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TRANSCRIPT: S01E03 - The Sino-Mexican Revelation

TITLE: The Sino-Mexican Revelation
WRITTEN BY: Javier Grillo-Marxuach
DIRECTED BY: Jeremiah Chechik
DESCRIPTION: Wendy must save the day when The Middleman and Sensei Ping are kidnapped by a group of Lucha libre wrestlers.

The illegal sublet Wendy shares with another young, photogenic artist. 9:15 AM Pacific Daylight Savings Time

WENDY: Do you have a head injury?

LACEY: I need a job! You know, it's not like the world is just shelling out cash money to see me do my confrontational spoken word performance art. There was two people at my last performance and one of them rushed to the stage to give me a hug.

WENDY: Mom thought you needed one.

LACEY: I can't ask my mother for any more money. Or you…

WENDY: Well if I had it, I would give it to you.

LACEY: I can't believe Sexy Bossman hasn't paid you yet. I mean, don't you gotta get your crapmobile fixed?

WENDY: I do have to get my crapmobile fixed. But my boss –

LACEY: Sexy Bossman?

WENDY: – my boss says the checks don't start until the training is done.

LACEY: You're not fully trained yet?

WENDY: They have an expert coming in from out of town to work with me. He's supposed to, like, vet me or something.

LACEY: Out of town?

WENDY: China.

LACEY: For a temp agency?

WENDY: Hey! How 'bout we talk about your new job?

LACEY: Well, this restaurant's supposed to pay the best tips in town.

WENDY: When we graduated art school, we swore two things: No more underwear stealing boyfriends –

LACEY: Yeah, what was it with those guys? We were like magnets.

WENDY: – and no more waitressing.

LACEY: That's before the student loan fairy left a little somethin' somethin' under my pillow.

WENDY: There are tons of other day jobs.

LACEY: Yeah, well, you know all those times I got arrested protesting? It turns out there is such thing as a permanent record and they really do look at it.

WENDY: Okay, so where do I have to go for the free fries?

Lacey! The Booty Chest?! Ugh. The pirate-themed sports bar with scantily clad waitresses?

LACEY: Arrr.

WENDY: Lacey! You're an independent, politically active woman of today and you're working at a den for middle-age gropers and frat boys?

LACEY: This independent woman of today is paying off her crushing student loan debt with tips from middle-age gropers and frat boys. It's like turning bad money into good.

WENDY: Oh my god, you hear that? It's Simone de Beauvoir turning in her grave.

LACEY: How much are you getting paid for your new job?

A street near the Middleman HQ. 2:30 PM Newfoundland Daylight Time

TYLER: Nice car.

WENDY: Ugh. Have you been helped?

TYLER: Oh, I'm not making fun of you. That's a Hruck Bugbear. Manufactured in Eastern Europe in the '80s and imported to the States. People mark it as a poor man's Yugo, but I consider it the pinnacle of Cold War Balkan engineering.

WENDY: Yeah, my car and Chernobyl.

TYLER: Aw, don't be so hard on the little guy.

WENDY: You love it so much, you try and see if you can make it go. I got a guy coming in to train me at work today and I'm gonna be late. You a mechanic?

TYLER: Musician. I just like lo-fi, low-tech stuff. You should see my collection of Moogs.

WENDY: Oh, I totally loved The Moog Cookbook when I was 15!

TYLER: Although, the way my prospects have been going lately, Eastern European automotive repair would probably be better than what I've got in the hopper.

WENDY: It could be worse. My roommate just got a job at The Booty Chest.

TYLER: The pirate-themed sports bar with the scantily-dressed waitresses?

WENDY: Arrr.

TYLER: Maybe I should get a job there.

WENDY: You don't seem like the Daisy Dukes type.

TYLER: Well, I'm a man of multiple shades and dimensions. Plus, if it pays well and it gives me some time to work on my music…

WENDY: I so know what you mean. I'm a visual artist.

TYLER: Oh, yeah? Let me guess. Semi-abstract expressionist.

WENDY: How'd you know?

TYLER: I know artists. The bummer is, I finally got a job interview. They called weeks ago and my flaky roommate lost the message.

WENDY: That is the bummer master general.

TYLER: Yeah. It gets worse. I found the message under my roommate's pile of 12-inch singles from the '80s, right between the Night Version of Girls on Film and an import of Ant Music.

WENDY: Ooh, nu-romantic, very nice

TYLER: Yeah, you should see him in his puffy shirt. Anyway, I rushed over to the place but they had given the job away. It sounded perfect, too. Flexible hours, dynamic work environment, and a totally messed up name on the letterhead.

WENDY: What was it called?

TYLER: The Jolly Fats Wehawkin Temp Agency. Oh, and uh, what's weird is my contact didn't even have a name. Just "The Middleman."

Middleman HQ. 8:05 AM Hawaii-Aleutian Standard Time

WENDY: You were gonna give my job away to someone else, weren't you?

THE MIDDLEMAN: We're always on the look out for gifted recruits. Just because we had someone on the radar doesn't mean this job isn't yours.

WENDY: Well, you made it sound like me getting this job is a once in a lifetime thing.

THE MIDDLEMAN: There's no way of knowing if you would have survived the tests or made good with Sensei Ping.

WENDY: Well, what if I don't make good with Sensei Ping? Does that mean that I never get paid and some handsome and delightful musician gets my job?

THE MIDDLEMAN: You best cowboy the heck up and start getting the place and yourself ready!

WENDY: I am ready!

THE MIDDLEMAN: You don't know the meaning of ready! I – I was Sensei Ping's apprentice and let me tell you –

WENDY: That Sensei Ping is the most lethal man alive and since he has graciously agreed to train me into a killing machine to be a better sidekick to you, there are three things I must remember before meeting him. A: Never ask why he wears a Mexican wrestler mask. B: Never ask his age. And C: Never, ever bring up the Clan of the Pointed Stick.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Never bring up the Clan of the Pointed Stick! Remember, Sensei Ping is the only man alive who knows the Wu-Han Thumb of Death.

WENDY: You think he'd be proud to be a member of the world's most secretive and elite martial arts organization.

IDA: You just broke rule number three!

WENDY: Oh, put a sock in it, Threepio.

THE MIDDLEMAN: And you've memorized the most hallowed verse of greeting, right?

WENDY: I've never seen you antsy like this.

It's kind of cute.

Yes, I memorized the most hallowed verse of greeting!

IDA: O2STK just called – it's a red ball.

THE MIDDLEMAN: What the monkey?! We can't have a red ball today! Sensei Ping expects The Middleman to pick him up. It's a question of honor!


IDA: The people we work for.

WENDY: Wait a minute, wait – we actually work for someone?

IDA: Well, they got a bad one and they wired your money, so you gotta go take care of business.


IDA: Robbery at the Metro Museum. The local authorities already blundered through and have nothing. O2STK wants you there, post-haste.

WENDY: What's O2STK stand for?

THE MIDDLEMAN: What did they steal?

IDA: La Cage De Lumiere.

WENDY: Oh, I read about that in the Arts section! It's the world's most complicated diamond. If you shine a light through it, it actually makes a cage of light.

IDA: And it's also worth more bread than the two of you meat socks put together.

WENDY: See, and that's why I'm an artist and you're a soulless android from outer space masquerading as a cranky librarian.

THE MIDDLEMAN: This one's a pickle.

IDA: No. It isn't. You're going to the museum. O2STK was very clear.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Buckle up, Dubbie. It's going to be a crowded day.

IDA: Yeah, cuz I'm just made of time.

Metro Museum of Rare Antiquities. 10:20 PM Moscow Daylight Time

THE MIDDLEMAN: I understand the police and insurance company investigators have already been here. But I am Special Agent Heliel Goldfarb of the Mossad and this is my associate.

WENDY: Lieutenant Esther Finklestein.

THE MIDDLEMAN: The stolen diamond was mined and cut in the homeland. Our government has a vested interest in the theft.

MUSEUM OFFICIAL: So you are in the Mossad? I served in the Israeli army. [Speaking Hebrew. Captions: Are you a product of the Kibbutz movement like me?]

THE MIDDLEMAN: [Speaking Hebrew. Captions: A man asked me that question once. I kicked his male reproductive organs into his watch pocket. Now he must check the time whenever he wishes to copulate.]

WENDY: Wow. I thought that when people stole jewels from a museum, it was all cat burglar, Tom Cruise, Mission Impossible stuff. This looks like a herd of frat boys threw a kegger.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Frat boys had nothing to do with it. This was a coordinated strike. The power cables were all yanked out by hand. Lasers were torn down by a freakishly tall person. The guards were all over-powered by brutish strength. The thieves came in numbers large enough to beat any force and knew the response time well enough to escape before the police arrived.

WENDY: So who did it?

THE MIDDLEMAN: We'll find out soon enough.

Ida, begin a forensic scan, please.

IDA: I'm starting the scan. Try looking around, will you? If you don't see it, I can't scan it.


IDA: Those cops left their fingerprints everywhere, buncha gorillas. It's gonna take me a while to eliminate their prints.

THE MIDDLEMAN: We don't have the time, Ida. Sensei Ping's first-class flight from Muhan is going to be here lickity-split.

IDA: Well, why didn't you say so? I'll just re-write the source for the H.E.Y.D.A.R., route the data conduits to a broader band pipeline, do an exhaustive search of higher efficiency satellite uplinking frequencies, and replace all of the chips that's in the operation with stuff that works faster.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Holy jumping bananas, we're in dutch.

WENDY: Uh, yo. Bossman.

Am I or am I not wearing a dorky uniform? Sensei Ping expects a middleman to pick him. Send me!

THE MIDDLEMAN: Well, you're not a middleman yet.

WENDY: Not a paid one, anyway.

THE MIDDLEMAN: You're – you're not ready.

WENDY: To pick up a surly Asian guy at the airport? You just described three of my last four relationships.

Just give me the car keys, Cletus. I'll take care of it.

THE MIDDLEMAN: I need the data relays in the Middlemobile to continue the investigation. You…do have a car, don't you?

J.R. "Bob" Dobbs International Airport. 7:30 Foxtrot Time.

SENSEI PING: Did The Middleman send you?

WENDY: Uh, Sensei Ping! Like an unborn lotus festering in the mud, waiting to blossom, I come to you with humble greetings to beseech your guidance most awesome.

SENSEI PING: [Laughs] Did The Middleman tell you to recite the most hallowed verse of greeting to Sensei Ping?

WENDY: Uh. Yes.

SENSEI PING: He's such a comedian. You know, most of us masters of martial arts are actually very laid back.

WENDY: Really? Ah!

SENSEI PING: You will stand up straight when you repeat the most hallowed verse of greeting like it actually means something to you! And then! Fetch Sensei Ping's bags.

I see the middlemen have upheld their tradition of driving large black American sedans. In Sensei Ping's homeland, cars are shoeboxes. But here, floating palaces. Finally, slow learner, you have scored a fraction of a point with Sensei Ping.

WENDY: Well, that's not my car. That's my car. It's the Hruck Bugbear. It's the pinnacle of Balkan engineering. Ow!

SENSEI PING: Do not speak unless spoken to! And never! Ever! Let Sensei Ping's bags touch pavement.

Middleman HQ

IDA: The print in the lower right-hand quadrant at coordinates oh-four-five-thousand and oh-four-five-six-seven-three belongs to Metro officer Leslie McLaine.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Have you found any relevant material, Ida?

IDA: Why? Are you bored? Because I'm just havin' a rip-snortin' time X-in' off cop digits back here.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Mutual of Omaha! Ida. Are you seeing what I'm seeing?

IDA: That unclassifiable piece of biomass on the floor?

THE MIDDLEMAN: This could be the clue we've been looking for. Whatever this stuff is, it's fresh, hasn't been here longer than a few hours. Analysis?

IDA: Stand by. Anncho chilis, mulato juaito chilis, bitter chocolate, soft bark cinnamon –

THE MIDDLEMAN: Ida. Those are the exact ingredients of mole sauce.

IDA: The savory Mexican chocolate condiment on the day Sensei Ping is coming to town? This is bad.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Get on the Marconi to Wendy. If we're right, she and Sensei Ping are in a pig trough of trouble.

Schlermie Beckerman Memorial Square. 9:50 PM Mitteleuropaische Sommerzeit

SENSEI PING: Sensei Ping has never known such indignity. This mode of conveyance is to anyone who walks up. Also smells like something that was strained from a bowel and rides like –

WENDY: Okay, you know what? I can't imagine why you would possibly wear a Mexican wrestler mask. I mean, you don't look all that old to me, but hey, I'd probably cover my face too if I were in an organization with a craptastic name like Clan of the Pointed Stick!

SENSEI PING: Sensei Ping shall make you pay for this outrage.

WENDY: Oh, really? What are you gonna do, kill me? What's the O2STK gonna say when they find out? Aw, yeah. How do you like me now?

SENSEI PING: Silence, my little pig viper. Danger has come up on our tracks.

WENDY: Uh…Sensei Ping?

SENSEI PING: It is my name; do not wear it out.

WENDY: Uh, why is my car being surrounded by a bunch of Lucha libre wrestlers?

SENSEI PING: That is a very long story for another day, my impotent young weasel.

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: Sensei Ping. [Speaking Spanish. Captions: Sensei Ping, your day of judgment is at hand.]

SENSEI PING: [Speaking Spanish. Captions: No, the only judgment will come at the hands of Sensei Ping.]

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: [Speaking Spanish. Captions: Is this your new apprentice?]

SENSEI PING: [Speaking Spanish. Captions: Never! This little one is nothing!]

WENDY: [Speaking Spanish. Captions: Hey! I understood that!]

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: [Speaking Spanish. Captions: FIRE!]

WENDY: La Cage De Lumiere!

Wait a minute! You can't –

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: Oh, we can. And you will live to tell the world that someone has finally forged a prison that will hold the legendary Sensei Ping.

Fade To Black

THE MIDDLEMAN: Wendy? Are you okay?

WENDY: Ah! My head!

THE MIDDLEMAN: Where's Sensei Ping?

WENDY: Uh…uh, I kinda lost him.

Schlermie Beckerman Memorial Square. 5:00 AM Japan Standard Time

WENDY: Me and Sensei Ping were pulled over and then we were ambushed by a group of masked wrestlers.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Sweet mother of Preston Tucker, did you pick him up in that?


THE MIDDLEMAN: You said you had a car.

WENDY: Can I finish my story? So the wrestlers put him in this laser cage and then a guy wearing a green and gold mask said he had finally forged a prison that could hold the legendary Sensei Ping.

THE MIDDLEMAN: El Maestro De Ceremonies, I knew it. One of his associates is the world's most ruthless infiltration expert, El Comelon.

WENDY: Doesn't that mean 'The Glutton'?

THE MIDDLEMAN: Wherever he goes, the stain of mole is sure to follow. He weighs 329 pounds but he's been known to squeeze through spaces the diameter of a tennis racket. That's how they got into the museum to steal the diamond. These wrestlers have a decades-old blood feud with Sensei Ping. Now they're using the rarest diamond in the world to trap him. It's diabolical.

WENDY: A blood feud?

THE MIDDLEMAN: How did they get you to pull over the car?

WENDY: What? Oh! Uh…well…we were kinda already pulled over.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Why would you do that?

WENDY: Uh…he, well, I mean –

THE MIDDLEMAN: Out with it, Wendy! I need all the intel I can get.

WENDY: Well, he kinda got mad because…I…asked about the mask and –


WENDY: – about his age –

THE MIDDLEMAN: You didn't!

WENDY: – and I brought up the Clan of the Pointed Stick.

THE MIDDLEMAN: How could you? Of all the things, why?!

WENDY: Well, he pushed me! He had it coming!

THE MIDDLEMAN: How did he have it coming?

WENDY: He bopped me on the head! And then he made fun of my car!


WENDY: Hitting people is wrong!

THE MIDDLEMAN: Did you ask him to stop?


THE MIDDLEMAN: Did you try to talk to him?


THE MIDDLEMAN: Did you make any effort to deal with it other than to bring up the three things I specifically told you not to?

So the single best way you thought to handle a cranky martial arts master from a foreign culture – a man who spent two of your lifetimes climbing to the top of his art and earning the respect of every fighter in the world – after he flew halfway around the world to train you was to offend his honor and open him up to an ambush?

WENDY: Well, how was I supposed to know there was a troop of luchadores gunning for the guy? This is so unfair!

THE MIDDLEMAN: The first order of business is to get Sensei Ping before the Clan of the Pointed Sticks knows he's gone. Take your weapon and go home. If I'm not back in four hours, leave the country, preferably for South America, and change your name. You'll probably want to spend the first few years doing cash-only work, you know, like waitressing.

WENDY: Did I miss a memo?

THE MIDDLEMAN: In seventeen hours, when Sensei Ping fails to show up for his traditional breakfast of chicken feet at The Golden Ocean Teahouse in Chinatown, the Clan of the Pointed Stick will immediately send out three highly-trained Shuai jiao fighters –

WENDY: Reinforcements. Awesome!

THE MIDDLEMAN: – to kill us.

WENDY: What!? That sucks!

THE MIDDLEMAN: Well, la-di-da, Dubbie! You must be mistaking the Clan of the Pointed Stick for one of the rational societies of paranoid celibate martial artists. When they discover we let Sensei Ping get kidnapped, their retribution will be like a divine cleansing flame.

WENDY: So you're benching me?

THE MIDDLEMAN: Absolutely.

WENDY: What about my job? I mean, I can help you here! There's a reason why you hired me!

THE MIDDLEMAN: You've done enough for one day.

Obligatory Johnny Cash Reference. 9:30 PM Greenwich Mean Time.

NOSER: Yo, Wendy Watson.

WENDY: Hey, Noser.

NOSER: You know what tortures me?

WENDY: The ring of fire? When the man comes around? That your daddy named you Sue? The fact that God's gonna cut you down? That you're in the jailhouse now? The fulsome prison blues? That the road goes on forever?

NOSER: What was the sixth one of those?

WENDY: The fulsome prison blues.

NOSER: Yeah. That is what tortures me.

WENDY: You and me both, Noser.

The illegal sublet Wendy shares with another young, photogenic artist. 2:33 PM Pacific Daylight Savings Time (North America)

WENDY: Hey, what are you doin' here?

LACEY: I live here? Well, you look like a hundred bucks. How bad?

Dear Lord, that bad?

WENDY: I might need to change my name and move to a South American country.

LACEY: Well, if you need a waitressing job for cash I knew a guy in Buenos Aires.

WENDY: Shouldn't you be at The Booty Chest?

LACEY: No. I quit.

WENDY: This was your first day.

LACEY: Yeah, turned out to be just a den for fratboys and gropers.

WENDY: I told you.

LACEY: Yeah. And who woulda thunk that every single guy in the place would turn out to be a total masher chumsucker? I mean, I might not be above putting on a tight t-shirt for student loan money, but I'm not sitting on a man's lap without a deep and intimate connection of love, trust, and understanding.

WENDY: Someone asked you to –

LACEY: How 'bout every guy in the frickin' frackin' place? And just when I thought things couldn't get any worse, this group of Lucha libre wrestlers showed up.

WENDY: Lucha libre wrestlers?

LACEY: It must be Cinco de Mayo or something. I mean, this one guy was so fat, I don't know how he fit through the door.

WENDY: El Comelon!

WENDY'S BRAIN: Holy Ka-winky-dink, Batman!

LACEY: Wendy? Wendy?

WENDY: Okay, how long ago was this?

LACEY: I just got home and I am going to write a new confrontational monologue on how losers who go to pirate-themed sports bars with scantily clad waitresses objectify minimum wage earning women.

WENDY: Lacey, do you still have your Booty Chest t-shirt?

LACEY: Can you tell me what it is about your job that requires you to dress up like a Booty Chest girl and talk to a bunch of Lucha libre wrestlers?

WENDY: Look…the temp agency had a big account with the…uh, PALLF.

LACEY: The Pan-American Lucha Libre Federation?

WENDY: Yeah, and I sorta messed up today. It was a human resources thing and I wound up losing the account.

LACEY: Mm, are things bad with Sexy Bossman?

WENDY: Must you call him that? Must you?

LACEY: Yes. I must.

WENDY: Well, yes, things are bad. He wants the account back. And if I could just convince those Lucha libre guys to reconsider…maybe I won't lose my job. I have to do it stealthy. I have to show Sexy Boss – I have to convince my boss I can fix this.

LACEY: Alright then. Listen close. A Booty Chest girl has to be two things. They made us repeat it like a mantra at basic training.

WENDY: Basic training? You were there, like, what? Two hours?

LACEY: Basic training at The Booty Chest consists of one concept.

WENDY: Drop some wisdom on me.

LACEY: Slutty…but sweet.

WENDY: Slutty but sweet?

LACEY: Slutty but sweet.

Okay, Wendy. Well, I taught you all I can. What you do with this knowledge is up to you.

Middleman HQ. 2:34 PM Heure Normale Du Yukon

THE MIDDLEMAN: Hot flaming pork buns, I knew it! A high-powered energy beam emitter was stolen by masked wrestlers from the Particle Physics Department of the University of Guadalajara only 48 hours ago. Input these performance characteristics and scan the city electrical grid. Tracking the laser's power consumption signature ought to bring up Sensei Ping's location lickity-split.

IDA: Hey! My online mahjong is getting hot. Well, don't look at me in that tone of voice, young man! I'm the one that's hooked up to this unholy machine by my tripes.

Alright. Commencing scan.

We have a problem. Your high-powered Mexican laser has the same exact power consumption characteristics as: a Teledyne Water Pik with custom high output heating element and aftermarket turbo power wash accelerator.

THE MIDDLEMAN: …Who'd own that?

IDA: At least five people in this city.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Just print out the addresses. Gullmonging weirdos.

The Booty Chest – a Pirate-Themed Sports Bar with Scantily Clad Waitresses. 5:00 AM India Time Zone

WENDY: Bingo.


WENDY and TYLER: It's you! From the street. You work at The Booty Chest?

TYLER: You told me that they were hiring and I…wasn't kidding when I said I needed the work, so…what about you?

WENDY: Uh, I am doing research for an art project.

TYLER: Really?

WENDY: Yeah. It's about how losers who go to pirate-themed sports bars with scantily clad waitresses objectify minimum wage earning women. And I thought I'd start with those Lucha libre guys over there.

TYLER: Um, that's a very relevant theme for an art project, but I wouldn't go near those guys if I were you.

WENDY: I can handle it. If you'll excuse me…

TYLER: Hey, do you know anything about Lucha libre? There's good wrestlers and bad wrestlers, like you know how El Santo and Blue Demon are like the Superman and Batman of Lucha libre, but these are definitely bad guys. Stonecold and Hollywood Hogan have nothing on them for devious, cunning, and I'll tell you something else, those guys ain't here for the waitresses. They've been sitting there for a while; they haven't looked at any of the women twice. They're up to something. Something bad. Doing research for an art project is one thing but, uh, this is triple next-gen villainy right here.

WENDY: How do you know so much about Lucha libre?

TYLER: I'm a man of multiple shades and dimensions. Plus I watched a lot of Lucha libra as a kid. I grew up in Panama. My dad was a military man.

WENDY: Mine too!

TYLER: Really? Well, trust me, one military brat to another: don't mess with those guys.

WENDY: Tell you what. One military brat to another. I'll go over there and if things get rough, you get my back.

TYLER: Hey, nice brush off! You really think you know what you're doing?

WENDY: Well, good thing is, if this goes bad, you may have a job waiting for you.

[To EL COMELON] [Speaking Spanish. Captions: I have an atomic de-moleculizer at your spine. Send your men away. Now.

EL COMELON: [Speaking Spanish. Captions: Out! Everyone! So you are Sensei Ping's little servant…you must know this will not end well.]

WENDY: [Speaking Spanish. Captions: I'm asking the questions here, where is Sensei Ping?]

EL COMELON: [Speaking Spanish. Captions: On his way to his final judgment in the Yucatán. Sensei Ping will face our justice – and so will his apprentice.]

WENDY: And his apprentice? You wanna kill The Middleman too? That's why you're eating spicy chicken wings at a pirate-themed sports bar? [Captions: Su aprendiz? Quiere asesinar a el Middleman también? Por eso es que usted está comiendo alitas de pollo en una barra deportiva con tema de piratas?]

EL COMELON: [Speaking Spanish. Captions: A group of wrestlers lies in wait in the alley with a Teledyne Water Pik with custom high output heating element and aftermarket turbo power wash accelerator. Without a doubt, The Middleman will mistake it for the laser beam.]

WENDY: Oh no.

TYLER: You said have your back.

WENDY: Let's go.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Ida, I've found the source of the power signature. They must have Sensei Ping inside this van.

WENDY: Don't open that!

The alley outside of The Booty Chest, a pirate-themed sports bar with scantily-clad waitresses. 11:4 PM Coordinated Universal Time

WENDY: Please wake up. Please? Not now, Ida. I'm busy.

IDA: What did you do? The big green cheese has gone completely offline.

WENDY: Yeah, we got ambushed by a group of Luchadores and this nice cute boy who tried to help me got knocked out.

IDA: Wah-wah-wah. What's that got to do with the price of eggs in China? You need to get back here, post-haste.

WENDY: I can't leave him!

IDA: How about you wake up and smell the first responders, honey-pie. You're about to be targeted for assassination by a paranoid society of celibate martial artists and now the cops are coming to get you for starting a brawl in a pirate-themed sports bar with scantily clad waitresses. Your boy-toy's gonna wake up in the ER in minutes. The question is: do you want the G-Men to toss your behind in the pokey?

WENDY: I'm sorry. It'll be alright. I promise.

Middleman HQ. 9:32 AM Australian Central Daylight Time

WENDY: El Comelon said that they were taking Sensei Ping to the Yucatán to be judged, no doubt taking The Middleman there, too.

IDA: Oh, I know that. Those wrestlers are taking him to their secret headquarters at the Dread Pyramid of Itzilichlitlichlitzl.

WENDY: You knew that already? Then why you hooked up to the H.E.Y.D.A.R.?

IDA: I'm using a well-known commercial website to buy myself tickets to Buenos Aires where I intend to lay low for a while. Wanna come along? I hear those tango jockeys are real bob cats in the sack.

WENDY: Are you drunk? We have to save The Middleman and Sensei Ping!

IDA: Maybe you oughta start wondering about what you're gonna do when the Clan of the Pointed Stick comes to kill you for letting Sensei Ping get kidnapped by masked wrestlers.

WENDY: They're not gonna kill me because I'm gonna be the one bringing Sensei Ping back.

IDA: Don't pee on my leg and tell me it's raining.

WENDY: Look, I know it's a big job but I think it's time you let me into the Middleman Circle of Trust and we can just call O2STK and tell them what's going on and ask them for help.

IDA: Oh, you poor thing.

WENDY: What?

IDA: O2STK is a joke. Neither me nor The Middleman really knows who we work for so we gave them that name as a, well, little, you know, inside joke. It stands for Organization 2 Secret Too Know.

WENDY: Now you tell me?

IDA: Didn't expect you to run with it.

WENDY: Oy. Well then, fine. Just tell me how to find this Dread Pyramid of Itzilichlitlichlitzl.

IDA: You wanna find it in the jungles of Mexico, be my guest. The Middlejet's parked on the roof.

WENDY: We have a Middlejet?

IDA: What kind of an outfit do you think this is? It's right above the Middleboat. Not that a bolshie spliff-sniffer like you could fly it.

WENDY: Before he vanished under as of yet unexplained circumstances, my father was the best pilot on the face of the earth.

IDA: So?

WENDY: There's two things I know how to do better than anyone. Painting abstract expressionist renderings of paranormal phenomena and flying any crate with wings and an engine.

Cockpit of the Middlejet.

WENDY: Ida? This is Wendy reporting in.

IDA: Well, hello there, Miss Fancy Pants.

WENDY: I need the coordinates and I need you to patch me in to Lacey.

LACEY: I'm in the middle of something!

WENDY: Lacey, it's me!

LACEY: Dub-Dub? Are you in the cockpit of a Harrier Vertical Takeoff and Landing Fighter Jet or something?

WENDY: No! No, no, it's – it's nothing like that, really.

LACEY: I mean, it's okay, it's just that…I'm in my yellow teddy suit.

WENDY: Oh, god! Oh, I didn't mean to –


WENDY: – interrupt you.

LACEY: – it's okay. I'm almost done anyway, and besides, it's you. So what's up?

WENDY: I need you to do something for me. There's this guy. A musician. He was working as a busboy at The Booty Chest?

LACEY: Oh, New Guy? Started work today, kinda tall and really, really, really cute?

WENDY: Yeah.

LACEY: His name is Tyler. Yeah, I noticed him.

WENDY: Tyler. Well, okay. I kinda got in a fight with those Luchadores I told you about and he kinda got knocked out. And I don't know where they took him or anything.

LACEY: Well, is he okay?

WENDY: I don't know. Could you call your old bosses and find out what ER he's in? Make sure for me?

LACEY: Well, why aren't you with him right now? What's going on?

WENDY: Could you please just check up on him for me?

LACEY: Sure, Dub-Dub.

WENDY: And Lacey? I just want you to know it means the world to me that you made me over into a slutty but sweet waitress at a pirate-themed sports bar.

LACEY: I know, Wendy. I know. But there's something I have to know…what is your new job?

The Dread Pyramid of Itzilichlitlichlitzl. 4:00 PM Charlie Time

SENSEI PING: You have put on an appallingly poor display, my apprentice.

THE MIDDLEMAN: I can't disagree, Sensei Ping. But I will find a way out of this.

SENSEI PING: Sensei Ping is still in this cage. That is all Sensei Ping is saying.

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: Sensei Ping. You have been brought to the ancient cross of Itzilichlitlichlitzl to face the consequences for your cold-blooded murder of the greatest masked wrestler to ever swept the canvas, legendary El Sapo Dorado.

SENSEI PING: Sensei Ping demands to be heard.

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: Our tradition allows you to speak your last word, Sensei Ping.

SENSEI PING: It is true. Your master, El Sapo Dorado, did indeed die before me. But I did not kill him. Your master came to me after years of wandering the earth, trying to a warrior who could best him. With the utmost respect, he challenged me to a series of duels. We fought for twenty-five days without dishonor. On the dawn of the twenty-sixth day, when El Sapo Dorado suffered a fatal heart attack, I buried him with honors and took his mask. Not as a trophy but as a tribute to the one man I could never best.

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: Silencio! Silencio! You truly believe this lie of yours will stand?

SENSEI PING: It doesn't matter. Because you have resorted to thievery, deception, and murder to settle this feud. And in the name of El Sapo Dorado, Sensei Ping demands his right for trial by combat!

THE MIDDLEMAN: Very clever, Sensei Ping.

SENSEI PING: Sensei Ping can be quite the wheeler-dealer when the opportunity arises.

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: If it's trial by combat you desire, then so be it.

SENSEI PING: We will be out of here in a second.

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: Now choose your champion.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Did he just –


THE MIDDLEMAN: That that means you aren't –


THE MIDDLEMAN: So I'm gonna have to –


THE MIDDLEMAN: El Maestro can be quite the wheeler-dealer when he chooses to, huh?


The skies over the Yucatán Peninsula. 10:45 AM Heure Avancée de l'est

WENDY: I have the Pyramid of Itzilichlitlichlitzl in my sights but I don't see a landing strip anywhere.

IDA: That's no problem. You'll just have to bail in upper atmosphere, parachute under the top of the pyramid and find your own way in.

WENDY: Bail? Parachute? How will I get back?

IDA: You'll either be dead or you'll rescue The Middleman and Sensei Ping, kill all the wrestlers in your way, and jack whatever plane they use to get here. What, you never watched a Bond flick?

WENDY: I'm just about to fly over.

IDA: Well, then you better bail now, shouldn't you?

WENDY: I, uh…I…

IDA: Oh, yeah, I can see how this would all be very overwhelming, sweetie. How 'bout I engage the remote and do it for you?

WENDY: Wait!

The Dread Pyramid of Itzilichlitlichlitzl. 5:10 PM Alaska Standard Time

SENSEI PING: You look good.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Why, thank you, sir.

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: Sensei Ping! You have selected your…champion. Now meet your opponent. The one, the only, the dread Cien Máscaras!

THE MIDDLEMAN: What's the matter? I can take him. Cien Máscaras means a hundred masks. It's just one guy with a hundred masks, right?

SENSEI PING: He was. Until he was cursed by an Aztec mummy. Now he is one hundred identical men who must all wear the same mask.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Oh, phooey.


EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: Well, he still has twenty-five to beat. He will not survive.

SENSEI PING: Behind you!


WENDY: Let him go!

SENSEI PING: Nicely done, young one. Sensei Ping may have to revise his opinion of you. Sensei Ping will take it from here.

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: He's free! [Speaking Spanish] He's free!

SENSEI PING: There's something you should know. Sensei Ping didn't face down a hundred men until he was twice your age. What you did will be the stuff of legends, my apprentice.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Why, thank you, sir.

WENDY: Are you okay?

THE MIDDLEMAN: I've been better.

You may want to unhook your parachute. It cramps your style.

WENDY: Oh, shut up!

SENSEI PING: This blood feud ends today.

EL MAESTRO DE CEREMONIES: There's only one way to resolve this situation! [Speaking Spanish. Captions: EVERYONE ATTACK!]

THE MIDDLEMAN AND WENDY: The Wuhan Thumb of Death!

SENSEI PING: This blood feud is finished.

Alfred Necessiter Memorial Hospital. 12:35 AM Zulu Time

DOCTOR: Excuse me? Are you a member of the patient's family?

WENDY: Uh, yes. I'm…his sister!

DOCTOR: Okay, then. Uh, well, Tyler's resting now, we shouldn't wake him, but there's something I need you to know. He has a concussion and…well, amnesia.

WENDY: Amnesia?

DOCTOR: I'm afraid so.

WENDY: I thought people only got that in movies and soap operas and comic books?

DOCTOR: Well, it's extremely rare but it's quite unlikely that young Tyler here will ever remember any of the events of the past two days.

WENDY: He doesn't remember anything from the past two days?

He has two-day amnesia?

DOCTOR: He shouldn't have any trouble remembering his sister.

WENDY: Oh, what a lousy, stinkin' world.

DOCTOR: He's waking up. Do you want to say hello?

WENDY: Would you mind holding these for me? I'm having a hard time seeing my brother like this and I just need to pull myself together.

The illegal sublet

NOSER: Yo, Wendy's boss.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Hello, Mr. Noser. May I ask you a question?

NOSER: Sure thing.

THE MIDDLEMAN: What does become of the broken-hearted?

NOSER: I think eventually they gotta find peace of mind. Maybe.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Thanks. You've been helpful.

LACEY: It's open!

THE MIDDLEMAN: Hello, Lacey. Nice yellow teddy head.

LACEY: Please don't make fun of the yellow teddy head.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Oh, I couldn't if I wanted to. When I was a boy, my parents bought me a set of three-thousand Lincoln logs. But the only way I could truly create to the best of my ability was to wear a large badger costume.

LACEY: You understand.

THE MIDDLEMAN: It's what I do. Is Wendy upstairs?

Wendy's Bedroom

THE MIDDLEMAN: That's a sad painting.

WENDY: I'm a sad person.

THE MIDDLEMAN: No, you're not.

WENDY: Really? Because, I don't know, that whole thing where I almost lost my job and then turned a totally adorable guy I should be dating into a two-day amnesiac and then had to watch a hundred masked wrestlers get killed like co-eds in a slasher film – I could really see how that could bum a person out.

THE MIDDLEMAN: Had to be done. They would have killed us all.

WENDY: I know it had to be done.

THE MIDDLEMAN: You impressed the living croutons and fondue off Sensei Ping. I just went to his suite at the Four Seasons. He says you show a lot of promise, he's looking forward to training you, and he's promised to put a good word in with the Clan of the Pointed Stick.

WENDY: So I guess it all worked out.

THE MIDDLEMAN: We certainly ducked a bullet thanks to you. You know…Sensei Ping's not the only one who's impressed. I'd be takin' the big dirt nap if you hadn't come to the rescue. I owe ya and I'm not just talkin' wooden nickels. What you did wasn't a sad person's doing. It was brave, resourceful, and cunning. It was a Middleman at work. Just, uh…your first paycheck. And a little something extra for going above and beyond the call.

The Street

LACEY: That is awesome! Sexy Bossman gave you a sweet Smart car?

WENDY: I guess I kinda helped him get back that Lucha libre account.

LACEY: This is fantastic!

WENDY: Yeah, but I'll miss the Hruck Bugbear. Kind of a babe magnet, that car.

LACEY: Yeah. Right. So what's this license plate mean?

WENDY: Sort of an inside joke, Lace.


This is really useful. Thanks!

One note: it's the Folsom Prison Blues, unless there's some subtlety I'm missing...
Yeah, it is, I just didn't capitalize it. :)


Excellent work on this! I just have one correction:

"IDA: Well, why didn't you say so? I'll just re-write the source for the H.E.Y.D.A.R., route the data conduits to a broader band pipeline, do an exhaustive search of higher efficiency satellite uplinking frequencies, and replace all of the chips that's in the operation with stuff that works faster."

That should be "...replace all of the chipsets in the operation with stuff that works faster."