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Mystery Science Theater 3000

 

Deathstroke, the Terminator - Annual 3

 

[Season 10 theme song. We open up on the SoL. Mike is alone on the Bridge.]

MIKE: Welcome to the Satellite of Love, where we're just about to kick off our first annual philosophy night. I'm really excited about the prospect of discussing weighty issues like the origins of the universe and the existence of minds.

[Tom and Crow enter.]

CROW: Hey Mike, do you think I'm evil?

MIKE: Well, I-

TOM: Stop beating around the bush and tell the man if you think he's evil or not.

MIKE: Um, evil is-

CROW: My dictionary says evil is 'having bad natural qualities; bad; harmful; disagreeable; vicious; corrupt; wicked; calamitous; unfortunate'. So I guess that means I'm evil, right?

MIKE: Well, that def-

[Lights flash.]

TOM: Oh look, Cher and Don King are on the line.

[Castle Forrester.]

PEARL: Who're you calling Don King, you runt? And you, goldenrod, you leave the evilness to the expert. For instance, this week, we have a deliciously evil comic book from the DC Universe.

[SoL.]

TOM: It isn't one of those god TMK Legion issues, is it?

[Castle Forrester.]

BOBO: Ooo, I love those.

[SoL.]

TOM: Shvaugin Erin was a pretty good character. Did you like him too?

[Castle Forrester.]

BOBO: HIM???

PEARL: No, you don't get off that easy. It's one of those Elseworlds stories where nothing actually makes sense.

[SoL.]

MIKE: How is that different from the rest of the DC Universe?

CROW: He still misses the Claremont X-Men.

[Castle Forrester.]

OBSERVER: Sure they made sense... if you can accept resurrections every two issues.

[SoL.]

MIKE: Hey! If you don't see the corpse....

[Castle Forrester.]

PEARL: Well, we'll all get a chance to see your corpses after this comic. It's called Deathstroke Annual #3, and it shows just how great a range that character can have. He can be really terrible. Brain Guy, send them the comic!

BOBO: Ooo, can I go too?

[Pearl glares at Bobo. Back to SoL. Mike and the 'bots cringe as they hear a "wham."]

[Movie Sign lights flash.]

CROW: We have comic sign!

[Typical panic happens and the door sequence begins]

DEATHSTROKE THE TERMINATOR, ANNUAL 3
(It's snowing. Deathstroke is standing in the middle of the rubble of a ruined city.)

[Mike and 'bots sit down.]
TOM (Singing): It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

Elseworlds. In Elseworlds, heroes are taken from their usual settings and put into strange times and places-

MIKE: Like Chuck-E-Cheese right at the dinner rush hour.

--some that have existed, or might have existed, and others that can't, couldn't or shouldn't exist. This is one of them.

Calm down.

CROW: But I like being frantic!

I'll tell you the story,

TOM: 'Bout a man named Jed, a poor mountaineer who barely kept his family fed-

although I can't believe you would want to hear it again.

ALL: We don't.

Ahh, well. Quiet and listen closely.
They say the legend of Deathstroke the Terminator

MIKE: A.K.A Deathstroke the Underlined.

began more than five hundred years ago, but who alive today can vouch that is true?

CROW: Dick Clark?

Know only that someone who claims that name may have saved our fragile little world from extinction.

MIKE: Or possibly doomed our big robust world.
CROW: And for all we know, it could have been Batman.

Know that his name is remembered when others, far more deserving

TOM: And far less underlined...

than he, have sadly been forgot.
But, for good or bad, this is his tale.

CROW: It wags when he's happy.

I call it...

TOM: Monica's story.

JOURNEY'S END

MIKE: But it's too dumb to come when I call it.

Marv Wolfman: Writer

CROW: Down with 'the Man'.
MIKE: Silver bullets... get the silver bullets!

Ed Benes: Penciller
Keri Kowalski: Assistant Editor
Rus Sever, Terry Beatty, Bob Smith: Inkers

TOM (singing): Inkers away...

Rob Simpson: Editor

CROW: D'oh!

Steve Haynie: Letterer
Julianna Ferriter: Colorist
Deathstroke created by Wolfman & Perez

MIKE: A Perez dispenser?

(Deathstroke, with sword and gun in hand, looks up at a ruined building. He's dressed in his usual costume: bright blue with orange superhero underwear, belts, bandoleers, gloves, and wide-cuffed boots. He looks fiftyish, has long white hair tied in a ponytail, a beard, and only one eye; his right eye is covered with a borg-like piece of metal.)

TOM: It's Seven of Nine, after the sex change!

(He occasionally wears a full face mask, which is half orange and half blue. At the moment, his face is uncovered.)

CROW: A brand-new superhero color scheme! No one else is that tacky.

How long ago was it now that The Genetix

TOM: That's Jenette Kahn's department.

destroyed our way of life?

CROW: Wasn't that called Crisis on Infinite Earths?
TOM: Only if you live on Earth-Prime.

(Deathstroke runs up some stairs)
Oh, yes. I remember.

MIKE: Then why'd you ask the question?

It was at the end of the last century.

TOM: Back when Bismoil had a decent magnoball team.

We made them to be better than us, and in gratitude, they destroyed us.

MIKE: Much as we wish to destroy this mag.
TOM: Good thing Pearl got it out of the 25 bin.

Or at least most of us.
Deathstroke survived the Raid

ALL: Raid!!

On Manhattan South.
(Deathstroke stands in a trashed room. Books and bookcases are scattered everywhere)

MIKE: Geez! It looks like my Grandmother's house after my cousins have gone through it.

Four million dead, but he lived. Then again he always lived.

CROW: Much like a roach.

It was like he could never die.

MIKE: Although he deserved to.
TOM: Aargh! He's a Summers!

This tale of Deathstroke began with his raid on the Library of Congress.

MIKE: When did the Library of Congress get into Manhattan South?
CROW: But everyone knows about the city expansions of 2498.
TOM: I think he was going after Bob Packwood.

(Deathstroke stands, looking at destroyed computers and machinery.)
Most of the paper evaporated two hundred years ago.

TOM: Except for the comic books in those nifty mylar bags.

Tapes disintegrated in the acid rains early this century.

CROW: Even my Beatles tapes?

Computer chips were no longer operable since the magnetic storms erased all their data. Historical data existed on bio-wafers,

MIKE: With creamy centers

but Deathstroke wasn't searching for information.

MIKE: "I seek the holy Grail."

This was a bloodier hunt.

CROW: With more underlining.

(Deathstroke, whirling around suddenly, fires his gun off panel, to the right.)
Deathstroke: "C'mon out, Genetix!"
(His gun goes "Zwippp.")

TOM: They must have sound effects left over from The Flash.

Deathstroke: "Why the hell are you cowards hiding?"

MIKE (as Genetix): "Your gun is 'zwippp'ing at us."
TOM (as Genetix): "Yeah, we're hiding in the Punisher movie, where it's safe."

(Shot goes through the wall. Several Genetix are there. One gets hit and is knocked back.)
Deathstroke: "I can smell you through the walls." [Skreeashhhh!]

MIKE: Don't most guns make consistent noises?
TOM: That's why this book didn't get approved by the Comics Code.
CROW: Well, that and the guy getting his guts blown out on the next page.
MIKE: Hey, no peeking!

Genetix leap at Deathstroke from behind the rubble. They are greenish humanoids with borg-like implants - yes, them, too - and with bad haircuts.)
A Genetix: "We were reelin' you in."
A Genetix: "No place to run now."
(A random sound effect goes "Zwippp.")
A Genetix: "We have you."
(Deathstroke shoots; his gun goes "Skreeeammm.")

MIKE: Wow. They're talking as if they were major villains...
CROW: And not just the evil cannon fodder.

(Deathstroke fights with sword and gun. Several Genetix spit something green on him.)

[They all make spitting sounds.]

The Genetix spat acid at him.

TOM: Doing 8D damage.

It burned his flesh, but it didn't stop him.

TOM: The book would be over on page three if it did.
MIKE: If only....

(Deathstroke kicks and slashes. He lops the arm off one of the Genetix.)

TOM: He slices! He dices! He even makes julienne Genetix!

Their heat-flashers

CROW: The ones that work on 57th street?
MIKE: Don't go there.

cut into his arms and legs. That didn't stop him either.
(He continues to fight, and he blows a hole through a Genetix.)
Legend says Deathstroke could not be killed,

CROW: He was the Dread Pirate Roberts.

but the man had to be in terrible pain. Still nothing stopped him.

TOM: Just like Marv Wolfman-he was under contract.

He killed a dozen Genetix...

CROW: It's cheaper by the dozen.
MIKE: That's over the limit. He's going to get fined for that.

(Many Genetix surround Deathstroke)
...but hundreds more took their place.
A Genetix: "You can't fight us all, human."
A Genetix: "We're everywhere."

CROW (as Genetix): "We're Amway!"

(Deathstroke continues to fight but is being overwhelmed.)
A Genetix: "We're in your thoughts and your nightmares."

MIKE (as Genetix): "We're the American Gladiators."

A Genetix: "Our deadly spit is in your water."

CROW (as Genetix): "We run the EPA."

(Deathstroke is being buried under the horde of Genetix.)
A Genetix: "Our poison blood is in your food."

CROW (as Heston): "Soylent green is Genetix!"

(Deathstroke has been knocked out, and Genetix are stepping on his head.)

MIKE (singing): Step on my face, and tell me that you love me...

A Genetix: "And our disease-ridden hate-"

TOM (as Genetix): "Is being distributed by Louis Farakkan."
MIKE: With a bit of good hygiene it could be sparkling fresh hate.

A Genetix: "-it festers"

CROW: Uncle Festers?

Same Genetix (con'd): "in the very air you breathe!"

MIKE: What, we're in New Jersey all of a sudden?

Even Deathstroke could fight them no longer.

TOM: How could he fight all of New Jersey?
CROW: Lots of soap and water?

(Deathstroke is naked)

ALL: Aarghhh!

(Save for a conveniently placed piece of metal,)

ALL: Whew!

(In standard comic-book high-tech restraints, and is being dragged through the snow.)
A Genetix: "Drag him through the streets."

MIKE: But wouldn't that be a hate crime?

Same Genetix (con'd): "Let our brothers have their way with him."

CROW: But that would be a different kind of hate crime.

A Genetix: "How many of their mothers and fathers have you slain, Deathstroke?"

TOM (as Deathstroke): "It wasn't me, it was Tommy Monaghan!"

Same Genetix (con'd): "How many of their brothers and sisters have you murdered?"

MIKE (as Deathstroke): "Um- self defense?"

(The Genetix are stoning Deathsroke.)

TOM: He who is without sin may cast the first stone.
CROW: Mom, cut it out!

They struck him with everything they could lay their twisted hands on. They hated him,

CROW: You really think so?

these Genetix. And their hate would have killed any ordinary man.
(A Genetix is sawing at Deathstroke's chest with a knife.)

TOM (Minnesota voice): Oh, ya, this cut of Deathstroke is so nice and tender, don'cha know.

They beat at his face and groin,

MIKE: Ugh, now we know why it's not a Comics Code mag.

smashed his chest and cut into his gut.

TOM: Talk about cheap liposuction.

(Deathstroke, still naked except for another conveniently placed metal panel, has been crucified, pinioned to a pillar.)

MIKE: It's the Last Temptation of Deathstroke!

And when they were done, they tacked what was left of him to the wall of what had been the American White House.

TOM: But that happened to Captain America just last week!
CROW: That happens to Captain America every week.

(A crowd of Genetix are standing in front of Deathstroke. They're piling wood beneath him.)

ALL: Burn the witch! Burn the witch!

A Genetix: "You've hunted us and killed us. What do you have to say for yourself, human?"

MIKE (as Deathstroke): "Wasn't it Genetix hunting season?"
TOM: Duck season.
CROW: Rabbit season.
TOM: Duck season.
MIKE: Stop it, you two!

Deathstroke: "Go to hell!"

CROW: Ooo, that's a witty comeback.

(A Genetix fires a gun, or possibly a flame thrower, into the pile of wood, setting it ablaze. The gun goes "Whoomp!")

TOM: Oh great, now they're stealing sound effects from Archie Comics.

A Genetix: "No! You go to hell!"

CROW: Do you really want to lock Deathstroke up with two women?
MIKE: Huh?

A Genetix: "We don't argue with humans. Destroy him."

MIKE: They've been trying to do that for five pages already.

(Shot of Deathstroke beginning to burn.)

MIKE (singing): Burn, baby, burn! Disco inferno!

They lit the fire beneath him and stepped back to watch.

CROW (sleazy voice): They like to watch.

Unlike other humans, Slade didn't break.

TOM: No, he bent like Plastic Man at the Paradise Island swimsuit competition.

(Close-up of Deathstroke burning.)
He didn't cry.

CROW: He was a big girl now.

He didn't plead with them to stop.

MIKE: But he sure pleaded for them to slow down a lot.

Deathstroke: "Do what you want, you monsters. This isn't over!"

CROW (as Deathstroke): "And I know that because I looked ahead in the script."

(The Genetix are dancing around the fire.)
They didn't listen.

MIKE: We tried not to either.

They didn't care.

TOM: They're sounding more and more like us.

Perhaps they didn't believe.

CROW: In the power of Our Lord
TOM: They will believe a man can fly, though.

As his flesh seared, his mind returned to that time when the real pain began.

CROW: The day he lost his puppy Rover.
TOM: No, it's a flashback within a flashback.
MIKE: It's Tarantino-esque.

(Flashback time. Everything is knocked out in violets and lavenders. Slade, dressed only in his skivvies, is strapped to a chair in some military-type office. He has tubes coming out of his chest. In place of the metal thing over his eye, he has a standard eye patch.)
The Army told him they were testing a universal antidote to truth serums. Slade Wilson, already an accomplished soldier, volunteered.

TOM: So did some jerk named Rogers.

(Slade is tossing furniture around.)
But the serum somehow changed him. At first it drove him mad.

MIKE: It made him wear women's clothing
CROW: And hang around in bars.

(A bunch of MPs get Slade in a headlock and wrestle him to the ground.)

MIKE: Give him a noogie!

There was panic.

TOM: She was given her own comic series.

This was the era of Watergate. If word had gotten out about secret Government experiments,

MIKE: Ford would have pardoned a few more crooks.

the Army Doctors knew heads would roll.

TOM: And fail their saving throws.
MIKE: Do government scandals get saving throws?
CROW: Bill Clinton did.

(Slade is lifting very heavy weights. He's still in his underwear.)
But Slade's madness disappeared

MIKE: In the woods, but its film was recovered one year later.

and was seemingly replaced with incredible strength.

TOM: But was actually Folger's Crystals.

(Slade is doing acrobatic flips to avoid gunfire. The guns go "Blam! Blam!")
His reflexes were instantaneous.

TOM: And poor.

Thought and action were as one.

CROW: Yeah, one gastropod.
MIKE: He's a factor in the Transcendental Order.

(Slade falls down. A scientist-looking woman rushes forward, looking worried.)
His power kept increasing, almost geometrically so.

MIKE: But he was failing Geometry, so he only increased algebraically.
TOM: They only tested the serum, not him.

But then he suddenly collapsed... with no reason.
Woman: Slade!

MIKE: He could be so unreasonable sometimes.
TOM (as Schwartzeneger): "It's not a tumor!"

(Slade is getting loaded into an ambulance.)
He spent weeks recuperating in a top-secret hospital.

MIKE: Because the American public cannot be allowed to know that hospitals exist.
TOM: He had tea with the Roswell alien.
CROW: He had a kick-ass HMO.

The army wanted their fiasco hushed up and forgotten. Several higher-ups thought about killing him.

TOM (sarcastic): But that would be unethical!
MIKE: What, and shooting people into space and forcing them to read this stuff isn't?

But then Slade seemed to lose his power and return to normal.

MIKE: Whatever that is.

(Slade, finally fully dressed, is walking out of a guarded building, accompanied with the woman who shouted "Slade!" a few panels up.)
Eventually he was given a medical discharge.

TOM: Similar to a stool sample.
CROW: Like this mag.

(Now Slade is dressed as Deathstroke, and is kicking and shooting people who are presumably bad guys, since they carry guns.)

CROW: But wait. Isn't Slade using a gun?

But his powers hadn't vanished. They changed Slade. Made him stronger, faster, more agile.

MIKE: Less able to use pronouns.
TOM: Bizzaro has better grammar than this.

They gave him recuperative abilities.

CROW: Highly unspecified recuperative abilities.

Slade Wilson became Deathstroke the Terminator!

TOM: He's the best there is at what he does, but what he does isn't very pretty.

(Shot of Slade standing at a gravesite, looking depressed.)
First his sons died, Grant and Joseph.

MIKE: Too bad they had lived as Gina and Tiffany.

Many years later perhaps his only friend and confidant, W.R. Wintergreen,

CROW: A sparkling fresh man.

passed away... No one is certain if his death was natural or the result of foul play.

CROW: There was this grassy knoll, see...
TOM: And Howard the Duck was spotted nearby with a shotgun.

(Shot of Slade and various others at a funeral, with an old dead woman in a casket.)
Twenty yeas later, Adeline, Slade's ex-wife, died.

MIKE (as Narrator): "And no one is certain if it was natural of foul play."

And for many years he was sullen and angry

TOM: Much as he had been for the prior forty years.

(Deathstroke is now in a city, in costume, running from laser-using guys in armored suits who are riding hovering disks. Their laser pistols go "Zwipp. Zwipp.")
As the world became crazier, his missions

CROW: To the jungles of South America-

became mad vendettas, and by the year 2030 he was wanted by every country in the world.

MIKE: Mostly for loitering.
TOM: In the Vatican, he's wanted for jaywalking.

Slade had a death wish that forced him into public praying he would be attacked.

CROW: Does that mean he wanted to be attacked while praying in public?
MIKE: Something like that.
CROW: I guess we're dealing with Bizzaro Wolfman again.

(Deathstroke is still running from the "Zwipp"-ing lasers.)
He was already well over two hundred years old. And he wanted to die!

TOM: And he used sentence fragments!
MIKE: Why not call Kevorkian?

Janey McCather, his second wife,

TOM: And his first daughter. He's a West Virginian, you know.

was slain on their honeymoon.

CROW: By the Flying Elvises.
MIKE While on Her Majesty's Secret Service.

(Now a large tank is bearing down, going "Braroooom!")
His third wife...

CROW: Was a small shelled clam.

I shouldn't talk about what they did to her.

TOM: Oh, all right; they cooked and ate her.
MIKE: She used to sidelight as the Dancing Baby.

(More people on hover disks are shooting.)
Time and again he screamed

MIKE: He had a very strong voice.

at fate, pleaded for her to take him.

TOM: But the Doctor was out.
MIKE: Rob Simpson should be arrested for this grammar mauling.
CROW: No, he should be arrested for approving this plot synopsis.

(Deathstroke is getting blown up with a "Bra-bammmmm.")
Kill me, he cried! Kill me!

ALL: Direct quotes, we cried. Use direct quotes.

(Three military men, two dressed in strange costumes that look like a cross between G.I. Joe and Imperial Stormtroopers, complete with full-face helmets, and one in a lab coat, are standing in a morgue-type room. Deathstroke, to all appearances dead, is lying on a slab.)

TOM: Where do they get these villains?

Guy in Suit: "This man has not aged in two hundred years."

MIKE: Yeah, that's what the narrator said, genius.

Guy in Suit: "Dissect him. Learn his secret."

MIKE: Are all secrets obtainable through judicious use of autopsies?
CROW: What if his secret is just clean living?

(Labcoated man has a scalpel in his hand and is advancing on Deathstroke.)
"The last of the American generals hired you to rescue his country. But you failed him twice. America has fallen..."

MIKE: Inflation is rising.

(Close-up on Deathstroke. His eye is opening.)
Labcoat man: "And your secrets will make her enemies stronger!"
(Shot of Deathstroke's hand, reaching up to grab the Labcoat man's hand. The scapel goes flying.)

MIKE (as Deathstroke): "I give up. Rosebud is a sled."

Labcoat man: "NO!"

MIKE (as Deathstroke): "Are you sure? I saw the movie twice."

(Deathstroke, naked again, jumps up and begins attacking people.)

TOM: Deathstroke: Nudist Vigilante.

His healing abilities revived him. He killed the soldiers who had overrun his country...

CROW: Because he still had some aggression to work out.

...and then fled into the night.

TOM: Because fleeing into the day just wasn't as dramatic.
MIKE: Or intelligent.

Slade felt the flames dancing around him, ending his reverie...

TOM: This origin story was brought to you by the letter 'D', the number '3' and the symbol '}'

(The flashback is over. Back to the real story. Deathstroke is getting burned at the stake, and the Genetix are dancing around him.)
...while the Genetix celebrated as the fires burned at his flesh.

MIKE: Thus demonstrating again that they were supposed to be the bad guys.
CROW: But next to Slade, they looked like a pack of freshman cheerleaders.

(Deathstroke is burning up, but appears to be laughing.)

TOM: Some people just see the bright side of everything!
MIKE (singing): Always look at the bright side of life.

Their enemy would at last be destroyed - although, perhaps, he did not believe that.
(Night-time. There is a green moon.)

TOM: That's what you get when you don't pay the colorist enough.

(Deathstroke has been burned to a charred husk, and the flames have died down to smoking embers.)

MIKE (as McArthur): "I shall return."
CROW (Captain Sheridan): "Expect me when you see me."
TOM (Vigo the Carpathian): "Death is but a door; time is but a window; I'll be back."
MIKE: Let's get out of here, guys.

[Door sequence]

[Mike and the 'bots are leaning on the counter in the bridge.]

MIKE: The Genetix caught Slade, burned him alive, and forced him to have a flashback of his origin story. Guys, I'm pretty sure that the Genetix are truly evil.

TOM: Yup. Sure looks like that. Pure evil.

GYPSY (OS): Alien ship approaching from the starboard aft.

MIKE: Cambot, give me rocket number nine!

[View of very ordinary looking spacecraft]

GYPSY (OS): They're hailing us.

MIKE: Cambot, open the hexfield viewscreen.

[In the hex-screen is a Genetix in a neat business suit with a guitar. He immediately begins to sing in the tune of Dulcinea:]

I have cooked thee too long
Never braised thee or boiled thee, but fried thee with all of my beans.
Half a sauce, half a stew
Thou hast always been with me though we only shared a few scenes.
I'm Genetix. I'm Genetix.
I see nachos when I see thee; I'm Genetix.
Ah, thy taste is like fresh parsley over lamb chops,
For Genetix. I'm Genetix.
If I reached out to thee,
And I told thee that I and my kind never were treated fair;
Let my audience see
That I'm warm and alive, not a monster who never did care.
I'm Genetix. I'm Genetix.
I have sought thee, sung thee, dreamed thee, you pathetics.
Now I've found you and the world shall know my story:
I'm Genetix. I'm Genetix.

MIKE: Wow, that was nice. They must not be evil after all. I guess we'll have to let him on board.

[Docking sounds. Then the flashing lights]

CROW: Oh no, we have comics sign!

[Door sequence. Mike and 'bots take their seats]

(A bunch of Genetix are gloating over the charred, skeletal corpse of Deathstroke)
A Genetix: "At long, long last, our enemy is no more."

ALL (as Genetix, singing): "Ding dong, the witch is dead."

A Genetix: "Take him away before his stench makes us sick."

MIKE (as Genetix): "Are you sure that's not our stench?"
CROW (as Genetix): "All right, take me away before- Wait a minute!"

(A couple of Genetix have take down the pillar and are carrying it away. Other Genetix are watching.)
A Genetix: "Chop him into bits!"

CROW: Build a bridge out of him!

A Genetix: "Grind his bones!"

TOM: To make our bread!

A Genetix: "Feed him to the dogs."

CROW (as Rocky Horror audience member): "Soup!"

A Genetix: "Dump him with the others."

MIKE: Wow, they must burn a lot of superheroes.
TOM: No wonder the Martian Manhunter is so scared.

Same Genetix (con'd): "Let all the slaves see what happens to those who defy the Genetix!"

TOM: It couldn't be much worse than forcing them to read this comic.

(The Genetix with the pillar are removing Deathstroke from it and are about to dump him on an immense heap of skeletal corpses.)
Human resisters were killed, gutted and left to rot on a pile of worm-ridden bodies at the remains of what had once been Arlington Cemetery.

CROW: But was now the salad bar at Shoney's.
MIKE: Dumping bodies at a cemetery... I can't think of anything more disgraceful!
TOM: Having your name on the credits of this mag would be pretty disgraceful....

(They toss Deathstroke, now just undercooked pink muscle and bone, on the heap.)

MIKE: Send it back! I ordered this well-done!

They say you could smell them all the way to New York.

TOM: Oh, please. New York has its own sanitation problems.

'Don't resist the Genetix_' the stench warned.

MIKE (as Dalek): "You will be exterminated."

(The Genetix walk away.)
'Don't fight what is better than you.'

CROW: That means we can't fight anybody!

(They throw more bodies on the pile.)
'You made us, but we destroyed you.'

MIKE: I wonder if there's a moral to this story yet...

'Be our slaves and we may let you live with only a little pain.' 'Follow our wishes...'

TOM (as Genetix): "And follow the yellow brick road."

'...or join those who did not.'

MIKE: I'm just not the kind of person who joins things.
CROW (Announcer): "Join them tonight... on Jerry Springer."
TOM (as Vader): "It is your destiny."

The lesson was learned by most.

MIKE: But some people just kept flunking out over and over again.
TOM & CROW (singing): A B C E F H G, Z R X Q T M P.

(Close up of Deathstroke.)
Slade was left for dead as the pile grew around him.

TOM: Due to all those other regenerating corpses.

(Deathstroke is beginning to heal.)
As his own flesh began to knit its way back up his bones.

CROW: As the fragmentary sentence.

As capillaries and veins and arteries reconnected.

MIKE (as Yoda): "Grammatical structure your sentences lack."

As blood began to flow again.

MIKE (as Hulk): "Me tired of lousy fragments. Hulk smash!!"

(His arm, fully healed, bursts out of the pile of bodies.)
As his heart began to beat again.

TOM (as Warlock): "SelffriendMarv writing style is abhorrent to Self."
MIKE: How come his blood started to flow before his heart started beating again? Isn't it usually the other way around?

(Deathstroke, fully healed, leaps out of the heap of corpses, extremely miffed.)
Deathstroke: "Never again!"

MIKE (as Deathstroke): "Will I pay too much for my muffler!"
TOM (as Deathstroke): "Well, once more, but that's it!"

(Close up of Deathstroke's face. He's still angry.
He had been alive for five hundred years, and virtually insane

CROW: What do you mean, 'virtually'?

for the past three hundred.
But this shock seemed to revive him.

MIKE: They'd moved his body to Corbal.
TOM: How shocking.

(Deathstroke's walking away, highlighted by the green moon.)
Enough was enough,

MIKE: But one hug is never enough.

Deathstroke thought.

CROW: That must have taken him a while.

(Scene of a city.)
The Genetix...

TOM: Who are filling in for the Orcs...

...they would have to die so humans could live.

MIKE: Wasn't that what the Nazis thought about the Jews?
CROW: Also what Cap'n Crunch thought about the Soggies.

(A large number of Genetix are hanging around in what looks like a disco, complete with mirrored balls.)

MIKE: Finally! Proof that the Genetix are evil - they like disco!

A Genetix: "No action tonight. May as well go home. Early day tomorrow. They want us to sweep through Baltimore"

TOM (as Genetix): "Man, I hate cleaning up after WorldCon."

Same Genetix (con'd): "There's been another rogue-human sighting."

TOM: But Rogue's a mutant.
CROW: That's why it made the cover of Weekly World News.
MIKE: Come see the Completely Normal Person.

(Close up on a couple of Genetix.. They're riding hover-disks)
A Genetix: "Wait. I'll go with you. But nature calls."

CROW (as Genetix): "Nature calls me a bit weenie, but I go anyway."
MIKE: Did she remember to use 10-10-321?

(Rear shot of that Genetix.)
The Genetix relieved himself...

MIKE: Do we really need to know this?
TOM: He had worried that he had left the iron on.

(The Genetix turns around and sees Deathstroke standing on his hover-disk.)
...but when he returned to his flier...

CROW: Which was unzipped.

Genetix: "Hey! Who are you? Get away from my flie-"

TOM (as Genetix): "I'm not that kind of girl!"

(Deathstroke shoots the Genetix. His gun goes "Babbam Bam."

MIKE: That's the third different sound effect for that same gun.
CROW: And this time it sounds like a Flintstones artifact.
TOM: Where will they get their effects from next? Gilligan's Island?

(Deathstroke takes the hover-disk and flies off on it.)
Slade headed for the remains of the old Pentagon.

CROW: As opposed to the ancient or the new Pentagons.

He and Wintergreen began working for the Government in the late twentieth century.

MIKE: Now Deathstroke needed a pension plan.

By the late '90s, arthritis put a reluctant Wintergreen behind a desk until his still-questionable death.

TOM (as Don Pardo): "Yes, W.R. Wintergreen is alive and well and living in beautiful Santiago, Chile."

Because the building was abandoned after the Terrorist wars of '08,

MIKE: I love getting important backstory halfway through the book, don't you?

their files would still be there.

CROW: Aha! The Pentagon was abandoned because it was undamaged and functional, right?

(Now Deathstroke is wandering around the Pentagon.)
Working for a Government

MIKE: Not the government, but a Government.

has always meant death to those he loved.

TOM: Just like the Baldwin brothers?

Addie died during a job for the French.

CROW: Those lousy Frogs!
TOM: It's not easy being green.

(Deathstroke is now fiddling at a computer.)

CROW: I don't want to know.

Slade's daughter was working for the Canadians when a bullet put her into the grave.

CROW: Huh, the words 'Canadians' and 'working' usually don't appear together in a sentence.

The only one who wouldn't die was Slade himself.

MIKE: Even though we wish he would.

He had to live to suffer through everyone else's death.

CROW: Ah, he's Jewish.

(Deathstroke's called up a screenful of gibberish. A computer graphic of the floating disembodied head of Wintergreen is floating on the screen.)

CROW (singing): Everything you know is wrong / black is white, up is down, and right is wrong.

Wintergreen's journals were transferred to bio-wafers just before the Pentagon was destroyed...

TOM: The destroyed Pentagon in which everything still works...
MIKE: Who's paying their electrical bills?

Computer/Wintergreen: "Slade,"

TOM (as Vader): "I am your father."

Computer/Wintergreen: "my research on the original experiment that created you indicates a series of secret experiments that cause me great concern."

CROW (as Wintergreen): "I wasn't at all concerned about their experimenting on you."
MIKE (as Wintergreen): "But Dr. Zaius assures me that all is well."

Computer/Wintergreen: "I've often wondered why the research was never continued."

CROW: He probably wonders why DDT isn't used anymore, too.

Computer/Wintergreen: "I believe the Pentagon is withholding information from me even now."

MIKE (as Wintergreen): "That may be because they revoked my security clearance."

Computer/Wintergreen: "I've recently found a locked computer file"

MIKE: The key is probably under the doormat.

Computer/Wintergreen: "called 'Operation Genetix'. Slade, I believe you were only a small part of some greater experiment."

CROW: "An experiment which may have involved Samantha Mulder..."

Deathstroke: "Genetix?"

MIKE (singing): You say Genetix, and I say genetics / Genetix, genetics, Genetix, genetics, let's call the whole thing off.

Deathstroke: "Top secret bio-wafers were kept behind locked doors."
(A locked door appears in the background.)

TOM: Behold, speak the name of the door and it shall appear in the background.
CROW (as Deathstroke): Now if only I could remember how to open doors.

Deathstroke: "Wintergreen, old friend, you were always too gentle."

MIKE (as Deathstroke): The way you used to kill people instead of maiming them like I do.

(Something explodes with a "Whoomm."
Deathstroke: "If you want something, you have to go for it!"

CROW: He found that one in a fortune cookie.
MIKE: Hey, they got the sound effect right; that's unprecedented.
TOM: Their budget will go sky high if they actually use the right effects.
MIKE: Maybe they just stole this one from The Punisher.

(Slade is looking at a ruined console and holding a smoking gun.)
Deathstroke: Is there some connection between me and the Genetix?"

MIKE: Is there any connection between Ted Turner and Jane Fonda?

(Deathstroke is glaring at a bio-wafer.)

TOM: Bleh! Diet food. At least it's better than rice cakes.

Deathstroke: "Is that what you were searching for when you died? Did those bastards kill you?"

CROW (as Wintergreen): "Do you really think they drowned me in all that Jell-O?"

(A disembodied head of a man pops up. This is possibly the guy who ordered Deathstroke dissected.)
Computer/Man: "File name Genetix."

MIKE: Wow that's great encryption. And the password protection was almost enough to stop a four-year-old!
CROW: That explains why Wintergreen couldn't open it.

Computer/Man: "Top secret clearance only."
Slade: "Yeah, yeah."

TOM: Even Slade knows that their security is a joke.
CROW: No, he's doing his Austin Powers impersonation. Yeah, baby! Yeah!

Computer/Man: "File 103-C: We have found the perfect subject in Slade Wilson."

TOM: For one thing, he hates Dennis the Menace.

Computer/Man: "He has been told we are trying to find a cure for truth serums. He believes us."

MIKE (as Bugs): "What a maroon!"
TOM (as Computer guy) "We're actually searching for a cure for successful comics with the letter 'X' in front of them."

Computer/Man: "Project Genetix was begun to create the perfect soldier. Invulnerable. Powerful. Controllable."

CROW: Two out of three ain't bad.
TOM: Didn't some Canadian group try the same thing a while back?
CROW: Yeah, but all they got were John Candy, William Shatner, and Bryan Adams.

(The computer screen shows diagrams of a human body.)

TOM: Leonardo DaVinci, 2999

Computer/Man: "File 204-A:"

MIKE: Are these .RTF files or .MPG files?
TOM: Neither, the government never figured out how to use anything other than ASCII text.

Computer/Man: "Test case Wilson has proven a failure."

CROW (as Computer head): "He's so dumb, he could flunk a blood test."

Computer/Man: "His strength and stamina have increased but nothing else."
(Shot of Deathstroke's face. He's looking angry. As usual.)
Computer/Man: "He is not invulnerable."

TOM: Unkillable, yes; invulnerable, no.

Computer/Man: "And he is definitely not controllable."

CROW: Maybe they should give him some Ritalin.

Computer/Man: "Unless there is a metabolic change, we are considering termination!"

MIKE: That computer file is getting awfully impassioned!

(A shot of the computer screen. The Computer head guy has sprouted a hand and is holding up a piece of paper with a diagram of a Genetix.)
Computer head: "File 399L: Genetix experiments continue. We have developed a new body-type which will accomplish our goals."

MIKE (as Computer head): "To retain the Women's World Cup title."

Slade: "The mutants?!?"

MIKE: Whoa, big boy. Do you really need all that punctuation?!?
CROW: You know, they prefer the term "genetically challenged".
MIKE: OK, guys, lets see what's up out there.

[Door sequence.]

[Cambot is focused on Mike and the 'bots, who are huddled near the Hexfield.]

MIKE (whispering): Be careful, you guys.

TOM (whispering): Yeah, the story implies that all Genetix are evil mutants.

CROW (loudly): Cool!

MIKE & TOM (loudly): Shhh!

[Cambot pans out to the normal distance. Standing on the right side of the bridge is the Genetix in the business suit. He doesn't have his guitar with him.]

GENETIX PR GUY: Hey, don't worry, guys. Don't think of me as one of the Genetix; think of me as a Public Relations executive.

(Mike and 'bots notice him for the first time.)

ALL: Aaaugh!

GENETIX PR GUY: What? What did I say?

MIKE: We've had some bad experiences with PR people.

TOM: Well, I thought Nuveena was kind of nice.

MIKE: Well maybe Nuveena. But let's just say we've had more bad experiences with PR folks than Scott Adams has.

GENETIX PR GUY: Please, please hear me out. You look like nice people. So please don't rush to judge me as an evil mutant, because I'm not.

CROW (disappointed): Awww!

GENETIX PR GUY: And no, I don't like disco.

MIKE: It's OK, Crow; we'll find you an evil mutant to play with some other time.

GENETIX PR GUY: Let me see if I have Newt Gingrich's number in my rolodex.

TOM: Hey, you PR guys sure have a lot of connections.

GYPSY: [rushing in] Can you contact Richard Basehardt?

GENETIX PR GUY: Ah, here's Gingrich. Unfortunately, he's away taking some evil-mutant continuing-education classes. But I could get Trent Lott....

ALL: Nooo!

[Lights flash.]

MIKE: We've got comics sign!

[Door sequence. Mike and 'bots sit down.]

(Deathstroke, in costume, is standing over Wintergreen's grave, as per the flashback.]
CHAPTER TWO

ALL: Electric Boogaloo!

Deathstroke: "Wintergreen, your hunch was right."

MIKE: "It was Colonel Mustard in the library with the candlestick."

Deathstroke (con'd): "I shouldn't be surprised they lied to us."

TOM: They're Democrats.

Deathstroke (con'd): "That's the way governments have always operated."

CROW: Sans anesthesia.

Deathstroke (con'd): "Little could I know I was a failed prototype that led to genocide!"

MIKE: So in 500 years, he's done how much research?

Deathstroke (con'd): "But you've helped me again, old friend. For too long I was without purpose. Now I know what we have to do.
(Genetix begin sneaking up on Deathstroke.)

TOM (as Harley Quinn): Sneak, sneak, sneak!

If they let me into heaven, I'll see you soon."

CROW (as Deathstroke): "But if they send me to the other place, I'll meet you soon."
MIKE (as Deathstroke):"Hey, wait a minute. I'm Buddhist!"

Deathstroke (con'd): "But before I die, the humans who still remain need a helping hand."

MIKE (French accent): "Though I die, the resistance lives on."

"We're going to reclaim our planet."

CROW: Do they still have their claim ticket?

(Genetix leap out and begin firing. Their guns go "Zwipppp.")

CROW: It's zwipping again!
TOM: Isn't there a rule about that? Aren't they supposed to wait an hour after eating?

A Genetix: "Kill him!"

CROW: What? Again?

(More guns are firing, and Deathstroke is dodging. The guns go "Barooommm" and "Zwippp.")
Slade had heard the rustling behind him,

TOM: I thought it was a 'zwipppp.'

knew they were closing in and readied his hand to draw his weapon.

CROW: Ewww! In public?

Even as he fired back, his mind was racing.

MIKE: It wasn't winning any medals, though.

He knew there was virtually no way to kill the Genetix,

TOM: They regenerate three hit points per round.

but now he understood why. They were exactly like him.

CROW: Transvestite lumberjacks?

Their healing factor would bring them back from near-death. He could blow

CROW: Um, I'm not touching that one.
MIKE: Good.

them apart and they would stay that way, but they would never actually die.

TOM: Sort of like those people who follow the Grateful Dead.

(The Genetix have caught up to Deathstroke and are pouncing on him.)
But there was an another way.

MIKE: An underlined way.
TOM: A curds and whey.
CROW: The highway.

If he could live long enough

MIKE: Williard Scott would wish him a happy birthday.

to implement it.
A Genetix: "You still live, even when we rip you apart?"

TOM: Did you see the body?
MIKE: Well, no...
TOM: What did you expect? This is a comic book!

A Genetix: "What are you, human?"

MIKE: Umm... human?
TOM (singing): I am the very model of a modern major general!

A Genetix: "How are you like us?"

CROW: We're both pink giant bunny rabbits?

Deathstroke: "I'm not like you."

MIKE: What a sec. Just a couple of panels back, he said that he was just like them! God, can't they even keep the continuity straight in the same book?

(Deathstroke shoots the Genetix, silently.)
Deathstroke: "I could never be like you!"

MIKE: I mean, look at you! How do you stay so slim?
CROW: This time, his weapons make no noise at all! No "zwipppp", no "bambam," no nothin'. It's a sign that this comic has gone over budget for sure.

(More Genetix run to attack him.)

MIKE: Lemmings, ho!

A Genetix: "You will die, human."
A Genetix: "You will all perish!"

TOM: Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated.

A Genetix: "Genetix are the future of earth!"

MIKE: This is the future! It's five hundred years in the future!
TOM: They're not talking about the not-too-distant future, Mike.
CROW (singing): I believe the Genetix are the future

(He's still firing. This time the gun goes "Zwipp!"
Deathstroke: "Like hell!"

TOM: Y'know, even when it has the same general sound effect, that gun has a variable number of 'p's.

(Genetix pile on Deathstroke.)
There were too many of them to fight, and Slade knew he had to get away.

TOM & CROW: Run away! Run away!
MIKE (as announcer): "Slade Wilson! You just got the crap beaten out of you! Where are you gonna go now?"
TOM (as Deathstroke): "I'm going to Earth C!"

He pushed them back...
(Deathstroke tosses something that looks not unlike a Star Trek TOS communicator. It has a little light that's blinking.)
...his fingers scrambling to find the explosives he had readied -

MIKE: Where is he getting all this extra stuff from? This is the first time we've heard about any explosives.
CROW: He must have Wakko's gaggy bag.
TOM: You know, he really should start writing his equipment down on his character sheet.

- and then -

TOM: ...Slowly he turned, step by step, inch by inch...

(Big explosion. It goes "Barooomm." Genetix are hurled away)

CROW: John Brome?
TOM: No, he's from Barsoom.

Deathstroke: "It would normally take you a month to revive. When you did, you'd regret your immortality as I do mine?"

CROW: Five hundred years has not done much for your grammar, Slade, has it?

Deathstroke (con'd): "But I'm going to save you that pain."

MIKE: In a U.S. savings bond.
TOM: He's going to take them to a Jerry Lewis film festival. They'd die of boredom.

(Deathstroke stalks away.)
Deathstroke (con'd): "Which is the only thing I regret."

MIKE: Being nice to people sucks, man.
CROW: I regret nothing.

(Deathstroke, carrying a huge bag over his shoulder, is walking through yet more rubble and into a building.)

TOM: Even after the apocalypse, Santa delivers!

The remains of what had been Georgetown lay a mile from the center of Washington D.C.

TOM: And even though it's after the apocalypse, there still isn't any parking there.

Once it has been an upscale community

CROW: Now, it's garbage.

filled with expensive brownstones

MIKE: And brown-nosers.

and Diplomatic missions.
Slade knew that before he was done, all this opulence would be completely _destroyed._

TOM: He's going to turn it into Anacostia.

(He pushes a bookcase aside and finds a secret door. He enters the door and walks down some stairs.)

CROW (as Shaggy): Gee, Scoob, you think this a good idea?

The Metro train tunnels

MIKE: You know, I've been on the Metro. It doesn't deserve being underlined.
CROW: After five hundred years, they still haven't finished the Green line.

under Washington had been forgotten by most,

TOM: Since when do bank cards give out directions?

but not by him.

MIKE: The extremely useful Pentagon was also forgotten by most.

(Rats scurry about. Some get to close and Deathstroke smacks them with his sack.)

[Crow opens his beak to talk.]
MIKE (shutting Crow's mouth): Don't.

Remember, he was there when the tunnels were built over five hundred years ago. Though there had been some modifications since then.

MIKE: Yeah, they had extracted the rest of that sentence.
CROW: And they had given this place a plot canal. It's sort of like a root canal, only it sucks out all the interesting parts of the story.
TOM: This story had interesting sections?!?

(Deathstroke has come to a high-tech, circular door.)

MIKE: And scratched a queer sign on the door.

Deathstroke: "Barred!"

CROW: Great! Now disbar him!

Deathstroke: "And poor me without the access code."

TOM: Aww, and is da po' widdle man widout da access code?

Deathstroke: "What must a fella do?"

MIKE: I dunno. Whip out another brand-new, never-before-seen weapon from your bag of many things?

(Deathstroke pulls out a tube. Flames shoot out one end of it with a "Whoomp!")

MIKE: Told you so.
TOM: Sounds like Jughead fell out of bed again this morning.

(Shot of Deathstroke's eye - he's reacting to something he sees beyond the door.)

CROW: I don't think I can take any more sound effects right now. I need a break. Let's go, guys.
TOM: But. but I want to see what's behind the door! Oh, all right.

[Door sequence.]

[SoL Bridge. Mike, Crow, and the Genetix PR Guy are playing a board game and are really concentrating on it. Tom is off to the side reading a book.]

CROW (to the Genetix): Your turn.

[Lights start to flash. The Genetix rolls some dice and moves his piece.]

GENETIX PR GUY: Mike?

[Mike reaches for the dice. The Genetix and Crow study the board. Tom glances up and notices the lights.]

TOM: Oh, hey, guys, the castle's calling.

[Mike reaches over and taps the lights, and then goes back to the game.]

[Castle Forrester. Pearl, Bobo, and Observer sitting around reading various books and magazines. There's a knock at the door. Pearl grumbles but gets up to answer it. We hear the door creak open.]

PEARL (OS): Oh, hey! Hi! Come on in!

[Pearl escorts Deathstroke into Castle Forrester]

PEARL: Now watch your step, there's still a couple of hairballs left over from when Bobo was sick. Ah, Bobo, Brain Guy, I'd like to introduce my dear friend, Deathstroke the Terminator.

OBSERVER: Observer. A pleasure to meet you.

BOBO: Say, that's an interesting mask. Do you wear that because you're as ugly as Brain Guy? [Deathstroke pulls out a gun and "Zap"s Bobo] Aaagh!

OBSERVER: [smiling] Would you like some tea?

DEATHSTROKE: Why yes, thank you.

[Angry crowd noises are heard coming from both in- and outside the castle. Deathstroke looks over his shoulder and sees about 100,000 Genetix warriors invading the castle. He takes out his Gun and starts shooting them.]

DEATHSTROKE: Camomile if you have it.

HIS GUN: Zwipp. Skreee. Bambam. Bam. Whoomp.

PEARL: So tell me, what were you thinking when you found all those poor slobs hiding under Georgetown?

OBSERVER: I know I would have felt like I had come home. Home to a people who could understand my trials and tribulations. People who could take me into their arms and-

BOBO: You mean like that girl who always comes over to watch Sliders with you?

DEATHSTROKE: No. Mostly I just felt that they were a complication that I didn't want or need. I'm not any more human than the Genetix are, really.

GUN: Zrak. Vreee. Spooo. Gronk. Arf. Moo. Quack.

PEARL (grinning): So, this immortality of yours, it basically prevents you from escaping eternal torments, right?

BOBO: Say does that costume of yours ever give you a wedgie like mine does?

OBSERVER: Bobo, you're not wearing a costume.

DEATHSTROKE: Well, you saw what happened when the Genetix burned me at the stake. That's the kind of thing that makes me regret my immortality. An no, I never get wedgies.

GUN: Buurp. Squish. Waaahh. Mama. Teeheehee. Doggie. Booboo.

[They all stare at the Gun in stunned silence. Then...]

GUN: What. Are. You. Looking. At?

ALL: Oh, nothing.

[Back to SoL.]

CROW: There! Now I have hotels on both Park Place and Boardwalk!

MIKE (nonplussed): But we're playing Parcheesi!

[Movie Sign lights flare and chaos ensues.]

ALL: Comic sign!

[Door sequence.]

(Slade is standing in a large underground city. A lot of humans in ragged clothing are staring at him.)
Slade had heard tales of a refuge camp hidden under Washington. Humans who managed to escape Genetix recon missions. He assumed if they were humans, they would be like nomads, hunched over campfires.
A Man: "Who--? How did you find us?"

MIKE: Um, the script led me here?

A Boy: "Daddy, is he one of them!?!"

CROW: Does he look like a giant ant to you?

The Boy's Mother: "Stand back, Sim. He might hear you!"

MIKE: SimChild! New by Maxis!

Deathstroke couldn't have been further from the truth if he had found them living on one of the Mars colonies.

TOM: So J'on J'onz finally decided to rent out some condos. It's about time.

Before him was a full-blown refuge city!

MIKE: Built entirely out of Legos!

A Man: "Who are you?"

CROW: Are you a good Deathstroke or a bad Deathstroke?

A Man: "And what does he want with us?"
A Man: "He masks his face. He must be one of them."
A Man: "Tell us, man. Should we kill you now?

MIKE: Wait 'till next Tuesday. I'll have some free time then.

Same Man (con'd): "Are you one of them?"

TOM: Yes, I am a giant ant.

Deathstroke: "One of those mutant Genetix? Me?
(Deathstroke drops his huge sack. Dead Genetix and Genetix body parts fly out of it.)
Deathstroke (con'd): Hell, I'm your damned savior!"

CROW: Tell us what to think for ourselves, O damned savior!

(Large numbers of people are lining up.)
There were nearly five thousand of them. They were suspicious of the stranger,

MIKE: Mostly 'cause he was carrying around all those guns.

but they listened.

MIKE: Mostly 'cause he was carrying around all those guns.
TOM: They didn't want to get "zwipppped" at.

(Deathstroke begins working the crowd.)
Deathstroke: "The Genetix Communications Centrex"

CROW: Centrex?

Deathstroke (con'd): "is above us."

ALL: How con-veee-nent.

Deathstroke (con'd): "Their weaponry is made here and shipped to all Genetix camps."

MIKE: You know, when I went to camp all we got gimp to make keychains out of.
TOM: You know, they really ought to try de-centralization for a change.

Deathstroke: "But Washington is their home base."

MIKE: And he's rounding second, going to third, and he's going all the way to Washington!
TOM & CROW: [crowd cheering noises]

Deathstroke: "If we destroy this plant, we will cripple them. We are not their slaves."

CROW: Are you sure? We haven't gotten paid in five hundred years.

Deathstoke (con'd): "We do not exist for them to murder us, to experiment on us, or to humiliate on us."

MIKE (as refugee): "I do."

Deathstroke (con'd): "We have one chance for humans to stop hiding in these rat holes and to stand under the sun."

CROW: Because if we stood on it, we'd burn our feet.

Deathstroke: "Mankind must live again!"
A Man: "We're safe here. They don't know we exist. Why risk everything?"

TOM: We'll give you a free T-shirt.
CROW: And the guy who can't die tells you to.

Deathstroke: "Yeah, you're safe. Safe like laboratory rats!"

TOM (as Pinky): "Gee, Brain, what are we going to do tonight?"

Deathstroke (con'd): "Safe like the dead are safe. But humanity wasn't meant to be safe."

CROW: The Genetix sure think so!

Deathstroke (con'd): "We were meant to be free!"

MIKE: After a mail-in rebate. Plus shipping and handling.

Deathstroke: "Do-you-want-to-be-free?"
(All hands shoot up. Many are carrying weapons.)
Maybe they were safe in their protected world, but his words lifted their spirits for the first time in centuries.

CROW: Using the Wonderbra!

They gathered their things and followed him past the detector-shields to reclaim the promised land!

MIKE: To the land of milk and honey!
TOM: Yeah, but this is D.C. they're talking about. You can't trust any promises made there.

(Genetix headquarters, exterior. It's a big bunker-like building.)
Genetix Commander: "You rouse me from my sleep. This had better be good. Well, what is it?"
A Genetix: "The screens, sir...look."

TOM: They're making everything lighter, sir.
CROW: We just installed them in our submarine, sir
MIKE: Aren't those flying toasters cool?

(Interior headquarters. A bunch of Genetix are milling around, and two of them are staring into a giant monitor.)

CROW (motherly voice): Don't sit so close to the TV, you'll go blind.

Genetix Commander: "I can't understand these damnable things. What is it?"

MIKE: It's a screen!*
CROW: They guy's in charge and he doesn't know what a screen is? He must be Dilbert's boss.
TOM: It's called padding. They're setting up the scene here.

Same Genetix: "Bio forms, ummm- Homo sapiens, sir. Thousands of them.

CROW: [as Hudson] "They're all over the place, man! They're everywhere! Game over, man, game over!"

Same Genetix (con'd): "They just appeared on the scanners."

MIKE: "What? I thought you said they appeared on the screen!"
TOM: Hand scanner or flatbed?

Same Genetix: "They're underground, heading for the river."
Genetix Commander: "They're trying to escape, that's what they're doing."

CROW: Well, that'll be the third Kurt Russell movie: Escape from D.C.

Genetix Commander: "The humans must not be allowed to leave."

CROW: We still have all these leftovers to give out.

Genetix Commander (con'd): "Hunt them down."
(Exterior view. Genetix are leaving on hover disks and heavy tanks, armed for bear.)
Genetix Commander (VO): "Then dispose of them."

MIKE: Do you know how long it takes humans to decompose? The landfill will be full in no time if you keep using disposable humans.

Genetix Commander (VO, con't): "Let their deaths be a lesson to their
kind! The Genetix will not be denied!"

TOM: The Genetix will not be undersold!"

(The mass of people are marching and singing cheerfully.)
People: "We march for freedom proud! We shout for freedom loud!"

ALL: (singing): Do you the hear the people sing / It is the song of angry men / It is the music of a people who will not be slaves again.

A Man: "Deathstroke, what will you do once we're away from the city?"
Deathstroke: "It's best you don't know."

CROW: I'm going to sell pancakes!

A Man: "This is the way outside. What if they're waiting for us?
Deathstroke: "Then we march through them!"

TOM: Um... they can't die either. What will marching through them do, exactly?

A Woman: "The sun?!?"

CROW: No, the daughter.
MIKE: Uh, no, that's Jupiter. You folks haven't seen the sky in a long time, have you?

A Man: "We're free!"
A Man: "Free at last!"
They marched until their feet grew sore and their tempers flared.

TOM: Uh-oh. I'll give them three panels until they get attacked.

A Man: "Stop! We want to know where we're going."

MIKE: Don't get me wrong, we're glad to be leaving D.C.
TOM: Second star to the right, and straight on 'till morning.

Same Man (con'd): "We were protected before. Now we can be killed!"
Deathstroke: "That's right - now you'll have to fight for your freedom."
(a laser beam strikes the ground near the people. Deathstroke whirls around.)
Deathstroke (con'd): "They've found us!"

CROW: Now we're 'it!' "

(The Genetix are attacking. Deathstroke pulls on his mask and leaps to fight back.)
Deathstroke (con'd): "You weren't safe - you were already as good as dead."

TOM: Only the good die young.

Deathstroke (con'd): "But if I'm going to die, then I'll die fighting to save what little there is left of humanity."

MIKE (monotone): Oh, the humanity.
CROW: You mean humanity is quantifiable?
TOM: In Vampire it is.

Deathstroke (con'd): "Who's with me?"

MIKE: Not me.
TOM: Not me.
CROW: Not me.

(Deathstroke fells a hover disk using his flamethrower-tube, which goes "Whoom."
Deathstroke: "Who believes in justice?"

MIKE: What? In D.C.?
TOM: I believe that for every drop of rain, a flower must grow.

(He shoots his flamethrower-tube again. This time it goes "Skrakkk."
Deathstroke: "Who believes in freedom?"

TOM: Freedom at the point of a 'skrakkk' gun?

(The humans begin arming themselves.)
A Man: "He's right! Let's show those Genetix what the human race is made of!"

CROW: Blood.
MIKE: Guts.
TOM: Bones.
MIKE: Skin.
CROW: Teeth.
TOM: Hair.
MIKE: Toenails.
TOM: Mucous.
CROW: Miscellaneous squishy bits.
TOM: Tri-phospho-lipids.
MIKE: What?
CROW: And stupidity. Lots of it.
MIKE: Hey!

(The Genetix are busy getting ready. The Genetix Commander is peering through some binoculars at the assembled humans.)

TOM: It's sand people, all right.

Genetix Commander: "Four thousand, perhaps five. But they fight like trapped animals. And, to say the least, they are ill-equipped."

CROW: And bad-mannered.

Genetix Commander (con'd): "I suspect we will suffer only minimal losses."

MIKE: Right, a villain underestimating the good guys.
TOM: That's never happened before.
MIKE: Well, he's dead.

Genetix Commander: "Five hundred years ago the scientists sought perfection. We are proof of their success."

TOM: But science doesn't deal with proofs!
CROW: If you're so perfect, how come you can't off Deathstroke after five hundred years of trying?

Genetix Commander (con'd): "Physically, they are slower, weaker then we, and far less resilient."

MIKE: Genetix get a +2 to their CON and DEX.
CROW: But the humans get a bonus for good grammar.
TOM: But Marv Wolfman is a human.
CROW: All right; scratch that bonus.

(Many armed Genetix have gathered, ready to fight.)
Genetix Commander (con'd): "As they replaced their predecessors, we replace them. But evolution cannot wait for their end! It is up to us!"

MIKE (as Genetix Commander): "And our monosyllabic brothers."

Genetix Commander (con'd): "Destroy the humans!"

CROW: And their little dogs, too!
MIKE (singing): Kill the wabbit! Kill the wabbit!

Oh, the Genetix knew a thousand of their own soldiers would die,

CROW: Well can the Genetix die or not? Make up your mind.
TOM (as a Python): "We're not dead yet."

but they didn't care.

MIKE: They used Kaiser Permanente.

(Explosions and laser bolts. Something goes "Zwipp." Deathstroke and some of the refugees leap to attack and throw grenades.)
The concept of living beside each other was... unacceptable.

CROW: Property values would crash.

Perhaps they thought of themselves as the next logical step in evolution... ...and if they were right, then God had been playing a very cruel joke on mankind.

CROW: Hahaha. God is such a joker.
TOM (French accent): "And your God, he is the biggest bitch of them all."

(The grenade explodes, blowing bits of a tank and going "Barooomm." Deathstroke leaps into the tank.)
But Slade knew better.

MIKE: Yeah, all the gods go to Slade for advice.

Man was born to tame his world, not destroy it. He knew that to save the Earth, he would have to sacrifice himself.

CROW: Hasn't this entire book been about how he wants to die?
MIKE: In that respect, we're rooting for him.

(Another explosion. This one goes "Bakrarammm.")

TOM: The sound effects are getting stranger and stranger.

(Some guy is using the tank to blow up Genetix. "Barooom.")
A Man: "Deathstroke shows us the way!"

MIKE: Two lights down, and left at the gas station.
CROW (singing):"How to get to Sesame Street."
TOM: And he shows us how to live in the "Now".

Same Man (con'd): "We will be free!"
(Miscellaneous explosions and gunfire goes "Krakablam," "Zwippp," "Bambam," "Bam," and "Bam.")

MIKE: Looks like the got their sound effects wholesale.
TOM: Yeah, from the Cartoon Network.

Same Man (con'd): "They're dead? We won?"

CROW: But- but- but Marv said the Genetix couldn't die!

[Mike picks up Tom. He and Crow start to leave.]

A Man: "By God, we won!"

TOM (as Don Pardo): "A new car!"
CROW & MIKE: [crowd cheering noises.]
[They leave the theater.]

[Door sequence.]

[Castle Forrester. Pearl, Observer, Bobo, and Deathstroke are sitting around a table. Pearl et al are still staring at the Gun. Deathstroke, who is not paying much attention to anything is firing at the surrounding Genetix casually while sipping tea.]

GUN: Somewhere. Over. The. Rainbow.

OBSERVER: Sir, doesn't your gun ever need reloading?

DEATHSTROKE: We're from a comic book; normal physics doesn't apply.

BOBO: But Punisher has to reload his guns.

DEATHSTROKE: Do I look like Punisher to you?

BOBO: Well, sure. With a small change of costume and personality and armament, you'd be a spitting image.

GUN: Take. Me. Out. To. The. Ball. Game.

PEARL: [angrily] Will you shut that gun up!

DEATHSTROKE: But then the Genetix will overrun us.

PEARL: Idiot! They're my new minions!

DEATHSTROKE: [stops firing] They're what? Uh-oh. [He looks sheepish.]

[SoL. Mike and the 'bots are listening the Genetix PR Guy.]

GENETIX PR GUY: You see, a lot of the inflammatory quotes in Deathstroke Annual #3 were taken out of context. For instance, when the Genetix commander said "The humans must not be allowed to leave," Mr. Wolfman cut off part of the sentence. He actually said: "the humans must not be allowed to leave without getting their passports stamped."

MIKE: OK, but what about when he said, "Let their deaths be a lesson to their kind!" That seems pretty straightforward.

GENETIX PR GUY: Mike... 'bots... there was a whole minute of dialogue that Mr. Wolfman just snipped to make the Genetix look bad. There was a touching discussion about how the hoo-mon. sorry, human migration would have harmful impacts on the endangered Georgetown skunk, and that their deaths would weigh heavily on the consciences of the thoughtless humans.

TOM: He may be right. You know how ecologically naive humans can be.

MIKE: What about k. d. lang?

GENETIX PR GUY (grins fiendishly): Oh, don't worry, we'll get her. [he composes himself] I... I mean, we'll show her the error of her ways.

CROW: I'll help. Oops, we've got comics sign!

[Door sequence.]

(Deathstroke and the refugees have commandeered some tanks and are driving them away.)
Slade knew better, but chose to say nothing. At the moment the truth didn't matter. They commandeered a Genetix tank and drove onward...

TOM: Down the Indy 500.

(They come to the bridge. About halfway across there's a huge gap in it.)
A Person: "Look! The bridge--it's been destroyed. How do we get across now?"

CROW: Oh, swimming, pontooning, build a new bridge...
TOM: You could fix it using coconuts?

A Man: "Some savior you are, Deathstroke.

MIKE: (as Deathstroke): What, with a name like "Deathstroke", you thought I was supposed to save you?

Same Man (con'd): "What do we do now?"

TOM: We could join hands and sing...

A Woman: "They'll kill us all. We were safer in the catacombs."

CROW: Some Amantillado, Montressor?

A Man: "We thought you knew what you were doing.

MIKE: Well, that was your first mistake.

Same Man (con'd): "We trusted you to save us!"

TOM: And that was your second mistake.

(Deathstroke addresses the crowd from atop a tank.)

MIKE: Postage insufficient.
[Crow makes rimshot noise.]

Deathstroke: "I can't save you. You've got to fight for yourselves. And you've got to believe in yourself before you can do that! Hell is all that
waits back there."

MIKE: But we left my grandmother back there.
TOM (as Deathstroke): "Like I said, hell is all that waits back there."

Deathstroke: "And maybe all that's ahead is a lot of sweat and death and fear."

MIKE: And this is supposed to encourage us somehow?
CROW: (Monotone): "Yay, sweat and death and fear."'
TOM: Wasn't that a 60s band?

Deathstroke (con'd): "But, if we're very lucky, there's a little bit of hope, too."

MIKE: Trapped at the bottom of the box.

Deathstroke: "I don't give a damn what you do."

TOM: My, what an inspiring leader.

Deathstroke (con'd): "Anyone who wants to join me, let's get moving."

MIKE: Let's get ready to *rumble!*

He understood their fear and prayed the indefatigable human spirit would win out. And one... ...by one-

TOM: They marched like lemmings off a cliff
MIKE & CROW (singing): The human spirits go marching one by one, hooray, hooray

--you could see the fear dissolve in eyes which grew firm

CROW: Saaayyy...
MIKE: Eyes, Crow, eyes.

(The crowd begins cheering him and shouting "We fight!")
And resolute Some swore he was a hero, others reviled him as a villain, but I think this was the moment when Deathstroke became the legend we speak of today.

MIKE: So he became Ridley Scott's worst effort?
CROW: No, he was Tom Cruise before he learned to act.
TOM: No, he got his horn cut off.
CROW: Ooo, that must be painful.
MIKE: But he looked real good in that Demon Prince makeup.

(Deathstroke and the other people begin hauling giant ropes around. Deathstroke grabs one end of the rope and dives underwater with it.)
One of the bridge's suspension ropes had fallen onto the beach when the bridge was destroyed. It took a hundred of them to drag it to him. But he carried it alone into the river. The bridge's main cables lay at the river bottom. It took twelve attempts and the better part of the day to tie the two together. He didn't wonder if they could do it. They simply would. There was no other choice.

MIKE: Resistance is futile.
CROW: I choose raspberry.

Deathstroke: "All right. Let's do it."

CROW: Not tonight dear, I have a headache.

(The people, sweating and grunting, begin hauling on the line.)
Five thousand of them, young, old, male, female.

MIKE: Small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri.
TOM: Must. Resist. Correct. Grammar.

The strong and the weak.

MIKE: The electromagnetism and the gravity.

Together, they pulled.

CROW: But honey, you're supposed to push.

They pulled as if their lives depended on it.

TOM: Even Tolkien's narration didn't go on this long.
CROW: Well, their lives kinda did depend on it.

Can you imagine their pain? Their agony?

MIKE: We're reading this thing, aren't we?

(The bridge slowly rises.)

CROW: The bridge also rises.

They didn't have powers like Deathstroke.

CROW: They didn't have his terrible fashion sense either.
TOM: But they did have powers like Jimmy Olsen.

Their cuts and bruises wouldn't heal.

CROW: Ever. They'll just fester and ooze and attract flies!

They were simply people.

TOM: But people can be paladins, and they have no level limits...

In Deathstroke's mind,

MIKE: As small as that was...

they, not he, were the heroes.

TOM (as announcer): "Be a teacher. Be a hero."
MIKE: Shouldn't this be called the 5000 People Annual #3?

(Helicopters begin massing in the sky. Several people start firing guns at them.)
But as they pulled the bridge cable up to the beach... ...they heard the attack.

CROW: Damn, it's Christmas season already.

A Woman: "Deathstroke! We need you!"

MIKE (motherly voice): Not now, dear, we're under attack.

(Deathstroke grabs his gun and gazes into the sky.)
Deathstroke: "Don't stop! You know what to do!"

CROW (sleazy voice): You know how I like it, baby.

Even as he ran forward, he was in action.

TOM: I thought that was Arnold Schwartzeneger and some dorky kid.

(Deathstroke dodges some laser blasts that go "Bam. Bam. Bam. Bam."

MIKE: Pebbles, Pebbles.

(He jumps up and grabs hold of a helicopter. He then kicks the Genetix who's piloting it out. The Genetix crashes through the window with a "Skrashh.")
Deathstroke: "There's no time to waste. One more job, then it's back to the city!"

CROW: "One more job"? Oh, it's the 45-minute plot twist.

(He leans out the window of the helicopter and waves to the people below.)
Deathstroke: "Handle the copters. I've got a bridge to raise."

TOM (country voice): It's a good old fashioned bridge raisin', just like back in Amish country.

Slade attached the rope to the copter, then began to lift the cable. He held his breath.

TOM: Sounds like he's trying to lift the Blob, not Cable.

The cable held! The people continued to pull

CROW: [makes a gunshot noise]

on the rope connected to the cable and the bridge road... ...while the fighting continued.
(Refugees are firing guns and tanks at the helicopters. The guns go "Bam. Bam. Bam. Whammo. Blamm." Numerous helicopters blow up)
As fast as they came at them, Genetix helicopters were blown out of the sky.

MIKE: That's amazing; not even the fight scenes are interesting.

(The bridge has been raised.)
Deathstroke: "Let's go, let's go!"

MIKE: Flee! Run for your lives!

Deathstroke (VO): "And hurry! The bridge won't hold up for long!"
Helping each other, they rushed across. Once they entered into Virginia

TOM: Remember, Virginia is for lovers.

they would continue west, then south

CROW: Then east, and then north again! There's really no point to it.

over the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Deathstroke: "You should be in Tennessee within a week."

MIKE: Mind you, you won't be any safer there.
TOM: Not that it matters. Its after the apocalypse, there is no Tennessee.
CROW: No, no, he meant "tennis shoes". They're all barefoot.

Deathstroke: "I'll meet you there."
(The helicopter Deathstroke is in flies away.)
Deathstroke lied. He had no intention of meeting them. Slade Wilson knew that before the day ended, he would dead!

MIKE (singing): This'll be the day that I die.
CROW: Slade knew he'd be dead, but did Deathstroke?

(Deathstroke is standing at a computer terminal. On the screens are images of what is either a bomb or a Starfleet shuttlecraft.)
He returned to the vaults under the Pentagon....
Deathstroke: "Everything's set. Wintergreen, old friend, we're going to be together again very, very soon."

CROW: And then, yes, I will be Mrs. Slade Wintergreen!

Deathstroke: "The Pentagon kept bio-wafer records of every nuclear device in place under Washington."

MIKE: After the Clinton administration, they were a bit better about keeping their presidents in check.
TOM: Plus this is the DC universe; they give away nuclear weapons in cereal boxes.

Deathstroke (con'd): "Paranoid bureaucrats... never knew if they would have to blow the place to hell and back."

CROW: Since when do paranoid bureaucrats have access to nukes?

(Deathstroke pushes a big red button.)
Deathstroke (con'd): "Maybe they weren't so paranoid at that. There. Sixty minutes."

MIKE: A news magazine.

Deathstroke (con'd): "The city, the Genetix, and me... "

ALL (singing): Someday we'll find it / The rainbow connection / the city, the Genetix, and me.

Deathstroke (con'd): "we'll all go up together."

ALL (singing): We will all go together when we go / All suffused with an incandescent glow...

Deathstroke: "Complete and total disintegration."

CROW: And we have the only re-integrator pistol.

Deathstroke (con'd): "The only thing that'll keep us down."

TOM: Sentence fragments. The only thing that'll keep us down.

Deathstroke (con'd):"Always wanted to die big!"

MIKE: Live small, die big.
TOM: But he'll just die wide.
ELVIS: Just like Elvis.

Deathstroke (con'd): "This is my chance"

MIKE: To be a star.

(On the monitor is an image of a small, crying child, dressed in a blue and red jacket, with a red hat.)
Deathstroke: "The monitor! My God!"

CROW: It's full of stars!

(Deathstroke, baby in hand, is running though the rubble, getting closer and closer. There are no Genetix anywhere in sight.)
They say that in the mass exodus of Washington, a baby had been left behind. Is it true?

TOM: I thought it was a drunken college student.
MIKE: No, it's an urban legend.
CROW: Like Tom Cruise before-
MIKE: STOP!

Or only a fiction to explain why Deathstroke, who had decided to sacrifice

MIKE: A goat?
CROW: A virgin?
TOM: A virgin goat?
MIKE: His knight on Queen four?
TOM & CROW: Huh?

himself to take out the Genetix... ...instead found himself running to live.

MIKE: He needed to get his cholesterol down.

Twenty minutes remained. Genetix surrounded the helicopter. Fifteen.

TOM: ...tons and what do you get? / Another day older and deeper in debt.

A knife cut into his heart. He kept fighting even as he twisted it out.
(The child's hat falls off. There are still no Genetix in sight.)
Ten.

MIKE: It's Terry McGuinness's love interest.

They pulled him down, shot him and stabbed him.

CROW: Rasputin?

They tried to blow him up.

TOM: Wile E. Coyote?

(He's still running. Still no Genetix. Also no helicopter.)

CROW: Don't you hate it when the penciller doesn't go by the script?
MIKE: I hate it when the writer doesn't go by the script!

Three minutes. The helicopter lifted up as several Genetix hung from its tail. They pulled themselves into the cabin. They tossed in a grenade.
(Scene shift. A man in a ragged, hooded green jumpsuit - the narrator - is telling a group of kids the above story.)
Narrator: "That was the last anyone heard of Deathstroke, the Terminator."

MIKE: At least until the next month's issue came out.
TOM: And the whole continuity was restored.

Narrator: "But his mission was done. The bombs disintegrated Washington DC,"

MIKE: And there was much rejoicing.
TOM & CROW (monotone): Yayyyy.

Narrator (con'd): "As well as the Genetix soldiers and their war machines."

CROW: Genocide is fun.

Narrator (con'd): "The human race lived and the Genetix who survived worked with the humans to build our new world."

TOM: Then they had a picnic, and butterflies came, and there were happy unicorns, and they all lived happily ever after.

Little Girl: "Did Deathstroke die? What happened?"

CROW: Tune in next week, same Death time, same Death channel.

(The Narrator gets up and begins walking away.)
Narrator (con'd): "Nobody knows."

MIKE (singing): ...the trouble I've seen...

Narrator (con'd): "Perhaps the world, now at peace, no longer needed Deathstroke."

TOM: He was downsized.

Little Boy: "The baby didn't die, did it?"
(Close up on the Narrator. It's Deathstroke.)

CROW: Ooh. What a shocker.

Deathstroke: "I'm sorry, but I don't know."

MIKE: Don't know much of anything, in fact.

Deathstroke (con'd): "Now excuse me."

TOM: I cut a real juicy one.

Deathstroke (con'd): "I promised my son I'd pick him up at his school."

MIKE (as the Little Boy): Are you going to kill this one too?

Little Boy: "Will you tell us another Deathstroke story tomorrow?"

TOM: I'll have to see if there are any in my Titans back issues.

Deathstroke: "Maybe. But I think if Deathstroke were still alive..."

CROW: He'd be suing the pants off me for royalties.

Deathstroke: "...he'd prefer to just be a reminder of the way things were."

TOM: Remembering the better days of war and slavery and death.

Deathstroke: "He'd say the world's grown up."

MIKE: And it goes through shoes so fast.

Deathstroke: "With luck we'll never need anyone like him again."
(Deathstroke walks away.)
THE END

TOM: 'Bout time.
MIKE: Let's roll.

[Door sequence.]

[Tom and Crow, alone on the bridge, are dressed in white cultist robes. They look hypnotized.]

TOM & CROW (Droning): Genetix good. Humans bad. Genetix good. Humans bad.

Mike enters holding a bagel.

MIKE: Have you guys seen the cream cheese? [double take] Hey, what's going on here?

TOM & CROW (Droning): Genetix good. Humans bad. Genetix good. Humans bad.

The Genetix PR Guy enters, accompanied by several Genetix goons. All of them are heavily armed. The PR Guy points a gun at Mike.

GENETIX PR GUY: I'm sorry, Mike. We've decided that hoo-mons just don't have a place in our society. Of course, these two are robots, so they are more than welcome to stay.

The Genetix grab Mike. They drag him over to a convenient stake and tie him to it, and begin piling wood at the base.

MIKE: Hey, c'mon you two! Snap out of it! They're going to roast me!

TOM & CROW (Droning): Genetix good. Humans bad. Genetix good. Humans bad.

Gypsy enters, dressed as well in a white cultist robe and looking equally hypnotized.

GYPSY (Droning): Genetix good. Humans bad. Genetix good. Humans bad.

MIKE (Kirk voice): No! Gypsy! Not you too!

GYPSY: (droning) Sorry Mike. They offered me Richard Baseheart.

MIKE (Kirk voice): No, Gypsy... you... can't... dothis!

GYPSY (droning): Sorry Mike. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few... or the one.

The Genetix begin pouring gasoline on the woodpile. The Genetix PR Guy holds up a cigarette and a lighter.

GENETIX PR GUY: Any last words, hoo-man?

MIKE: Well, since you asked... [clears throat]

[Patriotic music begins to swell in the background.]

MIKE: From the dawn of time we came, silently down through the centuries. When we spoke out, we cried 'freedom'. As sayeth Picard, so too sayeth I: What a piece of work is man! How noble in reason. How infinite in faculty. In form and moving, how express and admirable. In action, how like an angel; in apprehension, how like a god! You'll learn that man is a feeling creature, and because of it, the greatest in the world. We will not go quietly into the night! We will not be undersold!!

[Genetix PR Guy's beeper goes off, ending the patriotic music.]

GENETIX PR GUY: [looking at his beeper] They finally found k. d. lang. She takes priority over this nobody. Come on guys.

[All the Genetix leave.]

MIKE: [slipping out of his ropes] I guess I'll have to deprogram the 'bots. Again.

[Down to the Castle.]

[Tea is over. Deathstroke daintily wipes his beard off with a napkin and stands up.]

DEATHSTROKE: I want to thank you for the lovely tea, but I really must be going.

PEARL: So soon?

DEATHSTROKE: Sadly, yes. It's time for my shift at White Castle hamburgers.

PEARL: Oh.

[Deathstroke heads towards the door. Then he stops and turns around.]

DEATHSTROKE (bashfully): Um, Pearl, I was wondering. Would you want to, you know, go out some time?

PEARL (overly pleased, and trying, somewhat unsuccessfully, to keep a poker face): Well, let me check my schedule... Sure!

DEATHSTROKE: Great! Friday at eight?

PEARL (grinning widely): Friday at eight it is. See ya then. [flutters her eyelashes] Buh-hye.

DEATHSTROKE: Bye.

[Deathstroke leaves.]

PEARL (excited): Ooh! I need a hair appointment, and a manicure, and a waxing, and a facial, and a pedicure, and a waxing, and I need to get some new shoes, make some reservations, get a sitter for Bobo...

[Pearl walks off screen, still talking to herself. The Castle is empty for a few seconds, and then Pearl pokes her head back in and glares at the camera.]

PEARL: What are you guys looking at? Haven't you ever seen a woman get ready for a date before?

[She hits the button.]

\ | /
- - O - -
/ | \

Fwishhhh!

DEATHSTROKE, THE TERMINATOR is copyright 1994 DC Comics. Mystery Science Theater 3000 is copyright Best Brains, Inc. No violation of copyright is intended or implied. This MiSTing is by David Lichtenstein, Jesse Willey, and Jessica Wolfman. This is not intended as a personal attack on anyone. Honest.

Kill me, he cried! Kill me!

 


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