off stage]

Lucy: Yes  Buttercup.

All [Even more shocked] Not Buttercup!! [Another 'moo' is heard]

Lucy: Definitely Buttercup.

Jack's Mum: Oh, alright then? {Another agonised 'moo', they all start to leave]

Jack: Just one thing.

All: Yes?

Jack: Who's Buttercup? [A final anguished 'moo'.]

SCENE THREE - On the Way to Market

[Enter Jack holding piece of rope, other end remains backstage with someone tugging on it. Ben follows sadly]

Jack:  Come on Buttercup. Come on! Oh, Buttercup, you bad girl!
Here, hang on to this will you?
[ He  gives the end of the rope to someone in the audience to hold and comes back with a bucket and shovel.
[Looks at audience] What?
[Goes back stage comes back with bucket. He goes back stage to clear up and comes back with the bucket which he spills over the audience]

Jack:  Come on the quicker we get there the sooner we start!

[They meet a stranger}
Stranger: [Eyeing them up} What are you doing with that cow?

Jack: [Furtively] What cow?

Stranger: That under nourished scabby old wreck of a cow that smells like the inside of a giant's sock.
[There is a loud 'moo']

Ben: Stop it, you'll hurt her feelings

Jack: So you'd like to buy her? [Ben whips his head round in amazement!]

Stranger: Yes [Ben looks at him, equally amazed.]

Jack: So how much will you give me for this fine cow? [ Ben mouths wordlessly at the audience]

Stranger: Umm, shall we say five hundred pounds?

Jack  [Puzzled] Er yes, that seems fine, but shouldn't you.....  never mind.

Stranger: Will you take a card?

Jack [Still puzzled by something and slightly distracted] Yes, yes, that's fine ... well er, that's it then, here's your cow.

[he stranger takes the cow after a lot of exchanging card and rope and general fumbling about he leads  her away.]

Ben: Right that's that then, your mum's going to be over the moon.
[Exit Jack and Ben ]

SCENE FOUR - Back at Jack's Cottage

[Jack enters the cottage, his mum is sitting knitting the boot while Lucy sits nearby.]

Mum Ah, there you are, did you get a good price for that cow?

Jack [Still puzzled] Yes er  five hundred pounds

Mum [Angrily] You sold our cow for a handful of....
How much did you say?

Jack: Five hundred pounds.

Mum  That's er... that's quite a good price.

Jack Yes. [They look at each other not quite sure what to do, something is clearly wrong but they are not sure what.]

He gave me a card. [He hands it over to her, she studies it.]

Mum IThis is a piece of card.

Jack  [Uncertainly] Yes

Lucy: [Gently] It should be plastic

Jack: [Starting to realise] Card ... plastic?

[Mum  and Lucy nod slowly.]


Ben: I'm out of here. [Exits rapidly]

Jack: So I should take the card and er.. [They continue to nod, menacingly] and go and find the stranger and er get the cow back or else I'll be tied in a sack and used as the ball for the goblins versus ogres annual football match... [They keep nodding. Exit Jack]

Lucy: By the way Mrs. Jack's Mother, I couldn't help noticing you seem to be knitting a Wellington.

Mum: Yes, it's supposed to be a sock but the wool is from these new genetically modified sheep and somehow it keeps coming out like this. [Lucy nods sympathetically, they both exit]

SCENE FIVE - The Market Place

[Enter Jack.]
Jack: [To the audience] I've looked everywhere for the stranger but I can't see him any where. [The stranger appears behind Jack]

Audience: He's behind you!

Jack: Where? [Turning round. This goes on until Jack eventually spots the stranger but just as he is about to collar him the crowd of angry Frenchmen rushes in and gets in the way.]

Frenchmen: Down with you filthy English food. Vive la France, death to the aristocrats!

Jack: Get out of my way I need to... oh drat he's gone.

[Enter Louise and Louisa with shopkeepers carrying parcels and bags]

Louisa: Oh I do love a good shop,

Louise: Absolutely Fabulous, but how do we get it all home?

Louisa: Oh look [noticing Jack] It's that verminous little slug of a boy.

Louise: Oh yes, come here, excrescence.

Jack: [Still peering around for the stranger] Who me?

Louisa: You're going to carry all our shopping home for us you little squit, no need to say thank you.

Louise; And don't get any grubby finger marks on it.

Jack: I.. I.. [The shopkeepers start to load him with parcels. he disappears behind the growing pile and finally sneaks away]

Louise: Right, off we go. [Nothing happens]

Louisa: Come on boy, up you get.

Louise: Is he deaf as well as stupid?

Louisa: [Looking behind the pile]
He's gone!

Louise: What! [They erupt in fury kicking the parcels all over the place before storming off in anger leaving the shopkeepers to tidy up.]

SCENE SIX - On the Way Home

[Jack enters looking rather disheveled.]

Did you see that lorry go by?  Did you get the number? I think it said 'Monsanto' on the side or something like that. What are these fallen out of the back?
[Stoops to pick them up]
They're beans, huh!
Um... smells good. Oh well.
[He puts them in his pocket and starts to walk home, on the way he meets Ben.]

 Jack: Oh there you are. fat lot of help you were.

Ben: Jack, how did you get on? Did you find the stranger?

Jack: [Gloomily] No... but [brightening up] I did find these beans. want to try one? They're very good.

Ben: No! [Striking the beans from Jack's hand.]

Jack: Ow! What was that for?

Ben: You were going to eat them!

Jack: So... what's your point?

Ben: The point is you were going to eat them and they are glowing an unearthly shade of vomit coloured green.

Jack: So...?

Ben: Well, they are probably magical or something.

Jack: Wow! Wicked!  Three wishes, now my first wish will be....

Ben: They might turn you into a toad. [Jack stops, the beans half way to his mouth.] or a slug, or even Chris Tarrant!

Jack: [Looking disgusted] Ugh! Not that!

Ben: Come on we better go and face your mum.
[Exit Jack and Ben.]

SCENE SEVEN - Jack's Cottage

[Mum is watching Lucy modelling a pair of Wellington boots.]

Lucy: They've come out quite nicely really

Ben: Are you still here?

Jack: Go on, disappear, we sort out our problems without your help!

Lucy: You can? Oh, alright then, I wanted to catch up on reading anyway, bye.

Mum: [Looming dangerously] So we still have problems?

Jack: Er.. sort of

Mum: [Even more dangerously] Sort of ?

Jack: [In a huge rush] Well I went to market and I found the stranger but this crowd of Frenchmen got in my way and he got away and on the way home this lorry rushed by and this sack fell off the back and....

Mum: And?

Jack: [Weakly] I've got some beans.

Mum: Beans!

Ben: I'm er.. off... again.

Mum: Beans.
[Jack nods silently]
Bed! [He troops off sadly, half way to the door mum calls out.]
Beans! [He comes back and gives them to her, she takes one look and hurls them out the window.

[During the night the beans germinate and grow at a tremendous rate.]

SCENE EIGHT - In the Garden

[ Enter the milkman and the postman looking up in amazement at the huge beanstalk.]

Milkman: Morning postie.

Postman: Morning milky!

Milkman: Um. Lovely morning.

Postman: Yes lovely.

Milkman: That's er quite a beanstalk

Postman: [Thoughtfully] Yes.

Milkman: Was it there um.. yesterday?

Postman: [carefully] I don't think so.

[Enter other villagers, they all stand staring]

Villager:  Morning milky, morning Postie

Milkman and Postman: Morning.

Villager: Um. Lovely morning.

Milkman and Postman: Yes lovely.

Villager: That's er quite a beanstalk

Milkman and Postman: [Thoughtfully] Yes.

Villager: Was it there um.. yesterday?

Milkman and Postman: We don't think so.

[Enter Lucy]
Lucy: Morning everyone.

All: Morning.

Lucy: Lovely morning.

All: Yes lovely.

Lucy: That's er quite a beanstalk

All: [Thoughtfully] Yes.

Lucy: Was it there um.. yesterday?

All: We don't think so.

[Enter Jack followed by his mum.]
Jack: [Miserably] Morning everyone.

All: Morning. [They wait expectantly]

Jack: What a terrible morning. [They all breathe a sigh of relief]

Mum: What's that?

Jack: [Turning round slowly] Er.. a bean stalk.

Mum: But it's enormous.

Jack: Is it? I thought it was just very close. [he reaches out to touch it and gradually understands.] Wow!

Lucy: As far as I can tell something has germinated over night and has since indulged in exponential growth producing a legume of prodigious size.

All: What?

Lucy: Beans the size of footballs!

All: Ah. [As if understanding]

Lucy: As far as I can see Mrs. Jack's Mum you've got it made.

Mum: We have?

Lucy; Think about it. Coach parties, tours of the plant, souvenirs. Then there's all the money you'll get for selling the beans!

Mum: [Excitedly] Yes!

[Enter Ben.]

Ben: Morning everyone, lovely morning.

All [Impatiently] Shut up!

Lucy: There's only one real problem, if you are going to harvest the beans somebody's got to climb up and pick them.

[Everyone leans back looking upwards then look at each other and shake their heads.]
Jack: Come on, who'd be stupid enough to climb up there? [Everyone turns to look at him.] Oh no!
[Jack looks at Ben]

Ben: Excuse me I have to see a man about a...
[Jack grabs him]

Jack: Oh no, not this time, you're coming with me.

[They start to climb]

Lucy: Bye boys, don't forget to write.

[Exit All]

SCENE NINE - On the Bean stalk

[The boys are climbing.]

Jack: Cor.. look at that view. Look down there. I can see our house and garden and look at all the people running about like ants.

Ben: Jack, they are ants, we're only two metres off the ground.

Jack: Ah..  well as my granny always says, 'You're never alone with a bean.'

Ben: She's a strange woman your granny. By the way, did I mention I'm afraid of heights and when I’m afraid I shiver and shake all over?

Jack: So how come you're not shivering and shaking now?

Ben: Well if I shiver and shake now I might fall off and I'm even more afraid of falling than I am of heights.

Jack: You're afraid of everything!

Ben: Cheese and Tomato Pizza!

Jack: You're afraid of cheese and tomato pizza?

Ben: No I can smell it.

Jack: What?

Ben: Cheese and tomato pizza, I can smell it. How strange.

Jack: Come on let's keep climbing.

SCENE TEN - Cloud Cuckoo Land

[They boys meet the strange inhabitants of cloud Cuckoo land.]

Ben: Well after all that we know nothing.

Jack: I've always known nothing.

Ben: Yes, but the problem at the moment is to make money. have you noticed something up here? No beans

Jack: [Looking around] No beans?

Ben: No beans. [ Suddenly they are passed by a crowd of small children jogging by.]

Jack: What was that?

Ben: I don't know, it was as if the beans had come to life.. they must be... [amazed] runner beans?

Jack: Hang on there's more coming.

[A group enter shivering]

Ben; Well look at that, they must be..

Jack: Cold beans? Freezing beans? Icy beans? [Ben is encouraging him] ah... chili beans!

Ben: That's it mind you I don't fancy eating them all that much.

Jack: So how are we going to make money up here?

Ben: I just don't know. Perhaps we could..[They hear the sound of a frog] What's that?

Jack:[Looking around] Hey look! [Picking him up] It's Clive the Frog! [Huge cheers from everyone.] Clive, any ideas about how we can make some dosh up here? [He holds Clive to his ear]

Jack: Well. basically he says that there is a castle just round the corner that's full of treasure and we can just walk in and help ourselves.

Ben:[Suspiciously] Just like that?

Jack[Innocently] just like that.

[They all exit]

SCENE ELEVEN - Outside the Giant's Castle

Jack: Well this looks like the place, in we go.

Ben: That's not very polite, let's knock. [he knocks very quietly] Oh what a shame nobody in, come on.

Jack: You need to knock like this. [He nearly bashes the door down, a voice booms out.]

Door: this castle is protected by Magic Elf Security Systems. To get in you have to answer three questions. Do you agree?

Jack: Yes I suppose so.

[All of a sudden the theme music for  current popularb quiz booms out and helpers rush in with stools and computer terminals. Enter quiz master

Quiz Master: Are you ready to play 'Who Wants to countdown and double their goose'?

Jack: Wow, are we on TV?

Quiz Master: No, you've got it wrong. I ask the questions so for one golden Goose, what is your name? Is it a) Felicity, b) Jack c) Anthea d) Clive ?

Jack: Wow, that's a tough one Chris, well it's definitely not Clive because that's the frog's name. I.. er..

Quiz Master: Well  Felicity, you've got three lifelines, you can ask the audience [A crowd assembles], go 50/50 or phone a friend.

Jack: Can I phone my mum?

Quiz Master: Sure.. no hang on [He listens to his ear piece.] No I'm sorry, telephones haven't been invented yet!

Jack: Well in that case I'll have a guess.. is it Jack?

Quiz Master: Is that your final answer? [Jack nods]
You've won one golden goose! Alright Clive, do you want to go for two? [Jack nods again, speechless with excitement.]
Here's your second question. What is ( name of member of staff)'s favourite football team? Is it a) Accrington Stanley b) Northampton Town c) Chelsea or d) Goblins United ?

Jack: I don't know, can I ask the audience? [He turns to the audience?] What is ( name of member of staff)'s favourite team?
[The audience reply] I'll go for Chelsea.

Quiz Master: Is right! You have two golden geese. They are yours to take home but you can go on, for four golden geese.

Jack: Yes, yes yes. [Turning to Ben] This is easy! [Ben shakes his head in disbelief.]

Quiz Master. OK Anthea, for four golden geese which amino acid genetically coded onto DNA  has the formula NH2 CH2 COOH. Is it a) Glycine b) Trypotphan c) Cytosine, d) Scott's Porridge Oats.

Jack: Ah, that's really tough. can I go 50/50?

Quiz Master: Ok that leaves Glycine and Scott's Porridge Oats.

Jack: Fine, well... I'm going to go for... glycine.

Quiz Master: That's your final answer?

Jack: It is.

Quiz Master: You're sure? Positive?

Jack: I am.

Quiz Master: You've won four golden geese!
[The audience goes wild.]

Ben: Hey look the castle door has opened!

Jack: Right let's go!

[As they approach a crowd of beans dances out to the Can-Can.]

Ben: French Beans!

[Exit all.]

SCENE TWELVE - In the Giant's Castle

[Jack and Ben creep in and look around in amazement.]
Jack: Wow this place is huge.

Ben:  It's bigger than ( current big building project)

Jack: and almost as tacky!

Ben: Look at that giant golden ring.

Ben : [Trying to pick it up.] It weighs a ton!
Jack: Hang on, somebody's coming.

Giant's Wife:  [ in a huge voice] Fee fi fo fum, I smell tomato and cheese pizza.

Jack: That's funny, I thought I could smell...

Ben: [Covering his mouth] Shhh! Look there! [They cover in fear.]

Jack: Who is she?

Giant's Wife: [Looking round sees the boys]
Hello boys, like some pizza?

Jack: [Coming out cautiously] Yes, er that would be very nice thank you.

Ben:[Even more cautiously] Hang on, aren't you giants supposed to be evil  all devouring monsters consuming gobbets of human flesh?

Giant's Wife: You don't want to believe everything you read in the papers, The bloodiest thing I eat is roast beef although I do like the occasional cheese and tomato pizza. No I wouldn't touch anything as tiny pink and squirmy as you to.

Ben: That's a relief.

Giant's Wife: [Still carrying on.] No it's my husband you need to be worried about.

Ben: Why is that?

Giant's Wife; he only eats beans.

Jack: Oh, I see what you mean, a bit whiffy eh?

Giant's Wife: No, he only eats human beans! In fact I think I can hear him coming now.

Ben: Come on, let's get out of here.

Giant's Wife: Are you sure you won't stay for some Pizza?

Jack: Well.....

Ben: [Frantically] Come on!

[As they run out jack stubs his toe on something.]

Jack: Ow! What's this?

Ben: Come on!

Jack: It's very heavy, [looking inside] Oh, pretty.
[He tucks it away]

Giant: Fee fi fo fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman. be he alive or be he dead, I'll grind his bones to make my bread.

Ben Let's go!

[They exit at a run.]


[Lucy is lecturing to a group of Frenchmen.]

Lucy: Voici le grande haricot verte.

Frenchmen: Oh ho! C'est magnifique!

[Enter Jack and Ben a little flustered.]

Lucy: Hello boys, have a good trip? Brought back any beans?

Jack: What?

Lucy: Beans, you went up the beanstalk to collect beans.. for sale.

Ben: We saw beans alright but you wouldn't believe it, things are going mad up there. The beans seem to have a life of their own, they're running wild.

Lucy: I expect that's because of the genetic modification.

[Jack and Ben nod wisely.]

Jack: Just one thing.

Lucy: Yes.

Jack: What is genetic modification... exactly?

Lucy: Oh, that's an easy one. I know we'll get one of the audience to explain it.

[Ben goes round the audience with a microphone, news presenter style, asking opinions.]

Ben: So there you have it, love them or hate them  genetically modified beans are here to stay, now back to Lucy in the studio]

[Suddenly Jack's Mum arrives with Baron in hot pursuit.]

Baron:  OK, no messing around, I want the rent and I want it now
[The villagers start to gather]

Jack's Mum: Look, the boys will be back soon with  more beans than you can shake a stick at. [She sees the boys] There you are.. Where are the beans?

Jack: Well... [All of a sudden he is interrupted a crowd of dancing figures with maracas and sombreros]

Mum: What was that?

Ben: Those were the beans Mrs. Jack's Mum. We think they've been genetically modified.

Lucy: They are Mexican beans.

Jack's Mum: But we can't eat those, we...

Baron: So you have no beans to sell? Right, Rag, Tag and Bobtail! [His three thugs appear] Sort them out.

Jack: Half a mo, how much do we owe?

Baron: More than you can afford.

Jack: Well I don't know about that, I've got a little something here I picked up um.. upstairs. [He pours out the contents of his bag of gold. Everyone gasps. The Baron’s daughters appear sniffing the air. Everyone is still stunned, the daughters advance.]

Louise: Oh, look at all that gold.

Louisa: Very, very nice, and it belongs to... [sizing up the situation] these two fine young men. [Jack and Ben look at each other wonderingly]

Louise: Hello boys!  Do we know you? [The boys gape in amazement]

Louisa: I'm sure if we had met them before we would have remembered. [They start to sidle up to the boys, their eyes on the gold.]

Lucy: Just a moment, Jack, where did you get that money from?

jack: Well I er... I sort of found it.

Lucy: Sort of found it?

Jack: In a giant's castle in the sky.. [ The villagers nod as if it is a well known fact that the sky is simply littered with this sort of thing]

Lucy: Giant's castle in the sky?

Jack: It doesn't matter where we got it does it? We're rich, we can pay the baron and.. [looking round for something to get him out of a hole] we'll throw a huge party for everyone!
[there is much cheering people start to bustle round.]

Lucy: [Suddenly creating silence] But it's stealing!

Ben: Oh, I wouldn't say that exactly er... [turning to the Baron's daughters.] What do you think?

Louise:   Well I say finders keepers..

Louisa: losers weepers. [They line up along side the boys.]

Jack: Come on Lucy, don't be a spoil sport

Lucy: Well stealing is stealing and I'm not having any part in it! [She flounces off.]

Baron: A party did you say? Did I ever introduce you to my caterers: Rag, Tag and Bobtail? [The three thugs have whipped out aprons and chefs hats!] Corporate catering at very reasonable rates.

Frenchmen: Oh ho! We love zee party! Champagne all around!  Camembert, croissants, Brie, baguettes, pate, pain au chocolat, escargot.

Baron: If you think we're ever going to eat your foreign rubbish here in England you're very much mistaken, never in a million years. {Everyone nods in agreement. the Freshmen look crestfallen and turn to leave]
Mind you.. [They turn back] I wouldn't mind some of that champagne!
[They break into cheers and the party erupts into life.]

SCENE FOURTEEN - Jack's Cottage, Six Months later.

[Enter Jack and Ben. looking very smart.]

Ben: So that's it, you're broke again? I thought that bag of gold would keep you going for years.

Jack: Yes well so did I but there have been so many things we had to get? Fridge, freezer, dishwasher, stereo system, car.

Ben: But none of them have been invented yet!

Jack: Exactly, that's why they have been so expensive. then there are all the presents for Lou and  Lou..

[The girls enter, seeing the boys they start to creep up on them.]

Ben: So you really haven't any money at all? [The girls look aghast]

Jack: Not a penny, not even a sou as our French friends would say.

Ben: So what are you going to do?

Jack:  Well just tell everyone the truth I suppose, I expect the Baron will give us time to look for work and I'm sure the girls will stick by us

Louise: Are you?

Louisa: Well if you think that's true you've got another thing  coming?

Jack: We have?

Girls: You have! [They empty buckets of brown 'goo' over the boys and stamp off.]

[Enter Lucy]

Lucy: Hello... [peering closely] boys? [Laughing] It is you isn't it?

Ben: Come on Lucy, help us out, We're sorry for upsetting you. We're even sorry for taking the gold... aren't we Jack?

Jack: eh?

Ben: [Elbowing him in the ribs] Aren't we?

Jack: Oh yes.

Ben: So what are we going to do Lucy?

Lucy: You could consider tearing some sheets up to make bandages.

Jack: Will that help us become rich again?

Lucy: No. but it might help you when the Baron  and his three thugs arrive. They're coming this way and judging by the expression on his face he's not coming for tasty  toasted tea cakes!

Ben: Come on Jack, let's get out of here!

Jack: Where?

Ben : Up the beanstalk, come on we can ask Clive if there's any more treasure to be found. [They scramble away. Enter the Baron and henchmen.]

Baron: Where are they? Where are they?

Lucy: I believe they have ascended a particularly fine specimen of Phaseolus  giganticus?

Baron: What? Oh never mind, come on men, they must have gone this way. [He leads them off in the wrong direction.]
Lucy: [Pulling out a book from behind her back.] he should read more. Now where was I? Oh yes, " Butter Bean, Phaseolus lunatus, also known as the Lima or Madagascar bean.. [She exits still reading,]

SCENE FIFTEEN - Cloud Cuckoo Land Again

[After bumping into the inhabitants once again they finally stumble across Clive.]

Ben: Are there you are Clive.  [He picks him up amongst great cheers]

Jack: Let me talk to him.

Ben: Not after last time, I'll talk to him. Now Clive, any other way of making money up here? [He listens to the Frog']
He says that he's heard that the Giant has a goose that lays golden eggs

[They look at each other.
Both: Naaa.

Ben :[Listens again] He says that the Giant has a golden harp.. or something like that.

Jack: That's more like it, come on let's go.

[They exit]

SCENE SIXTEEN - In the Giant's Castle

[Enter Jack and Ben nervously, the Giant's wife is watching them from on high]

Giant's Wife: Hello boys.
[They jump in surprise.]
Come back for some of my pizza eh? Well your in luck Bonecrusher has just popped out for a paper.

Ben: Bonecrusher?

Mrs. Giant: Well his full name is Bonecrusher Bloodpulp Gutsngore the third but his friends call him 'Boney'

Jack: [Unbelieving] He's got friends?

Mrs. Giant: Oh lots.. there's Breakneck and Fleshgulper and

Ben:  Yes fine but we need to find something we can pin... I mean er... borrow. You don't have anything um made of gold round here do you?

Giant's wife: Gold? Well we don't have much call for that kind of thing up here, oh there is the golden guitar.

Jack: [excitedly] Did you say golden?

Ben: Did you say guitar?
Mrs. Giant: Well yes... more or less, in fact here she comes now.
[Enter Golden Guitar Girl (GGG)]

GGG: Hi dudes, what's cool?

Jack: Eh?

GGG: I mean what's the scene babe, where's it at?

Ben: I think she's speaking a foreign language.

GGG: [Looking at them] Groovy guys.

Jack: Is it French?

GGG: Totally wicked, hey gimme five.

Ben: [Slowly] Do you speak English?

GGG: Hey, that's radical!

Jack: That's a very very nice guitar you've got

GGG: It's bad.

Ben: Hey I understood that bit!
[To the GGG]
Actually we think it's good, how about giving it to us?

GGG: No way man.

Jack: Come on, we need it more than you.

GGG: Like for why baby?

Ben: Just hand it over.. [They start a tug of war.]

Jack: It's no good she won't let us have it.

Ben: Well we'll just have to take her too!

Jack: Isn't that kidnapping?

Ben: No, it's guitar napping, completely different thing all together.

Jack: Oh.. good.. [To GGG] How about a little trip, get out of here, see the world, meet new people make new friends

GGG: Yo.. travel city U.S.A... mega!

Jack: Does that mean yes?

Ben: I think so, come on then.
[The giant is heard approaching]
Oh no! More trouble!

Giant: Fee fi fo fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman, be he alive or be he dead I'll grind his bones... actually a kebab would be nice.

Ben and Jack: [Dragging GGG between them] Ahhhhh!

GGG: Ok man, I'm out o here.

Giant: [Voice off] Ah it's been a hard day where is my golden guitar girl to play for me?

Mrs. Giant: Er.. she's gone.

Giant: Gone?

Mrs. Giant: Yes, she's gone off with those two nice boys, and I never did get a chance to give them a slice of pizza.

Giant: Pizza? I'll slice them up as thin as salami then eat them between two slices of bread and butter. [He roars a mighty roar]

Mrs. Giant: Well it's too late now dear. I expect they'll be home by now.

Giant: Not if I catch them and stomp on them first.


[Enter Jack and Ben dragging the GGG]

Ben: Quick, cut down the beanstalk! [Jack does nothing]

Hurry up! [In a panic] Cut it down!!

Jack: What with?

Ben : An axe you idiot, didn't you read the script?

jack: Right. I'll go and get it. [He goes back stage] There is a clunk and a yowl]

Ben: What's happened. ?

Jack: [Entering limping] The head fell off on my toe.

Ben: Well haven't you got anything else?

Jack: I er don't think so... only a chain saw.

Ben: Fantastic, get it now!

Jack: No hang on, I lent it to Tommy off Ground Force.. I suppose that means my chain saw is famous.

Ben : Don't be stupid, nobody ever had a famous chainsaw.

Villager: [Passing by] Hey Jack, caught your chainsaw on the tele last night, fantastic performance!

Jack: See.

[Jack and Ben cower as they hear the giant's rumbling steps. he is roaring out... ]

Giant Fee Fi Fo Fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman. Be he alive or be he dead, I'll grind his bones to make l'homme au vin.

[ The GGG is looking cool fingering chords on her guitar. The boys look upward anxiously, the giant appears and is clearly very small. They look down, look up again and look down.]

Ben: You're the giant?

Giant: Er yes.

Ben: You're very small for a giant

Giant: [defensively and slightly desperately] I'm not small at all....  I'm er just a long way away.

Jack: No you're not!

Giant; [Even more defensively} No.. well I've not been well recently. However, I have brought with me this very large stick. Now which one of you is Jack?

[The boys get into a huddle]

Jack and Ben: [Pointing to each other.] He is.

Giant: What?

Ben: Or rather I'm Jack, playing the part of Ben, pretending to be Jack.

Jack: And I'm Ben, playing the part of Jack pretending to be Ben!

Ben: Got it?

Giant: [Making as if to attack them] No, but you will!
[Enter Lucy]

Lucy: Hello boys, in trouble.. again? Who are your friends?

Ben: Er'..... Lucy this is the Golden Guitar Girl, Golden Guitar Girl, this is Lucy. [They shake hands]

GGG: Awesome.

Ben: And this is the er... giant. Lucy meet the giant, giant meet Lucy. [They shake hands.]

Lucy:  You're very small for a giant.

Ben: We've been through all that.

Lucy: Even so, he's certainly the smallest giant I've ever seen.. unless. You haven't been eating any of those genetically modified beans we've seen running about have you?

Giant: Well....

Lucy: That's it... genetic modification strikes again!

Jack: [Uncomfortably] So what are we going to do?

Ben: Do?

Lucy: Well I see his point, the pantomime was supposed to end with the beanstalk  being chopped down and the giant perishing leaving Jack with all his treasure and nothing else to do but live happily ever after.

Jack: Never mind, at least we have got the golden guitar, that should fetch a bob or two.

Giant: I'm afraid not, it's wood.. it's just wood painted gold!

Ben: Well that's that then! No money, no giant to kill, no happy ending. They're [pointing to audience ]not going to be very happy with that...
Watch out!

[Suddenly a bunch of hot surfing beans appear.]

Giant: What was that?

GGG: Hey cool!

Jack: They looked hot to me.

Ben: I've got it! Baked Beans.

Lucy: [Looking at GGG thoughtfully] Actually that gave me an idea.

All: It did?

Lucy: [To GGG, pointing at guitar] Can you play that?

GGG: Can I play it? [She strums  out a few power chords]

Jack: Wow!

Jack: Actually I'm not bad on the guitar myself..

Giant: .. and I'm pretty hot on the drums.

Lucy: .. and I can sing a bit...

Ben: Me to!

Lucy: Well that's it, we'll form a band, stage a concert in town, sell loads of tickets and perhaps even get a recording contract.

Ben: What's that?

Lucy: I don't know but I'm sure there's loads of money in it.

Giant: So how do we organise it?

Lucy: Well.... [they all get into a huddle and start to plan. Enter Baron and thugs.]

Baron: Get over there and find out what they're up to and stop it! [The thugs go over]

Thug: OK, what's going on over here? Come on break it up.

Lucy: Just a moment, what does the Baron pay you?

Thug: Pay us?

Lucy: Look, why don't you join us, we're going to be rock stars and we need some minders and body guards. You'll get to travel all over the world and we'll pay you loads of money.

Thugs: [Together] Cool! [They pull out dark glasses, put them on and turn to face the Baron.]

Baron: What's going on? Come on, [Trying to push past.] I want my money.

Thug: I'm sorry sir but if you want to talk to the group you'll have to make an appointment with their manager.

Ben: That's a point we haven't got a manager yet!

Lucy: What about Mrs. Jack's Mum, she'll do it.

Giant: Then we'll need a name, what about "Giant Bonecrusher and the Beanies"?

GGG: Man! Very uncool!

Jack: She's right, we need something simple. [They all look at him] Alright, I need something simple.

Lucy: Yes something short, easy to remember, what about er... ugga, okke, iffy, ubba,.....

[They all exit.]

SCENE 19  - The Happy Ending

Jack's Mum: Well the rest is history. Giant Bonecrusher practiced with the band for a few months but his eating habits were so disgusting that he had to leave. He moved to Liverpool, changed his name to Richard Starkey and joined a little known band called the Beatles. The others moved to Sweden and under the name of ABBA , Jack never could remember which way round to write his b's, triumphed in the  1974 Eurovision Song Contest with 'Waterloo'

[Everyone gathers for the concert, the group come on and perform Waterloo to great acclaim. They are joined by loads  of jumping beans.]

Jack: That's funny, I've never heard of bouncing beans.[Everyone looks at him.]

All: Jumping Beans!

Louise: Oh, aren't they wonderful!

Louisa: If we could only get near them.
[They try but are held at bay by the thugs. Enter Baron selling programmes.]

Baron: Get your programmes here, souvenir programmes.. bah!

Jack's Mum: I can't believe it... it's just like a fairy tale.

Lucy: You know that gives me an idea for a song.

[They all form up and everyone joins in with "I have a dream" ]

The End