Series 1, Episode 5: Smuggler
OFFICER John Cleese
MAN Michael Palin
VICAR Eric Idle
(Scene : A Customs hall.)
Officer: Have you read this, sir? (holds up notice)
Man: No! Oh, yes, yes – yes.
Officer: Anything to declare?
Man: Yes … no! No! No! No! Nothing to declare, no, nothing in my suitcase no…
Officer: No watches, cameras, radio sets?
Man: Oh yes … four watches … no, no, no. No. One… one watch…No, no. Not even one watch. No, no watches at all. No, no watches at all. No precision watches, no.
Officer: Which country have you been visiting, sir?
Man: Switzerland … er … no … no … not Switzerland … er … not Switzerland, it began with S but it wasn’t Switzerland… oh what could it be? Terribly bad memory for names. What’s the name of that country where they don’t make watches at all?
Man: Spain! That’s it. Spain, yes, mm.
Officer: The label says ‘Zurich’, sir.
Man: Yes well … it was Spain then.
Officer: Zurich’s in Switzerland, sir.
Man: Switzerland, yes mm … mm … yes.
Officer: Switzerland – where they make the watches.
Man: Oh, nice shed you’ve got here.
Officer: Have you, er, got any Swiss currency, sir?
Man: No… just the watches… er just my watch, er, my watch on the currency… I’ve kept a watch of the currency, and l’ve watched it and I haven’t got any.
Officer: That come out a bit glib didn’t it? (an alarm clock goes off inside his case; the Man thumps it, unsuccessfully) Have you got an alarm clock in there, sir?
Man: No, no, heavens no, no… just vests. (he thumps the case and the alarm stops)
Officer: Sounded a bit like an alarm going off.
Man: Well it can’t have been… it must be a vest, er, going off.
Officer: Going Off
(Clocks start ticking and chiming in the case. The man desperately thumps the case.)
Man: All right, I confess, I’m a smuggler … This whole case is crammed full of Swiss watches and clocks. I’ve been purposely trying to deceive Her Majesty’s Customs and Excise. I’ve
been a bloody fool.
Officer: I don’t believe you, sir.
Man: It’s true. I’m, er, guilty of smuggling.
Officer: Don’t give me that, sir … you couldn’t smuggle a piece of greaseproof paper let alone a case full of watches.
Man: What do you mean! I’ve smuggled watches before, you know! I’ve smuggled bombs, cameras, microfilms, aircraft components, you name it – I’ve smuggled it.
Officer: Now come along please, you’re wasting our time… move along please.
Man: Look! (he opens his case to reveal it stuffed full of watches and clocks) Look – look at this.
Officer: Look, for all I know, sir, you could’ve bought these in London before you ever went to Switzerland.
Man: What? I wouldn’t buy two thousand clocks.
Officer: People do, now close your case move along please come on. Don’t waste our time, we’re out to catch the real smugglers. Come on.
Man: (shouting) I am a real smuggler. I’m a smuggler! Don’t you understand, I’m a smuggler, a lawbreaker… a smuggler. (he is removed struggling)
(A vicar is next.)
Vicar: Poor fellow. I think he needs help.
Officer: Right, cut the wisecracks, vicar. Get to the search room, and strip.
(Cut to chairman of discussion group.)