TR (ANNC): A dark night in a city that knows how to keep its secrets. But on the 12th floor of the Acme building, one man is trying to find the answers to life's persistent questions. Guy Noir, Private Eye.


GK: It was Election Night, and I dropped off to sleep and I had a dream Barack Obama was giving a speech (TR OBAMA: Hello Chicago. (BIG CHEERS) If there is anyone out there who still thinks that America is a place that is run by people in their sixties who don't know how to do e-mail or text on a cellphone, tonight is your answer. And then I was awakened by a call. (PHONE RINGS). It was six-thirty in the morning. (PICKUP) Yeah, Guy Noir here. What can I do for you?

TR (ON PHONE): Guy, it's Louie down at the state election board -- listen, we've got one precinct still not reporting. One little precinct. Pine Bluff Township. You mind driving out there and get the vote totals so we can lock up here? (BRIDGE, CAR ACCEL)

GK: So I got in the car and punched Pine Bluff Township into my GPS and got almost there and --

SS (GPS VOICE): In point-one mile, turn left at the red barn with the chicken coop and silo and the "Prepare to Meet Thy God" sign on the tree in the front yard -- Recalculating route......

GK: Whoops, Guess I missed the turn.

SS (GPS VOICE): As soon as possible, make a legal U turn.

GK: Road is too narrow for a U-turn.

SS (GPS VOICE): Then turn into a farmyard and turn around.

GK: I don't see a farmyard.

SS (GPS VOICE): In 100 yards turn in at the yard with the cast-iron deer and the plaster gnomes in the front yard....(CAR BRAKES)

GK: Okay, there it is.

SS (GPS VOICE): Good. You found it. Now turn around and turn right onto the road you were just on.

GK: You don't need to be sarcastic. I know which way I'm coming from.

SS (GPS VOICE): Oh, really. Well, maybe you'd like me to just be quiet then. Okay. I'll just turn myself off and let you make it on your own.

GK: No, no. I didn't mean that. Where do I turn? (BRIDGE) It was a little white frame building. Pine Bluff Town Hall. There was a light inside. There was a meadow nearby and some Holsteins standing in the dark. (COWS QUIET MOOING) A farmhouse far away. (DISTANT DOG BARK) And far beyond was the town. (DISTANT TRAIN WHISTLE PASSING). (FOOTSTEPS ON GRAVEL) I walked over and (FOOTSTEPS ON WOODEN STAIRS) up to the door and went in (SQUEAKING DOOR) and there was a man sitting at a table under a single light bulb, counting ballots. (TR MURMURING). And a big jowly man in a chair beside him, asleep. (TK JOWLY SNORING, OFF) (FOOTSTEPS)

TR: One thousand thirteen. One thousand fourteen. One thousand fifteen. One thousand sixteen. One thousand seventeen. One thousand eighteen. One thousand nineteen. One thousand twenty. One thousand twenty-one. One thousand twenty-two. One thousand twenty-three. One thousand twenty-four. One thousand.....

GK: Excuse me--

TR: Whaaaaa?!?! (FLURRY OF PAPER)


GK: I'm sorry- I didn't mean to startle you.

TR: Look what you've done!!!!

GK: Let me help you pick those up.

TR: No!

GK: I am sorry.


TR: Go back to sleep, Cliff. Almost done.


TR: Gotta start all over, Cliff. Sorry. Go back to sleep.

GK: You have to start all over?

TR: Have to start all over-

GK: Sir, there are news anchors in New York waiting for your vote totals.

TR: Gotta start over.

GK: The presidential vote totals.
TR: Already counted those, now I gotta count the last race, the one for township judge.

GK: You couldn't give me the presidential totals and then finish counting--

TR: I always do 'em all at once. (EXASPERATED SIGH) One. Two. Three. Four. Five.

GK: You know you could make piles of twenty. It would go faster.

TR: Mister, I've been counting ballots in this township for sixty-seven years. Sixty-seven years.

GK: Okay but it'd go faster if you --

TR: This is the way I've always done it. One. Two. Three. Four. Five. Five. Six. Seven. Eight. --Did I say five twice?

GK: You did.

TR: You know, if you weren't here bothering me, I might be done by now. (TIME LAPSE BRIDGE)

GK: So I sat in the corner. Watched them do their thing. One man sleeping (SNORING) and the other man counting. (TR, OFF: Three hundred and fifty six. Three hundred and fifty seven...) I dozed off around four-hundred and when I woke up, he was almost done counting.....

TR: One thousand four hundred and eighty five. One thousand four hundred and eighty six. One thousand four hundred and eighty seven. (DOG BARKS, OFF) One thousand and-Shut that dog up!! (DOG BARKS, TK JOWLY GIBBERISH) Where was I?

GK: You were at one thousand four hundred and-

TR: And?


GK: Eighty-eight.

TR: Okay. One thousand and -- you sure?

GK: I'm sure.

TR: One thousand and--

GK: Eighty-eight.

TR: One thousand eighty-nine, one thousand ninety, one thousand ninety-one--

GK: Let me stop you there at one thousand ninety-one.

TR: What is it?

GK: I notice that this judgeship race you're counting votes for, you're only keeping one tally.

TR: I am counting votes.

GK: Not two or three totals, just one. One thousand ninety-one.

TR: Right.

GK: Why?

TR: She ran unopposed.

GK: We're sitting here five hours waiting for the vote total in a race with only one candidate?

TR: We need an accurate vote total.

GK: What's the problem if you're off by a couple? She's still elected.

TR: She wants to know if she has a mandate.

GK: A nation is waiting to hear about the race for president and you have to know whether you got one thousand ninety-one or one thousand ninety-two?

TR: Okay, now I'm confused again. I gotta start over.

GK: Don't start over. It's one thousand ninety-one--

TR: I want to get it right.

GK: You've got it right. You're at one thousand ninety-one--


TR: You can't go home now, Cliff. We aren't done counting yet.


TR: Just go outside in the bushes.


TR: Nobody's going to see you, what you talking about?

GK: You're at one thousand ninety-one--

TR: You're sure about that?

GK: Positive.

TR: Okay. Which ones haven't I counted yet?

GK: That pile there.

TR: Okay. One thousand ninety-one, one thousand ninety-two, one thousand ninety-three (HE CONTINUES, INTO BRIDGE)

GK: So Cliff went home and Judge Hoolihan went and sat in her car and I took my seat by the door and I dozed off again and dreamed I was in Washington on Inauguration Day and (CANNONS FIRING) there was a twenty-one gun salute and the Blue Angels flew over (JETS SCREAMING IN SKY) and the honor guard came to attention (SFX SGT COMMANDS, THUNK OF RIFLES, CLICK OF HEELS) (BAGPIPE PLAYS "HAIL TO THE CHIEF") and I wondered, why a bagpipe? And then I saw him --

TR (MCCAIN): I do solemnly swear, my friends, that I will faithfully execute the office of President....(STING)

GK: And I woke up--

TR: One thousand five hundred and sixty one. One thousand five hundred and sixty two. One thousand five hundred and sixty three. One thousand five hundred and sixty four.

GK (UNDER): Keep going.

TR: One thousand five hundred and sixty four. One thousand five hundred and sixty five. -- Did I make a mistake?

GK: No.

TR: One thousand five hundred and sixty six. One thousand five hundred and sixty seven. One thousand five hundred and sixty eight. (FOOTSTEPS APPROACH) One thousand five hundred and sixty-

TK (TEEN): Pizza! You order a sausage pizza? Extra onions?

TR: Dang it!

GK: Oh no.
TK (TEEN): Did somebody order a pizza? What's the address here? This isn't 611 Dry Creekbed Drive?

TR: It's 613 Dry Creekbed Drive. 611 is next door.

TK (TEEN): Whoops. Sorry. Wrong house. Bye


TR: I suppose I have to start over.

GK: You were at five thousand two hundred and sixty eight.

TR: Five thousand? There aren't that many voters here.

GK: Okay. You don't like five thousand, let's say One thousand five hundred and sixty-eight.
TR: One. Two.

GK: Don't do it.

TR: Three.


TR: Hey! My ballots!

GK: The American people are ready for this election to be over, okay? I'm just gonna give you a number, okay? Two thousand and eight.

TR: Why?

GK: that's the final number. Report it and go home. Trust me. Report it to the election board and go home.

TR: That's not how it's done.

GK: It is now. Go eat. My treat. I'll buy you a pizza. What you want? Extra cheese? Onions? Sausage?

TR: No anchovies.

GK: No anchovies. Not a single one. I'll remember that.

TR: And pepperoni.

GK: Pepperoni. No anchovies.

TR: No green peppers.

GK: No green peppers. Got it.


SS (ANNC): A dark night in a city that knows how to keep its secrets. But on the 12th floor of the Acme building, one man is trying to find the answers to life's persistent questions. Guy Noir, Private Eye