Poem for Uncle Jack Roger and Val Have Just Got In


Poem for Uncle Jack

Sitcom following the lives of a couple during their first half-hour home from work. Who is the man outside? Why do Roger and Val need help from Julie Andrews?


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Roger's fighting unfair dismissal

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and I'm on a shortlist for a Deputy Headship! Woo!

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But, Roger, you've won.

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So, Rog, all of this is over.

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Huh. It's over.

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It's over!

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I have a 31-year-old son called Liam...

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..who's alive.

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-I'm through to the second day.

-Oh, Val!

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Well, it's only the second day. I'm containing it.

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-Who else got through?

-Pam Bagnall.

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I will hunt you down and kill you like a dog.

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-You lied to me.

-Well, given the circumstance...

-No!

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In league with the mother of your child that I didn't know you had.

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-You were fine in the taxi.

-Don't speak to me.

-Oh...

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Are you OK?

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Oh! Ooh, I can't breathe. I can't get my breath.

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You can't get your breath?

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-I know I look contorted, I'm just trying to yawn!

-Stop speaking then.

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Don't speak to me. You're breaking my concentration.

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Ah, no good. I just need to yawn.

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Shall I see if we've got any Otravine. Is your nose blocked?

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-It won't help me. Won't help me.

-Well, are you OK?

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Stop asking me if I'm OK, I haven't got the breath to spare.

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Right, right, sit down on the stairs. Can you do that, Roger?

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-Oooh. Panic attack.

-There's no point saying, "Panic attack!"

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You're just winding yourself up more.

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There'll be a reason why he didn't come.

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-It's not Liam, it's a panic att...

-Stop panicking!

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Just don't panic!

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For God's sake, it's as if you're having a heart attack!

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I'm not!

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Liam will have got mixed up. He'll have gone to the wrong pub.

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Here. Breathe into this, Roger.

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-Oh! I thought a bird...

-No! Paper bag.

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It was good, wasn't it? Sitting in the noisy pub

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waiting for your son you've suddenly got! Sorry, Roger.

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-Eh?

-Well, it's just I'm not having a panic attack, am I?

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And I'm the one that's massively entitled. Had to say that. Sorry!

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Oooh, I just want to yawn. I'm desperate to yawn. Urgh! Urgh!

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It's not because Liam forgot. He just didn't want to come.

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No, you don't know that. We don't know him.

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Oh! Why don't you look at the light-bulb, Roger?

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-That's a sneeze.

-Oh.

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-PHONE RINGS

-Liam. Liam!

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Hello? Oh, hello, Barbara.

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Look, I'm in the middle of a panic attack. Let me pass you to Val.

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Hello, Barbara. Can I ring you back?

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Oh. Oh, I'm sorry to hear that.

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When? Oh, dear.

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No, no, you can't go down that road, Barbara.

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Well, you were separated,

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he could have lived for another ten years...but he hasn't. Mmm.

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But you didn't know that when you refused, you see.

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KNOCK ON DOOR

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With the best will in the world, Barbara, yes.

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Barbara, will you just excuse me a minute, please?

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There's someone at the front door! Yes, sorry, Barbara.

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Liam! Liam!

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Barbara, there's major nicky-knocky-nye door activity

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-in our area.

-Val! Help me, please!

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Barbara, I'm really sorry. I'm going to have to go,

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So, sympathy. So sorry, yeah.

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Yeah, really am very sorry.

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Yeah, I have to go, Barbara.

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Yes. Barbara, listen! I have to go. Rest in peace. Bye-bye.

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Roger!

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Liam!

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Roger! Ohhh.

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Gone.

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Gone. Oh, Val. Val.

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-Was it him, Roger?

-I think it was him.

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-Did you see him?

-No. But it was.

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-Thank you.

-Oh, Rog! And you're wet through!

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-It was him, Val.

-Maybe he'll be back later.

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I don't think he will.

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Did you not hear me? I was doing that.

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Oh. He'd be here now. Come and get dried, Rog.

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No, I know, I know. What did Barbara want?

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-Uncle Jack's died.

-Right.

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I hope Liam didn't think we were in because the lights were on.

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Typical Barbara! We don't even know Uncle Jack.

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We DO know him. He's your uncle.

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He's the estranged husband of my dad's cousin Barbara.

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Uncle is stretching it.

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Well, we call him Uncle Jack.

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-Could you pick him out in a line-up?

-Uh...yeah.

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Well, I couldn't. Not unless the line-up was in context,

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Auntie Nelly's blue settee and he was sitting bang next to Barbara.

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I'd say, "Yep, that's him. I'd recognise him anywhere."

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If I passed him on the street, I wouldn't.

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Well, he's not in kill-the-fatted-calf territory, no.

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No, but Liam is. You're his dad.

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Well, you're his biological dad. I don't know what you are.

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We don't know Liam either. I've met him once.

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OK, OK.

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-Well, what about this? Has Liam got a car?

-Yeah.

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See. You know that.

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I wish he was our son.

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The advantage there is we'd know him.

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Tim and Cath Hooper got divorced just because they moved house

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-and don't like it.

-Yeah.

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Well, we haven't done that! With all this.

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People run for the bus at different speeds.

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We've lost a son, so finding a son...

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How can I have a son with another woman and not with you?

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Well, I can think it was 12 years before I met you

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but you were still mine.

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Even though I didn't know you. Oh, I didn't know you but I did.

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And even if I missed the time and somebody else had got you,

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you'd still be mine, Roger. You'd have maybe come across me

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when I brought a school trip to the Winter Gardens

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and we'd get on far too well and I'd go home to my other husband

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that isn't you, Roger, and our seven alive kids, but even then, I'd know.

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Thank you, Val.

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Because I often think I'm a wanker.

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You know, really, I'm... Oh, shut up, Roger.

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I disgust myself with my endless self-analysis

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which only contributes to my neurosis in the long run.

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D'you think I'm like that?

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I'm stupid. No wonder Liam didn't want to come to the pub.

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You've only met him once, at his mum's house, and you didn't say much.

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That can't be the reason he didn't come.

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But I'm not a very surprising person! After a very short time,

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-people know me quite well.

-I think that's a good thing.

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There's nothing hidden.

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My stupid broad strokes, strong likes, prejudices!

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Hmmph! Snore!

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No, I'm sorry. I would not want to be my son.

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When Liam gets to know you, you will be a wonderful dad.

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-Now come on! Do you want some pyjamas?

-Yeah.

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Are those the only pyjamas I've got clean?

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Well, d'you want them or a track suit?

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No, I'll have the pyjamas. Christ, what a fool is man.

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These are your only pyjamas clean on a night like this.

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I've just been saying gorgeous things to you.

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I just don't think you can be a dad to someone who's already 31.

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Well, be an uncle figure, then!

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Yeah, like Uncle Jack whose funeral we're not going to.

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Roger! I am going to the funeral, actually. It's on Saturday.

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Yeah, on Saturday, I'm opening all the post

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I couldn't face during the tribunal and there's a lot.

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Well, I'll go on the train.

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There's engineering works at the weekend.

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You're going to have to figure out whether you mourn him enough

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-to sit on a bus replacement service.

-Oh, poor Jack.

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-Yeah. Wasn't there...? Didn't he...?

-Yeah.

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Dad saw him at the Liberal Club with his arms around two women.

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-He wasn't supposed to tell Barbara, but everybody knew.

-That's right.

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Oh, good. I don't think my nerves could cope with a cork.

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Oh, Val, your phone's blinking.

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It won't be Liam. He hasn't got my number.

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It'll be Barbara, I'll ring her back.

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-Oh, please, let's not do that now.

-No. Although you should ring Liam.

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Oh!

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Hang on. This is Pam Bagnall.

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-Eh?

-Yeah, she's left me a message at 21.13.

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I'll bet she's drunk, celebrating, calling to gloat.

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-How low.

-Yeah.

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Oh.

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She doesn't know she's rung me.

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Who's that in the background?

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-She's in Sainsbury's.

-What?

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-Just a minute.

-But your name's way down her alphabet. V!

-Shh-shh!

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-Oh, she's called you by mistake.

-No, no, no, no, no.

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Pam Bagnall, according to the evidence

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I now have in my possession, is addicted to Nurofen Plus.

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Give me the phone.

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-Who's that she's speaking to?

-Mr Bagnall.

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Yeah, I recognise his voice from the restaurant last week.

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-36 Nurofen Plus!

-Yeah, but keep listening!

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Does she say, "You get the extra two boxes.

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-"He won't serve me with any more Nurofen Plus?"

-Yeah.

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That's her talking to the pharmacist at Sainsbury's!

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-She doesn't know she's phoned you!

-No!

-This is dynamite, Val.

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-How?

-Well, she's addicted to Nurofen Plus.

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Yeah. So what?

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This could all be tied in with the Deputy Headship dirty tricks.

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Yes, but even so, Nurofen Plus are legal.

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No, Roger. I can't touch her. She's got the Deputy Headship.

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How is this going to help me?

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You have knowledge about Pam Bagnall that you did not have before.

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No, I certainly did not. It's a very telling insight.

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Knowledge is power with a person.

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I'm just trying to think how to use it. I'll come up with something.

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You shouldn't be so desperate for a box of Nurofen Plus

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-unless something's wrong with you.

-Is there something wrong with her?

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Not that I know of.

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-Is she experiencing pain down her left side?

-No.

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-Frequent headaches, loss of vision, anything like that?

-No.

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-Has she signed the contract of work?

-I don't know. She starts next week.

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-You see, I'm thinking, if she dies in post...

-Roger!

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No, I think it's far more likely that she got addicted to them

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-during the stress of the Deputy Headship race.

-She's addicted.

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Someone who goes out in this weather for something is desperate.

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-Roger, if we're going to talk about the Deputy Headship...

-We are not.

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..I'm going to ask you to crush up half an aspirin.

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The woman is a silent assassin!

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-Roger.

-Enough.

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Roger, if you would join me, please.

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Rest in peace, Uncle Jack.

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Uncle Jack.

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RAIN IS POURING

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Why did you do that?

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Just in case he comes back. Just...

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Instinct?

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Yeah. Just a minute.

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There he is.

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He's in his car. Is that Liam?

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Yes.

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Right. I need you to stay calm now, Roger.

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I absolutely understand this. It's like an animal smelling its parent.

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-Yeah.

-Opening the door was great. It was great that you did that!

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-Why?

-Well, it's instinct.

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I need you to do exactly as I say. Put the lamps on.

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Please help me. I feel frightened.

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No, no. Allow him his family instinct.

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He needs to see you, he needs to see us.

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Right, come back to the window.

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Let him see that it's all right.

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This is much better than meeting in the pub. He's right, now just...

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Hi there.

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I understand. I'm not coming out.

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Look like a person, Roger, not a puppet!

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Oh, look! He's like you. He's nervous.

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Ohh!

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I'm very keen to come across like the stepmother you'd want.

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-Not like the horrible Baroness in The Sound Of Music.

-You will.

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I want to be like Julie Andrews.

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And you can be the, um...oh, the Uncle Max.

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-Eh?

-Uncle Max?

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From The Sound of Music. Uncle Max from Salzburg.

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The one that brings the puppet show! The one that the children like.

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-Oh, right.

-Yeah.

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He's funny. The Uncle Max is funny. Pull a funny face.

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Yeah.

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No, hang on, hang on. Uncle Max is criminally un-political

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in Nazi-occupied Austria!

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Yeah, give it a rest for once in your life, Roger.

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Fine, yeah, I agree, yeah. I've done a funny face.

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OK.

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You know, I'm not sure people should speak at first.

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He needs to sense you.

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Why didn't we think of it? It's a good idea.

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I called his name. I hope he heard.

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Julie Andrews on the bed in the storm.

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-My God, that film's a work of genius.

-Yeah.

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Oh, OK. He's leaving now. CAR ENGINE STARTS

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Just very, very encouraging.

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# Goodbye! #

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He's not waving back.

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He's driving off, he's not...

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..it's not him.

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-What's not?

-The man in the car, it's not Liam.

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-What do you mean?

-The man we were waving to, it's not...

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-I'm sorry, Val.

-Well, who was it?

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-I don't know.

-Roger, who have we been waving at?

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-Well, that bloke, whoever he was.

-Why did you think it was Liam?

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Val, I've only met him once.

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-Anyway, you're the person who said it was him.

-I've never met him!

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I don't know! I saw dark hair in a car and I went with you.

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Well, he does look quite like the man we were waving at.

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I asked you, "Is it him?" You said, "Yes."

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-I whispered the yes because I was almost sure!

-Oh!

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And almost in these circumstances is...well, you grab what you can!

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How much have you had to drink?

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No, no, you said that you couldn't spot Uncle Jack in a line-up

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-and you've known him for 50 years.

-Well, you need glasses for every day,

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and that has confirmed it!

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I'm just questioning what that man is doing sitting in a car, watching.

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What's he got out of it?

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Well, he hasn't set out to mock us. We've mocked ourselves.

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Oh, no, Val! Life's mocked us. These pyjamas have made it worse for me.

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Yeah, well, we're all human beings, we should help each other out.

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If I was that bloke, I'd have got out of the car and I'd have said,

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"Look, I don't know you, but, you know, I wish you all the best."

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-Wouldn't you?

-I don't know what I would have done.

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I'm finished. Done waving.

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Can you fill my glass up, please, Roger?

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Roger, can you get up off there and fill my glass up? I've had enough.

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-Yeah, I have as well.

-Oh!

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I wanted it to be Liam and it's dark.

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I'm going to put on some pizza cos I'm starving.

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Good! Put another one in for me.

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OVEN BUTTONS BEEP

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Shall I tell you something, though? Out of it.

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THAT is why you'd be wasted as a Deputy Head.

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-Your communication with young people...superb!

-Mmm.

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See, I don't think he was young.

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Looking back on it, I should have twigged earlier.

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Well, these things start off... everyone has the best intentions

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but in three years' time, when Liam's central heating breaks down,

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he won't ring me to see if I've got any storage heaters.

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Oh, I disagree! Shove up. You'd be the ideal person.

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We don't know him.

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But, Roger, I don't know Uncle Jack, but he's still my family.

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Oh, I'm quite upset now about Uncle Jack dying.

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I'm glad the other husband didn't get you.

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Yeah. Oh, Roger.

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The Deputy Headship. I'm a disappointed woman.

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No, because that, what I witnessed there, that instinct from you...

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-Yeah.

-I know we're not allowed to mention the job.

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No, because there's a void, like there always is with me.

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No, but that instinct with people, that!

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But, Roger, I got the wrong person.

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But you did the right thing.

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I'm absolutely gutted.

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-No, the word is sabotage.

-Well, we can't be certain it was Bagnall.

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-Had you ever mixed them up before?

-No.

-No.

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Was Pam Bagnall seen leaving the cookery block that morning?

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Yes.

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Has Bagnall performed the age-old "saw it on Tom And Jerry when I was two" trick

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-of swapping the sugar for the salt?

-I suspect she has.

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Yeah, so do I.

0:20:010:20:03

Well, everyone's conscience is their own business.

0:20:030:20:06

Conscience is the least of her problems.

0:20:060:20:08

She's two steps to the side of a place in Broadmoor.

0:20:080:20:11

No, Roger, she wants the head's job.

0:20:110:20:13

She will then move on to saline poison the whole of the local education authority.

0:20:130:20:17

Well, she didn't poison anyone. It was just the interview tea

0:20:170:20:21

and coffee, which happened to be the responsibility of Food Tech.

0:20:210:20:24

No, the department where her Deputy Headship rival is in charge.

0:20:240:20:30

Well, I've got my own opinions about Pam. Not good ones.

0:20:300:20:34

But... she probably WAS the best candidate.

0:20:360:20:41

No. I will never accept that. No, she was not.

0:20:410:20:45

Roger, why didn't I get it?

0:20:450:20:48

I was down to the last two.

0:20:480:20:50

And now you say Liam's storage heaters won't come back

0:20:500:20:56

-and Uncle... What's his name? Oh, God!

-Jack.

-Jack.

0:20:560:21:00

Uncle Jack's died. What does it all mean?

0:21:000:21:04

Now, Val, no, no, no. I know where you're going, Val.

0:21:050:21:08

Just shut up, Roger! I will have it.

0:21:080:21:11

Val, please, you know how you get when you listen to this.

0:21:110:21:14

MUSIC: "Those Were The Days" by Mary Hopkin

0:21:240:21:26

Oh...listen to the insane sorrow.

0:21:290:21:34

Val, please, I believe this song to be sick.

0:21:340:21:37

Just ants in a long procession, Roger,

0:21:400:21:43

that's all we are, but in that long procession there are families.

0:21:430:21:47

Kings and queens and workers - class structure even there.

0:21:470:21:51

If you would open your eyes, please, Roger.

0:21:510:21:54

Oh, I wish Sue was here.

0:21:540:21:56

This song is a bit like me and Sue in Food Tech.

0:21:580:22:02

Yeah, because we're friends, me and Sue.

0:22:020:22:06

We work together very happily and we can leave every day at 3.30.

0:22:060:22:11

Can you, Bagnall? You... You Deputy Head.

0:22:110:22:15

This song does not look forward at all.

0:22:170:22:19

Actually, Roger, if I were the Deputy Head and I was in my office

0:22:190:22:24

and I saw Sue making her way over to Food Tech,

0:22:240:22:28

and I was listening to this song, I'd have tears pouring down my face.

0:22:280:22:34

I'm glad I didn't get it.

0:22:350:22:37

Well, there's no way of knowing any days were THE days.

0:22:370:22:40

Thus leaving this song essentially meaningless.

0:22:400:22:44

Jack's died!

0:22:440:22:47

SHE SOBS

0:22:470:22:48

-Put it back on.

-Val, you're drunk.

0:22:480:22:51

Get off it.

0:22:510:22:53

I'm going to get the pizza, Val.

0:22:530:22:56

Did I put it in the microwave?

0:22:560:22:58

Roger, can you get me a large glass of water immediately now?

0:23:030:23:07

Hang on, Rog, listen to this, right. This is my first line.

0:23:510:23:56

It's brilliant.

0:23:560:23:58

Poem For Uncle Jack.

0:23:580:24:00

Oh, Val...

0:24:000:24:01

No, that's not the first line, that's the title. No, listen.

0:24:010:24:04

Tonight, I find I can quite clearly recall your face...

0:24:060:24:10

-That's brilliant.

-Shhh! The small eyes Your bald head

0:24:100:24:15

The surprisingly pleasant smile Given your fangs...

0:24:150:24:19

Yeah, what were they, Val?

0:24:190:24:20

Well, they'd just be overgrown canines, Roger.

0:24:200:24:23

You were a Tory Seen in the Liberal club

0:24:230:24:27

With your arms round two women So who were you?

0:24:270:24:31

-My confusion grows...

-That's fantastic.

0:24:310:24:34

And tonight... Oh, actually, no, not tonight,

0:24:340:24:38

because the poem needs to be timeless. Hang on.

0:24:380:24:41

And this is probably the last time I ever think of you - adieu.

0:24:410:24:49

What do you think?

0:24:520:24:53

That is fantastic, Val.

0:24:540:24:56

Barbara must have that.

0:24:560:24:58

She must have a copy of it to be read at the funeral.

0:24:580:25:01

No, Barbara can't see it

0:25:010:25:02

because it's got the secret about the Liberal club.

0:25:020:25:05

Barbara must never see it, ever. Never show that to Barbara.

0:25:050:25:08

Sorry, Rog, I think I was getting a bit plastered there

0:25:080:25:11

but I've stopped now, just in time.

0:25:110:25:13

CAR HORN BEEPS

0:25:130:25:15

Val, it's the man in the car.

0:25:190:25:21

Who is he?

0:25:240:25:26

Oh, my God.

0:25:280:25:29

Oh, Val, I'm sorry it IS Liam.

0:25:290:25:33

No, it isn't. It's the same man we were waving to before.

0:25:330:25:36

Yeah, but I-I-I think it was Liam now. Yes, I'm... It is.

0:25:360:25:42

I know it is.

0:25:420:25:43

Now that he's out of the car.

0:25:430:25:46

Look how tall he is. It's him.

0:25:460:25:49

-Oh, Roger...

-See from the side he looks like their family but...

0:25:490:25:53

but full on, I mean, look at the height of him, it's him.

0:25:530:25:57

Oh, Roger, please be sure because I'm really investing here.

0:25:570:26:00

I'm sure now. When I met him before, he wasn't smiling.

0:26:000:26:04

What's he pointing at?

0:26:050:26:07

Oh.

0:26:330:26:34

It's Roses.

0:26:340:26:36

With raindrops on. It's one of my favourite things.

0:26:360:26:40

Oh, thanks.

0:26:400:26:42

He surely can't have known

0:26:420:26:43

that we were being The Sound Of Music people, though, can he, Val?

0:26:430:26:47

Well, he's clearly very bright and tall.

0:26:470:26:50

He doesn't get that from Jean. She's five foot three.

0:26:500:26:53

No, you go for the shorter woman.

0:26:530:26:56

Roger...

0:26:560:26:57

What?

0:26:570:26:58

There's a baby seat in the back of his car.

0:26:580:27:02

Have you got a baby?

0:27:040:27:06

He says yes.

0:27:060:27:07

CAR ENGINE STARTS There's a baby.

0:27:070:27:10

Oh, Roger, you're going to be so good with the baby

0:27:100:27:13

because you do all those funny faces.

0:27:130:27:15

Yeah, I'm beginning to think my funny faces were excellent.

0:27:150:27:18

Oh, he's a lovely lad. Generous...chocolates.

0:27:180:27:22

Let's have a drink. Wet the baby's head.

0:27:220:27:26

I'm going to step outside - smell the earth.

0:27:280:27:33

Oh, it's stopped raining.

0:27:340:27:37

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:28:020:28:06

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