‘Nam – Episode 106
PFC’s Pete Hormel and Ziggy Riley — wrongly accused of being war criminals — are on the run through the jungles of Vietnam, accompanied by RN Annabeth Bisch and ex-Viet Cong Haht Dung..
Episode 106 – Picture This
Stockton: Get a shot of this over here.
Wellington: (snaps a shot)
Stockton: The downed helicopter will symbolize the failure of the Nixon Administration to instill democracy in another third-world war-torn hell-hole, furthering the demise of the American Dream.
Wellington: Boy. You really hate this Nixon chap, don’t you?
Stockton: He stands for all that is wrong in our society. He is a manifestation of the corporate greed conglomerate built on the ideals of victimizing the lower caste into a slave society, until the hollowed-out corpse has been raped of its freedoms and nutrients and the citizenry is lying dead in the ditch of the road to the End Times.
Wellington: He’s got a big ugly nose too, in’t?
(Rolling Stone reporter Thom Stockton and British photographer Ralph Wellington are floating along the flooded Thiem in a motorboat, chronicling the destruction. The boat is being navigated by an older Vietnamese man from Saigon, who speaks very little English..)
Stockton: Qwong, take this tub further north. I hear some commotion over the horizon.
Qwong: Yes, meester.
Wellington: I don’t know, Thom. I’m almost out of film. Maybe we should call it a day, head back to the pub.
Stockton: It’s not even noon yet, you lout. Just a little further. I feel our cover story is just around the bend.
(On the PBR Abraham III, Dung and the Tihts are arguing again; as Pete and Zig try to figure out how to get the boat into reverse. The Tihts have relented and untied their captives, not fearing an insurrection. Zig fiddles with the motor in the back, while Pete yells from the wheel up front. Annabeth is busily turning radio dials, listening for an update on the at-large war criminals..)
Hormel: Just jiggle it a little.
Riley: What do you think I’m doing? I’m jiggling!
Hormel: Jiggle harder!
Dung: You knuckleheads come all way out here and get us lost?
Bonh: It’s Lonh’s fault!
Lonh: It’s Bonh’s fault!
Dung: It your mother fault for having you! We were doing just fine ’til you come along! My wife must be worried sick right now!
Bisch: Everybody shut up!
(The men are silenced immediately and they all glance at Annabeth as she points at the ship’s radio..)
Radio: …the war criminals Hormel and Riley are believed to be heading south to Saigon; perhaps hoping to find some sympathetic party, or perhaps a Communist agent who was in on the operation from the beginning…
Riley: Oh no! They think we’re Commies!
Radio: …this news desk has also learned that a Ms. Annabeth Bisch, a nurse with the late Company D of the 47th Battalion, who was at first believed to be an innocent bystander taken by the war criminals as leverage is now believed to be a collaborator. Officials say her medical know-how could have saved a large percentage of the hundreds poisoned by Hormel and Riley; but she simply refused to help. Officials also say the three may have been turned by their soulless Communist handlers while they were still youths here in the States. Rumors have even been circulated of a possible open sexual relationship between the three, much like the ones enjoyed by the youth degenerate radicals on Haight and Ashbury…
Bisch: Oh, gross!
Riley: (shrugs) Well, not totally gross. That sex thing sounded pretty awesome.
Bisch: That was the gross part, Ziggy.
Dung: Hoo hoo, you fools in mega trouble. ‘Ol Dung wouldn’t wanna be in your shoe!
Radio: Another possible collaborator, a Viet Cong soldier by the name of Haht Dung, went missing around the same time as The Commie Three and is believed to be traveling with them to Saigon. Perhaps to poison the city’s water supply. Perhaps they’ve gotten their hands on some sort of nuclear device. Regardless of their mission, American forces are in hot pursuit and are expected to apprehend The Commie Three (and Mr. Dung) by the end of the week…
(Annabeth clicks off the radio and everyone stands in stunned silence for a few moments..)
Riley: “Commie Three” sounds kinda cool. Like we’re superheroes who…share stuff.
Hormel: This is really bad.
Bonh: You’re tellin’ me, ugly.
Lonh: This is your fault, Dung!
Dung: What? How this my fault? They the ones poison all those American.
Hormel: Again, not entirely true.
Lonh: Yeah, but you the one that capture them and draggin’ them around. Let’s just kill ’em and dump ’em here. Saigon gonna be crawlin’ with US troops.
Dung: We not killing anybody! My father-in-law have some friends who wanna meet my friends. They stay with me.
Riley: Whoa, “friends”? What friends?
Lonh: Well, I gotta shoot somethin’!
Dung: (waves a hand) Ah, go shoot your foot.
Lonh: (smiles) I do you one better.
(Lonh points his pistol at Dung’s left foot and fires. Dung collapses to the deck in a screaming heap..)
Dung: Owwwwww! What you do that for?
Lonh: I told you I had to shoot something.
Dung: Well shoot a bird, you crazy psycho! Or a fish!
Riley: (nods) Or a monkey. You guys got monkeys here, right? Actually, don’t shoot a monkey. I like monkeys.
Lonh: (shoves the gun in Zig’s face) How about I shoot you, monkey?
Riley: (glares) I’m not a monkey!
Bisch: Uh, guys?
(The men turn to the right side of the ship where a toothy Englishman in a small motorboat is pointing a camera at them..)
Wellington: Say cheese, mates.
Stockton: (claps a hand on Ralph’s shoulder) Ralphie boy, I think we just found our cover story.
Riley: Hey, does anybody else think it was a bad idea for Tihty Boy here to fire his gun on a boat?
Peterson: You shot my friends!
Toole: We know, and we’re really sorry about that. And when the time comes, we’re going to own up to that fact and accept the consequences. But for now we need to find the war criminals, Hormel and Riley. Now you remember seeing the PBR Abraham III heading south after you regained consciousness. Did they mention anything about Saigon?
Peterson: Um, I don’t think so.
Talcum: Whoa, whoa, whoa. Let’s not gloss over anything here, Toole. I ain’t ownin’ up to shit. Gen. Kennedy hears we shot two American soldiers and we’re in the same boat as Hormel and Riley. In fact, let’s just blame it on Hormel and Riley. They escaped, right? Maybe they took a couple potshots on the way, took out your friends. Christ, they already got 412 bodies on them. Why not two more?
Toole: First of all, Talcum; we both know it was only 198. And second, if we lie about what we did we’re just as bad as them.
Talcum: But we are just as bad, Toole. We killed two American men.
Toole: I’m no war criminal.
Talcum: You are if you own up to what you did. We gotta lie to save our cans. Blame it on the war criminals.
Peterson: Uh, hate to interrupt your ethical quandary; but, speaking of the war criminals?
(Toole and Talcum look to where Private Peterson is pointing and see the PBR Abraham III sinking quickly into the flooded Thiem..)
Toole: Ah, crap.
(Pete, Ziggy, Annabeth, Dung and the Tiht Brothers are crammed into Thom and Ralph’s motorboat with Qwong at the helm..)
Lonh: (shoves Bonh) You’re on my side!
Bonh: (shoves Lonh) No, you’re on my side!
(The boat rocks back and forth and Ziggy leans over the side and vomits..)
Hormel: (groans, clutching his stomach) Ughhh, how long ’til Saigon?
Qwong: Seven hours, meester.