PBS KidsZOOM Home Back to Activity
Playhouse: The plays you've seen on ZOOM

Who Done It?


Christie of Oostburg, WI

CAST:
Detective
Jenna
Gardener
Cook
Duke
Butler
PROPS/COSTUMES:
cardboard house, cardboard lighting; fireplace with cardboard fire, settee, candelabras; painting; magnifying glass; desk with in and out boxes; candy wrappers; garbage can; bubblegum; powdered sugar; cardboard refrigerator; milk carton; milk carton smeared with lipstick; fingerprint kit; glasses; vase; cell phone; foil; journal; diary; mirror; ^veggie parfait^; bowl of candy; utensils; knives. Costumes: characters dressed in stereo-typical English detective mystery costumes.

SETTING: Inside the parlor

(The Cook, the Butler, the Maid, and the Gardener are in the parlor. The Detective and Jenna enter.)

Detective:
Good evening. My name is Detective Tubesock Jones, and this is my intern, Jenna. You needn't pay attention to her, just me. Now, I've summoned you all here because of that man... the Duke of Schnig. Someone has poisoned him with too much sugar!

(Everyone gasps. The detective opens the door to the Duke's office where the Duke is attending to his desk at hyper speed- phoning, putting things in the IN and OUT boxes, and balling up papers and throwing them in the trash.)

(From offstage the audience hears "Bum Bum BUHHH.")

Yes, it's true. Look at him! He's incredibly hyper-He can't sit still. There's powdered sugar on his fingers...

(Detective points out the sugar on Duke's hands.)

There are candy wrappers under his chair...and there's bubblegum stuck to his moustache!

(Duke then blows a bubble, pops it and continues his madcap activities. Detective shuts the door)

And one of you did this to him!

(Everyone gasps again.)

Was it Beatrice, the cook? Eric, the butler? Perhaps it was Marcy, the gardener? Jenna, go fetch my spectacles, would you?

(Each character reacts with disbelief as their names are mentioned. From offstage a dramatic note is played along with each reaction.)

Jenna :
Check.

Detective:
Now, did Beatrice, the cook, sweeten up the Duke?

Gardener:
Well, she feeds him! It must be Beatrice!

ALL (Except Cook & Detective):
Yeah!

(The Duke leaps through the scene with a butterfly net shouting, "Laaaaaa." The employees look at him in shock.)

Cook:
This is terrible. I didn't give him sugar! He's on a diet!

Detective:
Beatrice, look into my eyes. I am the master of the human psyche.

(She looks. Beatrice becomes quickly hypnotized. )

You made a delightful vegetable parfait for lunch.

Cook:
(Speaking with a hypnotized voice)

Yes, I did.

Detective:
Then you did it.

(Everyone gasps )

Tell us!

Cook:
I took the vegetable parfait to the Duke, then I came back to the kitchen. It was hot, and I was thirsty, terribly thirsty....

SETTING: The kitchen,

(Cook has just walked in. Cook looks around to see if anyone is watching, she sneaks over to fridge, removes milk, looks around, drinks it, puts carton back.)

SETTING: The Parlor

(Cook resumes her story)

Cook:
All the glasses were in the dishwasher. I wanted a cool sip of milk. I know how the Duke hates germs, but I, well I...

Detective:
Beatrice!

(The Detective snaps his fingers, which wakes her from her trance.)

You are not guilty of giving the Duke sugar! However, you are guilty of drinking milk straight from the carton! And you returned the bottle to the refrigerator!

Cook:
How did you know that?

Detective:
I am master of the human psyche, Beatrice. AND - you left lipstick on the milk carton.

(Detective holds up the milk carton smeared with Cook'S matching lipstick.)

ALL (Except Detective):
Gasp!

(The Cook is mortified. At this point, Jenna returns with the Detective's glasses.)

Detective:
Jenna, you missed some important facts of the case. Now, get me my fingerprint kit.

Jenna:
Check.

Detective - FRAN:
It is so difficult to get good free help these days. Now, let's move on to Eric the butler.

Gardener:
It had to be him! Thief! With the Duke in this state he'll rob him blind!

Detective:
Now, let's see...

(The Duke motors past with a phone pressed against each ear, )

Buy, no sell, no buy, sell, sell, buy....

Cook:
Oh dear!

Detective:
Eric, look into my eyes!

(Eric quickly becomes hypnotized. )

You had just finished setting the table for the Duke's lunch; tell us what happened next.

SETTING: Dining Room.

(The Butler is finishing setting the Duke's table for lunch. The Butler's jacket looks suspiciously overstuffed. Beatrice delivers the vegetable parfait.)

Butler:
Beatrice had just come in with her vegetable parfait when I decided to do a little "re-decorating"

(The Butler checks to see if the coast is clear. The Butler picks up a silver chafing dish and sneaks off.)

SETTING: The Parlor

Detective:
Eric,

(Detective snaps his fingers and Butler wakes up.)

You did not have anything to do with giving the Duke candy, but you are guilty of "Re-decorating"

(Everyone gasps. From offstage the audience hears Bum Bum BUHHH.)

Butler:
How did you know that?

Detective:
I am master of the human psyche, and your washboard stomach is actually

(The detective knocks on the Butler's metallic sounding stomach, then opens the jacket.)

a silver platter!

(The Duke quickly tiptoes through the scene singing "Tiptoe through the Tulips")

Cook:
Is he gonna be all right?

Hard to say.

(Jenna returns with the kit.)

Jenna! My kit! You should've known that when I asked for this kit, I ALSO wanted my journal AND my mirror. But, you're not master of the human psyche like me. Now go-go! GO!

(Jenna exits.)

Now, as for you, Marcy-

Gardener:
I didn't do anything wrong. I don't go anywhere near the Duke. I spend all my time outdoors.

Detective:
Yes, and you were supposed to bring fresh vegetables to the Cook, but you didn't, did you?!

(Everyone gasps)

Look into my eyes, Marcy!

(Marcy quickly becomes hypnotized.)

You went to pick the vegetables for the Duke's parfait, and then what happened? Tell us!

SETTING: The Garden

( Marcy is walking with a basket toward the garden. She stops and looks around, puts the basket down of the ground and, with great concentration kicks a pumpkin through a couple of garden stakes)

SETTING: The Parlor

Gardener:
I was walking to the garden to get fresh vegetables, thinking about the World Cup. I saw myself kicking the winning goal. I focused on the ball, and... AND...

Detective:
Marcy -

(Detective snaps his fingers and she wakes)

You are not guilty of poisoning the Duke, but you did smash the Duke's prize pumpkin to smithereens!

(Everyone gasps)

Gardener:
How did you know that?

Detective:
Because I am master of the human psyche - AND you have pumpkin seeds all over your feet.

(Jenna bursts in with Detective's journal and his mirror.)

Jenna:
Not so fast!

Detective:
WHAT can you possibly have to add?

Jenna:
Something very important!

(Jenna pulls out the hand mirror.)

Look into this mirror.

Detective:
Well, alright. My appearance is very important...

(Every one gasps. The detective looks into the mirror and hypnotizes HIMSELF.)

Jenna :
You know exactly what happened here. Tell us all about it.

SETTING: The Parlor

(The Duke naps on the settee. The detective looks all around, and opens the Duke's mouth and pours in sugar and candy.)

SETTING: The Parlor with all suspects.

(The detective is still hypnotized.)

Detective:
I snuck in just before lunch. I opened the Duke's mouth, and poured in sugar and candy.

Jenna:
And why did you do this?

Detective:
Because I want to be the Duke of Schnig.

Jenna:
Detective Tubesock Jones -

(Jenna snaps her fingers and wakes him up.)

You are guilty of poisoning the Duke with too much sugar!

(Everyone gasps.)

Detective:
How did you know?

Jenna :
I don't NEED to be master of the human psyche, I read your journal!

(She holds it up.)

Cook:
(Cook grabs the diary.)

April 19, I want to be the Duke of Schnig!

Butler:
(Butler grabs the diary.)

April 20, I really, really want to be the Duke of Schnig!

Gardener:
Appalling!

Cook:
Shocking!

Jenna:
Mystery solved!

(Jenna grabs the Detective by the arm and starts to take him away. The Duke dances around and taunts the Detective, then zips away.)

Duke:
Ooh, you're in trouble!! Weee!


next

not yet implemented