Gerry Todd’s Porta-Dish
Gerry Todd…..Rick Moranis
[ open on Gerry Todd in a control booth facing away from the camera, staring into a bank of television sets broadcasting various feeds, including several of himself staring at the television sets ]
Gerry Todd: Ha ha ha ha ha! [ turns around ] How are you? Grry Todd with ya’! You know – you know, video has come a long way since the days of the Big Three networks. Why, with today’s cable, you can get thirty, forty, maybe fifty channels. But if you’re a videophile like me, you’ll find that even isn’t enough. Well, thanks to satellite transmission, there are now literally thousands of broadcasts going on every hour, all around the world. Now, I know what you’re saying – you’re saying, “Gerry, how the heck can I afford to get those broadcasts on those dishes, they’re darn expensive!”
Well! Take a looksie at this: [ holds up a china eating dish with a thing sticking out of the middle ] This is a new dish that anyone can afford. It’s a new portable model, it’s unbelievable! It does everything the big ones do, plus it comes in dozens of patterns, it’s completely unbreakable, and it’s dishwasher-safe! And wait ’til you see the things that this baby pulls in![ picture turns to snow, then clears up on festive muzak and a blue screen filled with a scrolling list of city names and percentages – ex. “Boston. . . . . .45%” and “Cairo. . . . . .3%” ]
Gerry Todd V/O: Now, this is the Humidity Chanel. It’s a kind of a spin-off from the Weather Channel. Boy, it’s dry in Cairo, isn’t it? That’s handy to know! 56 in Europe.
Oh, now, this is the Trampoline Channel. This is from Czechoslavakia, this.[ picture turns to snow, then clears up on a man walking through a Western scene firing a rifle ]
Oh, this is the Rifleman Channel. They run these 24 hours a day – I’ve got all these on VHS already, though.[ picture turns to snow, then clears up on a microscopic slide images ]
Oh, now this is almost educational – this is the Microbiology Channel. It’s fun to turn down the sound, do your own narrations with these.[ picture turns to snow, then clears up on a scrolling list of alphabetized names – ex. “Jim Fish”, “Jim L. Fish”, “Joe Bob Fish”, “Vern Fish”, “Vern Fish, Jr.”, “Vern Bob Fish”, etc. ]
Oh, now this is the Census Channel. Your name comes up about once every six months.[ picture turns to snow, then clears up on an old black-and-white movie with mangled subtitles ]
Man in Film: That I don’t know. [ subtitle: “Taht I dont wonk.” ] By the way… [ subtitle: “Yb the yaw…” ]
Gerry Todd: Now, this is interesting – this is the Dyslexia Channel.
Man in Film: How did Tom and Betty make out today? [ subtitle: “Who dod Mot and Tebby mak out toady?” ]
Woman in Film: They’ve taken their new assignment very seriously. [ subtitle: “Thr taken or noo angsiment vy cereal.” ]
Gerry Todd: It’s closed-captioning for dyslexics.
Woman in Film: They worked all afternoon. [ subtitle: “Hey word al antlerfoon.” ]
Gerry Todd: I think that’s kind of a good public service, myself.[ picture turns to snow, then clears up on native Africans dancing with spears to Toni Basil’s “Mickey” ]
Now, this is “African Bandstand.” Ah, Dick Clark produces that out of Zimbabwe, Rhodesia.[ cut back to Gerry Todd in the control booth ]
Gerry Todd: It’s the Porta-Dish! Thousands of channels. It comes in paper for parties, two sets for your Jewish friends. You’ll need never — [ audience bursts into laughter and applause ] You’ll need never leave the house again![ fade ]