Saturday, July 04, 2009

Indonesian Presidential Debate (in Five Minutes)

INT. DEBATE ROOM - NIGHT

We see the three candidates; CANDIDATE #A, CANDIDATE #B and CANDIDATE #C, standing behind their lecterns.

The MODERATOR stands in front of them, just like a quiz show, the only difference is the MODERATOR knows he doesn't have to be entertaining because the viewers already have low expectations anyway.


MODERATOR:
Good evening, ladies and gentlemen. This is the greatest moment in Indonesian history of democracy. And I know millions people've awaited to see this live broadcast, therefore I'll start by wasting the first tens of minutes with an unconvincing monologue.

Fifteen minutes later...

MODERATOR (CONT'D):
...Not that there's anything wrong with our democracy. Before this, we've already had some kind of democracy, where anybody could speak up anything they want--

CANDIDATE #A:
As long as they have a death wish.

MODERATOR:
Excuse me?

CANDIDATE #A:
No, I won't.

MODERATOR:
Uhm... Anyway. Where was I?

CANDIDATE #B & #C:
Democracy.

CANDIDATE #A:
(covers the spoken word in a fake sneeze)
Repression.

MODERATOR:
Bless you. Right, democracy. We're enjoying it now, as we speak, for we can voice out any opinions--

CANDIDATE #C:
As long as you're up for some libel charges.

MODERATOR:
(annoyed)
We'll cover that topic in a moment.

CANDIDATE #A:
See! The government always cover things up!

CANDIDATE #B:
He did NOT say "cover up". He said "cover". And he's NOT part of the government. He's hired by the media.

CANDIDATE #C:
And by the way, you WERE part of the government, you know?

CANDIDATE #A:
The good kind.

CANDIDATE #B:
And you're basing that claim on...?

CANDIDATE #A:
Because our campaign contains the word "people" more than yours.

CANDIDATE #C:
Well, MY campaign quotes well-known muslim leaders.

CANDIDATE #A:
Did it contain the word "people"?

CANDIDATE #C:
Not in particular...

CANDIDATE #A:
BEGONE, EVIL!

MODERATOR:
ORDER, PLEASE!

CANDIDATE #B:
You don't need to shout.

MODERATOR:
I'm sorry. But can we go on with the debate now, please?

THE THREE CANDIDATES nod.

MODERATOR:
Good. First question, "What do you think about corruption?" Candidate #A?

CANDIDATE #A:
We're doing fine. It's no big deal.

MODERATOR:
Let me simplify it: are you for or against corruption?

CANDIDATE #A:
Oh, corruption! NOOO! NO! It's bad. It's bad.

CANDIDATE #C:
Objection! Unoriginal. Those are taken from a Michael Jackson's song.

MODERATOR:
Candidate #C, this is NOT an American trial. You'll have your say. Continue on.

CANDIDATE #A:
I think we need to enforce discipline to fight against corruption.

MODERATOR:
Candidate #B, do you agree?

CANDIDATE #B:
What exactly are you expecting? Me answering, "No, I'm for corruption, really. Way to go, I say!" Is that it?

MODERATOR:
You're saying you're for corruption?

CANDIDATE #B:
Of course not! I'm against it!

MODERATOR:
How about you, CANDIDATE #C? Do you agree?

CANDIDATE #C:
I agree...

MODERATOR:
Good.

CANDIDATE #C:
(mutters)
...that we need a moderator who can actually think for a change.

MODERATOR:
What's that?

CANDIDATE #C:
(smiles)
We need change in this country.

MODERATOR:
Oh... kay. Candidate #B, do you agree?

CANDIDATE #B groans.

MODERATOR:
Is that a "yes" or a "no"?

SFX: BELLS ringing.

MODERATOR:
Ah. Saved by the bell. That concludes our first segment. We'll see you after this break.

--COMMERCIAL BREAK STARTS--

The CANDIDATES' CONSULTANTS rush to the stage. Each CONSULTANT briefs his CANDIDATE for what to say and do.

CONSULTANT #A:
(to CANDIDATE #A)
Great job! Great job! Say "people" more often. Try something like, "It's a nice weather today. Good for the people."

CANDIDATE #A nods.

CONSULTANT #B:
(to CANDIDATE #B)
Punch to get out! Punch to get o--sorry, old habits. I mean, show more expression. People actually like CANDIDATE #C for being expressive. Try giving a wider smile.

CANDIDATE #B:
You mean, now?

CONSULTANT #B:
Yes. Try it.

CANDIDATE #B grins broadly.

CONSULTANT #B (CONT'D):
(loooooooong pause)
Okay, now don't EVER do that again.

CANDIDATE #B:
But you said...

CONSULTANT #B:
Forget what I said. You're good as it is.

CANDIDATE #B nods.

CONSULTANT #C:
(to CANDIDATE #C)
The polls are in! They like you better when you're talking while walking around the stage. So we prepare these for you.

CANDIDATE #C:
What are these?

CONSULTANT #C:
A skipping rope, a unicycle and a juggling ball. Try to use them nonchalantly.

CANDIDATE #C nods.

THE CREW prepares for the next segment. All CONSULTANTS walk away briskly from the stage.

--COMMERCIAL BREAK ENDS--

A new MODERATOR steps in.

MODERATOR:
Let's continue on.

CANDIDATE #B:
Why the sudden change?

CANDIDATE #C:
Anything wrong?

CANDIDATE #A:
What change? Oh, he changes his hair.

CANDIDATE #B:
He's now a SHE.

CANDIDATE #C:
And she's a different person, if you noticed.

CANDIDATE #A:
Of course I noticed. I always observe the people around me.

CONSULTANT #A gives a thumb up.

MODERATOR:
I thank you for the kind attention. But we know it's not about me. It's about you, lady and gentlemen. So there are a couple of changes to make the discussion more interesting. Indonesian people need to be able to decide after watching this, don't you agree?

CANDIDATE #C:
Yes.

CANDIDATE #A:
I look forward to endorse what the people want.

CONSULTANT #A gives two thumbs up.

CANDIDATE #B:
Here we go again.

MODERATOR:
Now, now... I'm different from my predecessor. Observe.

The MODERATOR pushes a button on her lectern. Three huge speakers rise behind the CANDIDATES, who look wary about them.

MODERATOR:
Don't be alarmed. Behind you are what we call the Truth Enforcers. From your tone of voice, it detects whether you're telling the truth or not. And should it detect any other than truth, it'll respond by a blaring alarm. Any question?

The CANDIDATES give each other looks, but say nothing.

MODERATOR (CONT'D):
Good. Let's stop beating around the bush. What will be your focus programs for economic development and how are you going to measure your success?

CANDIDATE #B:
I think our main focus should lie on the small to medium enterprises. We've allocated up to forty trillions rupiahs to help funding their businesses. I'm proud to say that we've reduced the number of poverty by 2.21 millions. We've successfully--

SPEAKER:
(blaring)
BLAAAAAAAAAAAAAARE!

CANDIDATE #B has to hold on to the lectern because of the shock.

MODERATOR:
Candidate #C?

CANDIDATE #C:
(also a bit shocked watching what happened to CANDIDATE #B)
Uhm. Right. I think we're not reaching our target, yet.

CANDIDATE #C waits. No alarm. CANDIDATE #C breathes in a relief and continues.

CANDIDATE #C (CONT'D):
I think we can do better. We can do a LOT better.

Getting more confident, CANDIDATE #C starts juggling some balls.

CANDIDATE #C (CONT'D):
And should I be elected, I'll do something different t--

SPEAKER:
(blaring)
BLAAAAAAAAAAAAAARE!

CANDIDATE #C falls to the floor.

MODERATOR:
I was afraid of that. Candidate #A?

CANDIDATE A looks very calm and composed; completely unfazed.

CANDIDATE #A:
I think--

SPEAKER:
(blaring)
BLAAAAAAAAAAAAAARE!

CANDIDATE #A also falls to the floor.

MODERATOR:
Looks like that's it for tonight, folks. We may have to continue this several times before we realize that we'll still be deciding by how they talk. Not what their programs are.

The CONSULTANTS are rushing to the stage to help the CANDIDATES.

MODERATOR (CONT'D):
We'll now switch to the debate between the candidates' spokespersons, where they're going to repeat most what've been said. But with louder volume. Because after all we need the entertainment. And I'm sure we can learn something from--

SPEAKER (O.S.):
(blaring)
BLAAAAAAAAAAAAAARE!

CAMERA-VIEW falls to the ground.

STATIC.

FADE TO BLACK.

END.

14 comments:

Alex said...

*grins through the reading*

and can we know who's who? candidate A's initials, etc? :P

denir said...

hahaha, gila panjang banget

Terbanglah Lebih Tinggi said...

Wonder if I could use some of those blarring alarms! :p

isman said...

I'll leave that to your imagination, Lex. ;p

Kebablasan nulisnya, Nir, hehe.

To make things more interesting at work, Yo?

Hendy said...

hahaha,

the funniest part is when candidate A said "i think" and the speaker blared in an instant

hahahha

everyone knows that candidate A don't think :D

@alex: it's actually straight forward, A is A, B is B, C is C. as simple as that

Kang said...

this is not that long, I've finish reading in five minutes
BLAAAAAAAAAAAAAARE!

Vicky Laurentina said...

Can't stop rolling along the reading..

Isman, you're hilarious! If I were Donna, I'll visit my doctor often coz you make my stomach aches..

nonoke said...

love the "truth bell" idea and how candidate A# said "people" ;)

btw, who are the consultants in real life?

isman said...

Hendy: A is A, B is B, C is C. as simple as that

isman: Hendy, you're explaining without adding any information. You have the knack to be a politician.

isman said...

Jodhi, you're such a kidder--BLAAAAAAARE!


Oh, Donna's already impervious to my antiques, Vicky. She'll just play along. It takes two to tango after all.


The consultants do exist, nonoke. For one of the candidates, you may've heard them as the Fox Brothers. And according to the people who attended the debate, they did exactly like that: approaching the candidates during recesses and giving pointers. "Just like a boxing match," said Enda Surya Nasution in Twitter.

nonoke said...

"like a boxing match?" So, this is a "Million Dollar Baby a.ka Debate?"

Is it worth it?

-=-IpanG-=- said...

geleng-geleng...

Arief said...

Hilarious. Love it :)

isman said...

@nonoke: Is it worth it? The election results say: Apparently not

@ipang: Guk angguk angguk angguk angguk angguk angguk guk!

@Arief: Thanks!