Back (2016) s01e03 Episode Script

Episode 3

1 Jaffa Cake, Jaffa Cake, baker's man Did the Jaffa Cake guys come up with that or did the rhyme precede the invention of Jaffa Cakes? - It's "pat-a-cake".
- Fuck off! - It is.
- Pat-a-cake? That doesn't make sense.
You don't pat a cake.
"Good cake.
Well done, cake.
" It's a nursery rhyme.
It'll be something to do with the plague, they always are.
Is everything all right? Do you want to fuck Mike and Jan? - Why? What have they said? - No, just objectively.
Do you want to fuck them when you see them? No.
But I'm not really a "fuck on sight" kind of guy.
I think you should want to fuck bar staff.
You come in, you see them, want to fuck them, and then you buy more drinks cos you want to be around them.
Does this apply in all retail? Should I want to fuck Fat Chris at the Londis? Would I buy more milk? Probably.
More fuckable staff could increase footfall.
You know Q3 footfall is down.
- What's down? - Footfall in the pub.
Do you think footfall means people tripping over? No.
Let's be careful how we alter the Barleycorn experience.
It's grown organically over many years.
This is a pub, not a YouTube channel.
It just seemed better when I was fostered here.
Permanently packed out.
A Golden Age I'm not sure about golden I just think the place needs a fresh look.
Some visual Viagra.
We just have to keep providing people with the chemicals that stop "the feeling".
As long as we help keep "the feeling" at bay, we're doing our job.
Geoff, you like Mike and Jan, don't you? - From Bucks Fizz? - Our bar staff.
Oh, yeah.
I love them.
- Yeah.
- Could you maybe be more vocal in your praise? Andrew doesn't think they're fuckable enough.
Apparently, everything's got to be sexy now.
They use sex to sell everything these days, don't they? - Perfume, cars, condoms - Very true.
Lube, that's another one.
It just might be interesting to see if we can get a new crowd in.
I agree.
Oh, Cass.
Dad's sports jacket.
Cancer Research Shop? Hospice Care Shop? It's quite hipstery, actually.
- So cancer.
- Yep, cancer has a younger vibe.
We shouldn't fix things if they ain't, or aren't, broke .
You change personnel at your peril.
Look at Spooks.
Well, as a semi-Buddhist, I believe all change is good.
Our atoms completely change each year, Stephen.
All of the atoms in our bodies.
That's science.
All of the atoms that make up our bodies completely change - each year? - Uh-huh.
- Every single atom? - Yes, they do.
- What about tattoos? So, any of your signature brainwaves, Andrew? I think, first and foremost, the John Barleycorn needs to look like an authentic country pub.
Great, it already does.
Because it is an authentic country pub.
But it doesn't LOOK authentic.
Yes, forgive my pressing this point but it's authentic because it is what it is.
Do you see? And to me, something actually being authentic is more authentic than something fake that looks authentic.
- N-yeah - I can see what Andrew's getting at.
Of course you can.
Just imagine -- refectory tables, reclaimed church pews, old mismatched wooden library chairs painted white.
Distressed and old-fashioned is attractive.
I'm distressed and old-fashioned and I haven't had sex in 22 months.
Look, we've just had a refurb and it cost a lot.
We can't just defurb the refurb.
We could just do the snug in Andrew's style as a test.
I could get that done for under £500.
- Mates in the trade.
- I knew you'd have mates in the trade.
You're such a mates-in-the-trade kind of guy.
Do you want to help me out? You look like you've got a good eye.
Do I? Thanks.
I'd love to.
Cass? Looks a bit cancery? Oh, yes.
That's pure cancer.
Could I try that on? Ooh.
That wouldn't be weird, would it? No.
It could've been made for you.
Stephen, would you rather have it? I'm not sure Dad's clothes fit me.
Oh, Mike, you got my? Oh, God, yeah, of course.
Sorry, Geoff.
There you go.
- Cheers.
- What's that? - It's Geoff's float.
- It's my float.
- What do you mean "float"? For sundries and incidentals, you know.
You mean for the pub? - No.
- You just get a fiver from the till for your sundries? Packet of mints, batteries, pens Odds and sods, you know.
You get this every day? - Yeah.
- And how long has this been happening? - Mike? - Six years? - About six years.
- Why have I never known about this? I've hidden it from you.
I thought you'd get cross.
- Your dad was fine with it.
- I'm not fine with it.
Precisely why I hid my behaviour.
QED, Stephen.
- Oh, Mike - What is it, boss man? I just want to say to you now, Mike, that you are so fuckable.
Thanks, Geoff.
- Geoff, this isn't what - I would happily give you a big old fuck.
You've got a big fuckable face and I would cheerfully bend you over this bar and fuck you in every available hole.
Stop, now, Geoff! This is too much.
No, I'm getting into it.
Do you want to know what hole I'd start with? So, is Operation Snug going to be possible? A boutique makeover? Absolutely.
Stephen's brilliant refurb was a great first step on a journey which may take us in a completely different direction.
We've got some UMCs on table six.
UMCs? Unreasonable Moaning Cunts.
Hospitality slang.
I thought you'd worked in restaurants? - What's the make-up? - One couple and a floating single.
They said the lamb was too well done, the broccoli was "limp" - and the gravy was granules.
- Was the gravy granules? The gravy was granules, yes.
- Target the single, they're weaker.
- Copy that.
I'm so sorry that there's been a problem with your food.
- Thank you, no, that's - Do you think a meal is about eating food? I tend to, yes.
Very telling.
A meal is also about service and ambience, both of which have been appalling.
- Appalling?! - Do you use gravy granules? - Never! - That's a lie.
OK, wait a second Erm, friendly bit of advice -- eat elsewhere.
Food is poor, the service is poor.
Hey! Can you stop saying that? This isn't North Korea.
We have free speech and TripAdvisor accounts, as you'll soon learn.
Come on! Now, this pew - I know - .
we really don't want.
God, no.
Look at it.
Piece of shit.
That is the opposite of what we want.
I mean, it's a pew, sure, but it says "bench".
We want a pew that screams "pew".
I love that one! - You really do have a good eye.
- I'm actually an artist.
I photograph, I paint, I collage.
I did a term at art school in London but it wasn't for me.
They created boundaries.
It was all technique and competence and being able to draw horses.
- Little boxes.
- No, big horses.
No, I meant they want to put everyone in little boxes.
"You're a painter, you're a plumber, you're gay, you're straight" Exactly.
"You're black, you're white, you can drive, you can't drive" - I love this pew.
- It's a great pew.
Could I see some of your art? Oh, wow.
Of course.
Mum says it's quite challenging.
Oh, I like a challenge.
Right, shall we have a look for some library chairs? Yes.
I love this.
This is brilliant.
Are you all right, Stephen? Yeah Yes.
It's just that jacket smells of Dad.
- Just got a bit of a - Oh, yes.
Oh! That is Laurie.
Do you want to? I'm fine.
Andrew and I were having some more thoughts about the pub.
Like free peanuts on all the tables.
Why stop there? What about a charcuterie platter and a huge free goose? This isn't a food bank.
Peanuts are tramp bait.
They'll just turn up for the salt.
Also, ketchup in bowls? I totally see why you have sachets.
They're fun and kitsch and have that tacky Blackpool vibe - and it's great to play that note.
- It isn't a note.
We've got a cupboard full of thousands of sachets.
We need to use them up.
We can't just chuck ketchup away.
We're not the Borgias.
Andrew also thought that we should bring knives and forks to the table rather than people having to get them.
We have a perfectly good system.
People are used to it.
Order drinks at the bar, then food, get asked if you want a roll and butter, pay 25p extra for any butters over and above the one supplied free butter -- we always recommend a minimum of two extra butters -- pay for your food, take a numbered wooden spoon, proceed to the cutlery and condiment station, then to your table, wait for Jan or Mike to yell your number, hand up, receive meal, eat meal, enjoy meal, fuck off.
We need to tell Mike and Jan that we don't need them at the weekend, that we're trying out new people.
I'm not telling them.
This isn't my idea.
Don't worry, Stephen.
I'll do it.
- It's fine.
- Thank you, Andrew.
Tom is baby mad.
He wants loads.
I think he'd prefer it if I was one of those frogs that can lay 20,000 eggs at a time.
You're a person, not a baby cannon.
Thanks, Stephen.
And anyway, the whole thing's going to be complicated by us moving.
- Who? Moving? - We're selling the house.
Our house? I mean, our old house? Heron Cottage? Yeah, I need a new challenge work-wise.
And Tom's bored of this town.
Says it's full of mediocre people.
It'll be good to have a new place.
And I suppose there are a lot of memories of you and me in Heron Cottage.
Of course.
I mean, not loads.
We weren't there that long before the divorce, were we? But some lovely memories of watching Frozen Planet together.
It was a terrific programme.
- Where might you go? - Birmingham.
Or Manchester.
Somewhere with a pulse.
Less of a backwater.
You belong in a frontwater.
So what sort of timescale are you guys looking at? - It's on the market, already had a couple of viewings, so - Right.
That sort of timescale.
Stephen, I worry about you being lonely.
You don't have a huge number of friends.
I'm fine.
There's Graham.
He lives in Munich.
We e-mail pretty regularly.
He's put on 4st.
Maureen seems well.
Yes! The vet says she may need possible anus work in the future, - but we're playing the anus by ear.
- Wise.
I must admit, I want to fuck them even less now.
This isn't an efficient method.
There must be a better way.
Maybe you could tape the sachets together and then put them through a mangle, like a machine gun.
I'll set my mind to finding a solution, earn my £5 float money.
Do you know when Andrew's back? He had something he needed to tell us.
Ah, right, yes.
Oh, do you know what it is? Only we've got dinner to prep in a sec.
Is it about the pay rise we keep discussing with you? No, and I think I've explained my position on that.
Sterling is all over the place at the moment.
So do you know what it is Andrew wanted? We'd rather you told us.
We're not that keen on Andrew.
I think he senses it, too.
Don't want to speak out of turn but he's just a bit, you know He reminds Jan a bit of Peter Sutcliffe.
Not in looks, just Something about him.
So if you could let us know what's up, then It's about Friday.
And you.
And coming in on Friday.
- To here.
- Do you want us in early? - No problem.
- No.
- Late? - No.
- Normal time.
- Oh, copy that, chief.
- You want us normal time.
- No.
Friday evening, you don't come in.
- Until? - At all.
- Neither of us? - That's right.
Won't that be a problem, though? Yeah, we need to serve the drinks, et cetera.
- We'll manage.
- I can't see how.
It's very busy on a Friday.
We're trying out two new people.
You don't want US working here on Friday? Or Saturday.
Or Sunday.
It's just a trial, two new people.
Emergency backup should you ever fall ill.
Neither of us have called in sick once in seven years.
No, I know, but you might have an accident.
A lorry might hit you, or-or you might get stabbed.
So these two new people are just cover for if we're ever stabbed? Sort of, yes.
Or I don't know why I said stabbed.
Not necessarily stabbed.
Er, kicked to death, or strangled, or deliberately set on fire, or whatever it might be.
Look after yourselves.
And there we go.
The Fuckables are working wonders.
And the snug is looking as sexy as the staff.
Ah, the whole thing is a triumph! Could you get me a pint, mate? I'm intimidated by the Fuckables.
They're just people, Geoff.
No, they're not.
They're sexy.
They look like models.
They've got that bone thing going on in their faces.
You shouldn't be scared of sexy people, Geoff.
Are they more scared of me than I am of them, like with snakes? No.
But still, don't be scared of them.
They can't help being sexy.
- I guess some people are born sexy - That doesn't sound good - .
while others have sexiness thrust upon them.
- .
or that, to be honest.
I might skip the pint.
Get back to my great new ketchup idea.
Three new TripAdvisor reviews.
Will this be the UMCs saying we're gravy-granule bastards? Oh, my God! It's not them.
It's people who have been here since Andrew defurbed the refurb.
- And do they like us? - They bloody love us.
Three reviews, all five stars.
That's 15 stars! Did you get the alert? Andrew's fucking smashed it! Oh, and another one! "Superb atmosphere.
Trad warmth with a hip spritz.
" Two more reviews! Both high-fivers! Hooray! Oh, I knew Laurie was right to bring you on board.
This is you, isn't it? We're a team, Stephen.
It's down to all of us.
No, I mean this is you writing the five-star reviews.
Sock-puppet accounts.
- This is fake news.
- Stephen You are playing with fire here, my friend.
We've been getting solid three-star reviews for years and now this is going to fuck everything.
We're a two-to-three-star pub.
People will now expect a five-star pub.
This isn't a five-star pub! These people say it is.
Seriously, you don't stick your head above the parapet with the TripAdvisor guys because you will call down a tsunami of shit.
A sudden flurry of five-star reviews, they get suspicious, send the black-ops reviewers in, there's a string of zero-star write-ups and then you're fucked.
It happened to The Plough in Harescombe, they flew too close to the sun.
I haven't written any reviews, Stephen.
And I really don't think there are "black-ops" reviewers.
- Oh, right, look at me like - I'm - the crazy one.
He's the guy with the multiple online personalities.
I'm treading ketchup! This is one of the best ideas I've ever had! Jesus, Geoff! Are you ill?! It's disgusting! You're a farmer.
Have you washed your feet?! Fucking hell! Throw all the ketchup away! This is fucked up! Stephen, you need some St John's wort or something, mate, because you are one very negative guy.
It's what I live for really.
I don't know what I'd do if I couldn't paint.
- Have you always lived with your mum? - God, no.
This is very temporary.
Just looking for the perfect space, you know? Absolutely.
Walls that feel like your walls, right? Exactly! I did have a flat but the guy got heavy and weird about his precious rent and everything.
- Nightmare.
- I hate money.
I wish I didn't have my share in the pub, if I'm honest.
Makes me feel anxious and tied down.
Lots of travel guides.
Some of these countries don't exist any more.
Yeah, they're quite old now.
I wanted to travel, but life got in the way and it never happened.
Then Blair got elected and, you know - You've done some travelling, though? - Oh, yeah.
I'm not some suburban small-town hick.
I mean, where to start? Been to Boulogne.
- Boulogne.
- Obviously, I've been there loads, like we all have, back and forth all the bloody time.
But the first time was in the fourth year and I got suspended for buying a flick knife.
Classic Boulogne.
And this Bangkok guide? - Have you been there? - Yes.
Yes, siree.
It was amazing.
Fucking hell.
The realest place I've ever been to.
Very real.
I felt like I was really there.
Did you try the noodles at Bang Rak? I did.
Amazing flavours.
Hot, but sour.
But sweet.
And really long.
The longest noodles I've ever seen.
And how did you feel about all the executions in Thailand? Sad.
You know? No, me too.
Should I sleep with Andrew? Unequivocally and without a shadow of a doubt, no, you shouldn't.
Maybe I should.
It would sort of be incest, but with none of the negatives and all of the positives.
All of the positives? - Of incest? - Exciting.
- Forbidden.
- It wouldn't be forbidden.
He's not your actual brother so it's not forbidden.
Although, I do forbid it.
Do you think those people there are TripAdvisor black ops? - That's not a thing.
- They look clever.
Bit sneery, metropolitan elite.
We don't get many clever people in here ordinarily.
We mainly attract average-intelligence people, with a smattering of real fucking thickos.
I'll offer them some extra butters.
I'll say the butters are on the house because we like their style.
You can't bribe people with tiny pats of butter.
And how is everything? Living up to your expectations? It's all lovely.
Thank you.
And, er are you in the area for tourism or business or? We're going to look at a property.
Thinking of getting a weekend place out here.
Heron Cottage up on Hill Crescent.
Do you know that part of town? Yes, I do.
It's it's good that people are moving back there, that houses are selling again in that area.
- Have they not been? - There was a lot of drug activity.
Buying, selling.
That thing where you heat the spoon up.
But the police are turning a blind eye now and it's all calmed down into a sort of semi-lawless "new normal".
Do you need any extra butters? We're fine for butters.
Sure? Can't tempt you? Excellent.
Are we all right to sit anywhere? Just for a drink.
Won't be eating.
- Can't afford to eat out now.
- Right.
- How are you? - Oh, we haven't been stabbed.
- Or have we? - How are they? Fine.
Kind of.
Look, it wasn't my idea to get them in.
But you didn't oppose the idea.
That's not fair.
I did oppose the idea, but ineffectually.
Bugger and shit! The UMCs have finally left their reviews.
Three two-star stinkers.
"They use gravy granules.
" "Lamb was cremated.
" "Beyond underwhelming.
" This'll crucify us! I'm really sorry about that, Ellen.
Can I get a double gin, Jan, love? Coming up.
Oh I don't work here.
Hey, I ran some background on those two-star kickings we got.
Entitled fuckers.
It's a power play, isn't it? Which way will Caesar's thumb go? Well, this is the weird thing.
They seemed like old hands at TripAdvisor, but the accounts reviewing us were all brand-new.
- That's odd.
- Odder still, checking the headers, those three different accounts are all using the same IP address.
The IP address of the computer in the back room of the pub.
I think we both know who's responsible don't we? Must be the Fuckables fucking with us.
I'll fire them, get Jan and Mike back.
Hi, Jan, it's Andrew Donnelly.
Look, Stephen and I were completely wrong to cut your shifts.
We've missed you and Mike enormously and the pub's just not the same.
So is? Yeah.
So is there any way you'd consider coming back? Maybe with a substantial pay rise.
- Jan and Mike! - Andrew! The Pretenders have retreated, the true King and Queen have been restored, and with a salary bump.
All hail the John Barleycorn! We were totally wrong about Andrew, Stephen.
Totally wrong.
He's completely won us over, hasn't he, love? Yeah.
He's not Peter Sutcliffe.
He's more Daniel Radcliffe.
Well, it's good to see you both back here.
It's like the ravens have returned to the tower.
What tower's that, then? Don't ravens eat nappies from landfill? Andrew said something nice about the Pretenders.
They're one of Jan's favourites.
- Wine, Stephen? - It's far too early.
A Merlot, please.
Did you post the poor reviews? - I did.
- You trolled your own business! It was counter-sabotage.
I was trying to save the pub.
By saying it's a shithole? I had to even out the five-star madness.
Have you been sleeping all right on that bed? No.
It's like an ironing board made of hot doorknobs.
But I'm not dangerously underslept.
Andrew'd like you to think I'm a zombie nutbag, but I'm not a zombie nutbag.
Should you maybe have some time away? Don't you be taken in by Andrew, too.
He's managed to get Mike and Jan on his side.
You're now my only ally.
Fuck off, Stephen.
I'm still your ally.
What sort of wanker do you take me for? I take you entirely for a non-wanker.
Tom and I have a potential buyer for our place.
- OK - Nice couple.
I thought they'd cooled, but apparently they met this quite freaky guy who started shit-mouthing our house.
They assumed he was after it for himself, so bang! Instant offer.
I bet that guy feels like a right prick now.
And he deserves to.
The prick Nobody loves me Nobody seem to care Nobody loves me, I say Ah, well, nobody seem to care Speaking of bad luck and trouble, mama Well, you know I've had my share.