a literary review
Dame Judi Dench as JOLENE CABOT
Ginger Spice as GINGER WOMAN
Scarlett Johansson as WHITE WOMAN
Melissa McCarthy as NICE GUY EDDIE
Madonna as BLUE WOMAN
Whoopi Goldberg as BLACK WOMAN
Leslie Jones as BLONDE WOMAN
Sarah Silverman as ROSÉ WOMAN
(INT. RESTAURANT. DAY)
BLUE WOMAN/MADONNA: You guys wanna know what “Like a Virgin” is really about?
JOLENE/DENCH: It’s neither the time nor the place, Blue Woman.
(INT. WAREHOUSE. DAY.)
JOLENE/DENCH (holding a pointer and standing in front of a blackboard): I’m very cross with you. Very cross indeed. Look at you. You’re an embarrassment to the profession and to this school.
BLONDE WOMAN/JONES: What school?
JOLENE/DENCH: Be quiet. And stop slouching. Now, listen carefully. These are your names. (She points to each person with her pointer as she calls out the names.) BLUE WOMAN, WHITE WOMAN, BLACK WOMAN, GINGER WOMAN, BLONDE WOMAN, and ROSÉ WOMAN.
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN: I don’t know, Jolene. I’m more of a Molson girl. I’ll think I’ll be Molson.
JOLENE/DENCH: You are not Molson. You are ROSÉ WOMAN.
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN: Why?
JOLENE/DENCH: Because you are middle class, that’s why. Now spit out that gum.
WHITE/SCARJO: Why can’t I be Black Woman?
BLACK WOMAN/WHOOPI: Because you’re white.
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO: I could pull off Black Woman. I’ve got the range.
JOLENE/DENCH: Neither the time nor the place, White Woman.
GINGER WOMAN/SPICE: I’m not sure about these outfits.
JOLENE/DENCH: They’re uniforms, Ginger Woman. Now straighten your tie.
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN: They’re too matchy-matchy. We look like the All-American Drag Kings.
BLACK WOMAN/WHOOPI: We’re not all American.
GINGER WOMAN/SPICE: Shh! (clears throat) Why do I have to wear flats? It’s all right for Blonde Woman. She’s six feet tall. How are people supposed to take me seriously without my platform shoes?
BLONDE WOMAN/JONES: They’ll take you seriously because you’ll be holding a gun.
JOLENE/DENCH: You will not be holding a gun. Any uncultured twit can use a gun.
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO: James Bond has a gun.
BLONDE WOMAN/JONES: If we don’t have guns, how are we gonna get them to give us the diamonds? Ask nicely?
JOLENE/DENCH: Don’t be absurd, Blonde Woman. You’ve been assigned weapons befitting your dignity as mature young women. (JOLENE hands each of the women a briefcase)
BLONDE WOMAN/JONES (opens her case and looks inside): Cold wax strips? Y’all serious, Jolene?
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO (looking inside her case): Crappy, overpriced make-up products. I wouldn’t put these on a mannequin.
BLACK WOMAN/WHOOPI: I got scented candles. Actually, they smell kinda nice.
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN (holding up a fistful of paper): Religious leaflets? These offend me as a non-practicing agnostic. What’s going on, Jolene?
JOLENE/DENCH: If someone were to bear down on you holding those leaflets, what would you do, Rosé Woman?
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN: I’d evacuate the area.
JOLENE/DENCH: Precisely. And what is the one thing that frightens people even more than religious zealots?
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO: Someone schilling for an MLM?
BLONDE WOMAN/JONES: Okay, so that’ll scare off the ladies. It won’t scare the men, though.
BLUE WOMAN/MADONNA: These will. (She reaches into her case and pulls out a handful of tampons.)
BLACK WOMAN/WHOOPI: We’re going to hold up a diamond store with tampons?
JOLENE/DENCH: Indeed. Now, off you go.
(INT. CAR. DAY.)
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO: Okay, so take me through it. What are we going to do?
GINGER WOMAN/SPICE: You park across from the store and wait in the car. I get out, cross the road, strut, strut, strut. Palm to the door. Biiiiig entrance. Pivot to the camera. Right hand across the chest, left hand across the chest. Zigga-zigga. Rob the store.
(INT. CAR. DAY.)
(GINGER WOMAN is in the passenger seat with blood all over her. WHITE WOMAN is driving.)
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO: Why did Jolene give Blue the tampons? I could do tampons. I’ve got the range. Are you okay, Ginger Woman?
GINGER WOMAN/SPICE: Please. I lose more blood than this every month. Once we’re back at the meet-up, I’ll get a hot water bottle, take an ibuprofen, have some tea. I’ll be fine.
(INT. WAREHOUSE. DAY.)
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN: Where’s Blue Woman?
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO: The cops arrested her. Last I saw, she was telling them what “True Blue” was really about. Where’s Black Woman?
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN: I left her at the store. She was making a killing selling those scented candles.
GINGER WOMAN/SPICE (lying on the floor): Could someone please make me a cup of tea?
(BLONDE WOMAN/JONES bursts into the warehouse dragging a man behind her. She ties him to a chair.)
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO: What are you doing?
BLONDE WOMAN/JONES: You know what this guy said to me? ‘Nice tits’. (She addresses the man in the chair.) They’re called ‘breasts’, mofo. Someone needs to teach you some manners. (BLONDE WOMAN whips open her briefcase and pulls out a cold wax strip. She turns on the radio. “My Vag” by Awkwafina starts playing. She addresses the man in the chair.) I am about to get metrosexual on your ass.
(The man in the chair looks terrified.)
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN: No, Blonde Woman, please. Not the ass.
(BLONDE WOMAN/JONES, bopping to the music, approaches the man in the chair and with a horrible ripping sound, she waxes the man’s eyebrows off. She holds up the wax strip full of hair in triumph.)
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO (screams and covers her face): I’ll never use Velcro again.
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN: Those will never grow back.
NICE GUY EDDIE/MCCARTHY (enters the warehouse): What’s going on?
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN: Blonde just manscaped this guy.
EDDIE/MCCARTHY: If you torture this man for long enough, he’ll tell you he wears women’s underwear.
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO: What’s wrong with wearing women’s underwear?
BLONDE WOMAN/JONES: Right? Stop it with the oppressive gender stereotyping. Let people wear what they want.
ROSÉ WOMAN/SILVERMAN: Yeah, seriously, what’s wrong with cross-dressing?
EDDIE/MCCARTHY (looks at self): Actually…nothing. It’s fabulous.
JOLENE/DENCH (enters the warehouse and takes in the scene): I don’t believe it.
WHITE WOMAN/SCARJO: You’re the one who gave her the cold wax strips, Jolene.
JOLENE/DENCH: This is a shambles. I’m very disappointed in all of you. I’ve a good mind to write to your parents.
GINGER WOMAN/SPICE (screaming): Could someone make me a cup of tea PLEASE?!
Sarah Totton’s humor has appeared at McSweeney’s, Points in Case, Little Old Lady Comedy, Slackjaw, The Belladonna, and 251. Her short fiction has appeared or is forthcoming in Nature, The New Quarterly, and Event. She was a regional winner in the 2007 Commonwealth Short Story Competition and received an honorable mention in the 2019 Wergle Flomp Humor Poetry Contest.