Friday, August 17, 2007

Son of the Microsoft Car

The house is surrounded by Zombies.

Joe and Linda get ready to make a desperate run for it.

JOE: Come on, honey. The car is only ten feet away. We can make it.


One of those this-may-be-our-last-kiss kisses.

JOE: Let's do it.

They burst out the door. JOE blasts various ZOMBIES with a shot gun. LINDA whacks them with a crowbar. They make it to the car.

LINDA: Let's get out of here!

JOE: My thoughts exactly.

He turns the key.

COMPUTER VOICE: Microsoft Car now installing updates.

A bar display on the dashboard slowly expands.

The ZOMBIES surround the car. We hear smashing noises. Screams.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Microsoft Car 2007


JOE USER approaches BILL GATES. BILL’s proudly showing off the Microsoft Vista, otherwise known as MSCar 2007, which resembles a genetic splice between a 1957 Cadillac and the Hindenburg. It gleams and shines. Despite his better instincts, JOE is seduced and comes closer. BILL notices, rubbing his hands and leering. He speaks with the unctuous, accent of Peter Lorre -- apparently polite but dripping with perverted subtext.

BILL: I see you are man of taste, sir. How do you like our new car?

JOE: Oh. It’s uh pretty, I’ll give you that. (looking closer) Why fins?

BILL: Oh, you don’t like fins?

BILL reaches in and touches dashboard – the fins disappear.

JOE: How did you do that?

BILL: The same way you would. It’s easy.

JOE: What would I do?

BILL: Anything you want. The options are infinite!

JOE squints, looks suspiciously inside the car.

JOE: Where’s the steering wheel?

BILL: In the recycle bin of history! We at Microsoft Cars use the joystick now! It’s so cool and futuristic. But, see, you can have the steering wheel if you want. (touches something – a steering wheel magically appears) We can also do “old school.”

Opens door.

BILL: Would you like to go for a test drive?

JOE: Well, I …

BILL: You’re not afraid, are you?

EXT DAY, LA Freeway.

Without any transition, JOE and BILL are sitting in the car, just driving along on the I-10. JOE’s on the left, BILL’s on the right. BILL’s driving. It’s a right-drive car.

BIL: Welcome to your beautiful, new home.

JOE: (white knuckled grip on the dashboard) Uh. What just happened?

BILL: We are taking a test drive, as you requested. I can show you the electronic form you signed. Including the “hold harmless” indemnification clause. Feel free to relax.

JOE: OK. (leaning back in his seat, closing his eyes)

JOE: Gee, the engine sure runs quiet … (opens eyes—realizes he’s in driver’s seat) Wait a minute, you’re driving.

BILL: Of course, sir. It’s a right-drive car. Right-drive is much more logical. We at Microsoft Car have done studies on the human brain that … But it’s so simple to make it a left-drive car! I just have to touch the menu… in the right way. (gropes suggestively at the bewildering dashboard menu) Even an ape could do it! Would you like to …

JOE: No, no, no. Keep driving.

BILL: As you wish.

Cars on the freeway pass them wildly, honking furiously.

JOE: How fast are we ... (looks at dashboard) 80 miles an hour? No. That can't be …

BILL: It’s kilometers per hour. Metric system!

JOE: So much more logical, yeah, OK. What’s that… I dunno, that red bar over the ...?

BILL: Oh. That is the following distance bar. It’s wonderful. You don’t have to do that irritating “one second two second thing” where you’re counting telephone poles. It indicates …

JOE: What’d you do with the turn signal?

BILL: The turn ...? (laughs) Oh, that. That’s in the driver to driver communication interface menu. See, you just touch …

JOE reaches for something

BILL: No, not that!

A heads-up map display appears on the windshield in front of JOE’s face.

JOE: Ahhhh! I can’t see anything. What the hell are you ...

BILL touches something. The map disappears.

BILL: I’m sorry sir. That was the personal navigation global positioning menu. It shows you where you are in terms of a Google Earth virtual reality real-time avataric presence which is constantly correlated to the number of available seats at nearby restaurants and sports venues.

JOE: I couldn’t see the road.

BILL: Naturally. Everything is designed with you, the user in mind. As I was saying, with the power of the DDCI, your car can indicate much more than whether you’re turning or applying the brakes or other such mindless things. You don't even need to honk the horn anymore! MSCar is so smart, it knows when you are angry! The car changes color depending on your mood and adopts a submissive posture in the presence of a policeman.

JOE: What’s that tiny little …

BILL: Oh the cute little glass. I’ll make it bigger. (gestures) This is how much gas you have. In optimist mode, we are half full. In pessimist mode …

JOE finally explodes with rage.

JOE: Shut up! Just shut up and take me back!

BILL: As you wish.

BILL pushes a button. The front of the car turns into the back of the car. The seats rotate 180 degrees. The car comes to a complete stop, then accelerates in the opposite direction against Interstate traffic. Older cars crash and burn all around it.

BILL: You see how easy that was?

JOE: Jesus Christ!

CAR: The nearest church is 1.7 kilometers.

JOE screams, covers face with his hands.

JOE: We’re gonna crash! We’re gonna crash!

BILL: “Crash?” I don’t like that word, Joe. You know what, Joe? The more I think about it, the more I don’t like you.

JOE: Help!

BILL: But you don’t want my help, do you Joe? (recorded soundbite of Joe’s voice) I hate you! I hate you!

BILL turns into Clippy. A blinking manifestation of pure evil in the form of a living paper clip.

BILL/CLIPPY: Do you think I’ve forgotten?

JOE: No. No!

BILL/CLIPPY: Goodbye, Joe. Enjoy the ride.

He fades away. The car crashes off the road, headed for a gas station.

JOE: No! I don’t wanna die!

CAR: Ask about MSFuneral.

JOE: Nooo!