SNL Transcripts: Candice Bergen: 12/20/75: The Elf

 Saturday Night Live Transcripts

  Season 1: Episode 8

75h: Candice Bergen / Martha Reeves, The Stylistics

The Elf

Teddy … Chevy Chase
Linda … Candice Bergen
Mom … Jane Curtin
Dad … Dan Aykroyd

[In a modest living room, Teddy, a grown man in agreen elf costume, crouches atop a coffee table,playing with his brown, peaked elf cap.]

Teddy: [sings]Up on the housetop, click, click, click
Down through the chimney with good Saint Nick
Ho, ho, ho – who wouldn’t go?
Ho, ho, ho – who wouldn’t know?
Oh …

[puts his hat on, speaks]

To the top of the porch, to the top of the wall,
Now, dance away, dance away, dance away all!

[Teddy jumps from table to sofa to a curtained windowthrough which he peers while singing.]

Teddy: [sings]Up on the housetop, click, click, click
Down through the chimney with good Saint Nick

[Teddy’s sister, Linda, bursts in carryinggift-wrapped boxes.]

Linda: Merry Christmas!

Teddy: Ho, ho, ho – who wouldn’t–! Sis? [surprised,he shields himself partially with a window curtain]

Linda: [shocked] Oh, my God!

Teddy: Don’t – don’t – don’t look, Sis. Be a lot lesspainful for ya if you just, uh, try not to look.

Linda: [refusing to look at him] My own brother. Amight have expected this of anyone but my own brother![drops gifts on a chair]

Teddy: [crosses to her] It’s been my secret so long,Linda. Guess I’m almost glad you found out. [puts ahand on her shoulder – she shrugs it off – he moves tothe sofa and crouches upon it] It’s like some reliefafter all these years … for somebody to finallyrealize and know that I’m – I’m a …

Linda: [upset] Latent elf?! Is that what you’re trying to say?!

Teddy: Yes, I’m an elf! I’m an elf and I’m proud of it! Now, maybe you’ll understand what I was doing with all those eight by tens of Santa’s helpers over my bed.

Linda: [despairingly] How did it start, Teddy? How didit happen? You were always a red-blooded American boygoing off to football practice!

Teddy: Only I wouldn’t go off to football practice![quietly] I’d go off to some leafy glade and makemerry. … I don’t want to talk about it.

Linda: All right. [joins him on sofa] So this is whyyou never got married.

Teddy: Oh, I could have gotten married. Lots of us getmarried, lead perfectly normal lives, have children.[sits on the back of the sofa, puts a leg up on thesofa’s arm, exposing his leotard-clad crotch]

Linda: Would you mind being a little more discreet? Ican see your bells.

Teddy: [puts his leg down] You think I’m disgusting, don’t you?

Linda: No, not disgusting. Just sort of … impish and … spry.

Teddy: [amused, grows thoughtful] Spry. Seen that word so many times in dictionaries, I’ve heard it over the years. I’ve– Somehow never dreamed it would apply to me.

Linda: I never did either, Teddy. I mean, we grew up together, both of us, referring to the Seven Dwarfs as “they” — and now this!

Teddy: You know, I guess, in a way, I’m – I’m surprised you didn’t guess earlier. Many’s the time I could have sworn you might have caught the twinkle in my eye, I–

Linda: Well, even if I did, lots of people have twinkles in their eye. Dick Cavett, I don’t know. [sees Teddy nod with amusement – sudden realization] You don’t mean–?

Teddy: Most talk show hosts are. You know, [hops up – walks around to the rear of the sofa] you’ll probably handle this a lot better once you realize that frolicking is, uh, perfectly normal.

Linda: [unconvinced] Sure.

Teddy: I mean, you like to dance. [hops up on back of sofa] I like to prance. [nearly loses his balance and his peaked cap] I like to lose my hat. [puts cap back on, with a grin] I like to put it back on my head.Does that make me any different than you?

Linda: I suppose not.

Teddy: There you are. You think of the Elves and the Shoemaker as some kind of a cute story. I think of it as … a grand design for life. [crouches next to Linda on sofa] So?

Linda: So what? [genuinely] I’m sorry, Teddy. It’s just taking me a while to get used to it, that’s all, but I’ll – I’ll learn to accept it.

Teddy: Aw, Sis.

Linda: Teddy.

Teddy: You’re the greatest.

[Teddy gives Linda a kiss. A knock at the door.]

Linda: Oh, my God! It’s Mom and Dad! I told them tomeet me here for the club Christmas party and now–!

Teddy: Hey, if they have to handle it, they’ll handle it.

Linda: Boy, I hope so.

[Linda rises and goes to open the door. Teddy crouches on an end table next to the sofa. The parents, conservatively-dressed, enter. Mom wears a stylish print dress and Dad, carrying Christmas gifts, wearsdark suit, tie and hat.]

Linda: Mom, Dad, uh, before you come in, I think there’s one thing you should know.

[Mom and Dad see Teddy crouched on the end table. Mom glares icily as Dad sets his gifts on top of Linda’s on a nearby chair. Teddy looks at Mom expectantly.]

Mom: [coldly] So you’re one of them.

[Teddy lowers his head.]

Linda: [puts her hands on Mom’s shoulders] Mom, listen–

Mom: It’s all right, Linda. Your father’s been one for years.

Linda: Dad?!

[Mom abruptly breaks away from Linda and pulls off Dad’s hat, revealing a green peaked elf cap.]

Mom: It’s something I’ve learned to live with. All those lonely Christmas Eves after you kids went to bed, wondering whose tree he was trimming, whose stocking he was sticking a lump of coal into.

Linda: [puts her hands on Mom’s shoulders again] Come on, Mom. I think we’d better talk.

[Mom nods and the two women exit, leaving the men to confront one another. Dad stares at Teddy for a long moment, exhales, and finally speaks:]

Dad: Son, I – I don’t know what to say.

Teddy: [arms spread wide] Dad! It’s all right!

[Relieved, Dad frolics forward and hops up onto the sofa in an elfin crouch. Teddy hops off the end table and joins him. They are nose-to-nose, grinning like … elves.]

Dad: [points a thumb upwards and sings] Up on the rooftop, quick, quick, quick!

Teddy: [grinning, quietly] Down through the chimney with good Saint Nick!

[Dad hops off the sofa and does a goofy elfin frolic. Teddy joins him a moment later and arm-in-arm, they dance and sing.]

Both: [singing and prancing in a circle]Ho, ho, ho – who wouldn’t go?
Ho, ho, ho – who wouldn’t know?

[Dissolve to a wide view of the set, including cameras, microphones, monitors and the applauding audience. A superimposed text reads: SOMEWHERE IN THE WORLD, THIS IS THE FAMILY HOUR. The two elves finishtheir dance and scamper in opposite directions off the set.]

Submitted Anonymously

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