Host ... Harry Shearer
Vincent Price ... Michael McKean
[Graphic: PBS PLEDGEBRATION - Dissolve to a two-tiered
phone bank full of seated volunteers who answer
ringing telephones, collect pledges, and talk amongst
themselves as part of a public TV station fundraising
drive. As we pull back, an earnest, bespectacled host
walks into view and abruptly addresses the
Host: Okay! As we've been reminding you all
evening long, our fine PBS programming is running just
a little bit late tonight because of our special Fall
Pledge-a-bration. It's now - [checks wristwatch] -
eight thirty-five. We'll be joining our scheduled
program at - [checks wristwatch] - eight forty-five.
It's a rollicking new comedy series from Britain, "A
Bun in the Oven," a domestic farce about a young man
whose wife must perpetually pretend to be pregnant or
they'll be evicted from their council flat -- or what
we'd call "public housing."
And speaking of "public": YOU -- are the "public" in
"public television." That's right. Only seventy-five
percent of our funds come from oil companies. We need
you. We count on you. You're the reason we interrupt
our fine programming to remind you that, without you,
there would be no "public" in "public television" and
there would be no fine programming to interrupt to
remind you that we need you.
We're delighted to have with us here at Pledgebration
Central tonight, the distinguished star of stage,
screen, scary movies -- AND public television, too --
please welcome, Mr. Vincent Price!
[Applause as we dissolve to Vincent Price standing in
front of a podium, wearing a tuxedo, graciously
acknowledging the crowd.]
Vincent Price: Edgar Lee Masters -- the author
of the American classic "Spoon River Anthology" --
never lived to see public television. And it's a shame
we can't send videotapes of this fine PBS fare up to
his lonely crypt on Spoon Hill. I think he'd get a
kick out of "Newton's Apple," don't you?
Whenever I'm at home with my wife, the actress Coral
Browne, and we're watching public television together,
I often forget she's in the room. The programming is
THAT fine. But I have another, more personal, reason
for urging you to support public television. You see,
without these fine programmers who occasionally see
fit to employ this humble mummer, I'd be spending many
a morning at the Hanna-Barbera office playing the
voice of the evil Doctor von Blowfish in the Snorks
Which brings me to a blatant plug for my new project
here on the public airwaves. What we've done is to
take the cooking show out of the kitchen and put it in
a spooky old library. Won't you join me now for a
preview of my exciting new series, "Recipe"?
[Price holds up a folder marked RECIPE and, as the
studio lights darken, he opens the folder and reads
Vincent Price: "Fave Dolci"! Or -- "Dead Man's
Now, the origins of this somewhat morbid name are
obscure but, in many cultures, beans were connected
with death or the souls of the departed. But this
tasty sweet makes a safe if somewhat tardy Halloween
[Dark, low string instruments play a minor melody as
Price adopts a melodramatic mood.]
Vincent Price: [dramatically, as if reading a
poem by Poe]
Crush two-thirds of a cup of sweet almonds in a
With three-quarters of a cup of sugar,
Four tablespoons of butter,
[ominously] And one egg.
Add the grated rind of half a lemon,
And work into a smooth paste.
Flour your hands!
And roll the paste into a long tube.
Cut this tube into bean-sized pieces.
Arrange them! Well-spaced,
On a greased baking sheet.
And squash them lightly to effect an oval
[Music ends, lights come up.]
Vincent Price: [mischievously] I'm not going to
tell you at what temperature to bake it or for how
long. You'll just have to watch the show. So -- join
me, my wife, the actress Coral Browne, and some other
distinguished doily-sniffers on "Recipe" -- coming
this January on PBS. Programming so fine, it almost
seems like fun.
[Dissolve back to the host standing before the
Host: Thank you, Mr. Price. Stay with us. Next
hour, Mr. Steve Allen joins us to tell a fascinating
story of why Jayne Meadows is in show business.
Meantime, Pledgebration continues -- so won't you
watch till it hurts?
[Dissolve back to the PBS PLEDGEBRATION