For this week I bring you chapter 16 of Arthur Scott Bailey’s The Tale of Fatty Raccoon. This and all previous chapters of this into Mystery Science Theater 3000 fan fiction are at this link. If that seems like a lot to read to get up to speed here, yeah, and don’t worry. The chapter explains itself pretty well. But it does reference Chapter 13, when Jimmy Rabbit and, he claims, his brother played a prank on Fatty.
TOM: Everyone who used to be a Vi, stand up.
> FATTY RACCOON PLAYS ROBBER
CROW: Stealing Farmer Green’s cornfield, as a bit.
> After Fatty Raccoon played barber-shop with Jimmy Rabbit and his
> brother it was a long time before he met them again.
CROW: So Jimmy Rabbit’s brother is a figment of his imagination, right? That’s why he doesn’t have a name?
> But one day Fatty
> was wandering through the woods when he caught sight of Jimmy. Jimmy
> dodged behind a tree.
TOM: Gee, why?
> And Fatty saw Jimmy’s brother peep from behind
MIKE: One more peep and we turn this forest around and go home.
> You see, his ears were so long that they stuck far beyond the
MIKE: Be fair, now, why would a rabbit learn how to hide?
> and Fatty couldn’t help seeing them.
> "Hello!" Fatty called. "I’m glad to see you."
> And he told the
> truth, too. He had been trying to find those two brothers for weeks,
> because he wanted to get even with them for cutting off his moustache.
CROW: And hiding his fez and penny-farthing bicycle.
> Jimmy and his brother hopped out from behind their trees.
> "Hello!" said Jimmy. "We were just looking for you." Probably
> he meant to say, "We were just looking AT you."
TOM: [ As Fatty ] Well, I was looking *through* you.
CROW: [ As Jimmy’s brother ] But you’re not there.
TOM: [ As Fatty ] Like you even exist!
> He was somewhat upset
> by meeting Fatty; for he knew that Fatty was angry with him.
> "Oh, ho! You were, were you?" Fatty answered. He began to
> slide down the tree he had been climbing.
MIKE: [ Sings the Batman 66 transition theme, slowly ]
> Jimmy Rabbit and his brother edged a little further away.
CROW: [ As Jimmy ] Have to … go … wax a … squirrel?
> "Better not come too near us!" he said. "We’ve both got the
> pink-eye, and you don’t want to catch it."
TOM: Why, a pink-eyed raccoon would be adorable!
MIKE: Or haunt your nightmares.
> Fatty paused and looked at the brothers.
MIKE: [ Making air quotes ] ‘Brothers’.
> Sure enough! their
> eyes were as pink as anything.
> "Does it hurt much?" Fatty asked.
CROW: Only when we look at stuff.
> "Well—it does and it doesn’t," Jimmy replied.
MIKE: [ As Jimmy ] Like, my brother? Nothing bothers him, because he’s made of nothing! Neat how that works, right?
> "I just stuck a
> brier into one of my eyes a few minutes ago and it hurt awful, then.
> But you’ll be perfectly safe, so long as you don’t touch us."
TOM: And you don’t jab a brier into your eyes. Sheesh.
> "How long does it last?" Fatty inquired.
MIKE: How long do you hold a grudge?
> "Probably we’ll never get over it," Jimmy Rabbit said
> cheerfully. And his brother nodded his head, as much as to say,
> "That’s so!"
CROW: Cut that out! You don’t get to support your brother if you don’t exist!
> Fatty Raccoon was just the least bit alarmed. He really thought
> that there was something the matter with their eyes.
TOM: Oh, they just need reading glasses. It’s nothing.
> You see, though
> the Rabbit brothers’ eyes were always pink (for they were born that
> way), he had never noticed it before.
MIKE: Also raccoons are maybe colorblind? Who knows?
> So Fatty thought it would be
> safer not to go too near them.
CROW: Fatty is the most bluffable raccoon out there.
TOM: He’s used to just chewing his way through life.
> "Well, it’s too bad," he told Jimmy. "I’m sorry. I wanted to
> play with you."
MIKE: [ As Jimmy ] Oh yeah? What game?
TOM: [ As Fatty ] Well, it’s 1915, so the only games are tiddlywinks, whacking each other with rolled-up newspapers, and baseball.
> "Oh, that’s all right!" Jimmy said.
CROW: Hey, there’s stuffing ferrets down your trousers, that’s something.
MIKE: Crow! They’re *children*!
> "We can play, just the
> same. I’ll tell you what we’ll play. We’ll play—"
TOM: PLINKO! For a chance to win up to FIFTY THOUSAND DOLLARS!
[ MIKE, CROW cheer ]
> "Not barber-shop!" Fatty interrupted. "I won’t play
> barber-shop, I never liked that game."
MIKE: Even though I started playing it with my brother right away.
> Jimmy Rabbit started to smile. But he turned his smile into a
CROW: Awwwww, bunny sneezes, too adorable!
> And he said—
MIKE: Yes yes, go on?
> "We’ll play robber.
TOM: [ As Fatty ] Robert?
MIKE: [ As Jimmy ] Robber.
> You’ll like that, I know.
TOM: [ As Fatty ] But how do you play Robert?
MIKE: [ As Jimmy ] It’s Robber. You play a robber.
> And you can be
> the robber. You look like one, anyhow."
TOM: [ As Fatty ] How can I look like a ‘Robert’? Anyone could look like a ‘Robert’, there’s like four kinds of Robert out there.
MIKE: [ As Jimmy ] I … you know what? Yes.
> That remark made Fatty Raccoon angry.
TOM: ‘You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry … heck, our author doesn’t like me at all!’
> And he wished that Jimmy
> hadn’t the pink-eye. He would have liked to make an end of him right
> then and there.
CROW: You know what Fatty could use? A peer group.
> "What do you mean?" he shouted. "Robber nothing! I’m just as
> good as you are!"
TOM: Really curious how this scene plays out in _The Tale of Jimmy Rabbit_.
> "Of course, of course!" Jimmy said hastily. "It’s your face,
> you know, That black patch covers your eyes just like a robber’s mask.
MIKE: [ As Fatty ] Oh! I thought you were talking about this giant bag with a dollar sign on it.
> That’s why we want you to be the robber."
> Fatty had slipped down his tree to the ground; and now he
> looked down into the creek.
CROW: Right next to the mirror department of the forest.
> It was just as Jimmy said. Fatty had never
> thought of it before,
MIKE: But how *do* you tell a cabbage from a lettuce?
> but the black patch of short fur across the
> upper part of his face made him look exactly like a robber.
CROW: Fatty had gone his entire raccoon life without considering human melodrama stage conventions for marking someone a robber.
> "Come on!" said Jimmy. "We can’t play the game without you."
TOM: We can’t ditch you without you coming along!
> "Well—all right!" said Fatty. He began to feel proud of his
> mask. "What shall I do?"
TOM: Well, first, rob something.
CROW: *Robert* something.
> "You wait right here," Jimmy ordered. "Hide behind that tree.
MIKE: … Bob’s your uncle …
> We’ll go into the woods. And when we come back past this spot you jump
> out and say ‘Hands up!’ … You understand?"
CROW: [ As Fatty ] OK, so, the Robert I’m playing, is he motivated by avarice or desperate need?
TOM: [ As Jimmy ] Buh?
> "Of course!" said Fatty. "But hurry up! Don’t be gone long."
CROW: [ As Fatty ] It affects how intense the Roberting is! What directions it might go. So I’m imagining my Robert as someone who turned to crime after losing his savings in the collapse of the Knickerbocker Trust Company.
TOM: [ As Jimmy ] Uh … sure?
> "Leave that to us," said Jimmy Rabbit. He winked at his
> brother; and they started off together.
CROW: [ As Fatty ] Oh, I know, you pretend to have documents relating to the United Copper Company, that’ll really make this scene crackle!
> Fatty Raccoon did not see that wink.
MIKE: And with that, his life changed forever.
> If he had, he wouldn’t have
> waited there all the afternoon for those Rabbit brothers to return.
> They never came back at all.
CROW: Be cunning and full of tricks! Also have the author hate Fatty, that’ll carry you far.
> And they told everybody about the trick
> they had played on Fatty Raccoon.
TOM: ‘We told him we were gonna play with him, and then we didn’t! What a loser!’
> For a long time after that wherever
> Fatty went the forest-people called "Robber!" after him.
MIKE: Well, this has been a merry descent back into middle school.
> And Jasper
> Jay was the most annoying of all, because whenever he shouted
> "Robber!" he always laughed so loudly and so long.
TOM: You suppose Jay is the bird we’re supposed to try to be naked as?
> His hoarse screech
> echoed through the woods. And the worst of it was, everybody knew what
> he was laughing at.
CROW: This chapter’s making me understand why Fatty wants to eat everybody he knows.
[ To be continued … ]