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Black Books written by Dylan Moran and Graham Linehan

Series One

Episode One - Cooking the books

(Bernard Black’s shop, he is on the phone)

B:               I don't know Nick, you're the accountant

Man:           These books

B:               Yeah I know

Man:           Hello?

B:               Maybe, I'm not sure

Man:           Hello there!  Excuse me!

B:               Yeah

Man:           Excuse me I just wonder if... Hel...

(Bernard writes ‘oh phone’ on a post it note and sticks it to his head)

B:               It'll be much simpler this time Nick, honestly, the accounts are in order, ok alright well I'll see you in an hour, ok bye (takes the note off his head)... Now.

Man:          Those books, how much?

B:               Hm?

Man:           Those books, the leather bound ones

B:               Yes Dickens the collected works of Charles Dickens

Man:           They're real leather?

B:               They're real Dickens

Man:           I have to know if they're real leather because they have to go with a sofa.              Everything else in my house is real.  I'll give you 200 for them

B:               200 what?

Man:           200 pounds

B:               Are they leather bound pounds?

Man:           No

B:               Sorry I need leather bound pounds to go with my wallet, next

(Rings bell)

(Manny enters)

M:               Hello

B:               Hello

M:               Do you have the little book of calm? I need the little book of calm, do you              have it? I need it I'm late for work, calm, little book, little book,

B:               Is this it? (Holds up a book called ‘Tanks’)

M:               No it's too big, too big, little, just little, small

B:               This one? This one? (Holds up ‘The history of screaming’)

M:               No no, calm, the little book of calm

B:               err this?

M:               Just a little one, that's the one yes, money, how much

B:               2.50

M:               2.50, could I…

B:               I'll just get you a bag

M:               No, no, no bag I don't need a bag, just the book

B:               I'll do you a receipt

M:               No, no I don't need a receipt that's fine

B:               That's broken I'll have to write one out

M:               Please

B:               Littleeeeeee boooook

M:               Look I'll do it, of calm, 2.50 thank you.  Umm errr stroke a no eat a....              no let go once in a while, you are a loose lily floating down an amber                           river, sorry I hate my job.

B:               What a strange man, (through a megaphone) right the shop is closed                               everybody get out!

Woman:     What?

B:               Time to go home, come on

Woman:     It's only quarter to three

B:               Yes but it's my shop come on go home bye bye thank you bye

Woman:     It's hardly fair

B:               It's not fair at all, get out bye bye

Man:           I expect better service from

B:               well expect away, get out bye bye come on all your time wasting                            bastards, back on the streets come on bye bye bye, goodbye thank you              bye bye bye back to life back to reality thank you.


Scene 2


(Fran is in her knick knack shop, opens a package containing a large ball shaped object, listens to the ball, sniffs it, Bernard crashes in through the hanging door)

F:                Bernard, do you want this? Buy this

B:               What is it?

F:                It's a thing

B:               Is it?

F:                Yes

B:               What does it do?

F:                It's very in

B:               You don't know what it is do you

F:                Its very now

B:               Listen would you just pop next door and mind the shop for half an hour I                have to see my accountant

F:                Bernard will you get an assistant so I don't have to do this all the time, oh              but yeah actually I will do it this one time, but you have to do the same for            me day after tomorrow

B:               Ok, why?

F:                Well you know my pal Julie?

B:               Yeah

F:                They're inducing the baby on Wednesday and she's asked me to be birth                        partner

B:               eeeugh, that's going to be very intense, there'll be a lot of blood and a lot              of shouting and

F:                Oh no no no no I'll just get drunk! In fact, she'll be on drugs, I'll be drunk,                 it'll be just like the old days

B:               Ok well have a nice time. bye.

(Crashes through the hanging door again)

F:                (to the ball) Hello? I do sell a lot of wank don't I.


Scene 3


(The accountant’s office)

Acc:           So show me your new filing system Bernard

B:               Well this is March, to boobedeeboo, this is misc, and the rest are other

Acc:            Other what?  Other weeks?  Other backdated weeks is it?

B:               No, other... times, so it goes this week, very recent and all other times

Acc:           You gotta help me out here Bernard I mean what period does all other                              times cover?

B:               I dunno Nick I'm not... wonder woman

Acc:           This new system, it's very closely modeled on the old system isn't it

B:               I'd go further than that Nick, I'd say it was more or less exactly the same,               except... no it's the same, I mean you know I sort of lied on the phone                        Nick, I lied

Acc:           Well I mean, did you hear that?

B:               What? What?

Acc:           Oh nothing, I mean you're lucky I'm so (takes drink and tablets)                                         accommodating. Because a lot of other accountants might be a bit funny,                      (phone), hello? Yes Jane, oh, right, ok, yeah, mm-hm, mm-hmm, oh right                 (shreds papers in a shredder) right, Bernard I've just gotta pop off

B:               What now?

Acc:           Yeah I'll see you soon alright bye (goes down the fire escape)

Police:       He's always one step ahead, the cat has left the basket, the cat has left                the basket!


Scene 4


(Manny’s office)

M:               (on phone) Mmm yeah, it's flying its flying I'm right on it, I mean it'll be in the pipe soon I tell you, the best thing is if I ... (puts phone down when his colleague      walks by)

Boss:         You, Manny, what's that you're eating, soup?

M:               Yes... it's extra chunky

Boss:         What's in it?

M:               Chunks, should I be doing something? Do you need the Gleason                           accounts now?  I have them on disk, err I would've emailed them but err            I had a lot            of clink on the stuffer expander and err, plug went in some                     tizer

Boss:         Look, just shape up or ship out alright?

(Manny makes a face; his boss turns round and sees him, the phone rings, Manny answers it still making the face)

M:               Yeah? Oh hi yeah, yuh, yuh I'm chasing up the err, the company account,              yeah ok, ok. 

(The boss goes through the door and Manny reads his little book of calm)

“visualise the ocean” Ahhh! (Reads the book again) oh a calm ocean, oh right

Boss:         Right come on we've gotta get Friday's invoices in

M:               Ok yeah here I come (knocks the book into the soup with his elbow, drinks the soup, chokes)

Boss:         What is it?

M:               I've swallowed the little book of calm, I've swallowed the little book of                                 calm!

(Ambulance drives off)


Scene 5


(In Bernard’s shop)

F:                (Talking to a customer) Is it some kind of bald furby?  (Bernard walks in)  Bernard! Early closing? How’d it go?

B:               Nick the accountant, Nick the accountant, is a fugitive, I'm not doing my                accounts

F:                Why?

B:               Because you can stick it up your arse.

F:                Bernard, you'll just have to do them yourself, I mean it's quite easy

B:               Yeah, give it a go, sure I could muddle along actually. 

(Cut to hours later, Bernard is poring over his tax return)

                   WHAT? WHAT  DOES THAT MEAN? THE WHAT? If you live in a council flat beside a river but are not blind, WHAT? “What is your mother's maiden name?” What's her first name? I just knew her as Ma, Ma, that'll have to do, Ma.  Possibly deceased.  “Did your non-returnable outgoings for the first half of the year exceed your deductions for quarterly vat returns?

(Cut to Bernard pairing his socks)

                   Right, that's all my socks paired, back to the accounts.  Ok, did your non-returnable        outgoings for the first half of the year exceed your deductions for quarterly vat returns? (Dials phone) Hello ma?  It's Bernard.  No nothing's wrong, come on I don't need an excuse to call my mother do I? (11 seconds later) I am, yeah I know, yes, yes, yes I will, I know, ha, yes, yes, I know, yeah, ok, yeah, GOODBYE I have to do my tax. Did your non-returnable outgoings for the first half of the year (door knock) Ahhh thank Christ.  (Opens door to two Jehovah’s Witnesses) Yes?

JW:            Hello we were wondering if we could talk to you about Jesus?

B:               Great! Come in!

JW:            What?

B:               I'd love to hear about Jesus what's he up to now? come on in, come on

JW:            Are you sure?

B:               Yes, in, in, come in

JW2:          It's a trick!

JW:            It's just generally people don't say yes

B:               Well I'm not people, come on in let's talk beliefs.  Come in, come in, grab a pew. Right let's go.

JW:            Well to be honest we've never actually thought this far ahead.  It's nice in               here, indoors.

B:               What's your favourite story about our Lord?

JW2:          (thinks) Moneylenders!  It has to be the moneylenders, chasing them out               of the temple.

B:               It is knockout stuff isn't it, yeah, and yourself?

JW1:          Oh it's all good but I suppose when he, when he rescued, when Jesus                               rescued the Samaritan.

B:               No that's a story Jesus tells about the Samaritan who helps somebody                 else.

JW:            Really?

B:               Yeah

JW:            Wow

JW2:          And I like the one where he went to dinner with a tax collector

B:               Do you have any literature or anything I could look at?

JW2:          Oh yes!  Those books and magazines we have!

Both:          Books and magazines!


Scene 6


(In hospital, beeping can be heard; Manny is on a hospitable bed dressed in a long white cape and sandals)

M:               Ah there you are, err time for my results?

Doc:           Well it's rather bad news I'm afraid Mr Bianco, the little book of calm is                 lodged between the small intestine and the pancreas, if it rotates a                   centimetre or two to the left, you'll be dead in seconds

M:               Oh my god

Doc:           N no hold on a moment that's just the worst case scenario, the other                      possibility and this is far more likely is that the little book of calm will              move to the right, into the renal canal, now if this happens, you could live       for anything up to ten years, one year, who knows.

M:               Oh my god

Doc:           Because of the massive scarring caused by the little book of calm                                     however it is possible that you'll be in a massive amount of pain-

M:               Oh my god...sorry

Doc:           -during that time

M:               Oh my god

(Doctor gets paged)

Doc:           Oh sorry about this, I'm gonna have to go, we'll operate tomorrow, see if               there's anything we can do about it, there's a good chance you'll survive,                   a 30% chance I'd say so try not to worry, as the book itself says,                            (reading x ray) whenever you're in a tight spot, try to imagine yourself                             marooned on a beautiful desert island.


Scene 7


(Bernard’s shop)

JW:            So he said that because no-one's without sin?  Is that right? Yeah yeah

B:               Yeah that’s right yeah you know that's what it was all, but it was hidden, y'know metaphor…

JW:            So it's like God and Jesus are the one thing?

B:               You got it, yeah, are you sure you won't stay a bit longer?

JW:            Ahhh no really I mean, we have to go its very late

B:               Ok alright whatever, come again though yeah

JW:            Oh yes yes

(JW2 hugs B)

B:               Yeah yeah

JW:            Goodbye

B:               Yeah, later (sees the accounts)


Scene 8

The next morning


(Bernard’s shop)

F:                Bernard?  Finished with your accounts?

B:               Yeah, I've turned them into a rather smart casual jacket.

F:                Bernard, I mean, it is a very nice jacket but what are you gonna do about              your accounts?

B:               I dunno, will you do them?

F:                Oh well look, you got that wrong for a start coz you divide by ten there, oh                         no no no, no no I'm not doing this, no no I have to give all my                                   attention to being Julie's birth partner, oh look look look look there's                          something written on the side there's something 15.99 oh no I wrote that.

B:               What am I gonna do now?  Who's gonna help me?


Scene 9


(Back in hospital)

Doc:                    Ahhh Mr Bianco back with us at last, there's been a complication, you see              we went in to remove the book and umm, well in medical terms it's gone,               to put it another way it's not there, now I don't know how this could've                            happened, the only explanation is that somehow you assimilated it into                   your system overnight which is of course impossible!

(Cut to Manny sat upright with a halo of light behind his head)

                   How  do you feel by the way?

M:               Add a drop of lavender to your bath and soon you'll soak yourself calm

Doc:                    I'm sorry?

M:               If you want to feel calm, eat more raw fruit and vegetables, yoghurt, milk                and seeds

Doc:                    Err maybe I should let you get some rest

M:               When you rest, you are a king surveying your estate, look at the                             woodland, the peacocks on the lawn, be the king of your own calm                          kingdom

Doc:                    Uh...yes.


Scene 10


(Bernard’s shop)

F:                I've got it!

B:               I'm doing them!

F:                I know what this is it's so simple it's for giving up sugar!

B:               Yeah, that's exactly what it's not

F:                No that's absurd isn't it.

B:               What's this now?  blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah blah, yah yah,                 blah blah blah, exemption clause, persons suffering from short or long-                           term injury or sickness may defer their returns until such time as, wait a            minute, persons suffering from short or long-term injury or sickness may            defer their returns... ahaha ha! ahaha!

F:                No no give it up Bernard no you'd have to really cripple yourself, you're                 hardly gonna do that just to avoid doing accounts.

(Bernard smiles maniacally)


Scene 11


B:               Err we've got a special offer on this one.

Man:           Really?

B:               Yes it's free if you break my legs.

Man:           Fair enough.

B:               Great! I'll just get the hobbling post, ok

Man:           Wait, I've read this one, that's the problem with woodhouse isn't it!

B:               Yes it's terrible now hurry up and break my legs.

Man:           But I've already read it!  No I'm sorry I've got to go.

F:                (holding the ball up to the customer’s face) What is this? What is this? Have you any idea what the hell this is?


Scene 12


VO:            Would the birth partner of Julie Williams please report to delivery room                 one

(Manny walks out discharging himself)

(Gloria! Can be heard by a choir)

Julie:           (screaming, giving birth) Where’s my birth partner? I can't do this without              my birth partner, where is she? Where is she?

Nurse:        We told you Julie we can't find her, we've been calling her all day!

M:               When you're feeling under pressure, do something different, roll up your               sleeves or eat an orange.

(Gloria is heard again, Manny stops a dog from barking by talking to it, stops a car alarm beeping)


Scene 13


(Bernard is trying to hammer a nail through his hand; a group of customers are around Fran in a circle looking at the ball)

Man:           Is it some kind of fake breast? Y'know that dads wear.

F:                What are you talking about?

Man:           Y'know for babies.

F:                Ba-babies! Oh my God, Julie!

M:               Be on the lookout for things that make you laugh, if you see nothing                                   worth laughing at, pretend you see it, then laugh.

F:                Yeah, whatever

Yob:           Oi! Hairy!

(Manny goes over happily)

Yob:           What you lookin’ at?

M:               Have you ever noticed a calm person with a loud voice?  Try and speak               softly once in a while

(Yob punches Manny)

M:               Add a dab of lavender to milk, leave town with an orange, and pretend                 you're laughing at it


Scene 14

(Bernard’s shop, Bernard is trying to chain-saw his own hand off)

B:               Oi you lot you better clear off I have to do a few, y'know I have to, I have to,                       ah! Skinheads! Perfect! Ahhh!

(Bernard skips over to them)

Yob:           Do you think you're funny?

M:               What happened?

Yob:           Looking for another slap are ya?

M:               Looking for another slap?

B:               Which one of your bitches, wants to dance.

(Yob drops Manny)

B:               Hey y'know when you're doing the usual sort of threesome thing you do                 of a weekend y'know and err the moonlight's bouncing off your heads                            and your arses and everything does that not get a bit confusing? 

(The skinheads look bemusedly at Bernard)

Right, look this is you, ok? Tralalalalalalalalalalalala Tralalalalalalalalalalalala. (Bernard skips and runs around childishly, still no reaction from the yobs)

Millwall! That’s the one, do you know this chant? Millwall, Millwall, you're all really dreadful and all your girlfriends are unfulfilled and alienated.

(They all punch Bernard)


Scene 15


(Bernard's shop, he is coming round, sees Manny in misty light looking like Jesus, Manny slaps Bernard gently)

M:               Are you in pain?

B:               Not enough!  Where have they gone?

M:               Oh they got tired and went away, why did you do that? That was just so                 incredible the way you just kept letting them punch you and, thank you!

B:               I've been gravely injured now, I don't have to do my accounts, you're a                   witness!

(Knock on door, Manny gets it)

M:               Oh, well I can do your accounts

B:               What?

M:               Well I'm an accountant, well was an accountant, huh, err it's the least I                    could do

B:               You mean you could do more?

M:               Yeah

B:               Could I have a glass of wine?

M:               Ok

B:               And a ham sandwich?

M:               If you like

B:               With a pickle?

M:               Alright

(Bernard smiles madly)

(Manny opens the door to the JWs, they think he's Jesus, scream and run away)

B:               Right well you, you get started on that and I'll begin the business of the                  day.

F:                Car won't start, cab number, cab number, got to get to Julie

(Bernard can't find a light, Manny uses the ball to light his cigarette for him, Fran screams)

Roll titles

Copyright Dylan Moran and Graham Linehan