Saturday Night Live Transcripts

  Season 3: Episode 4

77d: Charles Grodin / Paul Simon

Consumer Probe

Joan Face.....Jane Curtin
Irwin Mainway.....Dan Aykroyd

Joan Face: Good evening. I'm Joan Face, welcome to "Consumer Probe". Well, Monday night on All Hallow's Eve, there'll be a lot of witches, ghosts and goblins roaming the streets trying to give us all a traditional Halloween fright. But what really frightens us here at "Consumer Probe" is the increasing number of injuries, and even fatalities, caused each year by unsafe Halloween costumes for children. For instance.. [ holds up plastic skeleton costume ] ..this little skeleton costume looks cute and harmless, but in fact it's coated by a highly flammable paint.

[ cut to full shot, showing Irwin Mainway seated to Joan's right ]

My guest tonight is Mr. Irwin Mainway, President of Mainway Novelties, and Chairman of the Board of Mainway Latex Corporation. Mr. Mainway, you are clearly the main flagrant offender in this area. For instance, your company manufactures and distributes this Halloween costume.. [ picks it up and holds it ] ..Johnny Space Commander mask, which retails for $6.95. It's nothing more than a plastic bag and a rubber band. This is very dangerous for young children!

Irwin Mainway: [ grabs the costume ] Okay, I'm gonna say something about my product right here, Johnny Space Commander mask. I want to say, first of all, it's a very fluid item, in terms of sales. I don't know, Miss Face, if you're familiar with the movie "Star Wars"? Well, this movie has generated a tremendous amount of popularity and enthusiasm about space and science fiction. [ rips open the costume packaging ] This Johnny Space Commander mask here is a pure fantasy toy. I mean, you know, kids can have a lot of fun with a toy like this, you know? Let me show you.. [ puts the plastic bag over his head, then wraps the rubber band around it ] "Hello, hello, this is Johnny Space Commander. I'm in deep space, I'm gonna land the rocket now!" You see what I mean? [ takes off the plastic bag ] You see what I mean? It's a pure fantasy toy!

Joan Face: Alright, Mr. Mainway, if you don't think that was unsafe, how about this Halloween costume, which you market under the label "Invisible Pedestrian"? [ holds up the costume ] It's an all black suit, gloves and mask. Now, it seems to me, Mr. Mainway, a child wearing this costume at night to go trick-or-treating is in grave danger of being hit by a car!

Irwin Mainway: Car? What do you mean "car", Miss Face? I mean, a car is a pretty big object, right? I mean, kids are smart today, you know? They know when a car is coming at 'em to jump out of the way. I mean, most of the kids I know go trick-or-treating at houses, right? You don't see too many kids walking along the expressway knocking on windshields looking for treats. This is a "sidewalk" costume!

Joan Face: A "sidewalk" costume?

Irwin Mainway: Yeah! I mean, you know, we don't recommend this for blind kids. See, there's a warning right on the label - "Invisible Pedestrian, Not For Blind Kids." [ turns packaging around to show this warning in big bold letters ] Huh?

Joan Face: Alright, Mr. Mainway. But surely even you can see the danger in this next costume, which you call Johnny Combat Action Costume. This is an actual working rifle!

Irwin Mainway: An M-1, yeah.

Joan Face: I mean, this is a deadly weapon, and you're selling it to children!

Irwin Mainway: The ammo's not included. I mean, this is a very popular item, you know? Give the kid a little something extra! Field glasses, a little helmet there, the gun, you know, it makes 'em feel like a real general! I mean, this product is very popular in Texas and Detroit!

Joan Face: What about this? [ holds up new costume ] Johnny Human Torch? It's a bag of oily rags and a lighter!

Irwin Mainway: This happens to be a favorite of mine, because it's a low-price Halloween costume. [ tears it open ] It's really one of the more exciting ones. You take the rags, you just pin 'em on there like a hobo, you know? And then flame on, lights up the night! It's a beautiful costume, I think.

Joan Face: Mr. Mainway, I am shocked at your irresponsible attitude! I think we can all see that your Halloween costumes are unsafe and should rightfully be banned from the market!

Irwin Mainway: Now, wait a second, hold it! You're picking on these because you're saying these costumes are unsafe! Well, I'm gonna tell you something - any item of clothing can be proven unsafe! Anything! What you're wearing, what I'm wearing! I've got this tie on - nice tie, nice thin tie.. alright, I'm driving along in my convertible, a nice gust of wind comes up.. [ he lifts his tie, shoves it into his face and feigns choking ] I could choke to death, you know? I mean, really! I could put it in my mouth - I could swallow my whole shirt!

Joan Face: Mr. Mainway? You are a very sleazy man. [ turns to the camera ] I'm afraid that's all the time we have..

Irwin Mainway: Hold on, hold on! You see this jacket here? [ removes his jacket ] This is a rayon-polyester jacket..

Joan Face: ..tune in next week. Have a happy and safe Halloween.

Irwin Mainway: ..I'll show you something, this could go up in flames just like that! [ lights his jacket on fire, as the flames rise ] Look at that! Look at that!

[ show fades black, as Mainway jumps in front of the camera ]

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