Fay talks on the PA.
Fay: Announcing the arrival of Sandpiper Flight 15 from New Bedford, and welcome to our lovely island of Nantucket. As you stroll through town, you’ll probably notice my prize-winning rose garden. Please don’t pick the flowers. I have a Fungo bat, and I’m not afraid to use it.
Brian enters the airport whistling.
Brian: What time should I pick you up?
Helen: Pick me up? For what?
Brian: You don’t remember? Ah, Joe, help me out here. Haven’t I been talking about this date all week?
Joe: You talk all the time. I try not to listen.
Helen: Brian, if this is another one of your attempts at getting me to go out on a date with you, forget about it. How many times do I have to tell you? I don’t date pilots.
Brian: Ah, yeah, you’ve used that excuse at least a zillion times. At long last, what have you got against pilots?
Helen: Look. I grew up in this airport. I know you guys. It’s like you all are members of some exclusive little club that none of the rest of us can join. You act to smug. So superior.
Brian: Well, can you fly a plane? No, no, really? Oh, oh, take a guy like Joe, rock solid, owns his own airline, a tad boring, but a good Yankee stuff. What about him?
Joe: Yeah? What about me?
Helen: See, he may seem a little more grown-up on the surface, but underneath that hairless chest beats the heart of a pilot.
Joe looks inside his shirt.
Joe: I got a little.
Brian: You’re looking too far down, Joe. So, enlighten us. What’s your idea of the perfect man?
Helen: Oh, I don’t know. Solid, sensitive and dependable, but with a sense of whimsy. A love of music and children, a sense of commitment, but a respect for my independence. Adventurous, but a home body. But I really hadn’t thought about it that much.
Joe: That sounds great, Helen, but Kermit is a frog.
Brian: So, you’re saying that if Mr. Right waltzed in here and he was a pilot, you still would not go out with him?
Helen: Absolutely. Pilots and commitment, don’t mix.
Joe: Oh, come on, Helen. What about all those pilots in the world who are happily married?
Helen: I know both of them and they’re cheating on their wives.
Roy approaches Fay.
Roy: Hey, Fay, you know how I’ve been complainin’ I can never get a hold of Lowell when I need him?
Roy: Well, my communication problems are over. Watch this.
Roy talks on his walkie-talkie.
Roy: Hey, Lowell, I need you at the counter.
Lowell steps out of the Sandpiper Air hangar.
Lowell: Hey, Roy, how you doing?
Roy: Did you see that, Fay?
Fay and Roy laugh. Roy follows Lowell who made his way to the Aeromass counter.
Roy: This thing works like a charm.
Lowell: Have you seen that walkie-talkie you gave me? There it is. Now, if you need me, call me on this thing and I’ll be here on the double.
Lowell leaves his walkie-talkie on the counter and walks out of the airport. Roy follows him.
A guy sits on a stool at Helen’s lunch counter and starts humming.
Helen: Schubert. The Trout Quintet.
Matt: Fourth movement.
Helen: That’s my favorite piece of chamber music.
Matt: Mine too. I think of all the pieces of music about fish, it’s by far the most beautiful.
Brian is on the second floor watching Helen and Matt.
Brian: Hey, Joe, Joe, Joe, Joe. Take a look at this.
Joe looks at what Brian is watching.
Brian: You, uh, you enjoy theater, don’t you? The curtain’s rising, it’s act one, scene one of the new smash hit play, “Helen meets her dream guy” by Brian Hackett.
Joe: What are you babbling about?
Brian: I hired that man down there to be Helen’s dream guy.
Brian: He’s actually Matt Sargent, distinguished actor, noted for many magnificent performances such as Biff in “Death of a Salesman”, Mercutio in “Romeo and Juliet”. Currently, he’s the truck driver in that milk of magnesia ad.
Joe: Oh, yeah. He’s good in that. Very convincing discomfort.
Brian and Joe watch Matt in action.
Matt: I came over to the island to do a little painting.
Helen: Oh, really? Watercolors, oils?
Matt: Varnish. I’m doing the deck on my own summer place.
Helen and Matt laugh.
Joe: All right, I’ll bite. Why is he pretending to be Helen’s dream guy?
Brian: It’s a brilliant plan. Matt is gonna be everything Helen ever wanted in a guy and more, and then he’s gonna tell her that he’s a pilot. If Helen still goes out on a date with him, then she’ll never be able to use any one of those flimsy excuses on me ever again.
Joe: Brian, do I have to tell you how stupid this idea is?
Brian: Please do, Joe. Just for old-time’s sake. I miss it so.
Joe: You’re going through an awful lot of trouble. Do you really want a date with her that badly?
Brian: Joe, I’m used to having women either loving me or hating me and this bizarre middle ground of adult mature friendships just makes my skin crawl.
Joe: All right, so you get a date. What’s next?
Brian: I don’t know, Joe. I’m not you. I don’t need to know everything in advance. I don’t need to know that we’re having chicken next Tuesday night for dinner.
Joe: Roast pork. It’ll never work, Brian.
Brian: Yes, it will. Because I’m an expert at manipulating people. I have absolute control over the human psyche. I am…the puppetmaster. Watch how my marionettes dance for me.
Brian acts as though he’s controlling Helen and Matt.
Helen raises her arms.
Helen: Ah, finally, someone who hates sushi.
Matt: I just don’t get it.
Brian starts to sing as he continues to pretend he’s making Helen and Matt move.
Brian: “High on a hill was a lonely goatherd lay ee odl lay ee odl lay hee hoo.”
Roy runs down the staircase and makes his way to the Aeromass counter.
Lowell speaks on the walkie-talkie.
Lowell: This is Red Raider calling Raging Stallion. Come in, Raging Stallion.
Roy picks up his walkie-talkie.
Roy: This is Raging Stallion.
Fay takes off her glasses and looks at Roy.
Fay: I didn’t say anything. Although, I certainly could have.
Roy: This is Aeromass business Fay, it does not concern you.
Roy resumes talking on his walkie-talkie.
Roy: Come in, Red Raider.
Lowell: Can I talk to Fay?
Roy: Uh, ok, ok.
Roy walks over to the Sandpiper Air counter and hands his walkie-talkie to Fay.
Roy: Lowell needs to talk to, uh, to you.
Fay: Hello, this is Fay.
Lowell: Did you bring in that Scampi recipe, today?
Fay: Yes, I did. Do you want it now?
Lowell: Sure, let me find a pencil and paper, here.
Fay: Take your time.
Fay looks at the walkie-talkie.
Fay: Oh, made in Korea. They eat dogs there, you know?
Lowell: Fire away.
Fay: Um, all right, Red Raider. Take one pound of shrimp, shelled and deveined.
Lowell: Excuse me, but, who is Sheldon Devane. I know almost all of the people on this island.
Roy grabs the walkie-talkie from Fay.
Roy: That is shelled and deveined. You idiot! Which is exactly what I’m gonna do to you if you don’t get back to work.
Lowell: Roger, Raging Stallion.
Roy puts down the walkie-talkie.
Lowell: Psst. Fay, can you hear me?
Fay: Uh, yes, Lowell.
Lowell: Don’t be conspicuous, but can you see Roy from where you are?
Fay looks at Roy, who is right in front of her leaning on the counter.
Fay: Yes, I can.
Lowell: Is his face really red like a tomato?
Fay: Yes, it is.
Lowell: Uh-oh. I’ll be hiding out behind the utility shed. Don’t tell Roy.
Fay: He won’t hear it from me.
Roy takes the walkie-talkie and makes his way out to the utility shed. Brian and Joe step out of the Sandpiper Air hangar and make their way to Helen’s lunch counter.
Brian: Good morning, Helen.
Helen: No, it’s not a good morning. It is a great morning. It is a fantastic morning. It’s the kind of morning that just makes life worth living.
Brian: Yeah, I know what you mean. It’s a kind of morning when you want to spray yourself with lemon pledge and slide down a banister.
Joe: Why so chipper?
Helen: I met a guy.
Brian: Oh, really?
Brian looks at Joe.
Helen: We went on a date last night and I had the best time. Candlelight dinner, cappuccino on the wharf, terrific sex.
Helen: Just seeing if you were listening. You know, I hate cappuccino.
Helen: Hey, here he comes.
Brian: Ooh, he’s a handsome brute.
Matt approaches Helen and gives her a kiss on the lips. He also pulls out a rose.
Matt: I saw this in a garden this morning and it was so beautiful and I knew you had to have it.
Helen: That’s very sweet. Thank you.
Matt: It wasn’t easy, though. Some crazy lady chased me five blocks with a Fungo bat.
Helen: Uh, Matt, I’d like to introduce you to Joe and Brian Hackett.
Matt shakes hands with Joe.
Matt: How are you, Joe?
Joe: Hi, Matt.
Brian: Hmm. So, young Matthew, uh, where do you hail from?
Matt: New York.
Brian: Oh, really? And what do you do there?
Matt: I fly. I am a pilot for Pan-Am.
Brian: U-huh. U-huh.
Helen: You never told me that.
Matt: I can’t believe that never came up. Oh, well, listen, I have to run. I came by to tell you that I will pick you up tonight at 8:00. Nice to meet you, fellas.
Brian: Bye, Matt. Oh, darn, darn, darn, darn. Isn’t that just like life? You think you’ve found the perfect guy and wham, you get hit right on the teeth, huh! If only it wasn’t for that dang no-dating-pilots rule of yours.
Brian clicks his tongue.
Helen: Oh, that.
Helen razzes and goes to the kitchen. Brian faces Joe and razzes.
Brian: She says. My plan has worked to perfection. Now, she no longer has any more excuses to not go out on a date with me.
Joe: Wait, Brian, are you sure you thought this all the way through?
Brian: Joe, Joe, you doubt the puppet master? What could possibly go wrong with this plan?
Helen steps out of the kitchen.
Helen: You know what, Brian? I’m done with dating rules.
Brian: Oh, really?
Helen: Yup. From now on, Matt’s the only guy for me. I’m in love.
Helen smiles and goes back to the kitchen with her rose in a vase.
Joe: Any more bright ideas, Gepetto?
Joe and Brian are in the office.
Joe: Way to go, Brian. You managed to get Helen, who you wanna go out with, to fall for a guy who turns out to be a pilot so she won’t go out with him, but with you instead.
Brian: If we were to diagram that sentence, exactly where would you put the gerund?
Joe: I think you know where. You are gonna tell her the truth.
Brian: No, no. No, no. That’s not an option.
Joe: Why not?
Brian: All right. Let me ask you this. Have you ever had the slightest romantic interest in Helen?
Joe: Brian, I told you we’re good friends, that’s all.
Brian: Wait, wait, that you’ve never felt the faintest attraction, the tiniest yearning, the most fleeting misfiring of a nerve in your nether regions?
Brian: Well, you can forget that pipe dream buddy. Because if she finds out you’re in on this scheme you are histoire, man.
Joe: What did you have in mind?
Brian: Does this mean anything to you?
Brian gestures his hands like that of a puppet master.
Joe: Isn’t that the way deaf people say sparkling water?
Matt enters the office from the back.
Brian: Matt. Did anybody see you come in here?
Brian pulls down the shade on the front door.
Matt. Just some guy in coveralls singing Moon River into a walkie-talkie. Maybe I should, uh…
Matt gestures of leaving with his thumb.
Brian: No, no, no, no. It’s ok. Joe’s one of us.
Matt: Oh, so how am I doin’?
Matt looks at Joe.
Matt: Really? ‘cause I think I’ve got a handle on this Matt character. Yeah, yeah, yeah, but we just have a—a slight problem here. Oh, you hated me.
Brian: No, no, no, we loved you. But so did Helen. She’s fallen for you. That’s the problem. So w-we’ve got a slight change in our game plan. You have to make Helen, not want to see you ever again.
Matt: Oh, improvisation. I like that. I’m thinking on my feet. I’m thinking on my feet.
Matt claps his hands.
Matt: How about this?
Joe: No, no, no. It’s gotta be something good.
Joe: Uh, what if Matt tells Helen to quit playing the cello. She’d never give up music.
Brian: Why, Joe, you lovable weasel.
Matt: Uh, why would I do that?
Joe: Well, you could say that you love her so much that you can’t bear to share her with her music.
Brian: It’s good. That’s very good.
Matt: I don’t know, guys. I don’t think that fits in very well with my character. I mean, what’s my motivation?
Brian pulls out something from his pocket.
Brian: Another $50?
Matt: I can make that work.
Later that night, Fay approaches Brian and Joe who are sitting on a table.
Fay: Brian, are you done with my compact?
Brian: Shh! Haha! Fay, Fay, Fay, we’re trying to spy on Matt and Helen.
Fay: Oh, I’m terribly sorry. Where are my manners?
Fay leaves. Brian resumes watching Matt and Helen and exclaims.
Brian: Here it comes, Joe. Here it comes. This is where Matt tells Helen to give up the cello.
Joe: Poor kid, she looks like she’s in shock.
Brian: Mmm-hmm. Now watch, Joe. Watch how skillfully the puppet master guides our heroine through these emotional shrills.
Helen walks away from Matt.
Brian: She doesn’t believe Matt. He can’t mean what he just said.
Helen approaches Matt.
Brian: Uh, but Matt’s saying, yes, yes, he did mean it. Uh, and now comes the climax of our little play where Helen defiantly declares that she will not give up the cello for any man.
Helen goes inside the kitchen. Helen runs out of the kitchen carrying her cello then smashes it on the counter.
Joe: Oh, my God! Maybe she misunderstood the question.
Joe runs to Helen. Helen continues to smash her cello.
Joe: Helen! Helen! What are you doing?
Helen: Matt asked me to give up the cello for him, so, I did.
Matt approaches Helen and they kiss. Brian and Joe are in shock.
Helen: I’ll be ready to go in a minute.
Helen goes back to the kitchen.
Joe: Matt, Matt. This has gotten out of hand. Y-you’re gonna have to tell Helen the truth. I’m afraid that there’s a little bit of a problem with that, guys.
Brian looks at the damaged cello then to Matt.
Matt: I’ve fallen in love with her.
Brian is in shock. He couldn’t close his mouth.
Joe: What are you talking about?
Matt: Helen’s wonderful. She gave up the cello for me.
Brian grabs Matt by his shirt.
Brian: But you’re not you. You’re a fictional character. I hired you to play a part.
Matt: Here’s your money back.
Matt pulls out Brian’s money and hands it back to him.
Matt: I’m not acting anymore guys. I love her.
Matt: Listen, honey, I now that this is sudden. But if we feel the way that we do—
Matt: Why should we wait? Will you marry me?
Brian: Marry you? I can answer that.
Helen: Yes, of course I will.
Brian: Yes, of course—what?
Matt and Helen kiss.
Joe turns to Brian and pushes him.
Joe: Tell me one good reason I shouldn’t beat the hell out of you?
Brian: I’m on your medical plan? Look, Joe. Joe, Joe. I know things seem a bit convoluted at the moment, but don’t worry, I’ve got everything under control. You forget, I am—
Joe: The village idiot?
Joe: You are gonna have to tell her the truth.
Brian: What, now?
Joe: No, on their golden wedding anniversary.
Brian: Ok, ok.
Joe: Go ahead.
Brian: Ok. I’m going.
Joe: Go ahead.
Brian: I’m going.
Brian walks back to the lunch counter. Joe follows him.
Brian: Look, uh, Helen, I have something to say to you and you might not be too happy.
Helen: Are you kidding? This is the happiest I’ve ever been.
Matt kisses Helen’s head.
Brian: Listen, Helen. Matt’s an actor. I hired him to play a pilot.
Helen: I know.
Brian: You what?
Helen: Matt told me and I don’t care.
Brian: And you still love him?
Helen: Of course, I do.
Brian: Wait, wait, wait. Matt, the actor? Matt “How am I doing” Sargent?
Helen: Isn’t he great?
Brian: Camus was right. Life is absurd.
Brian walks aways. Joe approaches Helen and Matt.
Joe: H-Helen, uh, I have to talk to you right now.
Joe grabs Helen and leads her behind the lunch counter.
Joe: It’s very important. Helen, you can’t marry Matt.
Helen: Joe, I don’t see any reason why I shouldn’t, do you?
Helen looks at Matt. Matt smiles back.
Joe: No. Well, yes, yes, there is a reason. Uh, I don’t know quite how to put this but, well…I never thought I’d do this. Not like this. Not now.
Joe grabs Helen then kisses her.
Matt: Hey, uh, wait a minute.
Matt runs up to the two.
Brian: Joe, what the hell are you doin’? What happened to “we’re just good friends”?
Joe and Helen pull away.
Helen: Oh, God.
Joe: Helen, I love you.
Matt: Hey, back off, buddy. She loves me.
Joe: I’ve loved you for a long time. If I mean anything at all to you, don’t go.
Brian: Whoa, whoa. Sensory overload. Whoa.
Brian sits on a stool.
Helen: Joe, I never knew you felt this way.
Matt: Helen, Helen, what about us?
Helen bites her fingernail.
Joe: She loves me! Don’t you, Helen?
Helen looks at Matt then at Joe.
Helen: Matt, I don’t know how to say this to you, but I guess I’ve always loved Joe ever since we were kids. I just never knew he felt the same way.
Helen and Joe lean close to each other and smiles.
Brian runs and break the two apart.
Brian: Now, wait a minute, wait a minute, wait a minute. Wait a minute. You love Joe now?
Helen nods. Matt turns Helen around.
Matt: Wait a minute, you’re gonna dump me just like that? I thought—
Joe: Hey, get your hands off her.
Joe pushes Matt. Brian pulls Helen away from Matt and Joe.
Matt: You think you’re gonna take her away from me? You got another thing comin’, Joe.
Matt pulls out a gun and points it at Joe.
Joe: Hey, hey, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. Hey, now, take it easy now.
Matt: Helen and I belong together. I love her.
Brian: Yeah, of course you love her! We all love her! She’s a sweetie. She’s a cutie. She’s to die for—wrong phrase.
Matt: Shut up!
Brian: Shutting up. Shutting up.
Helen: Matt, don’t do this. We can all talk about this.
Matt: Does that mean you’ll marry me?
Brian: He is quite a catch.
Matt: I thought I told you—
Joe pushes Matt’s hand.
Helen: Oh, God! Be careful!
Joe and Matt struggle with the gun.
Brian: Jeez, no!
Joe and Matt enter the kitchen still fighting for the gun.
Helen: Oh, my God.
Dishes crash then the gun fires. Helen screams.
Helen: Oh, no.
Joe steps out of the kitchen with the gun. He puts down the gun.
Joe: I didn’t mean to.
Joe runs out.
Brian: Joe. Joe, wait, wait!
Helen starts crying.
Helen: Oh, God.
Brian: Helen, all I wanted was a measly date from you. I didn’t expect this to happen. No, no, no, no. Don’t go in there. Don’t go in there. Don’t…
Helen slowly walks towards the kitchen.
Brian: Helen, please, don’t go in there.
Helen sobs. She walks to the kitchen door and looks at the door window. She screams.
Helen: Oh, God! Oh, God!
Helen runs out. Brian slowly makes his way to the kitchen. Joe and Helen sneak up on him. Joe looks at the kitchen door window. Matt surprises him. Brian screams. Brian is startled by Joe and Helen’s presence. Joe and Helen laugh.
Matt comes out of the kitchen.
Joe: Don’t you love the look on his face?
Brian: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa.
Joe: Hey, we’re just yanking your strings there, bro.
Helen: Yeah, Brian.
Joe: After all, we are…
Joe, Helen and Matt: The puppet masters.
They wave their hands over Brian.
Roy is preparing to leave.
Lowell: Raging Stallion, Raging Stallion, this is Red Raider, come in, over.
Roy grabs the walkie-talkie.
Roy: What is it, Lowell?
Lowell: I have a bit of a problem here, Roy. You know that wrought iron fence by the utility shed?
Lowell: I’ve always wondered whether there was enough room for me to stick my head between the bars. Well, I won’t keep you in suspense. There is. But either my head’s swelled or my ears only bend one way. I guess, I’m kind of stuck here.
Roy: Don’t panic, Lowell. I’m on my way. I’ll bring the walkie-talkie with me so we’ll be in constant communication.
Lowell: Ok, but don’t take too long, Roy.
Roy sets the walkie-talkie on the counter and he leaves.
Lowell: I’m starting to lose feeling in my face.
Helen comes out of the kitchen.
Helen: Heading home, Roy?
Roy: You betcha. See you tomorrow, Helen.
Joe steps out of the hangar.
Joe: Good night, Helen.
Helen: Good night.
Helen sits on a stool at the counter to do some paperwork.
Helen: Hey. Thanks again for tipping me off about Matt.
Joe: Yeah, I knew right off the bat this was a pretty stupid stunt, even by Brian’s standards.
Helen: Prop gun, fake cello.
Helen snaps her fingers.
Joe: Yeah. It was fun stickin’ it to him.
Helen: Yeah, it sure was. The kiss sure took me by surprise, though.
Joe: We talked about the kiss.
Helen: No, we didn’t.
Joe: Aw, I could swear we did.
Helen: I think I would’ve remembered.
Joe: Oh, God, I’m sorry.
Helen: No, that’s ok. I thought it worked out all right.
Joe: Yeah. Me, too.
Joe: It was a good kiss.
Joe: You didn’t think it was good?
Helen continues to compute on the calculator.
Helen: No, it was fine.
Joe: Fine, but not good?
Helen clears her throat.
Helen: Joe, it’s just a difference in technique, that’s all. You’re a stiff-lipper and I’m a soft. It’s no big deal.
Joe: Well, I never really thought about it before. Does it make that much of a difference?
Helen: Yes. Here, I’ll show you.
Helen gets off her stool and approaches Joe.
Joe: What? You wanna kiss me again?
Helen: Oh, don’t be stupid. This is just an acting exercise and just relax.
Joe leans closer to Helen.
Helen: Don’t pucker up like Dudley Do-Right. Just relax your lips.
Helen softly kisses Joe and he does the same. Lowell sings on the walkie-talkie.
Lowell: “Moon river, wider than a mile. I’m crossing you in style, someday.” God, I love that song.
Joe stops and pulls away.
Joe: Like that?
Helen: That was better, that was much better.
Joe: Well, thanks for the tip. Good night.
Helen: Good night.
Joe steps back and trips on a row of chairs. He falls and rolls down the floor.
Joe leaves. Helen walks back to the counter and picks up her iced water. She pours it inside her blouse then sighs.
Lowell: Hey, look at that. I just saw a car exactly like yours go by, Roy. Who’d have guessed there were two purple El Caminos on Nantucket? “We’re after the same rainbow’s end. Waiting round the bend. My Huckleberry friend.” Roy, are you my Huckleberry friend? “Moon river and me”.
This is not the actual script. This is my own transcription of the episode. The “The Puppetmaster” episode was written by Philip LaZebnik. Wings is owned by CBS Studios Inc., Paramount Pictures and Grub Street Productions.
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