Workshop Wednesday

Okay, so along with running this site, my comic, my Castlevania site, and other little projects here and there, I've done a fair bit of creative writing. Mostly I write movie and TV show scripts that don't tend to go anywhere, but I find it relaxing from time to time to sit down a drop a whole bunch of dialogue on a page. Since I have some scripts (in various forms of completion) sitting around, I figured I'd post up some of these. It's a good way to put some interesting content up, and it might just motivate me to finish some of these stories I started.

Today we begin with a script that I've actually written on about three times over the years. It started as a novel (that I never finished) before I turned it into a movie script for a writing class back in college. More recently I was working with a low-budget production group and this story idea came up as a possible movie we could eventually make, so I started re-adapting it, updating the writing and improving the story over all.

I'll post this in chunks, instead of all at once, so that I don't drown you in walls of text. So let's begin with the opening sequence of Van Helsing Syndrome.

Van Helsing Syndrome: Part 1

INT: COFFEE SHOP, DAY.

Various customers are going about their day -- checking their phones, working on laptops, drinking coffee. We see MARK in a corner, sipping on his brew from a ceramic cup, reading a paper. INTERN walks up to counter to order a drink.

INTERN:

I need a large coffee, two creams, Splenda, extra hot.

BARRISTA:

House Blend or French Roast?

ANGRY CUSTOMER comes up into line at this point.

INTERN:

Oh, shoot, I don't know. Is one stronger?

BARRISTA:

The French Roast has a more full-bodied flavor. Darker, certainly, but not as overpowering as our seasonal blend.

INTERN:

Do you have any of the seasonal?

BARRISTA:

Not currently. Probably next week.

INTERN:

Crap, well... hold on.

INTERN gets out their phone, starts to dial. ANGRY CUSTOMER tries to get their attention.

ANGRY CUSTOMER:

Excuse me...

INTERN:

One sec.

BARRISTA turns around, goes back to tending other drinks for the drive-through.

INTERN:

(to phone) Yeah, they don't have seasonal. They say the French is strong... (pause) Yeah... one sec.

INTERN waves over BARRISTA.

INTERN:

Can we make that a French Roast with an extra shot?

BARRISTA:

Extra shot of what flavor?

INTERN:

No, not a flavor. Extra shot of espresso. (pause) Actually, my boss wants to know if you have flavored coffees?

BARRISTA:

Vanilla, coconut, Irish cream, hazelnut, and cherry-chicory.

INTERN:

Uhm... (pause) No, I don't know how strong the flavor... (pause) Can I get a sample of the chicory?

ANGRY CUSTOMER:

I just need a coffee.

INTERN:

Dude, I just need a coffee. Wait a sec!

BARRISTA:

I can't really do samples.

INTERN:

Well my boss doesn't want the chicory if the flavor is too strong. Can we blend the flavored with the French and put in an extra shot?

BARRISTA:

I'll have to charge you full price for the flavored, though.

INTERN:

Yeah, that's cool.

BARRISTA goes to the machine, pours out the flavored and then the French ANGRY CUSTOMER is starting to really stew, while INTERN just taps away at their phone, checking messages. BARRISTA comes back over.

BARRISTA:

Three bucks even.

INTERN pats their pocket.

INTERN:

Shit, I left my wallet in my car. One sec!

ANGRY CUSTOMER:

Seriously!

INTERN:

Just hold your fucking horses, bro. Two seconds!

ANGRY CUSTOMER:

Hold my... (sputters).

ANGRY CUSTOMER starts to float, causing the lights to flicker. Their skin melts, wrinkles, gets truly hideous. They thrust their hand into the INTERN's chest, splashing blood over the counter, display case, and BARRISTA.

BARRISTA:

(screams)

ANGRY CUSTOMER:

How about I hold this?!

ANGRY CUSTOMER rips their hand out, revealing the INTERN's heart. INTERN collapses. ANGRY CUSTOMER floats towards BARRISTA. From behind ANGRY CUSTOMER we see a hand come into frame, tap ANGRY CUSTOMER on the shoulder.

MARK:

See, right up until you ripped out their heart, I was on your side.

ANGRY CUSTOMER spins around, ready to attack.

MARK:

Not that they didn't have it coming, but in a more metaphorical sense, you dig?

SFX: Three gun shots.

ANGRY CUSTOMER's head explodes, raining more gore down on our poor BARRISTA.

BARRISTA:

(screams)

ANGRY CUSTOMER falls to the ground, twitching. MARK steps over the body and sets down his ceramic cup.

MARK:

Could I get another, to-go, please?

BARRISTA just stares at him. MARK points to a brewing machine farther away from the carnage.

MARK:

And use the machine over there, please.

BARRISTA numbly grabs a to-go cup, brews a cappuccino quickly, and the sets it on the counter. MARK sets down a five and turns around. The rest of the people in the store are just staring at him. MARK walks across the store, slips in some offal, rights himself, and then walks to the exit. He pulls out his phone.

MARK:

Yeah, I'm gonna need a clean up. My GPS location.

MARK takes a sips of his coffee.

MARK:

Guh. French Roast.

MARK chucks the rest into the nearby waste bin.

FADE TO BLACK.

Opening Credit Montage

SFX: Three gunshots

Blood pours out of three holes, coalesces into the words Van Helsing Syndrome. Letters fade out. Credits roll while images of monsters appear on screen. Very 1970s style imagery.

MARK (V.O.):

So here's the deal. Everything you ever feared, everything you thought was a myth, it all exists. Vampires, werewolves, zombies. Most of society doesn't know because it sounds crazy, right? Monsters belong in teen-lit fictions where the girl has to decide between the brooding mummy or the lizard man with the amazing abs. Humans are more comfortable with the amazing being fictional.

That's where I come in. I work for a nameless organization that doesn't exist in any government database. However, most of us call it the PHA: Preternatural Hunters Agency. We patrol that which goes bump in the night. And when a vampire rips your throat out, I'll be the guy there to kill it afterwards.

Sorry about the throat, though...

End Part 1:

That's the first section. We'll keep going until I run out of stuff (or finish this script).