F3 – Cycle 36 – The Start of Something Big


June 23, 2011 by Ray Yanek

Prompt: I want you to write a story with two buddies, Dean and Jerry. It can be genre you want, it can go any direction you want. But Dean has to be the straight suave guy and Jerry the bungling buddy.

So mix it up, I’m throwing Dean Martin, with Jerry Lewis, in a blender and I can’t wait to taste the cocktails you create.

Prompt: A Buddy story staring Dean and Jerry
Genre: Open
Word Count: 1000 word

Disclaimer:  I know neither jack nor shit about the Rat Pack.  So I did some research and found it interesting that towards the end of the Dean and Jerry duo, the sauve Dean grew jealous of the bumbling Jerry’s fame.  I used that as a starting point.  Oh, and I turned them both into zombies….

The Start of Something Big

Fade in:

Ext: Night–A diner in the deserted and quiet Greenwich Village on the corner of Loneliness and Desperation Avenue.  Windows line all sides of the dinner.  An advertisement for Phillies cigars sits atop the diner.  

Int:  A triangular counter is centered in the diner.  A lone WOMAN with flowing red hair, full scarlet lips, in a red dress cut low over her chest, sits at the far corner.  Her elbow on the counter, she appears board as she examines her fingernails.

A strand of silver bells rings through the silence as the glass door opens and ZOMBIE DEAN shambles in.  He wears a black suit and tie.  His wavy black hair is oiled and thrown back over his head offering us only a teasing glimpse of the hole in his head.

The WOMAN peeks up.  Her lips break into a sly smile.  She takes her elbow off the counter and moves a strand of hair off her shoulder.



Hi ya, Big Boy.  Where you been all my life?




(smile growing more sly)

Now you’re cooking with gas.  You gonna come over her? Or stand there in the door all night?

ZOMBIE DEANlumbers into the diner—suavely—the spark of love and recent resurrection glimmering in his milky eyes.  Three seats from the WOMAN, he plods between two stools and puts his elbow on the bar to strike a disinterested pose.

*            *            *

Zombie Dean misjudges the attempt.  His elbow slips off the counter.  The arm of his suit rips and an impressive chunk of flesh from his upper arm plops onto the floor.

*            *            *


H.B. Wallace jumped out of his director chair causing the white scarf he wore around his neck to fly up over his hat. He cursed, swiped at the scarf, missed, and then swiped and cursed again.

Finally, he left it and put the slender cigarette holder back in his mouth.    

“Get make up in here and get him a new arm!  Now!  And get him a towel for Christ’s sake!  He’s slobbering all over himself again!”  H.B. said through the side of his mouth.

The woman on set sighed and watched H.B. storm off set, stopping only to upbraid the two camera men in the rigging.  When she was sure he was gone, she stood and sauntered over to Zombie Dean, who still floundered, back-down, on the floor.

“Don’t worry, Sugar,” she told him.  “H.B. is like that with everyone.”


She smiled and cocked her head to the side.  “So, we still on for tonight?  Still gonna paint the town red?”


“Oh Dean, you always know what to say to a girl.”

*            *            *

Int:  The Diner—Night.

“That’s Amore” plays in the background.

ZOMBIE DEANsits close to the WOMAN.  He tilts towards her.  She leans her head towards him. Then, the crack of a door smacking open and shut is heard off stage.

ENTER ZOMBIE JERRY.  He is wearing a busboy uniform.  As he slogs behind the counter, he stumbles and careens into a stack of dishes sending them crashing to the floor.

 When the commotion settles, ZOMBIE JERRY looks at the camera and gives his best “oopsie” expression.

*            *            *

 Then, Jerry’s jaw disconnects from the right side of his face and is left  to dangle from the sinew still connected to his left cheek.  An explosion of laughter erupts from the rafters where the two camera operators can’t contain themselves. 

*           *            *


H.B. did his best to sound angry, but he was laughing too hard to be convincing.

“Now THAT,” H.B. said, “That is acting!”  He launched himself out of his seat and up onto the set, bearing straight towards Zombie Dean.  “Did you see that, Dean?  Did you see that passion in Jerry? That imagination?

Zombie Dean, a thin sliver of drool running down his chin, peered down at the skull that must have been under H.B’s hat.

“That’s what we need out of you.  You’re the suave one, the lover, the straight-guy.  You need to bring passion to that!” H.B. put a hand on Dean’s shoulders and used his other hand to pull the silk handkerchief from his pocket.  He wiped the drool from Dean’s face, careful not to take off any flesh, and went to return the hanky to his pocket.  H.B. thought better of it though, and tossed the hanky to the floor instead.  He gave Dean a little shake. “Passion.”

To Dean, H.B. smelled like chicken.

Zombie Jerry, his lower mandible still dangling, ambled up behind H.B.  He leaned in close and sniffed at H.B.’s head. 

H.B. sighed and took his hand off Dean’s shoulders.  He turned to the sniffing Jerry, gave him a sharp slap in the head, then put a stubby finger of warning to his face.

“Passion,” H.B. said, turning back to Dean.  “Let me hear it.”


“Passion, goddam it!  Give it to me!”


H.B. clapped his hands then lifted them to the sky.  “That’s what I’m talking about!  Now do it in front of the f-ing camera!”

H.B. turned and went back to his chair.  “Okay. Let’s get Jerry’s face  put back together and try this again!”

Dean stole a dead glance at Jerry, who was now off-stage and sniffing at the head of the boom mic operator.

“You gotta admit,” the woman said behind Dean.  “Jerry does have charisma.”

*            *            *

Int:  The Dinner—Night.

“That’s Amore” plays in the background.

ZOMBIE DEANsits close to the WOMAN.  He tilts towards her and she leans her head towards him. Then, the crack of another door smacking open and shut is heard off stage.

ENTER ZOMBIE JERRY.  He is wearing a busboy uniform—

*            *            *

–and a Carmen Miranda hat, stocked with bright fruit.

Once again the camera men burst into laughter.  The operator of the boom mic doesn’t  laugh.  He never saw Jerry’s gag.  He was too busy letting his eyes scan the floor for the piece of nose Jerry bit off him.

*            *            *

“Don’t give me that ‘Aruahhhhh’ bullshit!” H.B. exploded.  “You’re done, Dean.  D-O-N-E.  Done.  You don’t have the star power to keep up with Jerry.  You’re supposed to be the foil here, and you got about all the charisma as one of them Caribbean Zombie’s whose master got hit in the head with a fucking sugar cane to many times! You hear me?  To.  Many.  Times.”

After H.B. pounded off, Dean’s features slumped.  The hot lights weren’t good on his flesh.  He saw Jerry over at the counter.  The woman in her red dress sat on Jerry’s lap. Jerry was sniffing her head.

Dean sniffed the air himself.

*            *            *

In the rafters, Paulie pulled his news boy cap lower over his head.  “You rolling?”

“Hell yes,” Petey answered, his eye stuck to the view finder. 

Below them chaos had erupted.  The guy operating the boom mike dropped it with a clatter, gathered up his piece of nose and beat feet out of there. 

The others were a little too slow—and that was saying something, Paulie thought.

Paulie ducked just in time to avoid the severed limb—he thought it was H.B.’s—that had come careening up from the frenzy below.

“Think we ought to do something?”

“We are doing something,” Petey said.  “We’re making move history here!  Look at those two!  All this is impromptu and look how they feed off each other!”



6 thoughts on “F3 – Cycle 36 – The Start of Something Big

  1. Beach Bum says:

    Damn, everyone did great jobs on this prompt, I could not get anything going on this one though.

    –and a Carmen Miranda hat, stocked with bright fruit.

    Mentioning Carmen is always a winner for me!

    • Ray Yanek says:

      Oh wow…I think I just realized that I stold the idea about the Carmen Miranda hat from you! I think you may have used it in your story about the lizard smoking peanut butter-scented cigarettes. Seriously, I saw a photo of Jerry wearing a goofy hat with something that looked like fruit on it, and I couldn’t think of how to describe it and then Carmen Miranda popped into my head and I couldn’t figure out why.

      Now I know! And now I need to figure out a way to attribute that idea to you…or maybe I just did.

      And by the way, I saw the message about the new short story you wrote and posted and I’m really looking forward to reading it. I’ll get over to take a look as soon as I get a minute.

  2. Glen says:

    If it involves zombies it can’t be bad! I liked the way you moved it on to include your research about their real life

  3. Jenny says:

    Very interesting concept, I loved it! I didn’t bother to do much research. Kudos!

  4. What a terrific take on the buddy theme! I love how Jerry’s comedic timing shines through, even as a zombie.

    Great ending! I did not see that coming, although it certainly would be expected… seeing how they were zombies, after all! Lol!

    Thank your sharing! 🙂

  5. SueH says:

    Well, certainly a novel concept – zombie setting ! (although, I’d have thought that with all the alcohol Dean Martin (supposedly) consumed his physique would have been ‘preserved’ rather more intact! ;-p )

    Great last line – loved it!

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