Bonus Episode: Xmas

Happy holidays, everyone! We’ve got an unexpected bonus for you this week: we recorded it as a warmup during our most recent session and decided it was fun enough to release as its own mini-episode. And stay tuned – we’ll be back with Season 2 in mid-January!

Spoiler warning: This episode features a new character from Season 2!

Starring Kristi Boulton, Michael Divinski, Sean Howard and Phil Johnston

Sound design: Eli McIlveen
Cover art: David Demaret
Announcers: Marisa King and Michael Howie

Content warning: violence and death.

Music sting.

SEAN HOWARD

Hey everyone, Sean here, and I play Bob on the show, and I’m one of the producers. And this is a very special holiday episode. It wasn’t planned. So when we get together and we improvise an episode, we start with warmups. And for those warmups, we do five minute fully improvised mini-scenes with an offer from all of you. And this one was just too good to not share. So we turned it into a special episode.

Now, when you begin, you’re going to hear us warming up and then it’s going to transition into a fully sound designed episode so that you can sort of hear how we create it a bit. Now, bit of a spoiler: there is a new character you’re going to meet here from Season 2—and Season 2 is back in January. We are almost there! Season 2 of Civilized is coming.

But this was just a warmup. We didn’t expect to put it out. So it’s sort of out of order. And so you’re going to meet Al from Season 2, he’s an AI… and I won’t tell you where we are, but we’re somewhere a little different. And that’s all I’m going to say.

Anyways, enjoy the episode and we’ll talk to you all soon.

SETUP

Chattering voices.

KRISTI BOULTON

(laughing)

I don’t understand!

SEAN HOWARD

So these offers that we’re doing right now all came from our Discord. Thank you to everyone who gave us an offer.

As you all know, we use we tend to use the “Friends title”. So “The one where…” And so we’ll just—if it comes in that format, great, if not… you want to pick one, Kristi?

KRISTI BOULTON

I was thinking it’s quite timely that we do mottelz’s suggestion of “What holiday do they celebrate?” Hmm!

SEAN HOWARD

Oh, so “The one where…”

MICHAEL DIVINSKI

“…they celebrate a holiday”?

KRISTI

The holiday armadillo!

SEAN HOWARD

Right, so let’s come up with a name. “The one where they celebrate X.”

Silence.

MICHAEL DIVINSKI

OK!

KRISTI BOULTON

OK, X.

SEAN HOWARD

X?

KRISTI BOULTON

Xmas.

SEAN HOWARD

Okay, X.

MICHAEL DIVINSKI

(laughs)

SEAN HOWARD

“The one where they celebrate X”.

KRISTI BOULTON

(clears her throat)

Music sting.

THE KITCHEN

Shuffling cutlery and bowls.

BOB

(to himself)

I want the soufflé to be right…

(raises his voice)

Al?

A metallic beep.

AL

Yup!

BOB

Oh, hi.

Can you just double check again and make sure that this recipe is right? It just seems a little off to me.

Busy beeping noises.

AL

Okay, nope. Yep. 24 eggs. One bag of flour…

BOB

Yeah. It’s this whole milk replacement that I’m a little… concerned about.

AL

Well, powdered milk is just as fine as regular milk. And just because it was solid, and chalky, and green…

BOB

Yeah. Yeah.

AL

I don’t think anything’s gonna go wrong with it. And just because I don’t eat human food… I think you should trust my opinion more so!

BOB

Okay. Thanks Al!

AL

Believe in yourself.

BOB

I’m gonna! I’m gonna believe in myself. I’m going to make the best holiday soufflé ever!

Music sting.

ELSEWHERE

Crinkling paper and tape.

BEATRIX

(hums to herself softly)

And wrap… and a little bit of tape there. Bob and Barty are gonna love these. They’re so good.

(shouts)

Al!

Beep.

AL

Yes, yes, yes. Yes.

BEATRIX

I was wondering. Um, you and I don’t know each other super well yet? But if you were to get some holiday cheer… how would that look for you?

AL

Like if I were to be overcome with a human emotion… what would that manifest like in my processors?

BEATRIX

Something like that. Um, also though, have you ever gotten a present?

AL

Um… well, I used to get updated quite regularly. And that was like, really nice, but it’s more like being reborn as someone smarter. So like, it’s like a present of intelligence?

BEATRIX

Oh. I’m not sure I can give you that.

AL

Hmm.

BEATRIX

I mean, I could tinker at your switchboards.

AL

You know what I’ve always wanted to be able to do?

BEATRIX

Mmm?

AL

Open a microwave door.

BEATRIX

Like, just on your own?

AL

In the kitchen…

BEATRIX

Okay?

AL

In the southwestern kitchen, there’s a microwave and I can’t open it.

BEATRIX

Oh!

AL

I can’t do anything with it. It just sits there. And I would love to know what’s going on.

BEATRIX

Well, maybe I can give you the gift of… arms.

AL

(gasps)

BARTHOLOMEW’S OFFICE

The door slides open.

BOB

Hey, Bartholomew.

BARTHOLOMEW

Bob… what brings you to my office? I’m working on something rather important for X… mas.

BOB

Yeah, yeah, I don’t want to see. I just… I just need to ask you…

I just feel like Beatrix has been going all out. I’ve seen her… she’s taken over the whole bay. And she’s got all these little trinkets and stuff and all I have is a food dish, and I’m just starting to wonder, like… maybe I should be doing something more?

Silence.

BARTHOLOMEW

I’m so glad you said that! I’ve been in here for two weeks just saying I’m working on something super important for Xmas—I have nothing!

BOB

Oh my god, me either.

Oh! Oh! Maybe Al, like, could spy for us. Or maybe he knows what Beatrix really wants!

The door slides open again.

BEATRIX

Hey guys! Just on my way to the south wing, but I just wanted to pop in and say, I know you’re planning something real special! I’m so excited! I’ll see you later, I’m just gonna go!

She runs off.

BARTHOLOMEW

(shouting after her)

It’s gonna be great, Beatrix!

BEATRIX

Wooo!

BOB

Super surprise!

BARTHOLOMEW

So big! All the best…

The door slides shut again.

BARTHOLOMEW

(frantic)

Aaugh! What are we gonna do?

BOB

Uh, I think—

BARTHOLOMEW

Okay. Al. Al.

Beep.

AL

Hey, guys, Al here. It’s me.

BARTHOLOMEW

Al, ummmm….

BOB

What’s Beatrix really want?

AL

Well, for like the past two weeks, Beatrix has just been saying over and over again in like a beautiful singsong voice: “All I want for Xmas is my best friends to follow through again…”

I don’t know what that means.

(silence)

She’s got her hopes really, umm… high? That’s what she said, “high”. High hopes.

BOB

Do you remember when we built the house?

BARTHOLOMEW

Yeah, that was great. She loved that.

BOB

Or you played in the mud?

BARTHOLOMEW

Yeah, that was good.

BOB

Al, do we have mud?

AL

(cheerfully)

No!

BARTHOLOMEW

Okay. She likes spots.

BOB

Spots… special spots! A secret place!

BARTHOLOMEW

Yeah!

BOB

But how do we give her her own secret place?

Music sting.

THE SOUTH WING

Beatrix skips down a corridor, singing. Al accompanies her with out-of-tune beeps and occasional interjections.

BEATRIX

(sings)

All I want for Christmas, is my friends to follow through

My expectations are high

AL

(chimes in)

High!

BEATRIX

They all depend on you…

AL

On you!

BEATRIX

All I want for Chr—

Oh, here we are!

A door slides open, and Beatrix enters the southwest kitchen.

BEATRIX

I like your humming, thanks for that Al!

AL

Oh. Thanks.

BEATRIX

I never really had someone else to sing with, that was really lovely.

AL

We can harmonize.

BEATRIX

Mmm hmm! Okay, microwave!

AL

Microwave!

Beatrix wanders around the room.

BEATRIX

Okay, so I see it. I’m looking at it. I’m visualizing it.

AL

Yeah, it’s like… it’s the size of a breadbox.

BEATRIX

It is the size of a bread box.

AL

It’s black.

BEATRIX

Black!

AL

And has a giant large red alarm on it.

BEATRIX

Mmm! That says “Don’t Touch Me”.

AL

And wires. And it says “Do Not Touch”.

BEATRIX

“Do not touch”.

AL

Mmm.

BEATRIX

But I wanna touch.

AL

(softly)

Touch it. Touch it for me.

BEATRIX

(sings)

I’ve got high expectations…

Okay, here we go.

Music sting.

THE POD ROOM

BOB

So first of all, we killed Beatrix.

Way to go, Al!

AL

Hey guys! I don’t understand death or nothin’!

BOB

And then we surprised her with paperwork and—

BARTHOLOMEW

I always like it!

BOB

Yeah… and a soufflé that killed her again.

Thanks again for that, Al!

AL

Again, I don’t understand the mortal coil that you find yourself resting on! I don’t understand it! So I can’t be held to blame. No!

BOB

I should know green soufflé is not a good…

AL

Yeah, come on.

BARTHOLOMEW

Okay, hang on. Positive spin, guys. Think positive! I’m going to fix this with some positive thinking. You ready for the positive? Let’s drop the positive.

AL

Yeah! Yeah! Drop it.

BARTHOLOMEW

Her reiterating pod is kind of like her spot.

BOB

Well, she hasn’t left it in a week.

BARTHOLOMEW

I mean, we keep sending her back.

Beatrix’s pod beeps and hisses open. She yawns and stretches, and slowly steps out.

BEATRIX

Hmm! Feels like something special is happening?

But also I awake filled with fear.

Bartholomew strides over and switches on a nasty-sounding power tool.

BARTHOLOMEW

Merry Christmas, Beatrix!!

BEATRIX

(screams)

She runs off, with Bartholomew in pursuit.

AL

Oh nooo!

OUTRO

SEAN HOWARD

Scene!

Laughter all around.

SEAN HOWARD

It’s a great Christmas bonus that I want to put out at Christmas now! But Bob’s not back yet.

KRISTI BOULTON

It was supposed to be “Merry Xmas, Beatrix.”

MICHAEL DIVINSKI

All right.

SEAN HOWARD

Do that again.

ELI MCILVEEN

You said “Christmas” several times.

SEAN HOWARD

Okay, so let’s…

PHIL JOHNSTON

(laughs)

KRISTI BOULTON

(laughs)

Fuck.

MICHAEL DIVINSKI

I started saying “Christmas” once you started saying “Christmas”…

SEAN HOWARD

Yeah, you said it.

KRISTI BOULTON

Did I say “Christmas”?

PHIL JOHNSTON

Yeah, I started saying Christmas too.

KRISTI BOULTON

Aaa, never mind, it’s Christmas.

SEAN HOWARD

It’s okay, it’s a bonus, it’s fine. It’s a bonus.

BEATRIX

(laughing)

We’re from the Earth—we’re from “Yurth”, it’s fine.

SEAN HOWARD

(sighs)

KRISTI BOULTON

(sings)

All I want for Christmas is my friends to follow through…

EVERYONE

I’ve got high expectations that all depend on you…

Laughter.

SEAN HOWARD

That’s our new theme song.

PHIL JOHNSTON

It does sound like a real Christmas song, or at least that’s the vibe behind a lot of them.

MICHAEL DIVINSKI

It’s gotta be a ring tone.

SEAN HOWARD

We are going to do a Civilized musical episode. It’s coming. Okay.

Music sting.

ANNOUNCER

A Fable and Folly Production.

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