NOTE: This entire scene was cut from the film.
Back in KING BRIAN’s Court. the FIRST ADVISER has been dragged off. there are muffled screams coming from the nearby tree. The FIRST ADVISER is being hauled up it on pulleys.
SECOND ADVISER: Your Majesty, I can Find you a Lute player, whose music is passing sweet.
KING BRIAN: It’s not the same, You thick-headed fool!
(KING BRIAN hits him on the back of the head. he falls.)
KING BRIAN: There’s no fun in killing soloists!
SECOND ADVISER (picking himself up): He may have a friend…
KING BRIAN: GUARDS!
SECOND ADVISER: Oh Please your majesty! Please!
KING BRIAN: Take him away and tie his kidneys to the longest hedge in the kingdom!
The GUARDS drag the ADVISER roughly away.
SECOND ADVISER: No!
(he is dragged off screaming and protesting)
KING BRIAN (roaring at the rest of the court): I will personally disembowel the next little bastard who tells me that there are no more close harmony …
At this moment we hear faintly the sound of singing. KING BRIAN stopped to listen. The entire COURT turns thankfully towards the mellifluous sounds.
SONG: We’re the knights of the round table
our shows are formidable
but many times we’re given rhymes
that are quite unsingable…
KING BRIAN: Wait a minute! Five point harmony with a counter-tenor lead!
Various members of the COURT sigh and breathe more easily.
CREEP: Thank goodness.
KING BRIAN: Shut up!
KING BRIAN (punches him right on the end of the nose and shouts to the SECOND ADVISER): Oy you!
SECOND ADVISER (doubled-up, Surrounded by soldiers busy with his stomach): Yes, Your majesty?
KING BRIAN: Go and get ‘em!
SECOND ADVISER (gratefully): Thank you sir!
(He staggers off with some difficulty)
GUARD: ‘ere… We’d just started taking his kidneys out.
CUT TO ARTHUR,BEDEVERE,GALAHAD and LANCELOT (Garwin,thrstam, Hecrot) plus all their pages. there are riding along singing cheerily.
KNIGHTS: We’re baby mad and Camelot
we nurse and push the pram a lot
in war we’re tough and able
between our quests we sequin vests
and dress like Betty Gable
SECOND ADVISER: HALT!
SIR GALAHAD: Who are you who dares to halt the knights of king Arthur’s round table in mid-verse?
SECOND ADVISER: I bring greetings from the court of king Brian.
SIR LAUNCELOT: King Brian the wild?
SECOND ADVISER: Some call him that, but he’s calmed down alot recently.
SIR GALAHAD: Are those YOUR kidneys?
SECOND ADVISER (covering his stomach): No no… It’s nothing - just a flesh wound.
(The KNIGHTS look at each other)
SECOND ADVISER: He has heard your beautiful melody; and wishes you to come to his court, that he may listen at his ease ooh!
SIR LAUNCELOT: You must be joking!
(general murmur or agreement from the other KNIGHTS.)
SECOND ADVISER: Go to the court of king Brian the wild and sing close harmony!
OTHER KNIGHTS: No fear etc.
SECOND ADVISER (in increasing pain): It need not be close harmony oooh agh!
SIR GALAHAD: Ah but it would get round to close harmony, wouldn’t it?
SECOND ADVISER: Not necessarily … As I say king Brian is much more relaxed than he used to be.
SIR GALAHAD: I mean could we just stick to one line of plainsong with a bit of straight choral work?
SECOND ADVISER: Well obviously he’d prefer a bit of close harmony arghhh!
KNIGHTS: Ah! There you are!
SIR LAUNCELOT: We’d end unlike the Shalott Choral Society.
SECOND ADVISER: Oh that was an accident - honestly he’s so calm now oh!
ARTHUR: No we must be on our way.
They start off.
SECOND ADVISER (by now lying on the ground at his last gasp but still trying to sound threatening): If you don’t come and sing for him … ah … he’ll drive … oh … iron spikes though your heads.
KNIGHTS: Ah! That sounds more like Brian the wild!
SECOND ADVISER: (looking helplessly at his intestines): He … he … still gets irritable occasionally.
SIR GALAHAD: Like with close harmony groups.
SECOND ADVISER: Ooh … Look if you’re scared …
SIR LAUNCELOT: We’re not SCARED!
SECOND ADVISER (With his last ounce of strength): Very well! King Brian challenges your to sing before him in close harmony!
ARTHUR: A challenge?
The KNIGHTS look at each other rather taken aback but an idealistic glow suffuses KING ARTHUR’s eyes as he looks heaven-wards. The other KNIGHTS look at him rather fearfully.
ARTHUR (majestically): It is a challenge. We cannot refuse.
SIR GALAHAD: King Brian’s a fucking loony.
SECOND ADVISER (dies): Great!
SIR GALAHAD: Are you all right?
CUT TO KING BRIAN the wild on his dias. he sees the KNIGHTS enter the arena.
KING BRIAN: Ah good!
CUT TO TRUMPETERS who executes a rather bad fanfare full of missed notes. meanwhile various SHOTS of preparation.
KING BRIAN settling down.
KNIGHTS being led up to the podium. The last of the previous close harmony group is being loaded onto a cart and pushed away by the cart driver from scene two (Perhaps we see him being paid off)
SHOT of KING BRIAN on his podium and the HERALD being untied and having his gag removed.
SHOT of ARTHUR and KNIGHTS getting into a group on the podium still rather nervous.
The fanfare comes to an end, and several wrong notes.
KING BRIAN (who can’t wait): RIGHT! Carry on gentleman.
HERALD: KING BRIAN SAYS CARRY ON!
ARTHUR (whispering): All right … two tenor lines - I’ll take the base.
They all nod.
ARTHUR: One… Two… Three…
Sound of Bows being drown very near by.
ARTHUR looks up and frowns.
CUT to reveal a line of twenty ARCHERS they all have their left leg missing, but they DO have two arms.
Their arrows are drawn back and point directly at ARTHUR & CO.
ARTHUR: Hold it! Err … King Brian!
HERALD (Louder than ever): ARTHUR OF CAMELOT ADDRESSES THEE OH MIGHTY KING BRIAN!
KING BRIAN (truculently): What?
ARTHUR (Indicates the archers): What are THEY For?
KING BRIAN: Them? they’re… just to show you where the audience would be.
ARTHUR: Well we’d prefer to do it without an audience.
KING BRIAN: Oh you’ve GOT to have an AUDIENCE!
HERALD: KING BRIAN THE WISE AND GOOD RULER OF THIS LAND SAYS YOU’VE GOT TO HAVE AN AUDIENCE!
ARTHUR: We’d rather give a private recital.
HERALD: THEY SAY THEY’D RATHER GIVE A PRIVATE RECITAL! O WISE GOOD AND JUST KING BRIAN AND NOT THE LEAST BIT WILD!
KING BRIAN (to himself): Turds…
HE nods to the ARCHERS who turn and hop smartly off in step.
ONE-LEGGED RSM: Left … Left … Left, left, left, left. Left … Left … Left, left, left, left.
They hop round behind a long fence and disappear from sight (Fence needs to be about 7 or 9 feet high)
KING BRIAN: Right! Ready when you are.
HERALD: KING BRIAN IS READY!
ARTHUR: And … One … Two … Three … Four …
They are just about to sing when the ARCHERS, bows read and arrows points, peep over the top of the fence.
ARTHUR: HOLD IT!
SIR GAWAIN: (singing): We’re
Quick flash of ARCHERS sensed to fire, one tires to hold his shot back but fails and fires his arrows by accident in the air.
Quick flash of FIRST ADVISER who is hanging by his nostrils from the highest tree in the kingdom, moaning, getting hit by the arrow.
KING BRIAN: What is it now?
ARTHUR: We’re not entirely happy with the acoustics.
HERALD: THEY’RE NOT ENTIRELY HAPPY WITH…
KING BRIAN (impatiently): Oh Sod the acoustics! Get on with the singing!
HERALD: KING BRIAN SAYS SOD THE ACOUSTICS!
ARTHUR: In that case we shall just have to perform elsewhere.
(turns to his knights and begins to usher them off)
HERALD: THEY SAY IN THAT CASE THEY SHALL HAVE TO PERFORM ELSEWHERE, O RICH, FAMOUS AND EXTREMELY CALM KING!
KING BRIAN (getting very angry and dribbling slightly): NO! you’ve GOT to sing on the target are - er - convert … er … thing …
HERALD: KING BRIAN HAS STUMBLED OVER HIS WORDS! WHAT A WONDERFULLY HUMAN INCIDENT.
KING BRIAN: Don’t editorialize!
HERALD: SORRY, KING.
KING BRIAN: Come on you bastards! Sing close harmony!
KING BRIAN snaps his finders and the ARCHERS rise above the fence without any pretense it concealment - fitting arrows into their bows.
HERALD: KING BRIAN CALLS THEM BASTARDS AND DEMANDS TO HEAD CLOSE HARMONY! WHAT WILL HAPPEN NEXT?
KING BRIAN: I said don’t.
HERALD: Sorry, King.
KING BRIAN: Right! On the count of three … one …
HERALD: THE KING’S SAID ONE!
KING BRIAN: Two!
HERALD: THE KING’S SAID TWO! THEY’VE ONLY GOT ONE LEFT!
We hear the sound of bows being drawn back. Tension mounts. the KNIGHTS all look pretty grim. The end is clearly pretty near.
KING BRIAN (face in a paroxysm of blood-lust): Three!
Sound in the distance of beautiful close harmony singing: “Bravely, good sir robin was not at all afraid…“
CUT TO see SIR ROBIN and his MINSTRELS approaching from round a corner of the castle. SIR ROBIN walks a few feet in from of the them looking rather embarrassed.
KING BRIAN (turning to the sound): FANTASTIC!
CUT BACK TO ROBIN’S MINSTRELS
KING BRIAN: “To have his eyeballs skewered and his kidneys … argh!”
They are suddenly pin-cushioned with arrows.
KING BRIAN: HA! HA! HA! HA! HO! HO! HO! HO! Oh bloody marvelous!
ROBIN turns and looks at the decimated remains of his MINSTRELS, surprised but relieved.
ARTHUR: Sir Robin! this way!
ARTHUR leads is MEN off the platform and they are joined by their PAGES and make good their escape.
KING BRIAN: HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HA! HO! HO! HO! HO!
HERALD: KING BRIAN’S SHOT THE WRONG GROUP!
KING BRIAN: Shut up!
HE swings his sword and slices the HERALD’S head off.
HERALD’S HEAD (as it rolls away): PRESS FREEDOM INFRINGED!