SNL Transcripts: 10/03/81: The Funeral

 Saturday Night Live Transcripts

  Season 7: Episode 1

81a: (none) / Rod Stewart

The Funeral

Aunt Edie…..Mary Gross
Ruth…..Robin Duke
Uncle Ed…..Tony Rosato
Ruth’s Mother…..Christine Ebersole
Father Riley…..Joe Piscopo
Rod…..Tim Kazurinsky

[FADE IN on a funeral home as soft, mournful music plays. Ruth is dressed in black and standing in front of a closed casket while a huge weath is being carried across the room. Another woman in black walks up slowly behind Ruth.]

Aunt Edie: [gently] I suppose you expect me to bite my tongue and say, “It’s all right.” Well, it’s not all right, it’s all wrong.

Ruth: Well, I’m sorry you don’t like it, Aunt Edie.

Aunt Edie: Don’t like it? I hate it. That’s my brother inside a closed casket. He didn’t believe in closed caskets. And what kind of color is that, that’s a sissy color.

Ruth: I picked it out, Aunt Edie.

Aunt Edie: Oh, Ruth. Why didn’t ya ask me? I’ve been through this a million times. Honest to God, nobody asks Aunt Edie about anything, and nobody says “thank you.” You know, I got your mother a discount on the obituary notice ’cause the neighbor’s nephew works at the Tribune-Democrat.

Ruth: [forcing politeness] Thank you, Aunt Edie.

Aunt Edie: Did you get the casserole?

Ruth: Yes, thank you.

Aunt Edie: You’ll thank me for it later. And don’t forget to return the casserole pan, I lose more pans at these things.

Ruth: Well… I’ll wash it and return it personally.

[Ruth turns to walk away, but Aunt Edie touches her arm.]

Aunt Edie: Honest to God, your father’d turn over in his grave if he knew he was in a closed casket.

Ruth: Aunt Edie–

Aunt Edie: But you kids nowadays do things your own way; I guess that’s the way it goes. [sighs deeply]

Ruth: [angrily] Aunt Edie, they couldn’t get the chicken bone out of his neck, okay?

[soft laughter]

Aunt Edie: Oh. Well… that’s a different story, then.

Ruth: Yes.

Aunt Edie: Well, I guess it’s not so bad.

Ruth: Thank you.

Aunt Edie: Course, he could’ve wore a scarf, but people would ask, “Why is he wearing a scarf at this time of year,” y’know? [laughter] I woulda wore one, I dunno…

Ruth: Excuse me, Aunt Edie, I just have to talk to Mom for a second, all right?

Aunt Edie: Okay.

[Ruth walks away, but a man in a conservative blue suit and an ugly brown tie calls out to her.]

Uncle Ed: [loudly] Hey, RUTHIE! Heyyy, so, Ruth, hey.

Ruth: Hi, Uncle Ed.

Uncle Ed: How are ya, dear?

Ruth: Oh, I’m fine.

Uncle Ed: Hey, I want ya to know your old man–or, your father, there, he was a wonderful man!

Ruth: [softly] Thank you.

Uncle Ed: Wonderful man, y’know that? I–y’know remember him, last month, there, at that, uh, wedding party for your brother!

Ruth: [whispers] Yeah.

Uncle Ed: Hey, y’know, your brother got that girl in trouble, huh? [guffaws obnoxiously] Like father, like son, I guess. Y’know, he just brought a brand new pair of shoes that day, too. He comes up to me, says, “Hey: why don’t you try these on, I betya we got the same foot size!” So I try them on, and what the hell… son of a gun, they FIT! [guffaws] A PERFECT FIT–heh heh heh heh heh heh heh! You don’t know if he still got ’em on, do ya?


Ruth: [outraged] Uncle Ed! LOOK!!

Uncle Ed: Oh no, I couldn’t, it’s a closed casket, maybe a little later, when everyone’s gone, yeah. Don’t worry about it.

Ruth: [covering her face] Well, uh, just talk to Mom, okay, later?

[She goes to leave, but he stops her.]

Uncle Ed: Oh, sure! I will, Ruthie, because I’ll tell ya, I think we’re both a 15 1/2-inch neck.

[Ruth gasps and steps over to her mother, who is standing next to a priest.]

Ruth: Mum…

Ruth’s Mother: Ruth? This is Father Riley. Father Riley, my daughter Ruth.

Father Riley: [shaking Ruth’s hand] Ruth, I’m so sorry.

Ruth: Oh, well, thank you, Father. Father, could I just have a few moments alone with Mum?

Father Riley: Oh, I understand.

[He pats both women’s shoulders gently. Ruth pulls her mother aside.]

Ruth: Mom, I can’t take much more of this.

Ruth’s Mother: Oh, I’m sorry, honey, it’s almost all over. Nothing more wrong is going to happen, I promise.

[As she comforts Ruth, a young man in a bright blue leisure suit with a light blue flowered shirt appears. With a wardrobe bag over his shoulder, he turns to them.]

Man: Ruth!

Ruth: Chuck!

Man: Rod!

Ruth: What are you DOING here?!

Rod: Hey, no probs! I knew you were upset, so I flew into Pittsburgh. I didn’t know how I was gonna find ya, but I just knew I had to!

Ruth: Rod–

Rod: Then it HIT me. You’d probably forget you and your father have the same surname!

Ruth: Rod–

Ruth’s Mother: [politely] I don’t believe we’ve met.

Rod: Rod Schapps. [shakes her hand] Ruth’s lover.


Ruth: No! [She looks frantically around at everybody, including Father Riley.] No! [losing her composure] He isn’t!

Rod: YES! Yes, he is! [points to casket] He’s DEAD! And the sooner you understand that, the sooner you can move–LOOK!! He’s DEAD, Ruth, he’s dead!! Ruth– [hands bag to priest] Excuse me. Your Holiness, I can handle this. [grabs Ruth’s arms] C’mon, sweetheart, it’s okay.

[The others clear away as Ruth struggles in Rob’s grasp.]


Rod: Let it go!

Ruth: Why don’t you just go away? Lemme go!

Rod: [pulling her closer] Let it go! Let it go! Get it out of your system! Have a good cry!

[She finally collapses on his shouder and sobs.]

Ruth: [muffled] Noooooo…

Rod: [cranes neck toward others] What’re ya staring at, huh? Have you ever seen anyone have a nervous breakdown before? Go on about your business! [turns back] No, honey, it’s all right, it’s okay. [tries to kiss her]

Ruth: Rod, Rod, Rod, Rod, listen to me!

Rod: What’s the matter?

Ruth: [grabs his arms] Listen to me close!

Rod: I’m listening, I’m listening.

Ruth: You have got to understand this!

Rod: Yeah…

Ruth: I am normal, Rod. I’m normal. And you’re not!


Rod: I KNOW that! I know–remember when I told ya about that famous guy that died? What’s his name, BIG guy! I wanted to cry. I wanted to cry but I couldn’t. And that’s what I love about you.

Ruth: What?!

Rod: You just don’t understand, do you? You’re so innocent. [caresses her face]

Ruth: Rod. You are such a tool. [laughter] You are never gonna believe that I don’t like you the least little bit, are you? [waves hand in his face] Just doesn’t register! Rod, you are amazing!

[Rod grins sheepishly and looks at the floor.]

Ruth: [grabs his shoulders] Rod, I, I’m tired. I’m exhausted. Yes, I am, and right now I just need to be alone with my family.

Rod: [softly] Oh, sure. I understand.

Ruth: Okay? And I was just–I was FINE until you got here!

Rod: You cried on account of me?

Ruth: Technically speaking, yes.

Rod: Ahhhh, GEEEEEEZ!

Ruth: Rod, shut up, shut up and let me finish, all right?

Rod: Yeah.

Ruth: Now, I, I, I don’t have much strength left–I want you to go to your van.

Rod: No, I flew in.

Ruth: Well, then go to your hotel.

Rod: Okay.

Ruth: Okay? And wait for me there, and I promise I’ll come by later, and I’ll–

Rod: Promise?

Ruth: I–yes. Hope to die.

Rod: Okay.

Ruth: Okay? Okay.

Rod: [pulls out a matchbook] I’m staying at the Monongahela Arms, out on Route 54 out by the airport! See, there’s directions on the matches.

Ruth: Okay.

Rod: There’s a little map there.

[Rod turns from her and steps over to the mourners.]

Rod: Can I have my bag–thank you, Father. [takes wardrobe bag from priest]

Uncle Ed: You’ll like that hotel. I’ve been there myself.


Rod: [turning back to Ruth] Listen… you… you better not keep me waiting too long. I think the maid’s kinda sweet on me. She pulled the covers down on my bed, and she put a chocolate mint on my pillow.


Ruth: [hopefully] Great.

Rod: Naw, I was just kiddin’, c’mon, I don’t go for girls that throw themselves at ya.

[Out of nowhere, Ruth is overcome by passion.]

Ruth: [whispers] Rod.

[He mashes his lips against hers and bends her over almost to the floor. She grabs him to keep from falling. He pulls her up and breaks the kiss.]

Rod: [hushed] Okay, babe, take care…

[He dashes out of the room, but stops cold in the doorway and turns back.]

Rod: Dan Blocker!

Ruth: What?

Rod: “Bonanza”! Remember I talked about that famous guy died? Big guy? Dan Blocker!

Ruth: Rod, go. [She pushes him out through the doorway as he blows her a kiss.] Good, Rod. Go.

[She turns back in and walks straight into Uncle Ed.]

Uncle Ed: Hey, Ruth, was that guy one of your, uh, y’know…

Ruth: [stalks off] Drop dead, Uncle Ed!

Uncle Ed: Sure, no problem, sorry.

Ruth: [clasping her mother’s hands] Mom, listen. Mom, listen. I, I, I, I’ll explain this all later.

Ruth’s Mother: Look, you don’t have to, I’m a woman, I understand.

Ruth: No, you don’t understand. Mom, I’ve gotta get to Rod before the Humane Society picks him up, all right? [turns to leave] I’ll be home in a couple of hours.

[Ruth dashes away as the mourners gather again.]

Aunt Edie: You get the casserole?

Ruth’s Mother: Yes, thank you.

Aunt Edie: You’ll thank me for it later.

[Audience applauds as Uncle Ed steps in with a pair of brown shoes in his hand and starts to take off his own shoes. ZOOM OUT.]

Submitted by: Sean

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