Drunk History (2013) s04e02 Episode Script


1 (Dramatic music) Sam Patch screams out to the crowd, some things can be done as well as others.
Yeah! Sammy.
Ella Fitzgerald is like, I don't know Marilyn Monroe, like, what are we saying? But, whoa, whoa oh, so, so, so, so, so Buster We're gonna be big, big stars, baby.
At this point, it's just gonna be pure garbage.
(Patriotic music) Have you ever known a legend? I don't know, I think it's too soon to tell.
I know a couple people in good runnings So legends have to be dead? I think so, because otherwise, then, if you're if you're not dead, you're a hero.
Not like those frat guys that you got to meet my buddy; he's a legend.
No, that is those are legends.
- Those are true legends.
- (Chuckles) Those are today's legends.
He did it was legendary.
Two keg stands.
Gallon of jungle juice.
You're at his mom's funeral.
- Legend.
- Legend.
I'm Nick Rutherford, and today we're gonna talk about (Chuckles) Sam Patch.
The first daredevil.
It's the 1800s.
It's not even the 1900s yet, and it's just past the 1700s.
So young Sam Patch was working in cotton mills 14, 16 hours a day.
So Sam Patch, like all of his older coworkers, would spend their very little break time next to the river, watching the falls that powered these mills, and so Sam Patch started jumping off the top of the falls, avoiding the deadly rocks, landing safely in the water, and Sam Patch turned out to be very, very good at it.
He did it so well, crowds started to gather.
He would he would pass around a hat, take, like, pennies to help supplement his income.
So Sam Patch wants to do the biggest jump of his life, and he goes to the Passaic Falls River.
Sam Patch goes to the falls, screams out to the crowd, some things can be done as well as others.
Takes a few steps back, runs and takes a leap into the air, and then plunges feetfirst in his trademark straight-as-an-arrow dive.
Sam Patch emerges from the water.
Waves to everybody.
People lose their mind.
That was awesome.
That was awesome.
That was sick.
All right, so Sam Patch on top of the world.
On top of the world.
He's doing great.
So Sam Patch gets a bear.
That's that's what you did back then.
If you got to a certain level of success, you got a bear.
Well, what should we call the bear? There's no record of a name that Sam gave his bear, but I'm 100% sure that his bear's name was Bomzi.
Bomzi? I feel like I can do better than Bomzi.
Don't just don't worry about it.
So I still think I can do better than Bomzi.
Don't worry about Bomzi.
I am.
I am.
All right, move on from Bomzi and just talk about Patch.
I mean, you can keep on telling me what you want me to say, but I'm gonna keep on giving you gold.
(Chuckles) All right, so he decides So he gets the bear.
- Oh, you want to tell the story? - No, no.
So he's doing great; he's traveling around, he's jumping off anything that's tall.
He would go to his jumps.
He'd bring the bear up and then convince the bear that he should jump first.
The bear would jump first.
And then he'd be like, I guess it's good for me.
Says some things can be done as well as others.
Jumps off.
(Imitates splash) People think he's dead.
Pops up I'm alive.
So, at this point, these business dudes say, Sam, you're good at what you do.
Come to Niagara.
What's up in Niagara? You ask.
Oh, I don't know.
Come work for us.
And then Sam Patch says Bingo.
October 1829.
Sam Patch is ready to jump the biggest falls known to man: the Niagara Falls.
Everybody was there to see Sam Patch.
Sam Patch supposed to show up at 1:00 p.
No 1:00 p.
2:00 p.
, he's not there.
3:00 p.
, he's not there.
4:00 p.
, on the dot.
He's like, hey.
Yeah! Sammy! Sammy, Sammy, Sammy! Yes! He says his Sam Patch slogan, which is always, some things can be done better than others.
That's not it, but we we got it already.
Takes a few steps back.
Jumps off.
Does his signature arrow dive into the water.
What is this, a suicide? What's going on? Did this kid kill himself? (Triumphant music) And bear is at the now he's at the shore.
High-fives him.
So Sam Patch, the bear, they're hanging out.
Feeling great.
How can we top this? They think.
This is awesome.
Some other businessmen say Sammy! Bear team! I got a jump for you.
(Slurred) Genesee River.
Genesee River.
Where? (Mumbling) Genesee River.
Sammy, Sammy, Sammy.
So Patch says, yeah, I'm coming.
They get to Genesee River Falls.
He gets to the top.
His friend, the bear, hands him a flask of brandy.
He drinks all of it.
The bear's like, dude, that's my flask.
(Laughing) Takes a few steps back.
And then people notice that he started to flail a little bit.
Crashed into the water at at an angle.
People were sure he was dead.
People were positive that he was dead.
Nobody refused that he did not die.
There was a boat circling around.
Could not find him.
Sam Patch doesn't surface that night.
He doesn't surface the next night.
Doesn't surface the following night.
Four months later he shows up.
Drinking at his bar with his bear.
They're playing beer pong.
Having a great time.
No, I wish that was the ending.
That is not the ending.
Months later, a farmer goes to take his horses to get a much-needed drink from the river.
He had to break through the ice so his horses could get to the water.
Underneath the ice, he saw the frozen body of Sam Patch, just a young gentleman of 22 years old.
He was a pioneer in dumb stunts.
He stood out.
He also was in No Doubt.
Is that what you said? No Doubt? He stood out.
He stood out.
And I love No Doubt.
Don't speak.
I know what you're saying.
I know what you're doing.
Don't tell me 'cause it's true.
(Laughing) (Upbeat rock music) So, yeah, I puked once already, before we ever started.
And, um, like a true soldier me and Beyoncé I kept drinking, and I'm gonna make this [bleep] night happen.
'Cause you're a [bleep] hero.
- I'm a soldier.
- Talking about two heroes.
'Cause I'm a soldier.
Let's cheers to Ella.
To Ella! Ella Fitzgerald! My baby girl.
And my homegirl she's from Newport News and I'm from Virginia Beach.
Your homegirl too Tidewater, Hampton Roads.
One more cheers.
Boom, our baby! I didn't understand anything you said.
Here's to our baby, Ella.
- Ella.
- Baby girl.
I think I might throw up again.
My name is Tymberlee Hill, and today we're gonna talk about Ella Fitzgerald and Marilyn Monroe.
Ella Fitzgerald she's the Queen of Song.
Nobody sings better than Ella Fitzgerald.
So Ella's on the chitlin circuit.
She's killing it everywhere.
Chitlin circuit is for anybody who's black that performs.
Now, let's talk about the Mocambo.
Can we really quickly? The Mocambo is a place where [bleep] Frank Sinatra debuted in the '40s.
This is a place where Lana Turner, Charlie Chaplin, Cary Grant this was the hot spot, and you couldn't do it bigger, except, they do not want to let her in, and they're like (Mumbling) She's too black.
She's too chubby.
- She's too ugly.
- (Drink sloshes) Ah, shit, and [bleep] and all kinds of shit and piss.
- You want to clean that - Oh, that's okay, I, um, Scotchgard.
I Scotchgard like a mother[bleep].
I can keep it going.
I can keep it going.
What was the last thing that she said? Her the last thing oh, okay.
Oh, so, so, so, so.
Marilyn Monroe she's huge.
People didn't get it, and they were like, can't you just be our hot thing with no clothes on with the dress blowing up that we love so much? And she was like, no, I can't.
I want to do some real acting.
So Marilyn Monroe goes in to her voice teacher.
She says I want to be a triple threat.
I want to do everything.
I'm taking this class in acting, I'm doing these dancing classes, blah-de-blah-blah, you are my man for the voice.
(Hiccups) Her voice coach says, if you want to learn how to sing, buy Ella Fitzgerald's album.
She gets this record.
She lays down on the floor and listens to this record 100 times in a row.
She goes, this is the most astonishing voice I've ever heard in my life.
She calls the Mocambo, and they're like, oh, my God, oh, my God, oh, my God! Marilyn Monroe, what the [bleep]? And she's like, bring it all down.
If you let my favorite, my favorite baby girl jump on stage and sing her songs, I will show up, and I will sit in the fr (Gasping) And I will sit in the front row of the audience every single night, and you can take as many pictures of me as you want.
(Chuckles): I'm sorry.
You're very excited.
I am, I love these two, and I've known this story forever.
(Sputtering) Ella Fitzgerald she gets a phone call, and they're saying, we would love to have you at the Mocambo.
(Stammering): But what? Like, what the [bleep] are we talking about right now? He's like, somebody made a phone call.
Somebody named Marilyn Monroe.
Boom! So she's like, Marilyn I don't know Marilyn Monroe.
Like, what are we saying? You know, like, she didn't (gasps) - know anything about that.
- You okay? Yes, I just have weird hiccups and a lot of catched breaths.
Ella shows up at the Mocambo, and Marilyn takes a front-row center table.
The lights go down.
Ella walks out onto the stage, and then boom! It comes out of her voice.
(Scatting dynamically) Dah-dah-dah, dah-dah-dah Ah-scooby-dooby-dooby-dah (Scatting dynamically) And then people are a-going crazy.
And one person is like, I didn't even know music could sound like that.
And then Marilyn was like, I've heard these songs before.
But I never heard them.
What is going on right now? Like, I can't even understand my own mind.
That is a human voice singing to us.
And Marilyn, true to her word, shows up every single night, and she sits in the front row.
One night, after Ella performed, Marilyn came backstage.
(Uplifting orchestral music) So, so, it's just two girls talking about what real life is like.
Marilyn is like, ugh, you know, I'm a [bleep] orphan.
And, uh what's her name? Ella is like, I'm a [bleep] orphan too.
Then Marilyn's like, I had two marriages, and Ella's like, oh, my God, I was married to somebody when I was really young, and then I married another guy.
And then Marilyn was like, I cannot be accepted in this business because of the way that I look.
And Ella's like, I cannot be accepted in this business because of the way that I look! And these two women, they literally meet each other.
Because Marilyn Maloa Mon Meh Marilyn Mon Marilyn Mano Roe Maroe Maroe.
Marilyn (sighs) But anyway.
In this moment, that Marilyn helps Ella, she frees them both.
The fact is, sometimes, sisters have to hook each other up.
And when Marilyn passes away, because they stayed friends, Ella Fitzgerald said, I owe Marilyn a great debt.
After she personally called the managers of the Mocambo room and allowed me to play there, I was never, ever, ever, ever again in my life relegated to a small club.
She says, Marilyn was extraordinary and ahead of her time.
She loved that lady.
I got to say, here's to people who know when to shut their damn mouths.
(Jazzy piano music) Less talking, more texting.
Why are you talking? Let's try it again.
Maybe you didn't hear me.
I said, here's to people who know when to shut their damn mouths.
Then you're like (Babbling) - Okay, do it one more time.
- (Wheezing laughter) I'll keep my mouth shut.
Here's to people who know when to shut their damn mouths.
(Ice clinking) Could this ice make a little more noise? - It sounds good.
- All right.
Hello, I'm Patrick Walsh, and today we're gonna be talking about the life of Buster Keaton.
(Ragtime piano music) Buster Keaton was born to a family of vaudeville performers who toured the country with legendary magician Harry Houdini.
Buster was actually born Joseph Keaton, but when he was 18 months old, he fell down a flight of stairs and Houdini picked him up, inspected him, and said, we should call him Buster, 'cause he's a real Buster.
He can take a lot of shit.
And his parents laughed, they were like (Laughing) We should call him Buster! That's a great idea, famed magician Harry Houdini.
And in fact, they would say, step right up, come see the little boy who could not be damaged.
His father would throw his son into walls, into the orchestra pit, into the audience.
And Buster loved it.
He was always fine.
He had no marks.
He knew how to take a fall.
Could take a lot of abuse.
In a fun way.
Buster learned that he got bigger laughs if he would maintain a completely stone-faced expression.
They started referring to him as The Great Stone Face, which was his nickname, really, up until the end of his career.
So with all this knowledge of, like, what people found funny that he had gained from his time in vaudeville, he started doing these short films, and they were extremely popular.
Buster had a big admirer in Charlie Chaplin, who was the biggest silent film star of all time.
Chaplin, while touring the country with Douglas Fairbanks, Mary Pickford, and D.
Griffith, Chaplin was basically like, guys, we could sort of make our own artist-run movie studio, and we could have complete creative control over the projects we make, and other artists might want to come to us to enjoy that creative freedom.
And D.
Griffith said, you know, that's awesome, because we can keep black people out as well.
And they all, you know, looked at him a little strange.
They weren't quite sure what he meant by that, and he said, you know, we could tell more stories about how the Ku Klux Klan came to power and how they are the most glorious organization in America's history.
And they were like, yeah, or we could, you know, do other kind of fun stuff and kind of more creative stuff No, but the Ku Klux Klan! You know, I want to make all my my sweet, sweet Ku Klux Klan movies.
And they were like, maybe we should quit hanging out with D.
And he was like, guys, come on.
Ku Klux Klan? Right? You guys love it.
I love it.
America loves it.
He was a racist D.
W Griffith.
They decide they're gonna form United Artists, and Chaplin goes to his friend Buster Keaton, and he goes, you got a vision, you're creative, you should come do movies for us.
You can do what you want to do, we won't bother you, you'll have creative control.
Buster Keaton responded with a hearty nod.
Buster, we're gonna be big, big stars, baby.
And he embarked on, from 1920 to 1929, the greatest run of filmmaking in the history of movies.
Buster had complete creative control.
He was making these amazing movies with these amazing stunts.
So, at the end of the 1920s, Buster Keaton was doing very well critically and commercially, but he gets an offer from MGM, and they're saying, we'll pay you a lot of money to make movies here at MGM.
Charlie Chaplin goes, Buster, baby You're making a big mistake here.
They're not gonna give you the creative freedom that we gave you here at United Artists.
I know you want the more money.
I know you want to impress your wife.
You can't do it.
So he decides to sacrifice his creative control and freedom, and he went to MGM, and almost immediately, he realized he had made a huge mistake.
I don't even know where I where I left off.
It's okay.
At this point, it's just gonna be pure garbage.
That's okay.
- Okay.
- There is no garbage here.
So MGM interfered with every project he had.
He went completely bankrupt.
His wife divorced him, and he became an extreme alcoholic, so MGM terminated his contract.
1932 to 1934 is the lowest point of Buster Keaton's life.
Things got so bad for Buster with the drinking, they eventually put him in a sanitarium like, an insane asylum.
And, as was not uncommon at this time, they put him in a straitjacket, because they figured that's the only way they can cure a true alcoholic of drinking.
But little did they know His early mentor was Harry Houdini, who had taught Buster how to get out of straitjackets.
So they put him in a straitjacket.
Within about five minutes, Buster's able to get out.
He breaks free of the sanitarium, and he's out on his own.
Eventually he learned, if he wanted to cure himself of drinking, he was gonna have to do it by himself.
What he decides to do is to go to a small house with nothing in it and just sit in a chair, clenching onto the arms of the chair and biting on his tongue and went through all the withdrawal symptoms you do.
You know, he's having hallucinations, saying, come on, Buster, like, you can get through this, you can beat this.
(Dramatic music) And eventually he does.
He comes out on the other side, uh, free and clear.
He no longer wants to be drunk all day.
And he's able to go back to MGM and get his career back.
And in 1960, he won a lifetime achievement award.
Buster was like, look, I know people think that my life was probably pretty shitty.
The fact of the matter is, my life was great.
I got way more things than I ever expected to get.
My life was way better than I ever expected it to be.
So when things got kind of shitty, I was kind of like, all right, I expect there to be a balance of good and shit, and you got to treat both like, okay, all right.
Take the good with the bad you take the good, you take the bad, you take 'em both, and there you have the facts of life.
He was a big Charlotte Rae fan.
(Dramatic music)