Episode Description[edit | edit source]
Hey folks! We streamed for a very... very long time, so here's stream part TWO.
(And part one is here: https://www.patreon.com/posts/live-at-table-pt-22925817)
(Featuring Janine Hawkins, Jack de Quidt, Keith J Carberry and Ali Acampora)
Plot[edit | edit source]
It is the day of the lion meet-and-greet. Darren quickly gives the fake black lions a quick repaint. Dax is in the enclosure with the fake black lions and the “bummed lion that hates Boots” (“I am Dax Leopard, the leopard shepherd”), while Never films from outside. Dax brings out Boots, introducing him as “Francios”, “Thomas Francios” and “Francios Bonus”.
Boots apologises to the lion while not making eye-contact with the lion. The lion stares at him intensely. Dax asks if he wants to give the lion a hug and he says he does. Dax signals to Darren to bring forth the second lion, and Darren throws a deli-meat wrapper towards Boots. The real lion slowly walks towards Boots.
Dax encourages the audience to cheer (“the cats love the noise”), and continues towards Boots, jumping on top of Boots. Dax makes a series of noises, getting the lion to hug Boots (although the lion does growl into Boots’ ear). The crowd goes wild, and Boots continues to hug the lion, apologising profusely for the lioness being transferred away.
Although the crowd loved it, Boots has yet to make “real material amends” to the lion. Never hosts a press conference covering the “prevented lion attack”. Boots gets her attention from off-stage, saying that he has something he wants to address. Once the press conference is over, Boots tell her that transferring the lioness to the Trenton Zoo was a huge mistake, and asks her if there’s any way to get the lioness back. Never says that the Bluff City Zoo doesn’t have the money to buy it back, and there’s nothing in the lioness’s contract that says they can ask for her back.
Through the course of their conversation, Boots realises that the black lions are really leopards, and his faith in the “sanctity of the zoo” is shaken.
Boots tells Never that they should use the press to get the lioness back, by leaking to the press that the lion and lioness have been separated, and this will put public pressure on both the Bluff City and Trenton Zoos (“I don’t love pressure”). Never encourages him to frame it as being something that the Trenton Zoo did, to keep negative attention off the Bluff City Zoo.
Never, having got the idea to paint the Trenton Zoo in a negative light, goes to the Trenton Zoo with a plate of old macarons, leaving them there with a note card that says ‘free samples’. She hires an outside person to set the cookies up at the Trenton Zoo, and then sends Dax to Trenton Zoo to post on a dummy social media account about how the Trenton Zoo has bad food. She then has Darren post on a different dummy social media account about the fresh Bluff City Zoo macaroons.
She gets a call from someone from the Trenton Zoo, saying that they know what she did, although Never attempts to play it off like she doesn’t know what they’re talking about.
Dax, now “a hero", enlists Darren’s help in building the Dax Leopard exhibit. Never approaches them as they are “hammering something” although it is not clear what they are actually constructing. She questions why they’re building an enclosure for Dax, and says that if he’s in the enclosure he should have the food that the animals eat. When that doesn’t convince Dax, she says that he would have to provide his own uniform. Darren says they could bedazzle Dax’s uniform vest. Dax says he doesn’t understand why she’s fighting him on the exhibit, as he is a hero now (“I’m being so chafed by your jealousy [...] don’t chafe me dude”).
Never says that the exhibit won’t show Dax “in [his] element”, and Dax says they should put a lion in with him. Darren says they could build him a stage to show him with the Great Cats!.
Dax is also shocked to learn that he will not be getting a million dollars from the video Never took, as he and Darren thought they would. Never says they don’t make any money on the social media videos, and that they shouldn’t have done those calculations (“I don’t go to you two for math. I don’t know many people who do”). Darren and Dax insist that they are owed a million dollars. Never says if they show him a million dollar invoice, she’ll pay them.
Never continues to try and talk Dax out of having his own exhibit, and manages to convince him to go with a chair (or throne) instead.
Darren invites Dax and Boots to a club on the boardwalk to ask them a favour. Boots is running later, but Darren tells Dax that he and Boots have been trying to get the lioness back. Dax says that that’s a good thing, because ever since it saw Boots again it’s been sick (although he also does not realise that the “French-Canadian guy” was Boots). Darren says that bringing the lioness back will get Dax his own exhibit, and that to celebrate the lioness’ return and to make amends they should to a lion vow renewal. Dax agrees that this is a good idea because lions are “mad sentimental”.
Boots arrives, commenting on how loud the music is, Dax enthusiastically agrees. Darren and Dax share their lion vow renewal plan. Darren tells Dax that Boots already knows all about the situation because he was the french canadian guy. Dax is genuinely surprised. They leave to plan the lion’s wedding.
They meet back up in the cafe of a bookstore to plan how to get Trenton Zoo to return the lioness. Never overhears them talking, and drops by their table to tell them that Trenton Zoo has caved to public pressure and agreed to loan the lioness back to them the following week. They launch right into telling her about the lion’s wedding. Never has some questions about the logistics of it, aggravating Dax, who produces the lion’s original marriage certificate. Boots encourages Never to think about the publicity angle, and she agrees that the public would love it.
Never asks Darren to come to her office to draft out the wedding invitation to show to the public. They clash when discussing the design elements, but ultimately decide on an off-white (since it’s a vow renewal rather than a wedding). Never asks if the lions have any family and Darren says that once of the leopards was going to ask the lions to be the godparents to one of their cubs, and that he could bring over a peccary as a ringbearer.
The day of the wedding/vow renewal arrives. It’s held in one of the enclosures and is open to the public. Dax officiates the wedding (wearing a sleeveless tuxedo), and the lion’s best man and maid of honour are both leopards. The Trenton Zoo delegation walk the lioness down the aisle “like they’re her father”. Darren and Boots both assist from inside the enclosure, and Never films from outside, standing with a huge crowd of the general public.
Dax gives the lioness a treat in the shape of a ring and pronounces them “lions and lions”, and the crowd cheers, letting off sparklers (“everybody make noise, they love it!”). Darren starts his wedding playlist, since he cannot express his feelings about the lion wedding through words (the song is ‘I Believe In A Thing Called Love’ by The Darkness, accompanied by Darren’s Just Dance hard mode choreography).
Boots says that he’s not sure what they accomplished here today, and Dax says he should say something to the lion. Boots begs the lion not to eat him, and the lion puts a gentle paw on his shoulder, showing that Boots has made material amends.
Outside the enclosure, Never thinks about Boots’ intern-creditship review.
Darren gets caught in the zoo system, unable to leverage the lion wedding into a promotion any higher than a supervisor role at the Bluff City Zoo. He gets transferred to Trenton Zoo, which he is very upset by but cannot get out of. Darren tries to put together a youtube channel/animal wedding company, which eventually starts to take off a little (a chicken wedding for a Trenton school) until the bad press about the lion wedding (and the other Bluff City Zoo scams he was involved in) makes it to Trenton, and his animal wedding licence is revoked.
Boots finishes his internship, saying a pleasant goodbye to everyone at the Bluff City Zoo. Months later, he researches sneezing monkeys and the reality of the level of scams being run at the Bluff City Zoo, and his part in them, dawns on him. Boots finally receives his internship credit reports and his supervisor is not pleased with what Never wrote (“lets other zoo employees get him caught up in absurd schemes rather than doing assigned work, needs heavy management, is not independent, is not a self-starter”). Boots visits the zoo as member of the public, looking at the zoo with fresh eyes.
After the lion wedding, all of the keepers are emboldened into doing wilder and wilder stunts with their particular animals, which Never is stuck facilitating. The Bluff City Zoo gets some transfers from Trenton who are more attentive to the Bluff City Zoo’s social media, exposing Never’s deception. A new social media person is brought alongside Never, to be trained as her replacement. Eventually, Never is let go from the Bluff City Zoo and gets a job doing social media stuff for one of the casinos, which she finds much less rewarding. She eventually quits, giving a member of public her phone and walking away.
Sadly, the lions get divorced (“the smells were wrong”). Even more sadly, nobody cares about Dax’s hero exhibit, and the only people who stop by were “punk kids” that Dax gets into an altercation with. With Darren working at Trenton, Dax doesn’t get to see him as much anymore until they’re not really best friends anyone. Dax, believing that the zoo is no place for animals anymore, releases the great cats! into the wild and is chased by the police. He skips town, last seen wearing groucho marx glasses as a disguise and heading to his favourite spot on the boardwalk to get chicken tenders before getting onto a city bus, trying to get as far as he can on $18.
Cast[edit | edit source]
- Darren Cruiser (Ali Acampora)
- Dax Leopard (Keith J Carberry)
- Boots Bonus (Jack de Quidt)
- Never Watson-Wiley (Janine Hawkins)
Notes[edit | edit source]
- Stream archive on Patreon
- The game board for this game can be seen on patreon (requires patreon login to view)