Saturday Night Live Transcripts
Season 1: Episode 23
Inger … Louise Lasser
Sven … Chevy Chase
Death … Tom Schiller
[No music, only the sound of a loudly ticking clockheard throughout the sketch. An out-of-focus image ofa burning candle flame. We pull back and into focus toreveal that the candle rests atop a table on eitherside of which sit Sven and Inger. They stare soulfullyinto one another’s eyes as they slowly sip from mugs.Behind them, a window. A superimposed English textscrolls up from the bottom of the screen as a narratorsimultaneously reads it in mock Swedish gibberish.]
Sven is a struggling architect. He built the Svömmenplåken at Kvärkpårken in Stockholm for which he won the Knut Kvöllen Award. Lost in his work, he lives alone … the architect of his own unhappiness.
[Sven and Inger stare at one another lustfully.]
Inger works designing ceative toys for intellectual Swedish children.She was married to Torben, a brutal man who stilled the child within her. They parted. She was unhappy, yet alive for the first time.
[Sven and Inger slowly touch one another’s hands andfaces erotically.]
On a holiday in Austria, Inger met Sven on the chairlift at the Vödelsan Ski Resort. They fell in love. In Stockholm, they met secretlysharing kisses under the Östergaffel Bridge or at the new Kjölvaskashopping center Sven was designing. With the money sven made from anaccess ramp study, They planned their first vacation. They drove theirVolvo to Göteborg and then took the ferry boat to Gammel Färgspråkisland. They delighted in their love and the warm summer days.
[As the next paragraph of text scrolls by, a shadowyfigure with a pale white face appears outside thewindow behind Sven and Inger — it is Death — and heis the one narrating in Swedish. Sven and Inger turnto look at Death, then slowly wave him away. Hedeparts.]
One night, held in each other’s gaze, an apparition appeared at the window of their small rustic cabin. It was Death. “Let me in. I am death come to haunt, intimidate and make you very, very uneasy.” ThenDeath went away… soon to return.
[With Death gone, Sven and Inger return to gazing atand touching one another. Abruptly, Death returns andsits down at the table with them, still narrating inSwedish. The couple ignores him completely.]
They tried to enjoy their vacation, but were troubled by dreams, visions, and a burning desire to wash hands and faces. Once Sven was gathering nutmeats and thought he was being pursued by burning sheep. Inger was making cookies and death returned. “It is I… Death. Are you alone? Where’s Sven?” There was nothing for them to do. They both felt death’s mocking presence… watching, silently jeering. So they made love.
[Inger pulls at Sven’s lip, comically distorting it.]
And then they ordered pizza.
[Sven and Inger finally notice Death sitting besidethem.]
Inger: [to Death, casually, in plain English] Couldyou go out and pick it up for us?
[Death bows his head to her in agreement.]
Sven: [to Death, just as casually] You want the keysto the Volvo? [Death bows his head to him inagreement. Sven fishes in his pocket for the keys.] Igot ’em right here.
[Sven hands the keys to Death who, speaking mockSwedish, rises and exits as Sven and Inger return tostaring at one another. We see Death pass by thewindow outside, mumbling Swedish, as Inger puts herhands on Sven’s face. We hear the Volvo’s engine startup and the sound of the car driving away as Ingertwists and distorts Sven’s face to comical effect.]
Text: [with no accompanying narration]
So Sven and Inger fooled death. There is no pizza in Sweden.
[We slowly zoom in on the burning candle as the imagegoes out of focus.]
[dissolve to wide shot, with SUPER: “Coming Up Next… Walter Mondale Came Out Against The Vietnam War The Same Day Hubert Humphrey Did”]