THE LAST ASTRONAUT
BY TAYLOR WARD
(2) THE LAST ASTRONAUT (TLA) floats in the void of space listening to classic rock. He is insane and/or enlightened from long years of isolation. He floats dramatically onto frame. His arms are raised with his hand laced together behind his head.
The face shield on his helmet is dark, obscuring his face and reflecting the stars in front of him.
CUT TO: CLOSE UP HELMET (3) A close up shot of TLA’s helmet and upper chest. TLA takes a drag from his cigarette. The glow from the tip lights up inside of his helmet, revealing a grizzled face and an out of control beard. His eyes look curious and just a bit mad. His face recedes into darkness when his drag is finished. He lowers his arms from behind his head to his sides.
TLA’s voice can be heard, along with static and interference, crackling over a radio. When he speaks a blue light on the front of his suit pulses with his voice. TLA’s voice is as grizzled as his face. But he sounds happy too, like he might start laughing at any moment.
LAST ASTRONAUT Woah… What’s that?!
CUT TO: REVERSE SHOT (4)
The Earth is seen from orbit. The back of TLA’S Helmet is in the foreground with the Earth slowly rotating in the background. TLA is staring down at it.
CUT TO: CLOSE UP HELMET (5)
The image of the earth is now reflected in TLA’s face shield. He speaks about the earth with a curious fascination, as if he is seeing this world for the first time.
LAST ASTRONAUT It’s a creamy sphere. Like a… Like a muddy little ball.
CUT TO: INSIDE HELMET VIEW (6)
We are seeing through TLA’S eyes. Various readouts are displayed on the edges of the face shield. A burning cigarette is poking out of the bottom of the frame. Ragged pieces of TLA’s beard can be seen pushing up around the bottom edges of the helmet.
Behind the face shield’s HUD, the earth can be seen slowly spinning. With a quick blur the view of earth is magnified. We briefly see a view of a large desert-like land mass. The view quickly zooms again to some sand dunes with patches of grass.
(7)We quickly zoom again to see a close up view of a dung beetle frantically rolling a ball of dung.
When TLA speaks in HELMET VIEW, his voice is clear, not coming through a static filled radio. The cigarette bobs up and down slightly as he speaks.
LAST ASTRONAUT It’s got squirmers! The dung beetle pushes the ball over a partially buried human skull. A tooth pops out, gets stuck to the ball and rolls along with it. (8)The view pans quickly with a blur to a scene on a beach. A group of dumb-looking seals are lying on the shore on their backs. They are all furiously slapping their bellies and barking. LAST ASTRONAUT And Splashers!
The waves start crashing up against the seals. They seem unaffected and continue slapping and barking while they are pounded with waves.
(9)The view blurs again as it pans and zooms. This time revealing a overhead view of a city. It’s a larger city, like Chicago or New York, with large skyscrapers. But it looks run-down and abandoned.
LAST ASTRONAUT Well look at that, Human cubes! Yeah… They got some sweet lookin’ stacks there.
A small explosion is seen in a corner of the city.
(10)The view quickly zooms far out to show an unremarkable land mass. There are multiple clouds floating by the foreground.
LAST ASTRONAUT It’s got a stink bubble too, a tiny greasy film of farts.
CUT TO: CLOSE UP HELMET (11)
With Earth still reflected in the face shield, TLA takes another drag from his cig. His face is lit up again, this time he is smiling with his eyes and lips held tight. Think “Good Guy Greg” smile.
LAST ASTRONAUT What a cute little bobble. Just a jangle of Janes and Jacks, isn’t it? I bet they got everything down there. Flags, haircuts, triangles... What else does a donkey need? (pause) Oh wait, hang on.
CUT TO: INSIDE HELMET VIEW (12)
Viewing the earth in full again, this time we zoom even quicker than before to a view of a tombstone.
LAST ASTRONAUT Yep, dead. Those guys are always dying.
CUT TO: CLOSE UP HELMET (13)
LAST ASTRONAUT Poor little critters. They dig and splash on their wobbly rock, and they think it’s giving them life. Meanwhile, they are surrounded by burps and farts, just breathing that stuff in. Don’t even know that it’s slowly killing them.
A BEEPING ALARM is heard. Along with it, lights on the chest of the space suit begin flashing red.
CUT TO: INSIDE HELMET VIEW (14)
The full earth can be seen rotating. In front it it, displayed on the inside of the face shield, is a nervous looking digital face. This is A.L.A.N., the suit’s artificial intelligence. Over his face is the description “Automation, Life-support, And Notification.”. There are also several power level warnings flashing on the inside of the helmet. The ALARM can still be heard.
A.L.A.N. Speaking of dying, we are terrifyingly low on power!
LAST ASTRONAUT And what do you know about terror, Alan!? You’ve never even ridden off of something in a barrel!
A.L.A.N. All this smoke is really killing my filters. They’re sucking up a lot of power here.
CUT TO: CLOSE UP HELMET
TLA takes a big drag from his cigarette, his face looks very irritated. He holds the smoke in for a moment.
CUT TO: INSIDE HELMET VIEW (15)
A.L.A.N.’s worried face can still be seen inside the helmet. TLA forcefully exhales, filling up the helmet with thick smoke. His exhaling is drawn way out and turns into a raspberry at the end.
A.L.A.N. So helpful.
CUT TO: FAR SHOT (16)
TLA floats in the distance, surrounded by the vastness of space. The ALARM can still be heard BEEPING. TLA floats a while before speaking.
LAST ASTRONAUT (long annoyed groan) Guess I’m dead then, just like the dirt donkeys. Another pause, before
CUT TO: CLOSE UP HELMET (17)
LAST ASTRONAUT Woah… What’s that?!
CUT TO: INSIDE HELMET VIEW (18)
A.L.A.N.’s face can no longer be seen, but the warnings are still flashing and the ALARM can still be heard.
TLA is focused on the earth, but his vision quickly shifts slightly to the right, to a derelict spaceship closeby that he somehow hadn’t noticed until now. The view zooms onto the ship.
The ship looks partially destroyed, with small pieces of wreckage floating next to it. It’s also attached to a large asteroid which it had been towing. The ship stuck on the rock looks similar to the dung beetle on the ball of dung. The initials M.A.D.(Multinational Asteroid Drilling) can be seen on the ship.
LAST ASTRONAUT (“holy cow” whistle) That’s a dandy of a dingus. CUT TO: FULL BODY VIEW (19)
(A)The ALARM can still be heard and there are lights flashing on the suit on the front of TLA’s suit.
LAST ASTRONAUT Shut UP ALAN!
The ALARM and flashing on the suit stops.
(cont. in same tone) THANK you ALAN!
(B)TLA tries to start the jets on the bottom of his boots. They sputter briefly then die. The suit makes an ERROR TONE.
LAST ASTRONAUT My boot scoots!
A.L.A.N. I did say terrifying, right? Yeah, I’m pretty sure I used those exact words. TLA Shut UP, ALAN!
(C)TLA points his arm off frame and makes a downward fist. A small ball shoots out of the forearm panel of his suit. It is directly followed by a silly-string like spray. The string is connected to the ball.
CUT TO: M.A.D. SHIP CLOSE UP (20)
(A)There is a large hole in the side of the ship, with debris floating around it. (B)The ball hits the side of the ship and splats onto it, like a vending machine sticky hand. The silly-string follows immediately after, coating the ship in an erratic webbing. After a beat the silly-string web reverses back off the ship and goes taut.
(C)TLA floats into frame being towed in by the string.
LAST ASTRONAUT (muttering mock) I’m Alan. I’m totally scared. We’re going to run out of power, oh dear. Please, I don’t want to die.
A.L.A.N. That’s really great.
LAST ASTRONAUT Alan. Alan! Do you get it? That’s you.
A.L.A.N. No, yeah. I got it, it’s great.
LAST ASTRONAUT That’s what you sound like.
INT. M.A.D. SHIP (21) More debris floats around inside the ship. There are dark holes punched through various parts of the hull. There is also a large hole in the top of the ship. A lifeless crew member is strapped to a wall of the ship. His face shield is broken. TLA floats down through this hole and lands on the floor of the ship. TLA seems unaware of the body and begins searching the ship. He starts opening containers, digging through them and throwing unwanted items over his shoulder. CUT TO: CONSOLE CLOSE UP(22) A small screen and keyboard on one side of the ship is seen. TLA can be heard rooting around off screen. One of TLA’s unwanted items floats across the ship and hits a button on the keyboard.
The screen lights up with unreadable text and a distress signal can be heard over the radio. The distress signal is a woman's voice, she sounds frantic and scared. She cuts in mid-sentence. DISTRESS SIGNAL ..sel 3035. Requesting immediate pickup for M.A.D. vessel 3035. I have injured crew in need of assistance…
INT. M.A.D. SHIP (23)
TLA floats around and continues searching the room. He is oblivious to the distress signal. DISTRESS SIGNAL (CONT) It’s our payload, something’s wrong with the payload, it’s dangerous. TLA finds a small container marked “V5 POWER CELL”. LAST ASTRONAUT Bango! DISTRESS SIGNAL (CONT) This rock we’ve been hauling, there is something inside of it. TLA opens the container, inside is what looks like a small square cellphone battery. It has a little jewel in the center that is glowing. The words “250yr Span” can be seen on the power cell. DISTRESS SIGNAL (CONT) Once we started drilling. Some… something came out of it. Something is living in it! TLA presses a button on the chest of his suit and a panel slides open, revealing an identical power cell. During this, dark and blobby tentacles start emerging from the holes around the ship. They look like molasses, rather than something solid. They slowly ripple and float through the air towards TLA (24)TLA is distracted, he has taken the new power cell out of the container and is holding it in one hand. Four tentacles reach out and grabs TLA by his wrists and ankles. They pull tight and restrain TLA like he is caught in a web.
The power cell has popped out of TLA’s hand and is floating in in the air along with a bunch of other wreckage and various items.
TLA looks up at both his arms to the tentacles grabbing him. LAST ASTRONAUT Rock blob, huh? CUT TO: TLA CLOSE UP (25) A tentacle lowers from the ceiling, and stops in front of TLA’s face. A bulge in the tentacle works its way down to the end where one big eye sprouts and looks at TLA’s dark helmet. LAST ASTRONAUT You got chops son. Hope nobody tries to bust em. TLA takes a drag from his cigarette, his face is fierce. It scares the eye, which quickly shuts and races back up into the ceiling. INT. M.A.D. SHIP (26)
TLA struggles to reach one arm out towards the powercell.
LAST ASTRONAUT Gaaaaahhh! A.L.A.N. Come on, almost there! (27)TLA reaches past the power cell to the dead crew member. He reaches inside his front pocket and pulls out a pack of cigarettes. LAST ASTRONAUT Bango jango! (28)TLA sticks the pack into a slot on his chest and they disappear inside the suit. A.L.A.N. You… A tentacle flies down from the ceiling on top of TLA’s head, engulfing his whole helmet. A.L.A.N.(CONT) Idiot. (29)TLA begins frantically waving his arms around trying to grab the power cell. He and A.L.A.N. yell over each other. LAST ASTRONAUT A.L.A.N. It’s fine! I’ll find it! I can’t believe you Here it is… no wait. I knew you’d get us Alan, just! STOP YELLING! killed sooner or later. Hang on, I’ll get it! This has got to be the stupidest...
CUT TO: TENTACLE CLOSE UP (30)
While TLA and A.L.A.N. while arguing. Two groups of sharp fangs float through the tentacle attached to TLA’s head. CUT TO: INSIDE HELMET VIEW (31) The power warnings can be seen, but other than that the visor is totally dark. Two rings of fangs sprout out of the dark blob and press against the face shield. LAST ASTRONAUT WOAH! Okay, there’s the chops!”
CUT TO: CLOSE UP TLA’s CHEST (32) The empty power cell port on TLA’s suit is seen. TLA very quickly tries to blindly slam a few random objects into the port. The last one he tries is the power cell, it fits into the port and the panel slides closed. CUT TO: INSIDE HELMET VIEW (33) The fangs are trying to bite into the face shield. The power levels quickly fill up with a DING. CUT TO: M.A.D. SHIP INT. (34) Two bright jets bloom out of each of TLA’s boots. With a blurred streak, TLA flies up and out of the ship easily pulling free of the tentacles. EXT. M.A.D. SHIP (35) TLA jets out of the hole in the ship in a blur, flying off frame. (36)A moment later he flies back on screen towards the ship with his arms outstretched. He slams into the side of the ship, and it slowly begins to move. The ship picks up speed, then TLA lets go and gives it a swift kick as it accelerates off the screen. CUT TO: INSIDE HELMET VIEW (37)
TLA is focused on the M.A.D. ship. The earth can be seen rotating in the background. In the corner of the face shield there is displayed a small simple diagram of the orbit path of the ship around the earth. The ship is moving away from TLA, it’s accelerating and moving down towards the earth. Black tentacles are sticking out of various parts of the asteroid and from the hole in the ship as it falls. The orbit diagram changes as the ship picks up speed. The path is now shown to intersect the earth. The ship keeps accelerating faster and faster and getting smaller and smaller. It grows a fire trail as it enters the atmosphere, and soon it has sped off towards the surface of the earth and can no longer be seen. There is a quick beep and a flash on the orbit diagram signaling that the ship has crashed into earth. The diagram disappears after this.
CUT TO: TLA PROFILE (38) TLA is wiping his hands together back and forth. A job well done.
CUT TO: CLOSE UP HELMET TLA rests his hand behind his helmet. His classic rock turns back on. He takes a drag from his cigarette, he looks self-satisfied. LAST ASTRONAUT Heh heh, Busted blob chops. A.L.A.N. You’re insane. ROLL CREDITS
ON THE NEXT EPISODE OF THE LAST ASTRONAUT
A series of strange people, things, and events rudely interupts The Last Astronaut's sexy time with the universe.