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The (Un)Welcoming Return Of The Brighton Express
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The (Un)Welcoming Return Of The Brighton Express
A monologue I wrote for Playwriting class based on a post I made on NYC Transit Forums that I converted to a screenplay. A year after telling the history of the New York City Subway to Felicia, Shirley explains why he hates a certain train service that runs on their line.
I am an aspiring author and writer from New York who is inspired from television shows, movies, books, etc.
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The (Un)Welcoming Return Of The Brighton Express
EXT. KINGS HIGHWAY STATION - DAY
A Q train arrives at the temporary construction platform.
SUPER: "THE (UN)WELCOMING RETURN OF THE BRIGHTON EXPRESS"
INT. MOVING Q TRAIN - SAME
SHIRLEY VASQUEZ (22 skinny, half-Asian, half-Latino railfan) and his girlfriend FELICIA ORTIZ (28, tall, impatient, pale and fit) sit at a bench together as Felicia's 2-1/2-year-old daughter ERIKA plays with toys in her stroller next to them.
Felicia looks out the window as the train skips Avenue M and sees a nearly completed platform with windscreen and canopy. She grins and whispers into Shirley's ear. He looks unhappy.
SHIRLEY: I don't care the B train will start operating express again here on the Brighton Line in a month. It is one of the systemís lousiest lines with low scheduled frequency and lots of bunching and gaps between trains.
SERIES OF SHOTS
-- Shirley at the West 4th Street platform looking furious.
-- Him sitting on a B train held in the tunnel. He looks out the adjacent window, sees a D train passing by and is upset.
-- Him sitting on the train held in the tunnels on its other side. He looks out the adjacent window as a C train goes by.
-- Him running out of the 59th Street-Columbus Circle stop.
SHIRLEY (V.O.): The B has 8-8:15 minute intervals at rush hour and often gets held at the Manhattan Bridge's junction for around 3-4 minutes to let the D go first and another 5-6 minutes right before curving into 59th Street to let the damn C proceed. This is why I was often late in my two years at New York Institute of Technology.
-- A Manhattan-bound B train of R68s skipping Avenue H.
-- Shirley sits on a B train sweating and fans his face with his hand. Other people in that car sweat and fan themselves.
-- Him on a Q train looking out the motorman cab's door and gets angry after he spots a B train idling in front of them.
SHIRLEY (V.O. CONT'D): The cars the B uses, known as R68s and R68As, were once great, but now really suck. They are fat looking, slow, have crappy air-conditioning and announcements and their average breakdown rate fell from system's best to second worst in six years. I have been late to class like nine times since May because the B train ahead of the Q I was on broke down.
-- A Brooklyn-bound C train of R32s entering 14th Street.
-- A southbound Q train of R160Bs arriving at 7th Avenue.
-- A Brooklyn-bound Q train of R160Bs bypassing 28th Street.
-- Shirley gets on a Q train at 14th Street-Union Square and other riders get in or exit. He sits down and looks relaxed.
-- An Astoria-bound Q train of R160Bs leaving Broadway.
-- A Queens-bound N train of R160Bs leaving 23rd Street.
SHIRLEY (V.O. CONT'D): That's why unless my favorite cars, the sexy R32s that currently run on the C train, are moved to the B, I will stick with the Q to get to and from Baruch College due to its more frequent service, 6 minute interval between trains during rush hour and better R160 cars, which run faster, have far nicer air-conditioning and announcements, and break down less than the Bís cars, but it also has suffered from irregular runs after being extended to Queens and the N became a full time Broadway Local.
-- Shirley sitting on the B train as it leaves Kings Highway with a Q train running in the same direction doing the same. He looks out the adjacent window as the Q moves quicker than his train. He looks annoyed before the train slows down when it reaches Avenue M. It soon disappears from Shirley's view.
SHIRLEY (V.O. CONT'D): Each time I went to school in early 2009, I watched my fat B train and a high-tech Q leave an express stop simultaneously. The Q goes quicker, leaving the B behind before it gets to the next local stop. That was so hilarious and will occur when the B starts to run express again always.
-- A northbound B train of R68s bypassing Parkside Avenue.
-- A northbound 6 train of R142As arriving at Canal Street.
SHIRLEY (V.O. CONT'D): Besides based on the schedules, the express run here only saves like 4 to 6 minutes. Only the Q has direct access to the 6 till the connection between Broadway-Lafayette Street and Bleecker Street opens up and I have no clue when that will happen.
BACK TO SCENE
The train keeps moving as Felicia looks confused at Shirley. He takes three sheets of paper out of his bag and shows them to her when the train arrives at the Newkirk Avenue station.
AUTOMATED ANNOUNCEMENT (V.O.): This is Newkirk Avenue. Transfer is available to the B train.
SHIRLEY: I have charts from the Straphangers Campaign rating the subway services based on their performances in six categories for their annual report card. Look at it and you will know why the Q's much better than the B.
Felicia takes the papers while the train slowly stops.
EXT. NECK ROAD STATION - DAY
A Manhattan-bound Q train of R160Bs leaves the station.
SUPER: THE CREDITS
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© 2011 Winson Thai
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