"Outrageous Coincidences" (Season 1, Episode 20)

[Contributed by Chris Hadgis (chrish@mincom.com)]

------------------------------------------------------------

The pilgrims are caught in a blizzard on the Himalayan foothills. The horse is lost so Tripitaka is forced to walk.

Narrator: "A white horse is easily lost in a snowstorm"

They have taken shelter in a cave. All of them are suffering from cold and hunger. Pigsy suggests Monkey should extend his staff in the small chance that the tip of it lands in someone's soup, and when the staff is shrunk again, there may be soup or a dumpling on the end of it. Monkey's staff won't work because it is too cold. In fact, magic won't work at all. Monkey suggests they try and walk out of there. Pigsy is so hungry he starts gnawing on his staff.

Monkey is worried about Tripitaka. Tripitaka thinks he is going to die and wants his disciples to fetch the scriptures themselves. Sandy goes out to relieve himself. When he returns, Pigsy hallucinates that Sandy is a chicken and tries to eat him. Monkey eventually convinces Pigsy that Sandy is not a chicken. Tripitaka wants the others to eat him so that they can survive. Pigsy thinks this is a good idea, but Monkey and Sandy do not.

Sandy: "I always knew he was a swine"

Monkey suggests they try and find food. His first thought is to eat Pigsy. Monkey and Sandy try to trick Pigsy into volunteering to be eaten but it doesn't work. Monkey says the person who speaks the most individual nonsense should be eaten, ie Pigsy. When this doesn't work, Monkey tricks Sandy and Pigsy into arguing which of those two should go while he takes a rest. They think Monkey should go.

Monkey decides that drawing lots is the only fair solution. He plucks three hairs from his body. Whoever gets the curly hair will go for help. Pigsy picks first and draws the curly hair. In fact, all three are curly, and this is another of Monkey's tricks! They convince Pigsy to go.

Monkey: "Pigs are made of pork, aren't they?"

They tie a rope around his waist and hang on to the other end so they can reel him in when he dies.

Monkey: "As soon as you are dead, tug the rope"

Pigsy heads off but returns when he realises he has forgotten his rake. He leaves once more, this time for good. After a while, Monkey starts to feel guilty and pulls in the rope. Alas, Pigsy is not at the end of it. While he is looking for Pigsy, he trips over a frozen pig near the mouth of the cave. They think it is Pigsy, dead in animal form, and are sad.

Meanwhile, a snow-blinded Pigsy falls off a cliff.

Narrator: "Pigsy is a long way from the enlightenment which transcends humanity. He is a long way too from the bottom of the cliff down which he is about to fall"

Tripitaka, Monkey, and Sandy gorge themselves on roast pig, after which Tripitaka notices Pigsy is missing.

Tripitaka: "Where is your brother Pigsy?"
Monkey : "Not far away"

Tripitaka thinks he has eaten Pigsy and goes into shock. Sandy says it was fair because they drew lots. Monkey looks worried. Tripitaka is devastated and tries to run out of the cave but the other two stop him.

The blizzard is over. Tripitaka, Monkey, and Sandy continue their journey. Tripitaka is grieving for his lost disciple. He claims he can hear Pigsy's voice and that Pigsy is inside him. Sandy says Tripitaka is suffering from "transmigrational disorder" and that the swine has possessed the master.

Tripitaka goes into a trance. Monkey and Sandy see a pretty girl who will take them to a doctor. Tripitaka snaps out of his trance and starts lusting after the girl and acting like Pigsy. When Monkey tries to stop him, Tripitaka elbows him in the stomach and starts to devour the vegetables the girl was carrying.

They hold a service for Pigsy to try and snap Tripitaka out of it. They even build a shrine for their dead comrade. Sandy asks Pigsy to forgive them. At the end of it, Tripitaka still thinks he is Pigsy.

They make it to a village where they rest. At midnight, Tripitaka becomes Pigsy again. He gorges himself on food and wine. In the morning, there is a disturbance. It seems all the patrons of the inn have been robbed. All of the stolen items are in Tripitaka's bed. Monkey returns them all just in time. Sandy thinks half of Pigsy's ghost is in Heaven and the other half is in Tripitaka, and the two halves are trying to find each other. Tripitaka has a hangover.

Narrator: "Far from being a schizophrenic ghost of course Pigsy is very much alive"

Pigsy discovers the shrine Monkey and Sandy built for him.

Pigsy: "Just a shrine to some idiot"

The horse finds Pigsy. Pigsy believes his companions to be dead and feels very guilty about it.

Tripitaka is tied up for the night but he soon escapes.

Pigsy has discovered that someone dressed as a priest and calling himself Pigsy has been seen with a girl.

Meanwhile, Tripitaka is enjoying himself at a modern-looking disco dancing to an upbeat "Monkey Magic" song! Pigsy breaks into the disco looking for the impostor. When he confronts Tripitaka, he thinks it is a spirit and runs away. Tripitaka returns to his senses.

Wandering the streets, Pigsy bumps into Monkey and Sandy. He thinks they are spirits, and they think the same of him. A fight begins. Pigsy screams and summons up a cloud. It only sputters along slowly. Monkey gives chase. Pigsy's cloud is rather like a motorbike. Pigsy starts to lose altitude, but thanks to a burst of "jet power" from one of his nostrils, he regains some height. Eventually the "jet power" runs out and he flies into a mountain. He ends up back in the village. Monkey does a sharp U-turm and comes back.

Pigsy is unconscious. A wary Monkey pokes him with the staff. Pigsy wants to run away from them, convinved they are spirits. They finally realise the animal they ate was not Pigsy, and admit that they didn't really want to eat him. Pigsy tells them he learned to cloud-fly when he fell of a cliff and yelled.

Tripitaka is bathing himself (dousing himself with freezing water) to cool his passions. He is punishing himself for his actions. Monkey tells him that he tricked Pigsy into leaving the cave.

Monkey: "What an idiot he is, and we are worse"

Narrator: "And if there is Fate, it is fated too that we make our own luck"

The pilgrims continue their journey.


NOTES:

* Tripitaka is a Buddhist, and therefore a vegetarian. Apparently this doesn't matter when he is starving and there is only roast pork available to eat.

* They could make a fire to roast the pig, but not to keep warm?

* Tripitaka thinks it is okay for his disciples to eat him, but it is not okay for him to eat a disciple?

* When Sandy asks Pigsy for forgiveness, watch Monkey surreptitiously point to Sandy, as if to say it was all Sandy's fault.

* Pigsy may have loved his food and drink, but I didn't think he was ever a thief - except one time when he took the pearls ("Pearls Before Swine, episode 1.12)

* Although "Monkey" has cheesy effects, this is one of the few times I could see the strings holding up his cloud.



Back to the Monkey Summaries page