SCRIPT: KING TUT'S COUP, a.k.a. TUT TUT TUT

General goings on in the 1966 Batman World

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bat-rss
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SCRIPT: KING TUT'S COUP, a.k.a. TUT TUT TUT

Post by bat-rss » Thu Jun 27, 2019 2:27 am

The next script that we will discuss on TO THE BATPOLES podcast will be KING TUT'S COUP, Stanley Ralph Ross' rewrite of Pauline and Leo Townsend's TUT TUT TUT.


Tut Tut Tut - treatment
https://www.dropbox.com/s/8dn1kfafnce1w ... s.pdf?dl=0

Tut Tut Tut - draft
https://www.dropbox.com/s/q7t8zk4b3g23f ... s.pdf?dl=0

King Tut's Coup - draft
https://www.dropbox.com/s/x3dp7skk51fg8 ... t.pdf?dl=0

King Tut's Coup - final
https://www.dropbox.com/s/est1oq2k3o46s ... l.pdf?dl=0

Read away! We expect to record this episode July 12 -- as always, we'll select a few of your comments to read on that show.

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High C
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Re: SCRIPT: KING TUT'S COUP, a.k.a. TUT TUT TUT

Post by High C » Thu Jun 27, 2019 4:14 am

I already have a problem with the Townsends' treatment--it refers to Cleopatra as 'the siren of all time.' High C demands a recount!! :cry:

Then again, it is dated June 1966, so those two poor deluded creatures can be forgiven for their lapse in judgment...
'I thought Siren was perfect for Joan.'--Stanley Ralph Ross, writer of 'The Wail of the Siren'

My hobbies include gazing at the Siren and doing her bidding, evil or otherwise.

'She had a devastating, hypnotic effect on all the men.'--A schoolmate describing Joan Collins at age 17

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epaddon
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Re: SCRIPT: KING TUT'S COUP, a.k.a. TUT TUT TUT

Post by epaddon » Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:14 pm

And remember, Joan Collins was publicly considered for the role of Cleopatra once upon a time. :)

The original treatment reveals that the rumor that the Lisa character was supposed to be Mayor Linseed's daughter initially isn't true. From the very beginning the character is described as the daughter of a wealthy industrialist, exactly as "Lisa Carson" ultimately would be.

The Townsends I note with amusement in their first draft try to be self-conscious about real history when Tut says he knows he lived 1300 years before Cleopatra which is quite true (speaking as a former college history teacher), but it seems a little forced to have to make a point of that in the script for a show like this!

The name of "Deborah Clark's" father, "Lorillard Clark" I don't think is meant to be a take off on anyone specific. There is a Lorillard Tobacco Company but since that derives from a last name, it couldn't be anyone specific being parodied (that was more of a Stanley Ralph Ross type of thing)

In the Ross first draft it's rather ridiculous that the Professor decides he might as well become Tut just because the two students have been hit on the head and think he's Tut! I'm surprised to see this is still in the final draft which means that SRR wasn't reined in on this point and that it was clearly changed during filming.

It says the Batclimb and cameo to be written later. They ultimately used Suzy Knickerbocker and the climb dialogue leading to the cameo in that scene had nothing episode specific so that shows again how some cameos were filmed to just be inserted where needed in a particular episode (and the final draft confirms that when it says the Suzy cameo was "already shot")

Whoa on Batman's declaration of "My heart is pledged to a lady criminal"! That line got nixed from above no doubt.

"Man can not live by work alone" just doesn't have an appropriate ring to it.

Biggest thing on the final draft is that handwritten notation on the cover calling for a line or two to be worked in for the Commissioner to mention his daughter Barbara. Shows how they were already thinking of a way to start planning ahead re: Batgirl.

At least the final draft got rid of the "Barren Island" and "Phony Island" references from the earlier ones.

Amazingly, Ross doesn't write what seemed like an obvious joke. He has Carson do the "Sleet in Crete" line but only has Tut go, "You've got it." Buono must have insisted on-set doing the obvious My Fair Lady joke, "By George, he's got it."

The script clears up Batman's turning to the camera with that "No man is above the law" line (which was originally uttered by Theodore Roosevelt) and is called the "Bar Association line". I'm beginning to suspect that there may have been PSA spots by the ABA with that line during that period of time and he was having Batman in effect do a take-off of that!

Production wise for the episode itself, this is notable in that it was Grace Lee Whitney's first acting job after she'd been fired from Star Trek earlier in the season (her autobio revealed a very sordid story behind that involving sexual assault by someone she only referred to as "The Executive"). It was a return to the kind of "brassy blonde" type roles she tended to specialize in in her pre-Trek days like in her "Outer Limits" guest shot, and also the movie "Irma La Douce".

I've also noted in the past that Lee Meriwether, whose name is not on the cast sheet list for this episode was likely a last minute emergency call-in because normally her commitment to "The Time Tunnel" would have left her unavailable to do any kind of guest shot on another program. As it was, she had to go through a hectic schedule to do both this episode and a "Time Tunnel" that was shooting simultaneously (I documented her busy day in this thread a few years back).

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chrisbcritter
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Re: SCRIPT: KING TUT'S COUP, a.k.a. TUT TUT TUT

Post by chrisbcritter » Sat Jun 29, 2019 2:59 am

A few minor observations on the Lord Chancellor and Jester characters (Lloyd Haynes and Tim O'Kelly): I never could quite figure out if they were suffering the same malady as King Tut throughout the episode, or if they came to their senses and tried to take advantage of the situation (they were certainly interested in the ransom money; a leftover from the first draft?). Haynes would go on to play the main teacher character on Room 222; for O'Kelly, this was his second Batman appearance after playing Dick's classmate Pete in "The Joker Goes to School". A year later he would have his most notable role as deranged sniper Bobby Thompson (partly based on Austin, Texas sniper Charles Whitman) in Peter Bogdanovich's Targets. His career drifted into obscurity after his last role in 1970's The Grasshopper; in fact his IMDb bio had almost no info until I dug up the L.A. County marriage record of his first wife, actress Evelyn Rudie, and found out his real name was Timothy Patrick Wright. That led to his death record; he passed away at 48 in 1990. I updated his IMDb page with that info. Lloyd Haynes died young, as well; he was only 52 when colon cancer took him in 1986.
"To the medical eye, such childish claptrap means only one thing, young man: You need some sleep."

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Dr. Shimel
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Re: SCRIPT: KING TUT'S COUP, a.k.a. TUT TUT TUT

Post by Dr. Shimel » Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:26 am

chrisbcritter wrote:
Sat Jun 29, 2019 2:59 am
A few minor observations on the Lord Chancellor and Jester characters (Lloyd Haynes and Tim O'Kelly): I never could quite figure out if they were suffering the same malady as King Tut throughout the episode, or if they came to their senses and tried to take advantage of the situation (they were certainly interested in the ransom money; a leftover from the first draft?). Haynes would go on to play the main teacher character on Room 222; for O'Kelly, this was his second Batman appearance after playing Dick's classmate Pete in "The Joker Goes to School". A year later he would have his most notable role as deranged sniper Bobby Thompson (partly based on Austin, Texas sniper Charles Whitman) in Peter Bogdanovich's Targets. His career drifted into obscurity after his last role in 1970's The Grasshopper; in fact his IMDb bio had almost no info until I dug up the L.A. County marriage record of his first wife, actress Evelyn Rudie, and found out his real name was Timothy Patrick Wright. That led to his death record; he passed away at 48 in 1990. I updated his IMDb page with that info. Lloyd Haynes died young, as well; he was only 52 when colon cancer took him in 1986.
Tim O'Kelly might have been part of pop culture history had things gone better (from James MacArthur's 2010 obit in the LA Times:
Screenshot 2019-06-29 at 11.12.13 AM.png
Screenshot 2019-06-29 at 11.12.13 AM.png (121.9 KiB) Viewed 4299 times
A chilling note about Targets is that both the white Mustang and the rifle used by his character in the movie match the aspects of James Earl Ray's assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr.--which happened 4-5 months before the movie opened, Thus. since it had already been filmed by the time of that killing, there was no reason to blame Bogdanovich. This might have been one of the first films that presents the stereotypical embittered Vietnam War vet who starts killing, which was still a staple into the early 80's.

Regarding Lloyd Haynes, one small correction: he died of lung cancer on New Years Eve 1986. At roughly the same time he was filming his Batman appearance, he was paying the bills by working as a production assistant on Hollywood Squares. Prior to becoming an actor, he had been an intelligence officer and had some eclectic tastes. Perhaps he would have been more comfortable as one of Puzzler's henchmen, since he was a licensed pilot.

While Haynes and Victor Buono never crossed paths on Room 222, one Batman villain did: Burgess Meredith in the third season opener in September 1971.

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Re: SCRIPT: KING TUT'S COUP, a.k.a. TUT TUT TUT

Post by chrisbcritter » Sun Jun 30, 2019 7:38 pm

Dr. Shimel wrote:
Sat Jun 29, 2019 8:26 am
This might have been one of the first films that presents the stereotypical embittered Vietnam War vet who starts killing, which was still a staple into the early 80's.
Maybe, although the movie only shows a picture of the character in uniform; whether he went to Vietnam isn't mentioned in the script (Charles Whitman never was in combat or served overseas, either). I figured Bobby as a statesider who'd never fired a shot in anger before.

I've heard about the Hawaii Five-O story, too - when IMCDb had its message forums, a couple contributors got into a big catfight (sorry, Julie!) over who was better in the role... :roll:
"To the medical eye, such childish claptrap means only one thing, young man: You need some sleep."

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High C
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Re: SCRIPT: KING TUT'S COUP, a.k.a. TUT TUT TUT

Post by High C » Mon Jul 01, 2019 9:42 am

epaddon wrote:
Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:14 pm
And remember, Joan Collins was publicly considered for the role of Cleopatra once upon a time. :)
And Joan did a photo shoot as Cleo for the UK Esquire Magazine around that time.
In the Ross first draft it's rather ridiculous that the Professor decides he might as well become Tut just because the two students have been hit on the head and think he's Tut! I'm surprised to see this is still in the final draft which means that SRR wasn't reined in on this point and that it was clearly changed during filming.
Excellent point. Ross not being 'reined in' is a recurring theme in this script.
Whoa on Batman's declaration of "My heart is pledged to a lady criminal"! That line got nixed from above no doubt.
And rightfully so.
"Man can not live by work alone" just doesn't have an appropriate ring to it.
I concur.
At least the final draft got rid of the "Barren Island" and "Phony Island" references from the earlier ones.
But, as usual, Ross used a 'darling' of his later, Phoney Island in the Catwoman/Joker teamup.
***
As for the scripts themselves, I think you guys have some stuff to mine in terms of your stated goal, finding places in which Buono ad libbed. Certainly he did with more with 'royal boiling oil' than was in the final draft.

The overarching feel I got from the Townsends' script was that they were relying very heavily on the Tut arc from season 1, which would make sense because it was written after season 1 and before S2.

It has a lot of the same tropes--the cynical henchmen, the extremely cynical moll (Minea, changed by Ross to Neila, after his wife, seems like a carbon copy of Nefertiti from the first arc). The draft is better than the treatment but still has problems, such as the confrontation between Batman and the henchmen taking WAYYYYY too long (viewers want to see the villain, not the henchmen).

They also have one gambit that sounds as if Charles Hoffman wrote it--Batman takes an 'Anti-Clobber Capsule'??? Ugh.

To sum up Ross' rewrite of seven months later, I'd say his dumbing-down of the Duo continued apace. As you guys mentioned, the scene in which Batman refuses to cut down 'Fouad Sphinx' totally goes against the 'civic responsibility Batman' of season 1. So does Bats saying his 'heart is pledged to (Catwoman).' Just wrong. I mean it could have been palatable if he added 'if she ever sees the error of her ways,' although it still would bug me. This isn't the comics. She isn't Selina Kyle, Batman never lets her escape on purpose the way he once did in a comic book. The '66 Bat/Cat relationship and the comic-book one are apples and oranges, IMO.

Another problem in Ross' script is that he adds in the conceit of the two college students believing the prof is Tut after they apparently were concussed. The problem then is that he kept their personalities from the Townsends' script the same, so their behavior is different than in the teaser scene. Ross' script is ambiguous about whether those two are obedient to Tut or if they now have been corrupted because they have their own evil ideas. Again, he sacrifices characterization for a cheap sight gag.
'I thought Siren was perfect for Joan.'--Stanley Ralph Ross, writer of 'The Wail of the Siren'

My hobbies include gazing at the Siren and doing her bidding, evil or otherwise.

'She had a devastating, hypnotic effect on all the men.'--A schoolmate describing Joan Collins at age 17

robinboyblunderer
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Re: SCRIPT: KING TUT'S COUP, a.k.a. TUT TUT TUT

Post by robinboyblunderer » Sat Jul 20, 2019 10:38 am

Just wanted to say thanks agin for posting all these! What a coup for the bat-board. Holy Bad Puns!

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