Fame (1982) s01e01 Episode Script


You must develop some sense of the other players.
- I'm not into group scenes.
- I'm not inviting you to an orgy.
I knew it would work.
The real me is a redhead.
Girl, let me tell you something.
You keep treating your hair like that, the real you is gonna be bald.
Everybody gets bad reviews.
You're not out of town anymore.
You're in the hot, burning center of the galaxy.
You got big dreams.
You want fame.
Well, fame costs and right here is where you start paying in sweat.
Thank you very much, Miss Bryant.
We'll be sure to- I have one with flames on my baton, but I didn't want to set off the sprinklers.
- That's very considerate of you.
- Miss Bryant.
I understand that you're new to our city.
But what I don't understand- and maybe you can help me- The purpose of our school is to prepare young people for careers as performers.
Is there a demand for professional baton twirlers that I'm unaware of? Well, sure.
If a girl twirls really well she might get asked to be a cheerleader for a professional football team.
Thank you very much, Miss Bryant.
We'll let you know.
Thank you.
Bye! Miss Julie Miller? Just the chair.
You don't wanna know.
Miss Miller, these auditions are for new arrivals to New York City and maybe you could tell us a little about what brings you here.
My mom and dad got divorced.
Anytime you're ready.
Coco! How was summer stock? It was beautiful.
How was teaching summer school? Something less than beautiful.
Did you get to perform? I got to perform- painting scenery, nailing furniture, scrounging up props.
And I got to understudy the healthiest ingenue that ever joined Equity.
Anyway, did you see Bruno Martelli? 'Cause his father said he was here.
He's probably in the auditorium, helping to set up lights.
Sorry you didn't get to be a star.
I decided that you and me wasted last year.
What do you think about us getting some people together and really getting it together, and going- What, you dig that kind of music? I like any kind of good music, and she's good.
- What's the money for? - Cab fare.
Mother, I'm not taking a cab to school.
It's hard enough to fit in without arriving like Goodie-Shoes Gotrocks.
Julie, it's been 20 years since I lived in New York.
Till I know what's happened to that neighborhood since I moved away- Well, until I know.
Mother, not a taxi.
Come on! - How 'bout a compromise? - Okay.
What? I'll walk you to school.
Taxi! School of the Arts, please.
You wanna hear what happened at the United Nations last week? Sorry, baby.
I'm booked.
Solid gold, man.
It's a cheap chain.
A hundred karats.
It's cheap! - I'm not interested.
- Five dollars, and you're not interested? - Come on, man.
It's five dollars, man.
- I don't wear chains.
It's not for you.
It's for the sweet little fox in your life.
- I don't have a fox.
- You would if you flash this around.
TheJewish ambassador punches the Chinese ambassador and the Chinese ambassador gets up off the floor and asks what that was for.
"That was for Pearl Harbor.
" "Pearl Harbor?" says the Chinese man.
"That was theJapanese.
I'm Chinese.
" "Chinese, Japanese.
What's the difference?" So the next day- Hey, Ruby.
You know what? Thank you! - I'm sorry.
- You said it, baby.
And blind too.
Chinese dude punches theJewish dude.
Jewish dude gets up and says- - Buzz off, creep.
- "What was that for?" Jewish dude gets up, rubs his chin and says, "What was that for?" - And the Chinese guy says- - Silence.
"I had nothing to do with the Titanic.
" And theJewish guy- I'm not speaking until I hear silence.
The word for the day is "pretentious.
" One: making claims, explicit or implicit to some distinction, importance dignity or excellence.
Two: affectedly grand.
Superior, et cetera.
Who would like to use it in a sentence? Mr.
Garcy? The pretentious Chinese ambassador says "Iceberg, Goldberg.
What's the difference?" That's enough, Garcy.
This is no song-and-dance class.
It's English.
You're going to take it and all your other academic subjects just as seriously as you take your presumed careers.
You're going to work twice as hard as the other students in this city.
You don't get any breaks because you're talented or cute or funny.
This is still a high school.
If you don't leave my class speaking, reading and writing English properly you'll leave it, period.
Same goes for French and algebra and biology and physics.
- Coco Hernandez? - Yes? Use "pretentious" in a sentence, please.
Coming to school in a cab is pretentious.
That's not fair.
I come to school in a taxi every day.
That's different.
Your father drives it.
- You're Miller? - Yeah.
- I'm Montgomery.
Here's your books.
- Thanks.
Can you put them down? I can't get this thing to work.
Let me see.
Short people understand these things better than tall people.
Comes from being at a keyhole height during formative years.
What am I gonna do when you're not here to help me? Sweetheart, no one's running little Rico out of town.
They can stab me, shoot me, throw me in the East River.
No matter how tough it gets, you can count on little Rico.
How 'bout in the morning, before first bell? I'm not sure I can make that but, seriously, if you got any questions.
Yeah, just one or two.
New York City's like a lot of other cities.
It isn't unfriendly.
It's just crowded.
So everyone carries around a little piece of invisible space.
So you don't stare, you don't smile at strangers you don't invade someone's private space unless you're invited.
That's lesson one.
Everyone around here grows up knowing that.
- What if you didn't grow up here? - Someone has to help you.
It's really simple.
I could explain it to you in 1 0 easy lessons.
- That many? - Well, it's a big subject.
You gotta know what to do on the streets, who to talk to, who not to talk to where to go, where not to go.
- Okay.
- Okay what? - Okay.
Will you teach me? - Yeah, but why me? Because you're the first friendly person I've met in the whole school.
You seem to know what you're talking about.
At least I can understand you.
Sort of.
Hold it! Hold it! Martelli, if you please, the same notes and rhythm as the rest.
- I am in rhythm.
- You are in your rhythm.
You will play in my rhythm and the rhythm of the class.
You must develop some sense of the other players.
I'm not into group scenes.
I'm not inviting you to an orgy but to play in an ensemble.
Yes, sir.
A dancer's body remembers everything.
You learn something once, and it's yours for life.
But first you have to become a dancer.
Now, you may be hot stuff up in Harlem or you may have the best tutu collection in the country.
Doesn't matter.
I don't have time for prima donnas.
You wanna become a dancer, you're going to have to work- work your little tights off.
I ain't wearin' no tights.
You've got big dreams.
You want fame.
Well, fame costs and right here is where you start paying in sweat.
I want to see sweat.
And the better you are, the more sweat I'm going to demand.
So if you've never had to fight for anything in your life put your gloves on and get ready for round one.
And Mama and Daddy's little darlin's had better come out swingin'.
- What does that mean? - They don't take credit cards.
Spread out on the floor.
We're gonna repeat that modern one combination we did yesterday.
But I want you to add arms to the spiral.
Five, six, seven and spiral, two.
Release, two.
Arms spiral, two.
Let the arms flow.
And spiral, two.
Contract, two.
Extend and release.
Lesson number two: How to get around New York.
The buses are so crowded here.
I feel weird in them.
- Try the subways at 5:00.
There's weird.
- It does get kind of hectic.
Hectic? It gets downright deadly.
You can't stand too close to the edge.
A lot of creeps get their kicks outta wasting people on the tracks.
- Wasting people? - Doing away with them.
One morning I saw this woman- Actually, it was half a woman.
It was really gross.
Well, it wasn't the grossest thing I ever saw.
The grossest thing I ever saw was- - You want some coffee? - No, thanks.
I don't drink coffee.
- Montgomery? - Nah, me either.
My doctor won't let me.
Oh, you get anxiety attacks too? I don't know if it's anxiety, exactly.
You kind of get this pukey feeling in the pit of your stomach? And then your whole body gets all hot and prickly and it feels like a thousand tiny fingers are working overtime on your skin? - Sometimes.
- I feel it too.
So do I.
Don't stare.
Remember what I said? Give people their space.
What about my space? What are you talking about? What's going on? Lesson four: How to waste creeps.
- Sorry! - Don't you have eyes? I said I'm sorry.
They oughta hang a "danger" sign around your neck.
The word for the day is "deleterious.
" Harmful to health, well-being, property.
Who can use it in a sentence? Coffee can be deleterious to some people's health and to other people's clothing.
All right, Coco.
That's the general idea.
Who can be more specific? My Uncle Ramon is a real deleterious person.
That doesn't tell me what "deleterious" means.
I'm not finished yet.
You see, last month he hit the big number and he moved to the country to raise chickens, like he always wanted.
He's a city dude.
What does this have to do with "deleterious"? His chickens all died.
I asked him why.
He said, "I don't know.
Maybe I planted them too close.
" Relevé up, and down.
And plié.
Relevé up, and down.
And port de bras over, and up.
What are you wearing, Leroy? Dancing clothes.
- This isn't Roseland.
- This isn't dancin'.
That's cute, Leroy.
You know, you're real cute.
But either you dress properly for my class, or you won't be in it.
All right, class.
Everyone, across the floor in groups of twos.
We're gonna repeat what we did yesterday.
Five, six.
Five, six, seven.
And extend! Extend! - I'm sorry.
- Sure, hon.
- I just wasn't looking.
- You don't have to get A about it.
- A? - As in "annoyed.
" Oh.
I'm not.
I wouldn't do something like that deliberately.
When I say "extensions," I don't mean your mouth.
Five, six, seven, and step! Extend! Extend! That means the right shoes and the right jeans and no jewelry.
- Ditch the gold chain.
- No.
- Flashy is out, especially gold.
- I don't care.
You can take away the rest of my identity, but the gold chain is special.
- It's very pretty, but- - It's more than that.
Hey, you can't worry about what looks good.
In fact, the better you look, the bigger the danger.
You don't want to draw attention to yourself.
You want to dress down.
Which brings us to lesson nine: Defensive fashion.
Did you see that? He winked at me.
Michael Harrison winked at me.
He winks at everybody, Doris.
- He's the most popular boy in school.
- With a tic.
He never noticed me before.
It's my new look.
It's a learned behavioral response.
I knew it would work.
The real me is a redhead.
Girl, let me tell you something.
You keep treating your hair like that, the real you is gonna be bald.
He's coming over here, in person.
A couple of us are having a party Friday.
You wanna come? - Oh, I don't think so.
- I think she's busy.
I just- - Well, then what's wrong? - Nothing really.
You're being really smart.
You probably wouldn't like our friends anyway.
Well, I mean- We have to eat lunch.
- Was it something we said? - I'm on a diet.
I mean, I don't eat.
I mean, I'm free on Friday.
That's okay, deary.
We really have enough people.
Come on, Michael.
You know what you need? You need exposure.
I don't want exposure.
- We could be big.
- We? Hey, I don't just dance, see? I sing too.
- And we could go places.
- You can go places.
I'm going to the bathroom.
That was considerate of you considering he's the most popular boy in school.
Doris wanted a date.
I have a boyfriend anyway.
- You do? - Yes.
Back in Grand Rapids.
You never said anything.
Well I try not to think about him too much.
You really miss him a lot, don't you? With your sound and my voice and a couple of backup singers, maybe, and a small band- - Band? - The money, honey.
We could clean up.
There are bar mitzvahs and tea dances on Long Island.
- I'm not into money.
- You don't have to be, baby.
You just keep turning out your music, and I'll just keep doing- Look, I don't turn out my music, and I don't perform.
That's cool, baby.
I do.
- I don't believe you.
- I know.
You ain't seen or heard the best of me yet.
We're gonna handle that right here and now.
I don't work lunchrooms as a rule, but you deserve a break today.
Just wait right here.
Do you guys remember "Take Me"? Do you remember that? Looks like you've got sort of a crush on that Michael Harrison guy.
Julie, maybe people in Grand Rapids get crushes.
That's not the way it is in New York City.
- What do they get in New York City? - Herpes, mostly.
- Julie, spare me.
- Defensive wardrobe, Mom.
- If your father could see you- - Well, he can't.
Not anymore.
Honey, regardless of what happened between him and me he's still your father and he expects me to raise you in a certain way maintain certain standards.
But those standards don't apply anymore.
Is that what all your friends at school say? - I don't have that many friends.
- Why? Well, they set me apart.
Not all of them, but some.
My dancing was such a big deal in Grand Rapids but here it's kindergarten stuff.
My music's still okay, but I'm barely in their league sometimes.
I hate to sound like a shrink but it's a learning experience for both of us.
I mean, you're trying to fit in to your new school and I'm trying to wedge my way in to the job market.
But, Mom, I'm trying to fit in with a preppy wardrobe.
Look, either I look right or I look like a nerd and I get treated like one.
Want some advice? Don't answer, 'cause you're gonna get it anyway.
Life is not an "either-or.
" I used to think, either I make my marriage work or my life is ruined.
It's not true.
We both used to think eitherJulie gets an academic education or a musical one.
That's not true either, and the school you're going to proves it.
Maybe I'm just not tough enough.
Oh, honey.
You'd be surprised at just how tough you can be, if you have to.
Voice of experience talking now.
Still wearing that chain Lester gave you? Sweetheart, Lester is back in Grand Rapids.
Maybe a part of me is too.
Oh, baby.
The senior class will sponsor a mixer next Wednesday for the benefit of the incoming freshman class.
All new students are invited to attend and get acquainted.
There will be a band and entertainment- Mr.
Johnson, would you mind taking off your hat, please? Thank you.
- Will you please stop being funny? - I wasn't being funny.
Violins are on the way out.
It's the truth.
You don't need strings today.
- Did you hear this, Mrs.
Tussa? - I heard.
Orchestras need strings.
Orchestras are an endangered species.
You can do it all on one instrument.
If you got a keyboard and some oscillators and the right combination of wave forms you wouldn't need to make all these dinosaur tracks.
Dinosaur tracks? Mozart made dinosaur tracks? You should make such dinosaur tracks! He wouldn't orchestrate today.
He'd overdub.
He wouldn't need all this bowing stuff.
And this figured bass business- It was probably necessary in prehistoric days.
It was necessary in Leipzig.
It was necessary in Dresden.
- It was necessary- - In the good old days.
Yes, the good old days.
Look, is this a school or museum? Can't we bury the dead? I've buried mine, Mr.
Martelli and I've taught music to other bright, young men with big, brave mouths and superior visions.
The music survived.
Okay, class.
Da capo.
From the beginning.
- I'm a workingman.
- Well, how 'bout that.
How 'bout you hastening up this conversation 'cause I got business associates waitin'.
I'm waiting, too, for your homework.
Romeo and Juliet.
Remember? I forgot it.
- Four days in a row? - I told you I done it and I forgot it.
You got ears, and you can save us both some breath.
My hearing is fine.
It's your homework that's missing.
And the quality of the few pages I have is unsatisfactory if you want to stay in school.
Ain't nobody makin' me walk unless I wanna.
I will, Mr.
Johnson, and I won't waste any time.
Yeah? You been down on me from day one when you should've been out there testifyin' to all that new life I donated to your tired little school.
I am down, as you say on your big open mouth your little closed mind, your rude manners and your fourth-grade reading level.
It's not my reading level you're workin'.
It's racial discrimination.
Discrimination? Well, how 'bout that? Five whole syllables.
There's hope for you yet if I find your missing English assignment on my desk tomorrow morning.
And if you don't? You'll be dancing right out of this school.
You better have more than your mouth ready when you go makin' my flight patterns.
Four days' worth.
I never said I was stayin', but I hate makin' bigots happy.
Dear Lester, things are very difficult for me.
The kids here don't accept me, no matter what I do.
They look at me as if I just dropped in from outer space or something.
Maybe I don't belong here.
Maybe I don't belong in New York.
I miss you desperately when I think oflast year by the lake and how you put this chain around my neck how I vowed I'd never take it off until the day I saw your precious face again.
"O speak again, bright angel, for thou art as glorious to this night as is a winged messenger of heaven.
As is a winged messenger of heaven onto the white, upturned, wondering eyes of mortals that fall back to gaze on him when he bestrides the lazy, pacing clouds and sails upon the bosom of the air.
" Thank you, Montgomery.
That was very nice.
I forgot my book.
Borrow Julie's.
- "You put this chain around my neck- - Don't! And I vowed I'd never take it off until the day I saw your precious face again.
I miss you more than words alone can say.
Dear Lester, there is not a night you are not in Julie Miller's dreams.
" - That's enough, Garcy.
- A person's privacy oughta be respected.
You got the look of tension headache number nine.
- Its name is Garcy.
- What'd he do? Like they say in third grade, man, he oughta pick on someone his own size.
That's just Garcy.
You know the way he is.
He'll do anything to make a joke.
Does he tell Leroy a funny joke about eating watermelons on the levee? How 'bout a joke for Shorofsky on stingyJews? - Maybe a bit on Italian gangsters for me.
- What are you so bent for? I'm bent about people picking on minorities and in this school, in this city, she's in the minority.
All the talk we do about talent being the one thing we care about.
No, man, that's not it.
The one thing we care about is laughs and feeling superior.
Just thought we were better than that, that's all.
Good afternoon.
Anything I can help you with today? - Yeah, tights.
- Certainly.
For yourself? - Yeah.
- What size? - I don't know.
- Medium, I'd say.
- Yeah, right.
- Colored? I imagine you'd prefer black, don't you? Yeah, black tights.
That's it, man.
Right there.
- Dance belt? - Say what? - Do you have a dance belt? - Tights I've seen don't need no belt.
Young man, we're not talking about that kind of belt.
You see, most tights are, well, tight.
You ain't talking to no fool, turkey.
- Well, I know that.
- Tights are tight.
I know that.
Young man, you need what you would call a "jock.
" Well, why didn't you say that? Now, let's see what we have here for you.
How are these? Nah, not the kid.
Nah, that's all right.
No way.
Puttin' no tights on.
Tight tights.
Leroy, where are your tights? No, don't tell me you forgot them.
That was last week's excuse.
No, I didn't forget 'em.
I washed them, right? And they shrunk up.
I put 'em on, they were so tight, they cut off my circulation, and I couldn't walk.
That's awful, Leroy.
I'll tell you what.
Bring them in tomorrow morning, and I'll trade you for a pair that fits you, okay? Okay.
And take off the earrings, Phenicia.
But these aren't earrings exactly.
- Well, what are they exactly? - They're religious objects.
Tribal warriors in Africa wear them to ward off evil spirits.
Well, when your troupe performs in Togoland you can wear all of your earrings, my dear girl.
You can stick an elephant tusk through your nose, if you want to.
But in my class, between the hours of 2:00 and 3:00 p.
, we are not praying.
We are dancing without jewelry.
- Off with the necklace, Miller.
- No.
I mean, it's not a necklace.
It's not just- Oh, no.
No, don't tell me.
I know.
Another religious object.
You don't understand.
I promised that I wouldn't take it off.
Dear Lester, I remember that precious day when your precious fingers put this precious chain around my precious neck - and I promised myself- - Stop it! Stop looking at me! Stop it! - You're a moon child, aren't you? - I beg your pardon? What's your birthday? - July 1 3.
- I thought so.
That's why you're into big, emotional scenes.
- I am not into big, emotional scenes! - Rest, girl.
- If you gave me half a chance- - Hey, nobody gives you anything, baby.
You make your own chances.
- Come on.
Constant ridicule doesn't help.
- Forget it.
Everybody gets bad reviews.
You're not out of town anymore.
You're in the hot, burning center of the galaxy.
You oughta thank her.
Thank her? People around here want to get looked at, and she gave you a spotlight.
- I don't want that spotlight.
- Then what are you doing here? I don't know.
Yeah? Well, I do.
You're good.
You're not as good as me but then you don't have my experience or my planets.
A friend of my sister, see, she tells fortunes and stuff.
She says I have the sun and the moon in my hand.
All I have to do is wait for opportunity to knock.
Why are you telling me this? Because, in this school, you gotta be tough.
You can't cry over an unkind word.
You gotta work harder, prove 'em wrong.
Or you can quit.
But you won't not if you really belong here if you're a professional.
- You look beautiful, sweetheart.
- Thanks, Mom.
- Have a good day.
- Thanks.
! Do I hear silence? The word for the day is "metamorphosis.
" One: a change of form, shape, structure or substance.
Two: a marked or complete change - of character, appearance - Bye! Or condition.
Who would like to use it in a sentence? Mr.
Martelli? I never met a "morphosis" I didn't like.