SNL Transcripts: Ssuan St. James: 04/16/83: Magic Fish Negotiations


 Saturday Night Live Transcripts

  Season 8: Episode 18

82r: Susan St. James / Michael McDonald

Magic Fish Negotiations

Mommy…..Susan St. James
Numpkin…..Eddie Murphy
Fish…..Mary Gross
Mike Rudell…..Tim Kazurinsky
Burt…..Brad Hall

[Mommy holds a baby. Lullaby music plays in the background.]

Mommy: Okay, Charlie! Mommy’s gonna read you a little fairy tale! [opens book] Let’s see, where’s a really good one… Here’s one.Once upon a time, there lived a poor peasant named Numpkin, and one day poor Numpkin’s wife sent him down to the sea to catch a fish for their dinner, because they were so very, very hungry…

[Wipe to Numpkin with a fishing pole approaching a dock by the sea.]

Numpkin: Oh, I hope I catch a fish, otherwise my wife Bubbles will hit me with a spoon!

[Numpkin casts his line from the dock.]

Numpkin: Ooo, a nibble!

[Numpkin catches a fish.]

Numpkin: What an enormous fish! Such a fish could feed an entire village! Or give Bubbles a little snack…

[Fish spits water at Numpkin.]

Numpkin: You’re a nasty fish, ain’t ya!

Fish: Please good sir, do not eat me, I am a magical fish!

Numpkin: Zeus, it speaks!

Fish: Spare me, and I will give you three wishes!

Numpkin: Three wishes…

[Numpkin sits on the dock next to the fish.]

Fish: Yes, anything you desire in all the world can be yours! Interested?

Numpkin: Goodness, yes! I want a gold coach with a racing stripe with leopard interior and six black horses with… wait a minute, there’s a catch here, right? The same thing happened to my friend Potemkin, and I remember he was a woodcutter and he met this magical bush and the bush said he could have all these wishes and he wished for this giant goat, and the goat was a hundred feet high and it ate all his crops, then it dropped a big one on his wife! What you’re trying to do is teach me some lesson about greed, isn’t it?

Fish: No, no, oh please!

Numpkin: Alright fish, but you wait here for a second alright.

[Numpkin runs off.]

Fish: Strange peasant he that hesitates to accept my bounty. Perhaps I’ve overwhelmed the poor gentle soul with my generosity.

[Numpkin returns with Mike Rodell.]

Numpkin: Hey fish, this is my attorney Mike Rodell. He’s gonna be negotiating these wishes for me.

Fish: Say what?

Numpkin: You heard what I said. I ain’t no fool, I’m gonna cover my behind legally on this thing right here. Alright.

Mike Rudell: Alright then, let’s handle some of these contractual parameters here, OK. Regarding these proferred wishes: can my client opt to utilize one or more of these wishes to wish for more wishes?

Fish: Uh, no, not really…

Mike Rudell: Well, let’s get that in writing then, eh?

Numpkin: I want a cow!

Mike Rudell: Let me handle this, Numpkin. Suppose my client does wish for a cow. Could you legally, then, give him a cow that gives sour milk, or does the term “cow” prima facie denote a healthy bovine in all…

[Wipe to Mommy.]

Mommy: And they negotiated and they negotiated for weeks and weeks, until they had the most mutually acceptable contract in all the land. Finally, the great day came when Numpkin the peasant, hereafter referred to as the party of the first part, and the magical fish, hereafter referred to as the party of the second part, and Numpkin’s attorneys, Michael Rudell of the firm Flang, Rudell, and LeBuff, gathered together to sign their fine document.

[Wipe to the dock.]

Mike Rudell: Okay, I think we’ve got it here… let’s just look at the main clauses one more time, okay… pursuant to the three wishes, blah blah blah blah blah, okay, wish number one…

Numpkin: Look man, I just want my damn cow, alright!

Mike Rudell: Just sit tight, Numpkin, huh. The party of the second part agrees to supply the party of the first part with one Guernsey heifer guaranteed to be the largest in all the land, but not so large as to be physically unwieldy.

Numpkin: And I want the sucker to give more milk than any other cow in the land.

Fish: Absolutely!

Burt: Now, now, now, just a minute Numpkin! Now with that wording, Mike, correct me if I’m wrong, the cow could theoretically produce so much milk so as to float the entire village away and flood his hut.

Mike Rudell: Good point, Burt. We want a clause limiting the milk to a reasonable quantity.

Burt: Good move.

Fish: Fine! Damn!

Mike Rudell: To continue: wish number two. The party of the first part wishes to meet the king’s daughter. The above mentioned daughter at this time will be dressed in a leather corset revealing not less than 90% of the total area of her virginal pink flesh.

Numpkin: Don’t forget the boots and the chain drawers!

Mike Rudell: Yeah, you got it right away. Furthermore, the wife of the party of the first part, hereafter referred to as “Bubbles”, will not as a consequence of this wish hit the party of the first part with a spoon or any other kitchen implement.

Numpkin: Yeah, that bitch is crazy!

Fish: Agreed!

Mike Rudell: Well then, let’s just sign this, shall we?

Fish: Wait a minute, what’s the third wish?

Numpkin: Oh, the third wish is that you pay my lawyer, cause this dude is milking me dry.

Mike Rudell: Uh, that is correct. My fee is four wishes.

Fish: Four wishes! But I only gave him three, and he hauled me out of the sea!

Mike Rudell: You’ll pay me four, sister, or I’ll haul you to an appellate court, put the cow in escrow, and sell you to Mrs. Paul, alright?

Burt: Great move, Mike!

Mike Rudell: Thank you Numpkin…

Fish: I accept! I accept!

[Wipe to Mommy.]

Mommy: And the moral of the story is, it doesn’t pay to be greedy without competent legal … uh… representation. THE END, Charlie.

Submitted by: Jay Stuler

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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Henry Myers
Henry Myers
3 years ago

Random question – but do you have a link to the video of this sketch? I remember seeing it only once but I died laughing! Seriously, one of the funniest sketches I have ever seen. My brother and I have been looking for this to years. Either way, I’m just happy to have the transcript!

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