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# Every day you walk down the street Everybody that you meet
# Has an original point of view
-# And I say, hey!
# What a wonderful kind of day We can learn to work and play
# And get along with each other
# You gotta listen to your heart Listen to the beat
# Listen to the rhythm of the street Open your eyes! Open your ears!
# Get together, make things better By working together
# It's a simple message And it comes from the heart
# Believe in yourself For that's the place to start
-# And I say, hey!
-What a wonderful kind of day
# We can learn to work and play And get along with each other
# What a wonderful kind of day, hey! What a wonderful kind of day, HEY! #
Who wrote Frankenstein? It was Mary Shelley, at age 19.
How did this young girl create the most famous monster in the world?
She was on vacation with her friends in the Swiss Alps.
They decided on a contest to see who could tell the scariest story.
And now the ghost, too weak to haunt
Once more shall fade, as is his wont.
Your turn, Mary.
I am by birth a Genovese. My family is one of the most distinguished...
'Out of this friendly competition, a masterpiece of horror was born.'
..He was borne away by the waves and lost in darkness and distance.
Well, that's Frankenstein.
I know it needs work, guys, but what do you think? Guys?!
If Mary Shelley can scare the world with her brilliant story,
-can do it too.
How can it rain for three straight days?
-We're trapped inside with nothing to do.
-I know something we can do.
-Let's see who can tell the scariest story.
-Ooh, I love scary stories.
Really scary stories!
Yeah, no baby stuff. It has to be as scary as you can make it.
OK, OK. I've got a really good one. There was this vampire...
No, wait! It was a giant, radioactive lizard.
No, wait! It was a giant, radioactive, VAMPIRE lizard!
And he was really, really scary. The end!
That wasn't scary, Buster! It wasn't even a story!
I'll give you a scary story.
There was this girl and she went to this dance.
Her dress and accessories were perfect. She danced and danced.
It made her thirsty. She went for punch,
but the clumsy oaf in front of her tripped over his cheap shoes.
His punch spilt all over her dress, and the stain would never come out.
-Was that supposed to be scary?
-Fine! Your turn, Arthur - scare me.
OK. You asked for it.
There was this kid.
On his birthday, he got a hideous and mysterious pair of underwear.
He buried them in his underwear drawer, and that was that.
The next day, he was forced to go to the board and do long division.
Suddenly, his pants fell down... and there it was -
the mysterious underwear, the underwear he had never put on,
the underwear he thought he had buried for ever!
Oh! Arthur, you've got to get over your underwear obsession!
You split your pants months ago. It's over! Move on!
I guess it's my turn now.
My story is true.
It happened to my uncle. He's the one who saw the...Thing.
-My uncle's an entomologist.
A person who studies insects - bugs, beetles, that sort of thing.
That's not the scary part!
Anyway, he's a scientist. Stuff like that doesn't bother him.
But there was this one time...
One night, as a graduate student,
my uncle was working late in the lab with one of his professors.
It was raining heavily.
They were unpacking specimens from an expedition to the Congo.
Some of the insects were large.
-My uncle recalled a beetle with two-foot long pincers -
-the Congolese pincer pod.
Anyway, it was late, and the professor decided to go home.
He had no umbrella,
so he looked around for one somebody might have left behind.
My uncle kept working. He started to open the last crate,
and was surprised to find that it was already open.
-"That's odd," he remarked.
Just then, the old professor called out that he had found an umbrella.
It was a plain umbrella, with a long, wooden handle.
The only distinguishing mark was a green emerald on the handle -
a large, round jewel that caught the light and glinted.
It looked almost as if it had blinked, like some kind of eye.
My uncle walked the old professor to the door
so he could lock up after him.
The professor stepped out into the rain and opened the umbrella.
There was a high-pitched buzzing, then a rattle of scales and wings.
My uncle could see this was no umbrella. It was some kind of a...
-He saw with horror
that the wings were lined with hundreds of writhing stingers.
It folded the stinging wings over the old professor,
and my uncle heard something like a satisfied slurp,
then, with a bloodcurdling shriek, the Thing flew off into the night.
The professor was never seen again.
BELL RINGS Aagh!
I just couldn't sleep - couldn't get that story out of my head.
I know. I closed my eyes and all I could see were writhing stingers.
I kept hearing the satisfied slurp.
And the bloodcurdling shriek...
-Hey! Isn't it beautiful today?
-Why did you tell us about the Thing?
Yeah! I was so happy before!
How does your uncle sleep at night?
Muffy, I don't have an uncle and there is no Thing!
I made it up! You guys know that!
-You said it was true. Were you lying?
Saying that it all really happened was just part of the story.
It's a common storytelling device.
-By the way, Mary Shelley used it too.
-But those details -
the lab and the rain and the insects - you made it sound so real!
Yeah, well, that's what a good storyteller does.
It's not real, so get over it.
-I can still hear the bloodcurdling shriek.
-And that satisfied slurp.
And those writhing stingers - who could forget about those?
-Come on! It's just stuff I made up.
-You know what's really scary, Fern?
-Your brain! I mean, how could you think up a story like that?
And I could think up even scarier ones if I tried.
Listen to this! It was a dark and stormy night...
-Let's get out of here!
-I wanted to remind you about the library book sale.
-Can't hear you!
-Hey, Arthur, will you help me with this?
-Wh-what's in there?
-Oh, Arthur, it's just...
-No! Keep your scary stories to yourself.
Scare Your Pants Off books are always hot items at the book sale.
Are you sure you want to part with these, Fern?
Yeah. Since I read Frankenstein, I found them all kind of tame.
Wait till I plug in these lights - a touch of glitz for the book sale!
Be right back.
Welcome to the totally unscary book sale!
Here, everybody - garlic. Prunella said it would protect us.
-What's with the garlic?
-Begone, Queen of Darkness!
-Your powers mean nothing here!
-I am NOT the Queen of Darkness...
Um, what caused this blackout, do you think?
I blew a circuit when I plugged in the fancy-schmanzy sign.
Hi! We've got lots of Scare Your Pants Off books today.
-Everybody likes a good scare.
Well, if you don't want scary, we've got plenty of options here today.
Captain Underpants And The Wrath Of The Wicked Wedgie Woman!
-So funny! I loved it!
-How about this one? It's a real tearjerker.
-It's so sad. I cried and cried.
Me too. A good writer can make you feel anything.
Arthur, I'm not ready to go!
-Guys, I'm not the Queen of Darkness and I can prove it.
My story was scary, but I can make it unscary. Just listen.
-The umbrella doesn't HAVE to turn into the Thing!
-I can make it into anything you like.
-It's a trick.
No, listen. I could make it turn into something wonderful, like...
-like a dragon.
-Dragons are scary!
Not this one! When the old professor opens the umbrella,
it transforms into a golden dragon!
Golden is good! Platinum is better!
OK! It's a platinum dragon!
And it knows the way to a secret cave full of, you know, treasures -
-jewels and really great, um...
-Accessories! And shoes!
Lots of shoes!
Shoes?! I don't get it.
-Or maybe the umbrella turns into something else, like...
..But a nice one!
-Does it always have to be aliens?
The umbrella can have superpowers. Hold on to it and you can...
-Fly! And rid the world of evil-doers!
Stop! Stop it, all of you! You're ruining the Thing!
DW, what are you talking about? You don't even know what the Thing is.
I have ears! For two days now, the Thing is all you've talked about.
The slurp, the shriek, the stingers!
-I want them back in!
-But it's too scary, DW!
-It could be scarier. I had a couple of ideas.
-Oh, yeah? Like what?
The big horrible Thing should break up into a lot of horrible Things.
I like the platinum dragon.
You mean, like lots of spiders or scorpions running around?
That kind of thing? That's good!
BOTH: We can't hear you! Can't hear you...
The little horrible things are really bloodthirsty...
Subtitles by Judith Russell BBC Broadcast 2004
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