The Dark Backward (1991) - full transcript

A man pursues stand-up comedy encouraged by his fellow garbage man. Though his friend, who accompanies him on accordion, continues to tell him how great he is, he actually stinks. When the "comedian" grows a third arm out of his back, the friend uses this twist to get him signed up with a sleazy talent agent, and it begins to look like his career is on the move, even though his girlfriend has left him.

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Uh, ladies and gentlemen,
won't you please, uh,

give a warm welcome
to the comedy stylings...

of, uh, Mr. Marty Malt.

Good evening,
ladies and gentlemen.

My name is Marty Malt.

I'm reminded tonight...

of something
that happened to me
the other day.

I went to the post office
to get some stamps,

and I waited my usual
three hours in line.

And just as I was getting
to the window,

an announcement was made that
if anyone just needed stamps,



to move into a different line.

So I moved into
the different line,

and this giant boot
came down from the ceiling...

and stamped me on the head.

Ooh!

Do I have a headache.

I decided to buy a pet,

so I went to the pet store
and asked the guy there...

what would make the best pet.

And he suggested a turtle.

So I bought a turtle
and got a nice little bowl...
for him to live in...

with some plants and a bridge
for him to walk on.

But he would never
come out of his shell.

I waited and waited,
but he never came out.



And then I realized
that the pet shop owner...

had taken me for a ride.

It wasn't a turtle at all.

It was a rock.

So now I use it
as my doorstop.

Even you didn't laugh.
I was laughin'
on the inside!

I was roarin'!
Oh, God!

See, I didn't want to laugh
out loud 'cause I was eyein'
this chick across the room,

and I didn't want to
come off uncool.

But, no,
I was laughin' inside.
Oh, yeah!

You were funny.
Trust me.

I know comedy,
and you were funny,
hilarious.

I don't usually
use that word unless
I really mean it.

But, yeah,
I'm gonna use it again.

Hilarious!
You were hilarious, man!

You think so?
Hilarious?

Oh, yeah, definitely.
You were sensational.

Well, 'cause Syd said
that I can do it regular...

on Tuesday
and Thursday nights
for 10 bucks.

You see?
They loved ya.
They know talent.

Most of them are probably
laughin' on the inside, too,

unless they were too stupid
to get the jokes!

So 10 bucks a week, huh?
Ten bucks a night.

Twenty bucks a week.

Twenty bucks a week
just for standing up
and telling dumb jokes?

Hey, that's great, man!

You're gonna do it,
right?

I guess so.
You guess so?

Go grab it, baby!

You have a talent.
It's your calling.

And maybe once in a while,
you'll let me play a little
musical accompaniment.

Maybe.
Hey, that's great!

You are gonna
be famous.

You are gonna be so big!

Big!
Let's see you go big!

- How'd it go?
- He was great!

Great, huh?
Fantastic.

He was so funny,
I thought I was gonna
have a heart attack.

He had the joint
eating out of his hand.

I almost split a gut!
What did you say?

Come on.
Give me a sample.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.
Come on. Come on.

Tell 'em the one...
about the movie star
and the podiatrist.

Oh, this one really
bowled them over!

Okay. Okay.

Okay.

This movie star goes
to see this podiatrist,
right?

Right!

Okay.

He limps
into the office,

and the podiatrist says,
"Oh, my God!"

- What's a podiatrist?
- Who the hell knows?

Um--

Well, he-- he limps
into the podiatrist office.

Hang on, Marty.

Hey, Rosarita.
What's the special?

- Um, ham and beans
au gratin with peas.
- Is that the man-made ham?

Nothing but the best.

So, Marty,
when's the next show?
Thursday.

You are lookin'
at the next big deal
in professional comedy!

Well, I-I always told him
that if he gave it a try,
they'd love him.

I've been working on
some new material.

I think it's gonna be
some pretty funny stuff.

People relate to jokes
about things they know,
you know?

A guy goes
into a barbershop,
he asks for a haircut.

Barber says,
"Sure. Have a seat."

The guy sits down.
He takes off his toupee.

The barber says,
"Wait a second.
You wanted a haircut.

You're completely bald."

And the man goes,
"Why, you're right.

In that case,
cut my ears off."

Marty?
Do you have any milk?

Whoa! Hey, Marty!

Oh, God.

- You got a bite, man.
- A what?

Uh, on your back.
A bug bite or something.

Oh, well.

Okay! Let's go!

Land ho!

Here I go

Whoa!

A-ho
Whoo!

Hey, Gus!

Yeah, Marty.
Can you come over here
for a sec?

Uh--

Here, help me
get this out.
What is it?

It's an authentic
Oriental rug.

Wow! How do you know
it's authentic?

Look at
the craftsmanship.
Yeah.

Hey, Gus?
Yeah, Marty?

I thought you
were gonna come by
and listen to my act.

I will, I promise, later.
We'll only be at Nicolette's
for a minute.

Well, I have
a whole bunch
of new material.

I think you're
gonna like it.

I have no doubt
about that,
sonny boy.

If last night's performance
is any indication
of what's to come,

I will laugh
so hard,

my stomach will burst open
and spray bile
all over the stage!

Well, I hope so.

Who is it?

It's Gussy pussy,

Nicky picky.

God, what a woman.

Gussy. Oh, baby!

Hi, Nicolette.

So what'd you bring me,
big boy?

I brought you something
very special,

and it didn't
cost me a dime!

What is it?
Give it to me.
Close your eyes.

Okay. They're closed.

Can I open my eyes?
Sure.

Give me! Give me.
They're mine!

Give me! Give me!

Give me!

Oh, baby.

Hey, man.
Why don't you run along?

We'll work on the act
a little bit later.

Marty has an act?
Oh, yeah, baby.

Marty's gonna be
a big, famous...

comedian.

Yeah. That's--
That's great.
Yeah.

Well, but-- I--

You got anything to eat?
I'm starving.

What took you so long?
Huh? What time is it?

Well, it's 3:00.

Geez, I'd better get home.

You know, we gotta go to work
in a couple of hours.

Just sleep here.
What, in this dump?

Never mind.

Hey, do you mind
if I eat this chicken?

It's been there
for quite a while.
That's okay. I don't care.

So, what have you
been doing?

Just polishing up
that new material.

Oh, yeah, right.
I wanna hear that.

You should've told me earlier.
I'd have come by. I would've.

Okay, let's hear it.

This is gonna be great!
I know it.

Okay, okay.

Let's see.

There was this guy--
Hold on a second!

We gotta do
this thing up right.

Ladies and gentlemen,

Syd's nightclub
is proud to welcome...

once again...

the comedy stylings
of Mr. Marty Malt!

Whoo-hoo-hoo!

Good evening,
ladies and gentlemen.
My name is Marty Malt.

-
- Yeah.

Well, I was-- I was
trying to grab a cab
the other day.

It was rainy and cold.

I forgot my raincoat
and my umbrella.

So I'm standing
at the cabstand with
three other guys and me.

A Jew, a priest,
and a black, and me.

So this cab comes up--
One cab to the cabstand.

And the cabdriver
was Chinese.

Okay? Well.

We were all standing there
in the pouring rain...

when this little old lady
gets in the other side,
and off they go.

Which just goes to prove...

nobody can get a cab
in this town.

This little old lady
jumped into the cab
from the other side,

and off they went.

Which just goes to prove...

nobody can get a cab
in this town.

So, you were laughing
inside again, right?

Well, I didn't exactly
see the whole show.

Me and the hatcheck girl
were getting friendly,
if you know what I mean.

Well, which part
of-of the show
did you see?

That's not important.
Just listen.

I've got some great news.

- How was the underpants joke?
- Will you shut up and listen?
You're gonna love this!

What?

- Me and Phyllis--
- Who's Phyllis?

- The hatcheck girl.
- Oh.

Me and Phyllis
went across the street
for some cocktails.

- During my act?
- Will you shut up?

We were in the lounge,
and there was this awful
comedian onstage,

and this fancy Dapper Dan
sitting at the bar
next to us,

squawkin' about
how bad the comic was.

So I said,
"You wanna see comedy,
mister?

"Catch Marty Malt
across the street at Syd's.

He's a comic genius,"
I said.

So, he hands me
this card,

and what do you think
it says?

Go ahead. Read it.

"Jackie Chrome,
Talent Agent."

So?
So?

So, he's coming here
to see your act Tuesday night!

Man, don't you see?

This is the start
of everything.

Do you know
what a talent agent
can do for you?

He'll just make you the biggest,
the richest son of a gun
this country's ever seen!

- Tuesday?
- This Tuesday!

Should I write new material?
Should I stick with
the old standbys?

What if he hates me?
What if he doesn't hate me?

Maybe I should get
some new clothes.

This is the lucky suit.

Geez, look at my clothes.
Whoa, whoa, whoa,
whoa, Mart.

What? What?
Hey, this lump's
getting bigger, man.

Does that hurt?
Yes.

You better see a doctor
before Tuesday.

The last thing we need
is for you to get
spine cancer...

before our big break.

- Morty Malt?
- Marty.

Oh.

The doctor
will see you now.

Excuse me.

Kitty.
Back to work.

Aah! Ooh.

- So, Mr. Fault.
- Malt.

What? Malt.
Yeah.
Malt.

What, uh--
What seems to be
your problem?

Well, I've got this odd lump
in the middle of my back.

I'm, uh, somewhat
concerned about it.

Oh.

Oh, you're concerned,
an odd little lump?

Well, at first I thought
it was just a bite,

but it hasn't gone away.

It just keeps getting
bigger and bigger.
Shut up. Shut up!

Here's where
your problem is.

What is it?
Will you wait!

I'm a professional.
Would you like me to jump
on a misconclusion?

Diagnose you
and send you off
in a coma?

You'd like that, maybe?
No, no, I thought not.

Just wait.
I gotta get my nurse.

Kitty, get--
Yes, Dr. Scurvy?

Here. What do you
make of this?

Um--

Ooh. It's an odd
little lump.

It's pretty big
though, huh?

- Uh, do I need
to worry about it?
- Now, look, kid.

I see this kind
of thing every day.

You just leave it alone,
and it'll fade away.

Of course, uh,

we-we could always
cut it off.

Uh-- Uh-- E--

If it's going
to go away... anyway,

I'd rather not
pay the money.

Do anything you want,
you little weasel.
I don't care.

I don't care.

All right. Here.
This'll fix ya.

Right.

That oughta do you.

What does this say?

Two.
All right. $250.

I--
I don't have $250.

Oh.

Um, well.

There are other ways
of paying,

besides money.

You know, when I see
a great act like this,

it makes me all hungry for
Blump's cheddar-scented cheese!

You can put this
on a Welsh rarebit.

You can put it on
a-- a Chinese rarebit.

You can put it onanykind
of rarebit there is.

Oh.

It smells so good!

And now it's Mr. Smuntz
and His Dancing Bible.

Well, Martin.
Do you realize
it's been a week?

I'm sorry, Mother.

How long do you expect me to
live on two bags of groceries?

How are you feeling?

It's obvious
you don't care.

I'm on my deathbed here.

Well,

I'm sorry that I'm a day late
with the groceries,

but I got another job.

I knew you couldn't
hold on to a job.

No, I got a second job.

Yeah? Doing what?

Doing stand-up comedy.

Oh, what a joke.

Comedy's big business.

And Gus got this agent...

to come and see me
on Tuesday.

You're not funny,
Martin.

Listen, Marty.
After you get done with that,
I want you to clip my toenails.

They're getting jagged
again.

This big agent
will probably get him
his own TV show.

That's exciting.

And he's gonna
take me along.
Me too.

When Marty gets rich,
we all get rich!

Hi, everybody.
Speak of the devil.

Hi, Marty.
Gus, we don't want
to be late.

Well, okay, pal o' mine!
Let's go!

So you're sure
that he's really
coming tonight?

As sure as my name is Gus!

How do I look?

Couldn't look
any funnier.

Cigars. Cigarettes.

Cigars. Cigarettes.

Cigars. Cigarettes.

Cigars.

So, he says,

"I'd like
the doughnut soup,
please."

Then the guy
behind the counter,
he says, "Would you"??--

Marty! Marty!

He just walked in.
He's here, man!

This is it!

That is
theJackie Chrome!

I can't do it.
Oh, Jesus. I can't go on.

Pull yourself together,
man.

Just picture him
out there naked.

And now, ladies and gentlemen--

I'll see you
after the show!

Syd's nightclub welcomes
the comedy stylings...

of Mr. Marty Malt.

Hey. Good to see you.

This is gonna
be great!

Seeing all of you
out there tonight...

reminds me
of my eye doctor.

He told me
I needed new glasses.

I told him
I already had four pair.

He said I needed more.

So I got four more
pair of glasses...

just to be
on the safe side.

So now, 16 people
can drink in my house.

My friends said that
I needed a hobby...

to fill up my idle time.

And...

I thought it was
a good idea.

I tried stamp collecting,
building the little ships
in a bottle.

None of it seemed right.

But I finally found
the hobby that suits me.

I'm reconstructing
tomatoes...

from ketchup.

Mr. Chrome! Mr. Chrome!
Mr. Chrome--

Sir--

Mr. Chrome,
show's not over yet!

Oh, it-- it is for me, pal.

Your friend stinks.

Marty Malt has to be
theworst stand-up comic...

I have ever had
the misfortune to see.

What are you being
so picky for?

You walked out
before his best stuff.
He was getting warmed up.

Come on.
What do you think I am?
Stupid?

Do I look stupid to you?

Talent is my business.
Your friend has none.

Now, if you'd like
some free advice,

shoot him
and put him out
of his misery.

So what are you saying?
Does this mean
no contract?

On the nose, buster.
On the nose.

Wait a minute, pal!

How 'bout a nice, class
musical act?

Drop dead.

Ah, you're a bum anyway!

He said he liked
your material,
loved your delivery,

but wants you
to polish it up
ever so slightly.

Ah, you don't want
an agent like him
anyway.

Did you see how stiff
his hair was?

Look, he's just
probably not used to
such intellectual wit.

You know agents
these days.

They handle all kinds
of dumb acts.

I would take it
as a good sign,
if I were you.

I don't know.

- You think so?
- Definitely!

And I got an idea
about how you can
polish up your act.

Musical accompaniment!

Yeah, you know,
you tell a few jokes,
I play a few notes.

You tell a few more jokes,
I play a few more notes.

Then, during your bow,
I play a little song.

It'll be real original.

Yeah. Yeah!

That might not
be a bad idea. Yeah.

Let's do it!

You see,
that's what I've been trying
to tell you all alo--

Turn around, Marty.

- What?
- Just do it.

Great Caesar's ghost!

- What? What happened?
- Marty!

Look!
Look at your lump!

Oh, my God! Wait!
Oh, my God! Oh, my God!

Oh, my God!
Oh, my God!

Oh, my God! Oh, my God!
Oh, my God!

That's weird, man.
That's weird!
God help me!

God help me! God!

Oh, my God!
Oh, my God!
Calm down a minute, will ya?

Do something, Gus!
Do something, Gus!
Calm down! Calm down!

Just calm down.

Now,

let me take
a look at it.

Oh, man. Oh, man.

Oh, no.

Oh.

- Can you feel this?
- Yes!

Uh--

Gus!

Oh, my God, Gus!

Whoo! Whoo!
Gus! What is it, Gus?

Oh, my God! Oh, my God!
Oh, my God!

Oh, my God!
Whoa!

I don't know why you keep
running in here all the time.

I see this type of thing
every day.

I told you
if you left it alone,
it would probably go away.

But, no, you probably
picked it, right?

I am sick and tired
of you little mama boys
coming in here...

every time you have an abrasion
or a hand growing out
of the back or whatever.

I am a busy man,
and I can't spend my time
babying you wimps.

Medicine is reserved...

for those with real problems,
life and death kind of stuff,

not these little frivolities
you guys come in here with!

Well, I--
I never heard of this.

Yeah! That's why
you're not the doctor.

Oh! Oh, my God!
That's gross!

That is so gross!
That's the most disgusting
thing I've ever seen!

You promised
you wouldn't scream.

You didn't tell me
it was a hand!

I thought it would be
a carbuncle or a boil,
but a hand?

I mean, Jesus!
I thought you'd
understand.

It's disgusting!
It's gross!

I'll-- I'll always
keep my shirt on.
It won't matter!

People don't grow hands
out of their back!
What's wrong with you?

Well, I-- I didn't
grow one on purpose.

Oh, geez!
I gotta get out of here.
Wait a minute.

Look, Marty, it's all over
between the two of us!

I can't love a man
with three hands.
I'm sorry.

It's all over, Marty!

Oh, yeah?
Well, my Gussy here
eats garbage.

He does?
You do?

Real garbage?

Yup.
I'll eat anything.

I'll even eat bugs!

- Well, I don't eat bugs.
- That's about the only thing
you don't eat.

Well, I have horseradish
on my pancakes.

Did any of you
ever eat dog food...

stir-fried
in castor oil,

topped with
minced clams...

in a sugary
cream sauce...

with pimento
and chives?

No one eats that!

Oh, yeah?

Show 'em what I had
for breakfast this morning!

Whoo!

Whoo-hoo!

Baby!

Ooh. That stinks.

Oh, mwah! My compliments
to the chef!

Wait a second!

You guys
wanna see something
really neat?

Uh-huh.
Well, come on!

Marty!

Party! Whoo-hoo!

Whoa! Wake up, Marty!
Come on. Open up.

Marty!

Whoo! Marty, old buddy!
Ol' pal o' mine!

We didn't wake you,
did we, Marty?

Nah, we didn't wake you,
did we, Marty?

See?
He's still all dressed.
No, I-- I--

I told you he'd be up,
didn't I? Huh?

Huh? My Marty here,
he's like an owl.

Make yourselves at home.

Girls, I bet you never
met a star before, huh?

Mmm.

You are standing
in front...

of the one and only...

Marty Malt!

Ooh!

Marty Malt,
this is Pickles.

And this-- whoa--

is Shirley!

I'm Pickles.
That's Shirley.

Oh! Oh! Pickles, Shirley.
Shirley, Pickles.

Shekels, shackles,
tickle, tackle!

Who cares!

Gus, I don't mean
to be a party pooper,

but it's really late.

Enough with the small talk.

Ladies,

will you excuse us
for a moment?

Look, Mart,
I promised the girls
a little something.

You don't mind
helping out, do you?
Tell some jokes?

I promised them
you'd show 'em
somethin'.

Oh, no.
Oh, yeah. Come on.
Show it to 'em.

No way, Gus.
Uh-uh.

If you do, you can
have your pick of either
Shirley or Pickles.

Both drunk and ready
to be taken advantage of.

Ooh.

Ooh! Ooh!

No way.
Come on, Marty.

No way.

Marty.
No.

Oh, I see how it is.
You ask a favor of a friend,
and what do you get?

A kick in the pants.

And you call yourself
a friend?

Well, am I-- am I
asking so much?

Am I asking you
to kill your mother,
or poke out your own eyes?

I don't think so.

I'm disappointed
in you, Marty.

Who got you the job
at the club?

You.

Who, uh, got Jackie Chrome
to come see your act?

He's a big man,
you know.
You.

Who's been pulling
your butt out of trouble
since we were yea high?

You.
Well, I think the record
speaks for itself.

I think if the shoe
was on the other foot,

you know what I'd do.

Yeah.
But it's up
to you, Marty.

If you don't want to do me
this one small favor...

after all I've done
for you,

then just forget it.

Okay.
Huh?

Huh?
Okay.

All right!
Well, come on over
and show the girls!

Ladies, what you
are about to see...

is the eighth wonder
of the world.

May I humbly
present...

the backside
of Marty Malt!

Whoa! Well, pickle my tongue!
You rascal, you didn't
even tell me!

Tell you what?
Look.

- Oh, God.
- Kind of weird, you know?

I don't know. I think
it's kind of funny looking.

Okay, girls.
Show's over.

Marty. Marty.

Hey, Marty.

When did it
get that big, man?

It wasn't that big
earlier.

You're a weirdo, man.
You're a nutcase.

Hey, Marty.
Mind if we use your bed
for a minute?

Know what I mean, huh?
Huh?

I don't know.
Aw, come on, Marty.

I can't wait.

Gus!
Marty!

I guess so.

That's my boy!

You sure you don't
want to join us?

Yeah. Yeah.
I-I-I-I'm sure.

I'll just wait right here
in the kitchen.
Oh!

Whoopee!

I love it!
Here comes Daddy,
you three little vixens!

Let's get naked!

Whoo! Yeah! Whoo!

Ah, Marty!
Marty, come on, man!

Whoo!

Oh, Marty.

This is great!
Ah, man! Oh, God!

Marty!

Marty!

Get away from me!
Please, Ma!

- Why won't you look at it?
- I can't stand to look at
that thing one more time!

How can such a thing happen?
How can you do this to me?

Do you think
I grew this on purpose?

How do I know why you did it?
You think I could figure out
what goes on in your head?

You're just like
your father.

I give you my life,
and what do you do?
You treat me like dirt.

You think you
bring up a kid right,
and what does he do?

He pulls a stunt
like this!

What are you trying to do,
give me a heart attack?

You know I can't take
this sort of thing!
Do you care? No!

What do you care?

I'm running a nightclub here,
not a circus sideshow.

But, Syd, no one's
gonna see it.
I'm gonna see it!

Now get the hell out of here.
I don't want no freaks
performing in my club.

- But, Syd--
- It's not just the arm.

I've been looking to fire you
for a long time now.
Your jokes stink.

I got me a new comic. Here.
This here's Rufus Bing.

He knows comedy.

Show him your stuff,
Rufus.
Okay.

So, I go into this coffee shop,
and there's three other guys
in there and me.

There's an Italian guy,
there's a Swedish guy,

there's a Jamaican guy
and me.

And there's one cup
of coffee left.

Suddenly this Mazatl?ntian
waitress comes up
and drinks it herself.

Which just goes to prove...

nobody can get
a cup of coffee
in this town!

Look at him! Yeah--
Now, that's comedy!

- But, Syd--
- That's it!
I've had it with you.

Take your third arm,
your lousy jokes
and beat it, you freak!

You're starting
to make me sick.

I'll give you 20 bucks a day,
uh, Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Uh, just keep those
original jokes coming.

Nobody can get
a cup of coffee here!

Oh, that's rich.
That's rich!

Who is it?
It's Gus.

Come on in.

Hey, Marty!
Look who I brought
to see you.

- Hi.
- Dr. Scurvy.

Hmm. What's that growing
out of your back?

An arm?

Hey, Marty,
I was down at the dump,
looking around for stuff,

and who do you suppose
I run into?

Good old Dr. Scurvy here.

So, we get to talking
and decided to come
and see ya.

Yeah, we-we came
to see you and, uh,
we came to help you.

Help me?
What do you mean?

What do I mean?

You seem to have forgotten.
I'm a doctor.

I fix things.

Yeah. Yeah!

Gus, he hated me.
I can't go in.

Would you
shut up about that?
He didn't hate you.

Besides,
you got a gimmick now.
It's a crazy idea.

Let's go home.
No way! Come on!
We're here.

What's the matter with you?
Don't you ever want
to succeed, huh?

It'll never work.

Here we are.

Jackie Chrome,
talent agent.

This is a mistake.

Marty! Marty.
Marty!

On the other side
of this door sits
the golden key...

of opportunity.

Go ahead. Knock.

You knock.

Come in.

Come in. I'll be with you
in just a minute.

Beautiful! Bravo, kids.
That was wonderful. Wonderful.

Why don't you, uh,
give me a call
in about a week?

- I just might have
something for you.
- How exciting.

In the meantime,
keep up the good work.
Thank you.

Thank you.
Cheerio.

Cheerio.
Very nice to meet you.

Weren't they
a bunch of honeys?

Mark my word, you'll
be hearing big things
about Marjorie Zipp...

and Her Human Xylophone.

Uh--
Do I know you guys?

As a matter of fact,
you do, Mr. Chrome.

The name here is Gus,
and I'm sure you remember
Marty Malt.

Oh, no.
Oh, no, not a chance.

I thought I told you guys
to drop dead.

- Calm down there, Mr. Chrome.
- You just take your little
friend and get out.

Before you jump
to any conclusions,
let me explain.

You got no explaining
to me, pal. I told you before,
this guy stinks.

I got no place in my agency
for the likes of him.
Let's go, Gus.

Sit down.
Mr. Chrome, I don't think
you quite understand.

I understand perfectly.

Something wonderful
has happened.

What? Somebody laughed
at one of his jokes, so now
you think he's star material?

Get up, Marty.

Come here.
Come here.

Come on. Come on.
Get over here.

Here stands Marty Malt,
a stand-up comedian
extraordinaire,

but with a difference.
I've just about had it.

Take your coat off,
Marty.

No, do me a favor
and leave your coat on
and get the hell out.

- I've heard enough.
-

Turn around, Marty.

Presenting Marty Malt,

the comic with
a little something extra.

I said get the hell out!

Oh, what have we here,
the old--

The old "fake arm
out of the back" routine?

Let me tell you something,
schmuck. I've seen 'em all.
I've seen 'em with--

I've seen--

It's real?

This is real?

It's-- It's real.

It's real!
It's real!

Marty Malt.
Marty Malt.

We gotta do something
about the name, fellas.

Martin-- Marty Malt.
It just doesn't grab me.

You're right.
Marty Malt,
that name stinks.

You see, Marty, in showbiz,
everything's in the name.

The name's more important
than talent even.

You gotta have a name
that grabs people.

You gotta have a name
that draws 'em in.

How 'bout Gus?

That's-- That's wonderful.
That's really wonderful.

Gus, the Three-Armed Comic,
and His Musical
Accompanist, Gus.

You guys don't know
a thing about show business.

You gotta have a name
that's snazzy.

A name with pizzazz,
you know.

How about
Peppy Rodriguez?

No. No.

The Amazing Maltzie.

What are you, stupid?
No M's.

Nothing that sounds
like Malt.

You don't want anything
that sounds like your real name.

Beside, we gotta push
the third arm.
That's the important thing.

Willy the Wonder Comic.

I like "Wonder."

I like "Wonder."

Willy...

the Three-Armed Wonder.

- Comic.
- Huh?

Willy, the Three-Armed
Wonder Comic.

I got it.

Desi, the Three-Armed
Wonder Comic.

Desi?
Perfect.

Wh-Where did Desi
come from?

Genius, my boy, genius.

Welcome to showbiz, Desi,
the Three-Armed Wonder Comic.

Fellas,
I got you booked Thursday night
at Club Gay Paree. Ooh-la-la.

Friday night
at Sam's Hoedown Ranch.

And then I got a gig
for you at Sloppy's
on Saturday and Sunday.

Sloppy's?
You hear that, Mart?

We're gonna be performing
at Sloppy's.

Let me tell you guys,
come this time next week,

we're gonna be blowing
our noses in money.

Sam's Hoedown.
I ate a dog there once.

I've always felt
that the fingernails
and toenails...

are the most underrated part
of the human anatomy.

The sensual implications
are, of course, self-evident.

However, left in
a natural state,

their crudity,
their vulgarity
is almost unbearable.

For me, anyway.

How does it feel
in the shoulder?
Too tight?

No.
M-Move your arms around.
See how it feels.

It's good?
Wonderful.
Wonderful.

You look
pretty sharp, man.

Nothing's too good
for our boy Marty here,
huh, guys?

That's right.
A wonderful job, Raoul.
Wonderful.

Thank you, sir.
I'm rather proud of it
myself.

Pay the guy, Marty.

Marty, we're gonna be famous.

Only I already had four pair.

But he said I needed new ones,
so I got four more pair,

just to be on the safe side.

So now 16 people
can drink in my house.

I was on a farm recently.

Farms are such funny places.

Somewhere
something's missing.

It wasn't me.
I think his timing was off.

Well, maybe the jokes
aren't strong enough.

Maybe if he did it
without his shirt on.

What? Half naked?

Let's both do it
totally naked.

What are you, stupid?
You want me to lose
my license?

I mean, what we need here
is a gimmick.

I thought my arm
was the gimmick.

It is, but we need
more of a gimmick.

It was probably
just a tough crowd.

Could be, but we really
need a little spark.

How about this?
I think I got it.

Right now I sit
on Marty's left side.

What if I were to,
unexpectedly,
after the first two jokes,

move my chair
to Marty's right side?

Then back again
after two more jokes.

And then you do that,
like every-- every
couple of jokes?

Yeah.

Yeah.

Yeah, I like that.
I mean it would
give the act...

just enough action
to be entertaining, and yet,

not so much
it would cover up Marty.

Yeah, I like that.
That's real good.

That's real good.

I hope all that motion
doesn't confuse me.

I'd hate for my timing
to be thrown off.

Timing, "schmiming."
There's more important things
to comedy than timing.

Gus is right, Marty.
I mean, I believe
this is the answer.

Come on, Marty.
Don't look so down, man.

The act's gonna work.
It's not that.

Well, what?
Well, I--

I've been thinking
about Rosarita.

- What's a Rosarita?
- Just some old girlfriend.

She dumped him
when he grew his hand.

Well, then who needs her?

That's what
I've been telling him.

But our Marty here,
he's a sap.

Are you a sap, Marty?

Are you a little chump, Marty?

Go talk to her, Marty.

No. No way.
She hates me.

She doesn't hate you.
She just thinks you're some kind
of weirdy or something.

- You know her, don't you, Gus?
- Yeah.

Well, you go talk to her
for him.

No. No.
Don't anybody talk to her.

Don't you worry
about it, Marty.

I'll just go have
a little talk with her.

Just talk.
She'll be begging
to come back to you,

once she hears
you're on the verge of stardom.

Hey, I'm doing this
strictly as a favor
to you, Marty.

I mean,
what are friends for?

-
-

Wow, was that wacky!

Here comes Lou Moskowitz...

and His Singing Bunion!

Are you hungry, Gus?

Oh, yeah, I'm hungry,
all right.

What would you like to eat?

I think what I want
isn't exactly on the menu.

- So, how's the world
of garbage?
- Oh, didn't you hear?

Me and Marty
ain't garbagemen no more.

Oh, yeah?
Yeah.

We're full-time
showbiz people now.

That's great.

How's Marty?
Oh, you know Marty.

Still the same old dork.
No respect for anybody.

I mean, look how
he treated you.

Growing an arm
out of his back.

Is that any way
to treat a girl?
An arm?

Yeah. He's bragging about
how glad he is he dumped you.

Oh, yeah?
Yeah.

Marty never did know
how to treat a lady.

But I do.

Gus, customers aren't allowed
behind the counter.

Oh, I've always considered
myself more than
just a customer.

Yeah?
Come on.
You've always wanted me.

No.
Oh. That doesn't
particularly matter,

because I've always
wanted you.

What are you doing?
Don't fight it.

What are you doing?
Stop.
No.

Stop.
No.

Stop.
No.

Stop it.
No.

Gus, stop.

Stop. Stop.

Stop. Stop.

No.

All of a sudden,

the little old Chinese lady
who worked there
grabbed it and ate it.

-
- Which just goes to prove...

no one can get
a cream puff...
in this town.

So here's the deal.
Two nights a week.
That's all I'm asking.

What's a measly
two nights a week?

Jackie, I like you,
but this act, it stinks.

It is the dumbest thing
that I have ever seen.

And what's with the guy
on the accordion?

What the hell does he keep
running all around for?

What's the matter?
You don't know anything
about comedy?

It's called pacing.

Fat slob.
That's it!

That is it!

Get the hell
off of my stage!

Right now, get 'em off!

I've had it with you two.
Outta the house. Out!

Get the hell out of here.
Get the hell out of here.

Go! Go! Get the hell
out of here.

I don't wanna
ever see you again!

You stupid--
Get the hell outta here!
That's the dumbest act--

Now, you too!

I've had it with you!
Don't you ever come back!

And don't you ever show me
another act like that.

I hope you all
drop dead!

Oh, go eat your beans.
Whoa!

What was that all about?
We had that crowd
eating out of our hands.

Well, he wanted you guys
every night for a year.

I said, "No can do.
These guys gotta circulate."

He got mad,
calls Marty a slob.

The next thing I know
we're in midair.
He called me a slob?

Geez, Marty, you're always
screwing things up.

Come on.

Rosarita.

I love you, Marty Malt.

Rosarita.

Rosarita.

Hey, Marty!

Marty, wake up, will ya?

- Marty, wake up, man!
- Gus.

Wake up, will ya?
We gotta get over to Jackie's.
Why?

I don't know, but he said
it was something big.
Something mighty big!

Say, you didn't happen
to talk to Rosarita lately,
did you?

Oh, yeah, yeah, I went in
to talk to her about you.

Man, just forget
about that chick.
What did she say?

She said she hates guys
with three arms.

Well, boys, I think
our boat has come in.

What are you talking about?
Let me put it
to you this way.

You're gonna
be on television.

What are you talking about,
you little weasel?

Does the name Twinkee Doodle
mean anything to you guys?

Twinkee Doodle's
Amateur Spotlight?

Desi, the Three-Armed
Wonder Comic and His
Musical Accompaniment, Gus,

will be filling
the number-two spotlight
on this Sunday's telecast.

Now don't get too excited.

I mean, it's just a local thing,
but it's one hell of a start.

D-Don't you see
what this means?

This is it!
This is the beginning
of everything.

Oh! Oh!

I've been waiting for this
all my life!

All my life!

Gus. Gus. Gus, Gus.
Gus. Gus.

Let's be realistic
about this.

I mean, accordion players
can come and go,

but the comedy genius
of Marty Malt and Desi...

is a one in a million thing.

You're right.

Marty here
is our baby boy.

Hey there, kids.
I know who you've
been waiting for.

Me!

Who's the guy
with the talent show

Twinkee! Twinkee!

I'm all ready
so come on let's go

Doodle! Doodle!

What can you do
Let me see

Play the harp
or eat a bee

Pull your tongue
down to your toe

Come and do it
on the Twinkee Show

Hi, everybody.

Welcome to the Twinkee Doodle
Amateur Spotlight.

Boy, have we got
a great show for you tonight.

We'll start with
Apples Yonahan,

the Man
With a Thousand Faces.

Okay, great, good. Thanks.

You guys are up next.
Oh, my God.
I can't do it.

Don't freeze up on me now.

You okay, Gus?
Never felt better
in my life, Mr. "C."

Twinkee, baby.
Man, I can't
thank you enough.

Yeah, yeah, great.
There's something I've been
meaning to tell you guys.

This is TV.
It's not the stage.

So when you're doing your act,
just stay in one spot. None of
this running around stuff. Okay?

That's what I've been trying
to tell him, Twinkee. You hear
that, Gus? Stay in one spot.

You got it, boss.
I gotta run.

You guys are next.

That was great!
I love it.
That was Apples.

Boy, did you see
all those faces?

Whew! But now we have
a real treat for you guys.

Keep in mind,
this isn't for the squeamish.

Give a nice warm
Twinkee Doodle welcome...

to Desi, the Three-Armed
Wonder Comic...

and His Accompanist, Gus.

Good evening,
ladies and gentlemen.

I heard this story
the other day...

about the tortoise
having a race
with a hare.

And I think
that's pretty stupid.

Everyone knows a tortoise
is a cold-blooded reptile...

that moves about
half a mile an hour.

Of course it will win.
A hair is just something
you pull from someone's head.

I went into
a butcher shop the other day.

And there were
three other people
in there and me--

a Catholic priest,
a Baptist minister,

a Jewish rabbi and me.

And only one leg
of lamb on the rack.

And all of a sudden,
this Buddhist monk
came out of the back room,

disguised as a bush.

And he grabbed
the leg of lamb
off the rack...

and proceeded to beat
everyone up with it.

Then he hit himself in the face
with the leg of lamb, knocking
himself unconscious.

And it just goes to prove
a leg of lamb
is worth two in the bush.

Hmm.

I was on a farm recently.

There was this telephone
in the chicken coop.

And I said to the farmer,
"What is a telephone doing
in the chicken coop?"

And the farmer said,
"Well, how the heck
should I know?

They're not my chickens."

Weren't they great, kids?

You guys sure are funny.

Sensational!
Sensational!

Boys, you hear me?
It was sensational.

I couldn't have done it
without my Marty here.

Hey, everybody,
look who's coming now.

It's Denny Ginkle...

and His Fantastic Gymnastics.

Whoo!

Wonderful. Wonderful.
Excuse me.

Are you the manager
of Desi, the Three-Armed
Wonder Comic?

Yes. Jackie Chrome,
talent agent, at your service.

Dirk Delta.
I'm the talent scout
forThe Night-light Show,

starring Sammy Dugan
in Hollywood, California.

The Sammy Dugan?

You got it, babe.
Wow!

Well, uh, what can I
do for you, sir?
How about a cigar?

We're looking for some,
uh, unconventional
entertainment.

There's just so much competition
in late-night television
these days, you know.

Yeah, I know.
I know.
You know?

Does he know?

Well, I just got
this feeling about Desi.

He's gonna be
a really big star.

You got a great eye, sir.
Desi's a great talent.

We'd like to book him
on next week's show.

Call my assistant here.
He'll call you back,
and we'll make the deal.

Keep in mind
that a limo...

will be waiting for you
on Tuesday.

Do you hear that, Marty?
We're going to Hollywood! Whoo!

Oh, yeah! Oh, yeah!
Oh, yeah!

Babe, perhaps I didn't
make myself clear.
Uh-huh.

I want Desi,
the Three-Armed
Wonder Comic.

I have very little use
for an accordion player.

-
- Oh, no!

Marty, Marty--
Uh, Desi, Desi.

No way.

- I'm not going anywhere
without Gus.
- Yeah.

Would you--
Would you excuse us
for just a moment?

Excuse us.
Yeah.

You guys crazy?
Do you realize this is
The Sammy Dugan Show?

I'm not going on
without Gus.

Listen to me.
Listen to me.
Marty goes.

Gets a little notoriety,
then we work the accordion
back in.

That's the way
you do things.
No, Jackie!

I'm not going on without Gus.
It's either both of us
or none of us.

Marty, don't do this.

Fellas, fellas,
six of one,
half dozen of the other.

I'll take 'em both.

I'll see you next Tuesday
in Hollywood.

People wonder why
they need agents.

-
-

This is the best.
This is the greatest.

Don't you see?
We're gonna be stars.
Famous!

The Sammy Dugan Show.
I've been watching that show
ever since I was a kid.

Boys, I am
so proud of you.

I mean, I knew the first time
I laid eyes on you
that you were going places.

And I said to myself,
"You'd better get
a piece of that action."

You know, Marty,
I've been thinking.

Jackie's fine
for this local junk,

but out there in Hollywood,
they got all them
big-time agents.

Once they see us
onThe Sammy Dugan Show,

they're gonna be
knocking our door down.

We got a contract
with Jackie.
Contract, "schmontract."

What do you think,
he's gonna fly all the way
out to L.A. to sue us?

Maybe.

After Tuesday,
we never have to think
about Jackie Chrome again.

Marty, opportunity
only knocks once.

How come you never
wanna succeed?

I don't know.

You're right.
You're right.

You're always right, Gus.

We're going to Hollywood,
and we're going to be big stars.

That's my boy.
That's my boy!

Hollywood.

Quit screaming,
will you, Gus?

Where is it, Marty?
Where is it?

Where's what?
Your arm!

Oh! Oh!

Oh, no! Oh, no!
Oh, Jesus, Marty!

Oh, no, you gone
and done it now.

I can't believe it.
Where is it? It's gotta
be here somewhere.

How could you
do this to me?

Well, don't--
don't blame me!
It's not my fault.

Oh, well,
whose fault is it?

Mine? Huh?

Well--
You've--
You've gone...

and just ruined
everything.

We were so close,
and you--

Maybe we--
You wrecked it!

Well, I-I never
wanted a third arm
in the first place.

Bite your tongue!

Wait a minute.

Wait a minute.
I got an idea.

I don't think
it's gonna work.
Just shut up and trust me.

There they are.

My two stars.
Come on in.

- Morning, Jackie.
- Hey. Hey.

Well, I got the phone number
right here.

Shall we make the call now?

Or should we wait
a minute?
Why don't we make the call?

A little nervous, are we?

Well, I'm a little nervous
too, fellas.

Nervous?
Why should we be nervous?
Do we look nervous?

Are you nervous, Marty?
I'm not nervous.
No, I'm not nervous.

See? He's not nervous.
Look, it happens
to everybody.

I mean, you know,
it's nothing to be ashamed of.

You're right.
Jackie, you're right,
as always.

We're nervous, all right.
At least I know I'm nervous.

Are you nervous, Marty?
Yes, I'm nervous.

You see?
We're nervous.

Let's get this show
on the road.
What's going on?

Going on?

We're going to Hollywood,
that's what's going on.

Now make the call.

You guys are acting funny.

Well, um, Marty here's
a comedian.

We're supposed to be funny.

All right, fellas,
it's just my nerves speaking.

I mean, it's the biggest day
of my life, but I'm calm.

We understand.
Don't we, Marty?
Yes.

I think it would be best
if you made that call.

Okay. Okay.
All right.

Look, call me crazy,

call me
a sentimental old fool,
but before I make this call,

you gotta do me one favor.

In order to get in the mood,
I-I gotta see Marty
do a spin just once more.

No, nah, come on.
Just make the call, will ya?

Aw, come on, Just one spin.
I mean, look at my hands,
they're shaking.

Without a stage,
it's just going
through the motions.

That's all right.

Well, I need music.

Well, you got Gus's accordion
right there.

Marty slammed my hand
in the door on the way
over here. Oh, God.

Come on, just one quick spin.
I mean, we can't keep
Dirk Delta waiting. Please.

Get out of the way, Gus.

One more time, Marty, for me.
Come on, one more.

A real one.
Inspire me.

Okay.
Yeah.

A real spin.
A real spin.

Again. Again.

- Again. Again.
-

One more time for the Gipper.
Come on.

-
-

Turn around, Marty.

Turn around, Marty.

Turn around, Marty.

Turn around, Marty.

It's gone.
It's gone.

It's gone.

Where is it?

Where is it,
you stupid little maggot?
Where is it?

Say, leave him alone,
you bum.

Nobody pushes
my Marty around.

It's--
It's not my fault.

But where is it?

Well, who the hell knows
where it is?

It just must have
sunk back into him.

I'm sorry, Jackie.
I didn't mean to.

I'm ruined.

It's all over.

I'm ruined.

What are you talking about,
you're ruined?

Hey, that's not
the Jackie I know.

What, you're not
even gonna call him?

Big deal.
So he doesn't
have three arms.

He's still gonna tell
the same jokes. I'm still
gonna play the same notes.

They'll never buy it.
Sure they will.

I mean, what,
are you gonna give up
without even calling him?

- What am I gonna tell him?
- Don't tell him anything.

We'll stuff
the bat back in.
Who's gonna know?

Everybody knows
the old "fake arm
out of the back" trick.

Maybe you should...
tell him the truth.

You should call
before it gets too late.

Yeah, Dirk Delta's
secretary, please.
Jackie Chrome calling.

Hi. This is Jackie Chrome.

Yes, yeah, mm-hmm.

Tuesday.
Tuesday morning. Okay.

Flight 56.
Okay. Yeah.

No, that's great.
Yeah. Uh-huh. Mm-hmm.

Yeah, uh, by the way,

Desi, the Three-Armed
Wonder Comic,

yeah,

he's only got two arms.

He only has two arms.

Yeah.
I'm on hold.

Oh, Dirk.
How are you?

Mr. Delta, how are you?

That's right.
J-Just two.

No, no, the one
out of his back.

Okay, yeah.
I'm on hold again.

- Wh-Wh-What?
- Shh.

Right here.
Right here.

Uh-huh.

Oh, great.

Wonderful. Wonderful.
Absolutely.

Geez, thanks a million.
Okay, see you Tuesday.
Bye-bye.

-
- What's the beef, chief?

It's not as bad
as we thought, boys.
Honesty pays.

Honesty pays.
That's what
I've always believed.

You heard me tell him
straight out that Marty here's
only got two arms,

and he said they've
gotta fill the slot...

and all the arrangements
had been made.

Uh, I mean, he was honest,
you know. He said, "Comics with
two arms are a dime a dozen."

He said, "But Dirk Delta
is a man of his word."

I was really impressed.
So here's the deal.

He said, "Send out
the accordion player."

You're going to Hollywood,
Gus, me boy.

You're going to Hollywood!

Hollywood?

H-H-Hollywood?

Do you hear that, Marty?

I'm going to Hollywood!

Bless you, sir, bless you.

Oh!

In you go, little lady.
Bye, Marty.

Jackie.
Oh, hi, Marty.

I'll be seeing you,
buddy, huh?

You're going too?

Oh, yeah.
I'm gonna open up
this big agency in Hollywood.

No more
of this piddly stuff
for Jackie Chrome.

But what about me?

Ooh, uh,

Desi, the Two-Armed
Wonder Comic
has a great snap to it.

See ya.

See ya, Mart.

Can I help you?

Where's Rosarita?

She doesn't work here anymore.
You gonna order?

Mashed potatoes, please.

Ladies and gentlemen,
Syd's nightclub is proud
to welcome back...

the comedy styling
of Mr. Marty Malt.

Up until a few days ago,

I had a third arm growing
out of the middle of my back.

No.

It's true.

Three arms.

It was very frightening.

It started out as a lump.

And then it grew into
a... baby hand.

Anyway, it eventually
grew into a...

- full-sized arm.
-

And my best friend, Gus,

said I was a weirdy.

Having a third arm
taught me quite a bit
about my friends though.

My girlfriend dumped me.

Gave me the boot.

I guess she didn't like me
always having the upper hand.

Now that it's gone though,

I kinda miss it.

I mean, I was making a lot
of money as the turnstile
at Kiddieland.

It's very embarrassing
having three arms though.

Every time I would go
to a restaurant,
when I would stand up,

people would think
I was the coatrack.

At one point
I was so depressed,

I thought I would join
the military.

But I failed the physical.

Can you imagine?

Me, not being allowed
to join the army.