Trigger Mortis Rides the Range
Vintage comedy script from Dad's humor file. I was just going through Dad's humor file and came across the mimeographed copy. This is obviously very very old and there is no indication of who the author might be. I have fond memories of us as children reading through this script and sort of acting it out and laughing at the very bad puns, or maybe good puns if you really like puns. I notice there are alternate versions of the script circulating on the Internet but this incomplete version is all that we had. Other versions have the villain, Joe, landing in the casket.
Going by the Script
(British Voice) The makers of Fatrical present, Frontier Mortician (Music) Are you skinny and run down? Are you so thin you have to where skis in the bathtub so you don't go down the drain? When you turn sideways and stick out your tongue, do you look like a zipper? Is your weight down so low that you have only one stripe in your pajamas? When you drink strawberry pop, do you look like a thermometer? Then you need Fatrical… The dietary supplement that adds weight. Fatrical adds mesh to your flesh, ounces to your bounces, mud to your blood, and pose to your nose. Fatrical is not a liquid; it is not a capsule, it is not a powder - it's a gas that you inhale. It comes in six delicious flavors - strawberry, raspberry, cherry, orange, lemon, and mustard. Fatrical is priced at only $1.98 for a three weeks' supply. The equipment for inhaling Fatrical costs $2,567 and includes a 10,000 cubic foot tube to hold Fatrical gas, 25 feet of hose, three pumps, two filter tips, and a partridge in a pear tree. Now, to our story, Frontier Mortician. The scene opens in the bedroom of Sam Alamode, owner of the Bar-B-Q Ranch in Sparerib, Texas. Sam is dying… for the 32nd time… and each time he thinks he has a new disease. He speaks to his teenage daughter, Piney, whom he lovingly calls pie - Pie Alamode. (Music Up and Out)
Pie, honey, I'm dyin' again. Go call the frontier mortician. His card's lyin' on the table.
Here it is. It says, "Frontier Mortician - Trigger Mortis. Have Hearse, will travel." Daddy, you've been dyin' for the past 20 years. What disease is it this time?
I feel like a hammer is poundin' in my head, and wheels a goin' round, and little A's and B's chasing each other around in my stomach, and all flattened out like an invisible shield fell on me.
Paw, what you been doin'?
I been watchin' television commercials, and I'm dyin', daughter. Go call Trigger Mortis, the Frontier Mortician.
But unknown to Sam Alamode, his foreman Joe Silver is hiding outside the window, listening to the conversation. He is a full-blooded Indian and Sam has always called him his faithful Indian companion, Silver.
(laughs to himself) Let the old man die. I wish he would! He's been dying for twenty years. Last week he swallowed a dynamite cap and his hair came out in bangs. The week before that he accidentally swallowed a hydrogen bomb and had an atomic ache. He's suffering from flower disease, he's a blooming idiot. If he only knew that this ranch is worth millions - millions! I've discovered a dozen bubblegum wells and if I can get rid of old man Alamode, I'll marry his stupid daughter, Pie Alamode, and be set for life. Ha, ha ha! Hey, who's that coming? Why, it's Pie Alamode's crazy boyfriend, Arnie. Poor kid. He's an orphan, Little Orphan Arnie… I'll just sneak back into the bushes and listen.
I haven't seen my girlfriend Pie Alamode since last week. Boy, she has beautiful eyes. One is brown, and the other two are blue. Last week she rolled her eyes at me and I picked them up and rolled them back. I remember the first time she kissed me. It made chills go up and down my spine… Then I discovered her popsicle was leaking. Well, I'd better knock on the door. (knocks)
See who's at the door, Sweetie Pie.
Yes, Daddy. Why, it's my one-and-only, Arnie con Carne. Hello, honey - and I call you honey because you have hives.
Hello, dearest, how's your father today?
Oh, he swallowed a thermometer and he's dying by degrees. I'm just about to phone Trigger Mortis, the Frontier Mortiican - have Hearse, will travel.
We interrupt this program to bring you a special message from Peter Pan make-up, the make-up that the stars use, Lassie, Bullet, and the Untouchables. Use Peter Pan make-up before your pan peters out. Listen to this letter from Mrs. Mergatroid Fluglehorn of Liverlip, Mississippi. She writes: My face was so wrinkled I had to screw my hat on. I used Peter Pan make-up and now I can't get my hat off. You have no idea how much time and money this saves since I can't get my hat off and don't have to worry about my hair. I give all the credit to Peter Pan." Here's another letter from Mrs. Claudia Cumquar from Possum Junction, Alabama: "My face was wrinkled like a prune. I used Peter Pan make-up and it tightened up my wrinkles in a day. The only problem I have is that every time I raise my eyebrows, it pulls up my socks." Meanwhile, back at the graveyard, Trigger Mortis is getting ready to visit Sam Alamode. We find Trigger talking to his faithful Hearse.
Your motor doesn't sound too good. I wonder if you've blown a casket. This is a grave situation. Hmm, the motor is coffin' again. Guess I'd better quit using embalming fluid in the gas tank. Well, it's time to make my weekly visit to Sam Alamode to see if he's dead yet. I'd better have a snack first… Here are some great Toasties. I like these much better than shrouded wheat. Now… I'll just start the motor, good old Hearse, and I'll just sing along as I ride. Have Hearse, will travel (sings to the tune of "Home on the Range")
Oh give me a grave
Where the tumbleweeds wave
And the worms wiggle in and out;
Where the vultures swoop low
Is where I want to go,
And the buzzards are flying about.
Home, home in the grave,
Where you don't have to shower and shave
For the worms keep you clean
And you'll probably turn green,
And the vermin make sure you behave.
Will Trigger get to the Alamode house in time? Tune in tomorrow to the next exciting chapter of Frontier Mortician to find out. This program was brought to you by the Double Deal Insurance Company, the best insurance in town. If you lose an arm, we help you find it. Here's a letter from Henry Higgenlooper, a satisfied customer: "The other day I hit my head, and your agent paid me in a lump sum. I'm satisfied!" You, too, can own a Double Deal policy. Call your local agent today… Tune in tomorrow for the second episode of Frontier Mortician. Dial us at 145 megacycles, and 10 motorcycles. Now, in closing, a word from the National Safety Council. They predict that 756 people will die in traffic accidents over this holiday. So far only 235 have been reported. Some of you aren't trying. Good-bye until tomorrow!
More about the "Frontier Mortician" - Some Internet clues
- Trigger Mortis, Frontier Mortician
This version of the script Trigger Mortis carting away the villain, Joe. Also, there is a note about the possible author of the script: Believe it or not, the author of the skit is a semi-retired pastor by the name of Warren W. Wiersbe of Lincoln, N
- 1997: "Dramas, Skits, & Sketches" by Youth Specialties
Here is another copy of the script. This book is in print or at least still available. Follow this link for a price comparison.
- Eagle Historical Society newsletter
Download this PDF newsletter for a watered down version of the script on pages 3 and 4, where the script is categorized as a sampling of humor from yesteryear.
- All About Whatever: For Your Amusement...
Personal blog of Rosezilla features a copy of the script.
Dramas, Skits, & Sketches, Volume 3 - By Youth Specialties
Published in 2001, the third volume of Youth Specialties' collection includes numerous scripts and skits, among them "Frontier Mortician."
Hear the Script Read Aloud - Stop Looking at the text and listen for a change
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Candi Calkins (author) from Coconut Creek, Florida on May 23, 2017:
Thank you, Jan Wismer, for emailing this information about Warren Wiersbe, author of "The Frontier Mortician" and other humorous scripts:
"The author is Warren Wiersbe. He wrote this when he worked with Youth For Christ and lived in Wheaton, IL. Subsequently, he pastored a church in Covington, KY before moving to the Moody Church in Chicago. From there he came to Lincoln, NE to be the Bible teacher on Back to the Bible. He retired from back to the bible in 1989 or 1990 and has remained in Lincoln every since. He will turn 88 on this coming Tuesday, May 16, 2017. His address is: 441 Lakewood Drive, Lincoln, NE 68510."