SNL Transcripts: Mardi Gras Special: 02/20/77: Jean Lafitte


 Saturday Night Live Transcripts

  Season 2: Mardi Gras Special

Mardi Gras Special

Jean Lafitte

…..Jane Curtin
…..Buck Henry
Jean Lafitte…..Bill MurrayDavid Benoit…..Dan Aykroyd
Marie-Claire…..Gilda Radner
Worker…..Tom Schiller
Worker 2…..Garrett Morris

[ open on Jane Curtin and Buck Henry at the reviewing stand ]

Jane Curtin: New Orleans is really an incredibly beautiful town, isn’t it, Buck?

Buck Henry: Yes, Jane, it is. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a more beautiful city, except.. maybe.. Lake Havasu City.

Jane Curtin: Ah! But most people don’t know that, when they visit New Orleans, it’s not the real New Orleans, but an accurate replica, made of over 45,000 tons of orlioite[?] synthetic polyfiber board, created by the Walt Disney Leisure Group, for use in amusement parks and retirement villas throughout the great nation. Isn’t that fascinating, Buck?

Buck Henry: Very interesting. You know, Jane – at one time — [ he dodges a pair of flying beads ] At one time, New Orleans was the home of pirates, buccaneers – among whom was, perhaps, the most notorious of them all, the infamous pirate Jean Lafitte.

[ dissolve to streetlight on a New Orleans corner ] [ SUPER: “New Orleans 1813, A Visit With Jean Lafitte” ] [ pan out to reveal French Quarter street market crowd, as Jean Lafitte steps forward ]

Jean Lafitte: [ in a thick French accent ] Hello, there! I am Jean Lafitte! This is my home – New Orleans, in the early 19th Century. Please, I invite you to look around – it’s Mardi Gras, and I welcome all of you! But, first, let’s get something straight: A lot of people call me a pirate, you know? In history legends, they say, “The pirate, Jean Lafitte.” [ shakes his head ] I do not consider myself a pirate, you know? I’m a privateer, a cossair[?], a brigham[?], a rogue – you know? Or perhaps, if you will, an independent marine contractor, you know? But not a pirate – NEVER a pirate! I HATE that word: “pirate.” Okay? Come on – let’s take a look around my marketplace. [ steps off to the side, removes his jacket ] As you can see, it’s been a pretty god year for me and my men.

David Benoit: Hello, Jean! You don’t know me – I’m David Benoit, from Bayou Celambe[?]. I just want to say, I’m, uh, one of your brother Pierre’s men! [ shakes Lafitte’s hand ]

Jean Lafitte: Well, it’s nice to have you aboard – it is nice to have good, loyal men, huh?

David Benoit: I-I just want to say that I think that you’re, uh — [ tosses Lafitte’s jacket aside ] you’re one of the finest pirates in all the by-you!

Jean Lafitte: [ frowns ] Look, uh, do not call me a pirate, okay? [ whips out his pistol and shoots Benoit to the ground, then faces the camera ] Look – I’m not a pirate. Call me a privateer, a cossair[?], a bandit – you know? But NEVER a pirate! Okay?

David Benoit: A pirate!

Jean Lafitte: Yeah! Now, I really mean it this time, okay? I’m sorry. Now, pirates attack anything that floats! I’m selective about it! Look, I’ll tell you what I do – here’s how I got it set up. [ takes a piece of paper out of his jacket ] I fly a flag of Argentina, you know? I’ve got letters of mark here, that says I can sink, plunder any ship standing on the Spanish vessel – you know, any Spanish vessel. That’s not piracy. That’s what we call “positive seizure of cargo in transit.”

Marie-Claire: [ trying to get Lafitte’s attention ] Uh – Monsieur Lafitte — Monsieur Lafitte?

Jean Lafitte: What is it, Marie-Claire?

Marie-Claire: Oh, you must tell me, which wine you would prefer with the evening meal — the red, with the;or the white, from your cousin’s vineyard?

Jean Lafitte: And, which would you prefer, my dear?

Marie-Claire: Ohhh. I’d prefer the white wine.

Jean Lafitte: Well, there is one way to settle this, Madam [ whips out his sword ]

Marie-Claire: Ohhhhh! [ grabs a sword of her own ] Watch your feet, Lafitte!

[ she whips the sword towards his feet, but he dodges it by leaping into the air. The clash their swords together several time, until she knocks his sword to the ground, steps on it, then holds her sword to his neck. ]

Jean Lafitte: Very well, you win – we’ll have the white instead! [ she allows him to return to his feet ] It’s a bit frightening, you know what I mean? I don’t like to fight somebody like that. Hey, Marie?

Marie-Claire: Uh, yes, Monsieur Lafitte?

Jean Lafitte: What is the word that I hate the most in the whole world?

Marie-Claire: Ummmmm — pirate!

Jean Lafitte: Right. [ points shotgun at her and fires it, as she screams and falls ] Aaarghh!! I hate it! Call me a charlatan! Call me a brigham[?]! Call me a punk! Call me a cheap swashbuckler!! But I’m no PIRATE, you know what I mean?! Look! I don’t drop my captured treasure in some sleazy hall, or a trunk buried on a beach somewhere! I’ve got professionals working for me! I’ve got bookkeeppers, I’ve got lawyers! I get my treasured washed every week! My doubloons are laundered by professionals, you know what I mean?! [ removes his belt and sword ] [ a worker yells at Lafitte from atop a balcony ]

Worker: Hey, Jean! I went to Paris! I stole for your mother!

[ angry, Lafitte fires a shot and drops the worker into a haystack below ]

Worker 2: [ steps forward ] Hey, hey, Jean — he said “Par-is“, not “pi-rate, man!”

Jean Lafitte: Oh. Sorry, very sorry. Well, anyway — right now, my big problem is what to wear to the big Mardi Gras masquerade ball, you know? I usually go as a harlequin, you know, something like that. [ begins changing behind a panel ] But, this year, just to let people know that Jean Lafitte is a good sort, you know — just to prove that — hoo hoo hoo hoo hoo-oo-oo-oo!! Oh, am I going to have a laugh on them! [ steps out from behind the panel, now disguised as a pirate ] I’m going as a PIRATE! Hey, hey — I’m NOT a pirate, I’m just GOING as one, you know? I HATE it.. but it’ll fool everybody, you know? [ chuckles ] HAPPY MARDI GRAS!!

[ dissolve to the cheering crowd of revelers ] [ zoom in on one woman, with caption: “Spells Kunte Kinte With a ‘C'” ] [ fade ]

SNL Transcripts

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Author: Don Roy King

Don Roy King has directed fourteen seasons of Saturday Night Live. That work has earned him ten Emmys and fourteen nominations. Additionally, he has been nominated for fifteen DGA Awards and won in 2013, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020.

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