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Slagar the Cruel:
Coast to Coast

"Ask Slagar"
Cruel Jokes

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Slagar the Cruel: Coast to Coast
Episode 8: Retrospective

[Slagar strides casually onto the stage... only to meet with a silent, darkened set. The rows of the audience, the chairs of the band members... all are empty. He stops before taking his seat.]

SLAGAR: ...Hello? [His voice echoes throughout the vacant studio.] Hey guys, when I suggested installing a laugh track, I didn't mean you should get rid of the audience! Um, and cast! And... turn off the lighting!

[Slagar laughs awkwardly for a moment, then abruptly stops. He stalks about the stage, glaring in all directions.]

SLAGAR: So what, did everyone call in sick but me? Should I assume that this was a snow day and everyone just forgot to tell me? Or perhaps... [Points towards the camera, suddenly shouting in rage] my infernal rival Matthias is trying to upstage me yet again? Show yourself, you little... little nut-basket-dropper!

[Slagar begins upsetting various objects on the stage, as if hoping to uncover some clue. He stops as he reaches the bandstand.]

SLAGAR: I'm over-thinking this. I-Am-That-Sucks will be hosting Warriors Weekly right about now... which I'm sure will dominate the ratings chart for my timeslot yet again. Why would he need to set me up like this when he's already stolen my viewership? No, the creatures responsible for this insult are the Dark Forest Broadcasting Company... and those gutless worms didn't even have the courage to tell me about it. They're trying to squeeze in one last crack on Slagar before putting him out of a job.

[Slagar shrugs.]

SLAGAR: Oh well. I suppose all I can do is accept my employer's decisions with the dignity they exhort.

[Slagar whips out a bola, which is somehow already ignited in flame, and hurls it towards the front row seats, which detonate.]

SLAGAR: Fire me, will they? Bah! I knew those greasy sons of benchwarmers at the network had it in for me the entire time. And my cast, oh fates, the cast, don't even get me started on that ill-begotten mess of rejects!

[Slagar begins to hurl the instruments from the bandstand to the floor and smash them to bits with his footpaws]

SLAGAR: Roaringburn Five, eh? More like Roaringburn None! Those snarky philistines, I was doing them a favor by letting them appear in the same show, nay, the same solar system as me, and all they did was spit in my face! And then they had the nerve to wonder why I cut their pay! Well let's see them play those ridiculous tunes without... THESE!

[Slagar hurls a harolina towards the curtains, chucking a knife after it. The knife collides with the instrument, causing a giant explosion which causes a great hole to form in the nearby curtains.]

SLAGAR: Vitch, Threeclaws, Halfchop, Gartar... bah, the fools are barely even worthy of my indignation! Maybe if they hadn't provided such clumsy, maladroit responses to my brilliant deliveries we'd still be on the air! If only I had severed Vitch's limbs more regularly, maybe he would have understood the importance of... ah, it's too late now!

[Slagar kicks one of the dimmed lights from the stage into a balcony, causing it to explode and collapse in yet another display of unusual volatility. Dust and smoke now billowing around him, the foxthief cackles maniacally as he walks towards his desk.]

SLAGAR: They've done it this time! They've tipped over the teapot! They've disturbed the sleeping giant! They've grinded my gears! I had to suffer through interview after interview, and I don't even get to pull off the show's big finale?! I will personally pistolwhip every last one of -

[Shaking his fist, Slagar sets one footpaw upon the chair at his desk, hoping to strike a defiant pose. In the process, he presses a button resting upon the seat which immediately causes confetti to shoot from the ceiling, followed by a banner which reads: "HAPPY BIRTHDAY SLAGAR". A trap-door opens, revealing the show's crew, who are looking quite peeved. There is a long pause.]

SLAGAR: [Jubilantly] Hey, wow, you guys remembered! Nobody ever-

TREEROSE: Can it, checker-face. Do you honestly think you're going to get away with that little outburst of yours? That was recorded? That we *all witnessed*?

SLAGAR: Oh! Oh. Yikes, this is bad. Do you think they'll deduct the damage to the studio from my paycheck?

TREEROSE: Our instruments... were one of a kind -

SLAGAR: Hey, way to try to ruin the mood of my birthday, Treerose. Honestly, couldn't you guys try to be pleasant once in a while?

THREECLAWS: Uh, chief, weren't you just shouting about how you hate all of us? Shouldn't y' be apologizing or somethin'?

ROOP: T' be fair, 'ee fossker tells uz that to our faces ev'ry week, hurr hurr.

HALFCHOP: [Nodding] Kachunk.

SLAGAR: So, thanks for going out of your way to do something for my birthday, guys. There's just something I'm wondering... why, the HELLGATES, did you schedule, a surprise party, for the same time, THAT WE'RE DOING THE SHOW?!?!

CLECKY: Y'see, birthday-blaggard, I've been put in charge of doin' a special commemorative show in your [Gags] honor tonight. Which would just so happen to take your show's place, wot?

VITCH: Actually, th' Taggerung cancelled his scheduled appearance for tonight to appear on Warriors Weekly. This birthday thing's kinda like a Plan B.

SLAGAR: Hmm, so Matthias is behind this! I should have known that I was right the first time, since, you know, I am never wrong about anything. Oh yeah, that reminds me... [Suddenly takes Vitch by the arm and slices it off with a quick flash of a cleaver, which then immediately disappears back under his cloak. Vitch rolls on the floor bleeding as Slagar continues speaking, unaffected.] But why the whole "let's-keep-Slagar-in-the-dark-until-he-flips-out" theme?

CLECKY: Mistake in planning, I s'pose. We assumed that in tryin' to figure out why nobody was here, you'd... I don't know... take a seat at your desk? Guess we overlooked the crucial detail o' you bein' a deranged psychopath.

SLAGAR: An understandable mistake. So! I'm actually going to be the focus of my show for once? How perfectly brilliant! Host away, Clecky, my deeply-loathed friend.

CLECKY: Er, considerin' the damage y' somehow managed to do to this studio, I'm not sure we'll be able t' go through with this here.

SLAGAR: Damage...? Oh, boo-hoo. It's just a little rubble and fire, it's not like it'll kill you. Have you forgotten that we're all deadbeasts? It doesn't matter how structurally unsound our surroundings are, because there's no way they can have any negative consequences on us whatsoever!

[A large chunk of the ceiling suddenly breaks loose and crashes down upon the camera, causing the show to be replaced by static.]

[The commercial opens with a dark, futuristic landscape. Scores of rats are shown marching through charred, oily metallic walls. A brief clip is shown of Romsca, wearing bright red shorts, charging down a different hallway holding a sledgehammer, being chased by mice. The commercial switches back to the rats, who are now seated in front of a huge screen which shows the gigantic face of a badger, barking oppressive pro-conformity jargon at the congregation. Finally Romsca converges with the crowd of rats and, spinning in a circle, she tosses the hammer towards the screen, which shatters. A blue cloud of dust shoots over the rats. One turns around and speaks.]

BLAGGUT: Hey, we were watchin' that!

RAT #2: Yeah, what's the big idea?

ROMSCA: Um... sorry. Guess my grip on that sledgehammer wasn't as tight as I thought it was.

RAT #3: Aw, man! Just when it was gettin' good.

VOICE-OVER: I bet you still have no idea of what this was advertising, do you? Man, this commercial rules!

[A picture of a fruit is shown.]

ROMSCA: I need a new job.

CLECKY: Welcome back, chaps, to a very special edition of Slagar th' Cruel: Coast to Crud! I, Cleckstarr Lepus Montisle III, am tonight's host, don't y'know. In this episode, we'll be taking time to honor our host, Slagar the Crud, by hearin' from all the beasts who've known 'im throughout 'is life.

VITCH: Wow, it sure is lucky that all the sets in the Dark Forest studios are exactly identical, or else we wouldn't have been able to get the show back up and running.

SLAGAR: Wow, it sure is unlucky that you weren't born a mute, or else we might have been spared that needless exposition. Continue with the Slagar revelry, Clecky! [Rubs paws together in anticipation]

CLECKY: Right, then! Without freddy ado, it's my indistinct pleasure to present... Slagar the Cruel: This Was Your Life!

[A spotlight turns on, projecting the silhouette of a vixen wearing some type of shawl.]

CLECKY: This vixen was your guardian for most o' your childhood. She spent a great deal o' her time rearin' you from when you were a blinkin' baby. In fact, some might say she... made you what you are today, wot? [Authoratatively] Slagar, can y' guess who this individual is?

[Slagar gapes incredulously at Clecky.]

CLECKY: So... I'm takin' it y'can't? I'll give y' a hint - she's very... motherly!

[Slagar tries to vocalize his indignation at being asked such an obvious question]

CLECK: Hmph, fine... an' I thought that was the easy one, wot? Sela Fox, come on out!

[Sela emerges from the curtains, and walks over to Slagar]

SELA: Happy birthday, dear! Oh, isn't it wonderful, Chickenhound? Finally, they let you have an episode of this ridiculous show where - [Abruptly smacks Slagar flat across his skull with a cane] Where's your jacket, you little moron?

SLAGAR: Ow! Mom, you old coot, why would I be wearing a jacket? And you know that my name is Slagar now!

SELA: Didn't I teach you anything? If you go out without a coat, you'll catch sickness, maggots-for-brains!

SLAGAR: First of all, you senile hag, we're indoors. Secondly, I'M WEARING A CLOAK. Maybe you'd see it if you would buy some spectacles from Ublaz's Optometry Barn for those aging eyes of yours.

SELA: I can see that your cloak isn't heavy enough just fine from over here, you little weed!

SLAGAR: Oh get off it, you furry fossil!

SELA: Vomit-breath!

SLAGAR: Gabby geezer!

SELA: Toad-kisser!

SLAGAR: Rancid relic!

SELA: [Hugs Slagar suddenly] Aww, I've missed these little conversations of ours, Chickenhound. You really need to come visit me more often! [Thrusts her cane into Slagar's gut suddenly and quite forcefully] And you also need to eat your vegetables, you scrawny slag-pile. Honestly! Who ever heard of an herbalist's son who doesn't eat his vegetables?

[Slagar raises a paw as if to answer, but only wheezes and falls over]

SELA: Oh, stop embarrassing yourself, son. It's bad enough that you've taken to prancing about on the telly in that flamboyant costume of yours...

GERUL: Ah, such a touchin' reunion! Mothers are so important in passin' on wisdom an' values through each generation. Me ould mother always used t' say, "me ould mother always used t' say, 'me ould mother used to say, "I can't remember what me ould mother used t' say!", that she did', that she did", that she did. 'Twas a sad chink in the chain of my lineage's catch phrases, an' one that taught us all the importance of sharing.

CLECKY: Er... right y'are, Gerul me ol' wing-walloper!

ROOP: Hurr, he'm rully ez quoit 'ee wallpaper toipe, zurr!

CLECKY: So, the story of our pal Slagar began in th' humble home of Sela Fox, where he first learned th' ways of varmintdom. We've created a re-enactment of Slagar's early childhood based on the ruminations of those who knew 'im well. Get that clip rollin', Gartar!

GARTAR: rollin rollin rollin

[The re-enactment shows a tiny fox being tied to a rock atop a summit, by what looks to be a younger Sela.]

SELA: There! That'll teach you the importance of retrieving my poison ingredients properly, little Chickenhound.

LI'L CHICKENHOUND: B-but mommy, I bwought you da Owl beaks and the bat eaws just like you said!

SELA: Yes, but you handed them to me in the wrong order!

LI'L CHICKENHOUND: I didn't mean to, mommy, honest! But you hit me on da head so much that sometimes I fowget stuff!

SELA: Serves you right! You're just like that good-for-nothing father of yours... now, I'm going to be collecting ingredients the proper way. If you behave, I'll let you down from here in a day or two! [Leaves]

LI'L CHICKENHOUND: Yes, mothew. [Sighs] Oh, my life is full of stwife and hawdship! Sometimes I can hawdly beaw the pwessuwe my mothew puts on me... and I, no mowe than a child! But I know that if I believe in myself, and nevew stop dweaming, I'll make it big... somehow!

[Musical accompaniment begins playing in the background, as though the young Slagar was about to belt out a song, but then a flock of very small birds swoop in and begin pecking at his body.]

LI'L CHICKENHOUND: Ahhhh! Very small birds! YEEAAAARGH!

SELA: [From a distance] If you scream, I'll have to give you another time out!

LI'L CHICKENHOUND: [Sighs] Yes, mothew...

TREEROSE: Aww, Slagar was adorable as a dibbun!

SLAGAR: That wasn't really me, you nimrod, that was a child actor.

TREEROSE: Oh! Well, that explains the difference in cuteness and speaking proficiency.

SLAGAR: Whose idea was it to make the story of my childhood into an inspirational abortive musical number, anyways?

CLECKY: That's, er, not important, wot? What IS important is that we move on to the next guest from Slagar's life!

SLAGAR: Well, my mom remembered leaving someone in the oven and left during that clip, so go ahead and hit me with the next guest, Clecky! There's no way that this one could be as humiliating as the last one.

CLECKY: Believe it or not... he actually is!

[The band (sans Clecky) plays that a foreboding musical cue. You know, like, dun dun DAHHHHH, like that.]

CLECKY: Yes sah, our next guest is a tyrannical rat with a disgustingly large tail, who gave Slagar his first real job, murdered his mother, and left him for dead. Please welcome Cluny the Scourge!

[Cluny marches out from behind the curtains and leers at Slagar.]

SLAGAR: [Nodding] Cluny.

CLUNY: [Hissing] Chickenhound.

SLAGAR: Have those severe knife wounds from your last appearance on the show healed up yet?

CLUNY: Are you still running a sissy advice column and a trashy TV show?

ALL: Oooohhhh!

ROOP: Foight! Foight! Foight!

CLECKY: Now calm down, gentlebeasts! I'm sure we can get through this flippin' misunderstand without resortin' to violence. Now Cluny, what was Slagar like when he was workin' for you as a young adult?

CLUNY: Hmm... where to begin? Let me think. Oh, yes. [Clears throat] HE SUCKED.

[Slagar raises a dagger, growling.] CLECKY: Come now, you're both reasonable adults... [Pauses, then laughs] Ah, who am I kiddin'? Go for it!

CLUNY: Thank you!

[Cluny dives upon Slagar, stabbing into him multiple times with his tail barb with Slagar slices wildly into the air with a dagger. Threeclaws and Halfchop spring onto the stage to wrestle the two apart, but not before Cluny can unveil a large glass vessel and shove it over Slagar's head.]

CLUNY: Take that, you stupid hack! How does it feel to soak your own head in a vat of acid?!

[Slagar pulls the vat off his head quickly, but not before his mask is completely dissolved, revealing his repulsive visage. Everyone gasps.]

TREEROSE: Good seasons, Slagar! That acid melted half of your face off! And left the other half hideously deformed!

SLAGAR: Yeah, very funny. [Turns to Cluny] Why are you even taking time to wreck my show over a petty dispute we had a while back? Matthias is your adversary, too, so why aren't you bothering him?

CLUNY: Matthias has a show? [Hastily worms his way out of the grasp of Threeclaws] Quick, which set is it being taped on?

SLAGAR: It's right down the hall, you can't miss it.

[Cluny flees from the set, laughing with crazed glee.]

SLAGAR: Well, now that I've convinced that clod Cluny to run headlong onto the set of Warriors Weekly, where he will doubtlessly be diced into dumplings, let's get on with the Slagar-fest. Which I'm hoping will improve immediately.

TREEROSE: Er, Slagar... can you look away from me while you're talking? You make me even sicker than usual when you don't have your mask on. What with the adder bite and all.

CLECKY: Speaking of which, our next guest is someone who Slagar should be pretty flippin' familiar with! This cold-blooded reptilian villain was responsible for removing large chunks of flesh from Slagar's body, and for making him into what he is today!

SLAGAR: Wow, you guys were able to get a hold of my dad?

CLECKY: Er, no, but good guess, wot?

SLAGAR: Oh, that's too bad. It's been a while since HOLD ON, WHO ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT?!?!

[Asmodeus Poisonteeth slithers out from behind the curtains, knocking creatures, decor, and furnishings over in his wake.]

ASMODEUS: Sssslagar! I ssssmell you, Sssslagar! Assssmodeussss issss here to finish the job he sssstarted!

SLAGAR: AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH [Quickly breathes in] AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!! [Slagar hops on top of a desk, visibly wetting himself.]

SLAGAR: C-commercial break! COMMERCIAL BREAK!

[A commercial opens with a shot of a building amidst dense clusters of trees. There is a huge balloon in the likeness of an eyeball tethered to the front of the building]

ANNOUNCER: Iiiiiiiit's Crazy Ublaz Madeyes' Wacky Optometry Barn! Where savings are emperor!

[A shot of glasses are shown.]

ANNOUNCER: You could be taking home a pair of glasses like these right now if you were at Crazy Ublaz Madeyes' Wacky Optometry Barn, and not in front of a TV or computer monitor! And you have the nerve to wonder WHY your vision is so bad.

[The visual suddenly becomes severely blurred]

ANNOUNCER: See what I mean? You probably don't, because your vision is so bad! And that's why you need help from CRAAAAAZY Ublaz! Tell 'em, chief!

[A terrible scene transition segues into a shot of Ublaz Madeyes, wearing a gigantic stuffed crown and looking dejected.]

UBLAZ: [Sullenly] Greetings, slaves to bad vision. It is I, Ex-emperor Ublaz Madeyes. I used to have a eye problem... a very useful, mind-controlling eye problem... but I've... [Sighs] ...been cured. And the same thing can happen to you at a low, low price.

[Another bad scene transition switches to Ublaz standing in front of a glasses display.]

UBLAZ: We're slashing prices.

[Nothing happens for an awkward amount of time, and then a pendulum swings from offscreen, cutting the glasses display in two.]

UBLAZ: In half.

[Yet another bad scene transition follows, and Ublaz is shown next to a rack adorned with unusual pairs of spectacles.]

UBLAZ: And for a limited time, you'll get some free novelty glasses too. Like, check out these... uh... [Holds up pair of red-tinted glasses] X-ray specs. Yeah. Amuse your monitor lizard lackeys. I mean slaves. I mean friends. Yes.

[Ublaz puts down the X-ray glasses and retrieves a pair which bears swirls upon its lenses.]

UBLAZ: Or for some real fun, try these hypno-lenses, that are... that... they can hypnotize... [Suddenly collapses, sobbing] Why? Why?! It's not fair! I used to be someone! I owned an island! Do any of you commoners understand the importance of a position like that? I should have never bought that coral snake! I should have saved and just bought my own set of pearls! Now look at me! I'm a failure! A FAILURE!

[Switches back to an outdoor camera view]

ANNOUNCER: You'll be failing at blindness once you make a stop at Crazy Ublaz Madeyes' Wacky Optometry Barn! The only place where I'm pretty sure the guy running it is seriously crazy!

CLECKY: Welcome back to Slagar the Cruel: This Was Your Life! How are y' comin' with Asmodeus, Slagar?

[Slagar, who at some point popped a paper back with eyeholes over his otherwise unmasked face and who is riddled with giant fang-holes, continues stomping upon a pile of quivvering snake-guts.]

SLAGAR: Take that, you overgrown earthworm! Oh, uh, sorry. Just got kind of carried away there, I guess.

CLECKY: So, are y' ready for our next pair o' guests from YOUR past?

SLAGAR: Well, that depends. Are they going to embarass me, mutilate me, or otherwise ruin the celebration of my birth?

CLECKY: Honestly, I was just going to have Vitch recount your adult life...

SLAGAR: Vitch couldn't recount his way out of a paper bag.

VITCH: Yeah, well I hope you can. Since you're wearin' one on your head an' all, chief.

[Slagar stares at Vitch for a moment, then hurls his bola towards him, slicing off his head.]

SLAGAR: Guess we'll need to put your head in a paper bag as well, Vitch! So it doesn't go bad, I mean.

CLECKY: Oh, great. So what are we gonna do, just glaze over your entire blinkin' adult life, Slagar? [Shouting] Is there anyone here, who knows enough about Slagar to recount his adult life?

THREECLAWS: Sure, Clecky, I can tell you. Lights, please!

[Threeclaws stands in the center of the stage, and a spotlight falls upon him. The set grows silent.]

THREECLAWS: And there were in the same country slavers, abidin' in the fields, keepin' watch over their slaves an' all. And lo, after much healin' of his face via herbal remedies while hidin' in a hole an' practicin' the ways of evil to be able to get revenge, Slagar came upon 'em, an' th' glory of his ugly face shone upon 'em, and they were sorely afraid. And Slagar said unto 'em, "fear not, fools, for I bring unto you good tidin's of great evil, which shall be to all beasts. For unto you this day is come a leader, which is Slagar the Cruel." 'E commanded them verily for many seasons, sowin' seeds of evil wherever they did pass. An' they did sow this evil at Redwall, which angered the stupidhead Matthias. And suddenly there was with the stupidhead, a multitude of stupidheads, pursuin' the Cruel One, and sayin', "give us our kids back you jerks". And Slagar did fall into a well.

[Threeclaws walks back to where he and Halfchop had been standing.]

THREECLAWS: That's what Slagar's adult life is all about, Clecky.

SLAGAR: That... was beautiful. A little revisionist, maybe, but beautiful nonetheless. Thank you for putting things into perspective and finally affirming my terrible evil greatness, Threeclaws.

THREECLAWS: Uh, by the way, I'm not Threeclaws.

SLAGAR: ...what?

THREECLAWS: Yah, I ain't never been no Threeclaws. The name's Halftail!

SLAGAR: Oh yeah, I forgot... Halftail was the bumbling stupid one, and Threeclaws was the mildly effective one. So why haven't you corrected anyone when, for the past 8 episodes, we've all been calling you Threeclaws?

HALFTAIL: It's a funny story, I... I actually forgot that I wasn't named Threeclaws too.

SLAGAR: Amazing. Never before have I gained and lost respect for an individual so quickly. So! That's a wrap, then? Can I go? Cause I have this tradition for stealing cake and presents on my birthday, you see...

CLECKY: Hold your horses, Slagar, y' impatient mental patient!

SLAGAR: [Pauses, then asks confusedly] Why would I want to hold horses?

CLECKY: I need to stop using these expressions I pick up off o' Gartar... they're pwnin' far less 1337-ly than I'd anticipated, wot? Anyways, we have one last thing to look over... your afterlife!

[A spotlight casts the silhouette of... another fox. These are really not helpful clues at all. As any stage-directions bracket text will tell you.] CLECKY: This grayish-furred fox met you while you were working at your first Dark Forest punishment-type job...

SLAGAR: No, don't say those words! Saying those words triggers -

[The camera switches to footage of a small, well-groomed, spectacled rat sitting in a chair in front of a fireplace.]

ROBERT GARRISON: Good evening, compatriots! I'm your host, Robet Garrison. You may know me from my adventures outside the canon Redwallian universe in the series "The Adventures of Superstripe the Unrealistic", in which I died, and ended up popping into the Dark Forest for canon characters as a result of a very strange coincidence which also made Gartar a part of this continuity. Anyways, tonight on Quasi-Canon Corner I'll be discussing the idea of "Dark Forest punishment" in-depth.

[Robert Garrison stands up, produces a pointer, and gestures towards a piece of parchment hanging on the wall which depicts a smiling mouse and a grimacing weasel standing side by side.]

ROBERT GARRISON: Now the Dark Forest, as anyone who's paid attention while reading through the chronicles of Redwall will know, is where the souls of those in this universe who have died end up. For a while, this system worked without a -

[Slagar bursts into the room, panting heavily, and punches Robert Garrison in the head.]

SLAGAR: We don't *pant* have time for the *pant* full version right now, you officiously *pant* you stupid *pant* JUST HURRY IT UP OVER HERE!

[The foxthief dashes back out of the room, leaving Robert Garrison looking rather confused.]

ROBERT GARRISON: Um... basically, when an evil creature ends up in the Dark Forest they either have to endure straight-up suffering day after day in the Mines of Misery, or they can get some kind of wacky alternate punishment that makes them suffer an equal or greater amount. One such punishment is working at a job that really irritates you. For Slagar, this means running an advice column and answering everyone’s stupid questions. Back to you, Slagar.

[The camera switches back to the set, which Slagar runs back onto, panting even more heavily. He places one paw on his knee, and uses the other to make a gesture to Clecky.]

CLECKY: Um... please welcome Ascrod!

[Ascrod, unpopular Marlfox and afterlife-long friend of Slagar, trudges onto the stage, his paws in his pockets and his eyes pointing to the floor.]

ASCROD: How's it going, Slags? Congrats on having made it in existence for another year.

SLAGAR: Pretty *pant* good *pant* thanks *pant* for *pant* coming *pant*

TREEROSE: Oh great, just what this show needs... two Marlish episodes in a row.

SLAGAR: Shove *pant* an acorn *pant* in it *pant*

CLECKY: So, what was Slagar like when he was workin' with you in the Mines of Misery, Ascrod?

ASCROD: I dunno. Okay, I guess. Though to be honest he kind of whined a lot. He was always telling me how the Mines of Misery were suppressing his greatness... sometimes it seemed like he was almost as bad as my siblings, really. No offense or anything, Slags.

SLAGAR: You *pant* traitor *pant* son *pant* of *pant*

CLECKY: Hmm, so... what kind of work do y' do in these morose mines o' yours, wot?

ASCROD: Oh, you know. Cart around boiling lava across beds of fiery coals... climb atop hills of spikes while carrying huge weights on our backs... swim across pools of blood that are full of pikes... wear uniforms that are made of paper-cuts...

CLECKY: Yeesh, say no more. So, do you remember how Slagar got out of the Mines of Misery?

ASCROD: Well sure. The initial institution of ironic punishments was a big deal, remember... only a small number of creatures could get them. There was a TV crew present when they were doling them out and everything.

CLECKY: In-blinkin'-deed! We just so happen to have that footage of when Slagar first managed t' get a hold of an ironic punishment here! Get it rollin', Gartar!

GARTAR: i wnat too roll it up into my lief

[The footage takes place in a gigantic fiery chasm, full of gored and emaciated vermin standing in lines. In the center is a strange figure cloaked in black, taller than a badger yet as slender as a mouse. A hedgehog maid holding a microphone stands in front of the camera.] REPORTER: Today, after the revolutionary decision of the Dark Forest Supervisors to legalize ironic punishments for naughty creatures, an unprecedented number of evil deadbeasts gather in the nexus of the Mines of Misery around the Lead Dark Forest Supervisor of Vermin Affairs and his staff, hoping to be among the first hundred inducted into the -

SLAGAR: Move it or lose it, hog!

[Slagar bursts into view from off-camera, pushes the hedgehog reporter aside, and resumes slicing apart the other vermin standing in line as he makes a mad dash towards the cloaked figure in the center.]

SLAGAR: Supervisor! Supervisor! Pick me! Pick me! PIIIIICK MEEEEEEEE! [Upon not being noticed] What, is this spectral stooge deaf as well as ugly?

???: [Turning to Slagar] Hmm, you're certainly a bold one. Very well then. What makes you feel you're suited to become a part of this program?

SLAGAR: Uh, hold up... umm... oh, I've got it. Because I am the greatest! I am unbelievably, ridiculously great. The next greatest person was not quite great enough to handle his own greatness, and he summarily vanished from existence in a paradoxical flash. Only I am great enough to keep such greatness without wiping myself out of existence. It is my gift and my curse.

???: [Sounding amused] Hmm, you've got me convinced. I think I recognize you... you're Slagar, right? The one who kidnapped those kids from Redwall a long ways back?

SLAGAR: Yeah, see? My greatness is so overwhelming that even the people running the afterlife are aware of me! That is real, ultimate greatness right there.

[The DFS looks over a clipboard he's holding for a bit]

???: Let's see... for someone of your psychological profile, Slagar, I've got the following punishments in stock... you could write an advice column -

SLAGAR: I'll take it!

???: ...are you sure? There are about eleven ironic punishments suited for you, there might be something you think is more bearable on here-

SLAGAR: Are you kidding? Writing an advice column... that doesn't sound like a punishment at all! Getting to insult people all the time, calling everyone an idiot instead of seriously advising them... I'd be a fool to pass that up. No, Supervisor, I want THAT "punishment", permanently. In fact, I want you to contractually bind me to that job for the rest of eternity so that nobody can kick me out of it when I start having too much fun. [Whispering] Plus I'll have time to plot against all of my dead foes! Muahahaha!

???: Whatever you say. Now, you'll be -

[The Supervisor and Slagar are suddenly obscured by the hedgehog reporter, who stands up again in front of the camera]

REPORTER: Ugh, this is the last time I work around vermin... hey Tom, why are you still rolling?

CAMERA BEAST: Fox... stabbed... my face... into... the camera...

[Back at the set, everybeast except for Slagar and Ascrod is howling with laughter. Slagar is just standing there, mortified, paralyzed with disbelief of what he had done in the past. Ascrod is paralyzed between comforting Slagar and just standing back and trying to be ignored as usual.]

TREEROSE: Hahaha! So all this time h-he's been complaining about writing for an advice column, and yet...

GERUL: Me ould mother always used to say yeh can't blame your messes on anyone but yourself, but this takes it to a whole new level! Whowhowhowho!

VITCH'S DISEMBODIED HEAD: Hehehe - ow - hehehe!



TREEROSE: [Whispering to Clecky] So I'm guessing the real story behind this episode is that Matthias paid you off to ruin Slagar's show again with all of these embarrassing looks at Slagar's history?

CLECKY: [Whispering back to Treerose] I resent that implication, marm! But yes, you're absolutely correct.

SLAGAR: This... there is no possible justification for this... I hate... I MORE than hate all of... NONE OF YOU ARE INVITED TO MY BIRTHDAY PARTY!

VITCH'S DISEMBODIED HEAD: Oh, we're all sooo broken up about that.


[Slagar marches towards the exit, but before he leaves, he turns to the camera.]


DISCLAIMER: Redwall, Slagar, and all related properties (C) Brian Jacques and the Redwall Abbey Company. All rights reserved.