Matthew Merkovich
Ben Sandofsky

© 2008

EXT. YELLOW CRAFTSMAN HOUSE, PORCH - NIGHT The front door is wide open. An Xbox 360 flies out and hits the porch, snapping off several large plastic chunks. Inside the house, the voice of CARLA hollers. CARLA (O.S.) Take your video games! The controllers for the Xbox fly out the door, along with a few games, all chased by GARY. Gary is 35 but looks 40. He could be the poster child for Hooter's patrons everywhere. Unshaven, hot sauce stained T-shirt, cargo shorts, untied sneakers. He's obviously drunk. GARY hurriedly stumbles out after the broken Xbox and begins collecting up the pieces, assessing the damage. GARY Carla, will you quit being psycho? Carla stops in the doorway. She is 30 but looks 25. Blonde. Gorgeous. She could be a model for a Banana Republic catalog. CARLA And take your booze. Carla hurls a bottle of Jack Daniel's at Gary, who clumsily fumbles it around before finally getting a solid grip. He glares at Carla. GARY Oh, I will take my booze! Carla pulls a comic book out of its protective sleeve and waves it high above her head. CARLA And take your stupid comic book. Gary's eyes follow the waving comic like a labrador retriever following a waving tennis ball. GARY (In time to Carla's waving.) No! Don't do it! Not that! Bam! The crumpled comic book nails Gary right between the eyes. CARLA And just go! The comic falls at Gary's feet. Gary grabs it and tries to smooth its pages.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 2. GARY C'mon Carla! This is an original 1952 Electric Avenger, issue one. Carla looks down at Gary. He is on his knees, trying to smooth his precious wrinkled comic book. He looks pathetic - like a super model satisfying her coke habit off a public bathroom toilet seat. CARLA You forgot my birthday, so you gave me one of your comics? Three years together Gary. Do you even know me at all? GARY This comic's worth a lot of money. (to the comic) Oh god. This is ruined. He keeps smoothing. CARLA Gary, I don't love you anymore. That gets his attention. GARY Don't be ridiculous Carla. We are going to go back inside and kiss and make up and everything will be fine. CARLA Not this time Gary. Carla's angry resolve melts into sadness. Gary looks at the sad woman standing above him and for a moment she magically transforms back into the luminous, smiling, beautiful girl who loved him in days gone by. The dream fades back into reality. A tear runs down Carla's cheek. GARY Wait. CARLA It's too late Gary. Maybe one day you'll learn, just not with me. Carla really starts crying now as she closes the door, leaving Gary on the porch, totally alone. Gary stares at the door. The realization of his stupidity washes over his face.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 3. GARY (sotto voce) I'm sorry... He lowers his gaze down to the Electric Avenger, fighting thugs on the cover of the crumpled comic. FADE OUT: EXT. EMPTY CITY STREET CORNER - NIGHT Subtitle: "One year later..." Gary's fist clutches the comic, now in tatters. His other fist clutches a half empty bottle of Jack Daniel's. He shambles down the street wearing the same clothes he had on when Carla dumped him - only now, they're torn, stained and filthy. His 5 o'clock shadow has become a ratty beard. He looks homeless. THUNDER rumbles overhead and Gary takes a swig from the bottle of Jack. An attractive yuppie HUSBAND and WIFE turn the corner and knock right into him. The husband and wife are dressed to the nines - him in a tailored suit, her in a red evening dress. WIFE Oh, excuse me. Gary freezes in his tracks and stares at the woman. She is blonde, gorgeous. GARY Carla? WIFE I'm sorry. My name's not Carla. A few drops of rain begin to fall. HUSBAND C'mon dear. The man pulls her close as they hurry away. Gary follows. GARY I'm sorry I forgot your birthday. HUSBAND She isn't your Carla! Gary grabs her, spinning her face to his. GARY Please forgive me!

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 4. The woman screams as lightening flashes. The husband lands a haymaker on Gary's chin, knocking him back into a pile of garbage bags. HUSBAND Leave us alone, you drunk! The couple dashes off leaving Gary sobbing. The drizzle turns to a downpour. Gary takes another long drink from his bottle. The husband and wife are far down the street now. Gary's eyes follow the woman as she and her husband disappear behind another corner. GARY I'm sorry Carla. Gary stands up, looks to heaven and lets out a scream. GARY (CONT'D) CAAAAARRRRRRLLLLLAAAAA! Then he starts to chug the bottle. It's suicide by alcohol. As he guzzles... KABLAM! A lightning bolt shoots straight through the bottle of Jack, and into Gary. Electricity illuminates him from within, like a full-color animated X-Ray. The electricity travels into Gary's very brain, short circuiting neurons and arcing between brain cells. Back outside his brain, his muscles spasm and lock. His teeth grind and gnash. When its over, he collapses. FADE OUT: EXT. EMPTY CITY STREET - LATER Darkness. Muffled VOICES. The voices grow clearer. VOICE (O.S.) Quick, find his wallet. Gary's eyes snap open. The voices belong to two THUGS who are crouching over Gary. STOCKY THUG, is a stout man with a short beard. LANKY THUG, is a skinny guy with a pock marked face and prematurely thinning hair. Stocky Thug is going through the pockets of Gary's charred smoking clothes. Gary leaps to his feet, but his equilibrium didn't get the memo. He flails around and barely keeps his balance. The thugs leap up as well. LANKY THUG Whoa! He's awake! Gary sees his comic book in the Lanky Thug's hand.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 5. GARY You tryin' to rob me? Pow! Gary socks Lanky in the nose. The comic goes flying and Lanky goes to the ground. Stocky jumps Gary from behind and gets him in a bear hug. Gary struggles, but his arms are pinned. Lanky stands up and shakes off the pain. His nose trickles blood. He heads right back at Gary, cracking his knuckles. LANKY THUG Hold him still. Gary's eyes spot his Electric Avenger comic book lying on the ground. He sees his hero on the cover fighting two men with electrical bolts flying from his fists. As Gary fixates on the comic, the street lights above start to flicker. Lanky stops in his tracks. Both thugs watch the flickering street lights which build in intensity and then blink out. Darkness once again, but this time the darkness is interrupted by flashes of lightning from Gary's fists. The flashes illuminate snapshots of the two Thugs taking a walloping. When it is over, the street lamps return and Lanky and Stocky lie on the ground, unconscious. Gary is exhausted, breathing heavily as he looks at the unconscious thugs. Across the street, in a comic book shop window, a slowly pulsing yellow glow catches Gary's eye. What's this? He heads to investigate. EXT. IN FRONT OF A COMIC BOOK SHOP - CONTINUOUS When Gary reaches the shop window, the glow has become a blinding white light. His eyes adjust and in the window before him stands THE ELECTRIC AVENGER himself. His costume is magnificent - flowing cape, lightning bolt emblazoned across his chest. But the electric avenger is a silver-haired old man. Gary falls to his knees in pious reverence. GARY Electric Avenger? THE ELECTRIC AVENGER Gary, you have found your destiny. GARY My destiny? THE ELECTRIC AVENGER I'm getting old Gary. It is time I passed on the mantle of The Electric Avenger to someone younger. You have proven yourself worthy.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 6. GARY But Carla hates me. THE ELECTRIC AVENGER Go to her Gary. She may be in danger. The Electric Avenger begins to shimmer and sparkle. He emits gentle tendrils of electricity that caress Gary. Suddenly, there is a brilliant flash! Gary has transformed - flowing cape, lightning bolt emblazoned across his chest. Handsome, clean-cut and magnificently heroic, Gary has become The Electric Avenger. GARY I'm coming Carla. Gary leaps up, and flies into the sky. EXT. YELLOW CRAFTSMAN HOUSE - EVENING The house is dark. Through the windows, the dark silhouette of an INTRUDER scans a flashlight around the living room. Gary streaks down to street level, landing right in front of the house. He looks at the windows and sees the Intruder and the flashlight. It looks like the Watergate break in. Gary rushes to the front door and raises his leg for a mighty kick. INT. CARLA'S LIVING ROOM - CONTINUOUS The front door is smashed right off the hinges and lands on the floor. Gary leaps in and is suddenly met by the beam of the flashlight. The Intruder and Gary simultaneously leap at one another. They battle. Fists fly. The Intruder catches Gary by surprise and clobbers him in the head with his flashlight. Gary lands flat on his back. He raises his hands to release electrical retribution when suddenly all the lights in the house come on. In the light, Gary's hands immediately lose their charge. Gary is defenseless and confused by his sudden loss of power. He looks to the intruder who appears to be just some good-looking, tanned guy in a pink polo shirt and chinos. The Intruder readies his final death blow. CARLA (O.S.) (shouting to be heard) Honey, I found the circuit breaker. It's in the basement. The Intruder pauses and looks to the source of the voice.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 7. INTRUDER (to Carla) Stay back! Carla's voice grows nearer. CARLA (O.S.) What was all that... She walks into the living room. CARLA (CONT'D) ...noise? She sees the intruder wielding the flashlight about to clobber Gary. Gary looks at her. GARY Carla! I'm here to save you! You are being robbed! Carla's shocked look is replaced by curiosity. CARLA Gary? Is that you? Carla steps farther into the room revealing a large standing floor mirror behind her. Outside the mirror Gary is The Electric avenger, but in its reflection, Gary is the lightning-charred homeless man he was back on the city street. Gary stares deeply at his reflection. FLASHBACK TO: EXT. EMPTY CITY STREET - NIGHT Gary's memory replays the two thugs hovering over his charred, smoking body. But in this memory these thugs aren't thugs. STOCKY He looks bad. We need to call an ambulance. LANKY Maybe he's got an ID. Stocky is patting Gary down frantically. LANKY (CONT'D) Quick, find his wallet. FLASHBACK TO:

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 8. EXT. EMPTY CITY STREET - LATER It's the finale of the "Thug" fight as Gary knocks the second good Samaritan to the ground next to the first. The streetlights above flicker as Gary looms over his two unconscious victims. FLASHBACK TO: EXT. IN FRONT OF THE COMIC BOOK STORE - NIGHT Still in Gary's memory, he approaches the window. Behind the glass is a yellow blinking neon sign for the store and a mannequin wearing a shabby super-hero costume. A hand-written sign below the costume reads, "After Halloween Sale! 75% off!!!" Gary's memory flashes forward. The window in front of the store is smashed. Glass is scattered across the sidewalk. The mannequin is naked and Gary admires the shabby costume that he now wears. He leaps up to fly but immediately lands. Instead he runs full speed down the street, hands stretched out before him like Superman. INT. CARLA'S LIVING ROOM - CONTINUOUS BACK TO PRESENT Carla now stands next to the Intruder - her new boyfriend. He holds her protectively. Gary opens his eyes and looks to Carla. GARY I'm so sorry Carla. He begins sobbing. Carla sees Gary as he is, an electricity charred, broken man sitting on the floor in a shabby halloween costume. Tears well up in her eyes as well. She walks to Gary and puts her hands on his shoulders. CARLA You left your comic books when you disappeared. Would you like them back? INTRUDER (pointing at Gary) Carla, who is this guy? Gary looks up at Carla. She wipes the tears from his eyes with her fingertips. She looks at his dirty face and Gary magically transforms back into the luminous, smiling, beautiful boy she once loved. He looks like a super hero.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 9. CARLA This is The Electric Avenger. FADE OUT