(even if you aren't vegan)


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Have you ever wanted to visit the City of Midway? Ever considered shacking up in the wonderful metropolis? Well, this video will help you assimilate into the real Midway experience!


{Open to an old movie countdown, in black in white, from 8 to 1. Each frame is a little ruined and spotty, but the film plays nonetheless. As soon as the screen goes black, cheery music plays, as a sepia-toned scene of the streets of Midway is shown. Zoom in to an apartment complex, in which a man is sleeping. The logo of a preposterous tourism agency with the words MIDWAY TOURISM BOARD imposed around the logo.}

VOICEOVER: Hello there! Welcome to the City of Midway. The Midway Tourism Board and its associates in conjunction with Rosenberg Industries would like to welcome you to Living Life...The Midway Way!

{Within the apartment, which is clearly a studio apartment, a man is just now awakening from his good night's sleep. For the typical human, his features look a tad exaggerated, similar to a Disney cartoon.}

VOICEOVER: This is Just Jim. Just Jim is like you and me, and every other citizen in Midway City. He is part of the foundation that keeps this city going strong today. We would be nowhere without Just Jim.

JIM: Ah, another beautiful day in my home city!

VOICEOVER: Jim was a smart cookie when he graduated high school, and instead of following his dirty avant-garde hippie friends and moving out to pastoral colleges to get liberal arts educations, Jim stayed close to where he was born and raised and got a decent education at a local business college! Take that, you hippies!

{Jim arises from his bed and struts over to his dresser, picking out a few choice business clothes. He heads into the bathroom and begins his daily routine.}

VOICEOVER: Jim has just awoken after a well-deserved weekend of rest and relaxation...

{Cut to a shot of Jim partying hardy in the club while horrendous rap music plays and many flashy lights shine. Cut back.}

VOICEOVER: And is ready to begin his work week again!

{Jim emerges from the shower and picks up his toothbrush, which bears the Rosenberg logo on it. He reaches for his toothpaste, which also bears the logo on it, and then starts to brush his teeth.}

JIM: It's a good thing I learned about that nifty hangover cure in undergrad school, or I'd be in for a world of pain today!

VOICEOVER: Little does Jim know that he still is!

{Jim emerges from the bathroom in his business attire.}

JIM: {Looking skyward} I, uh...what?

{Jim is picked up by a giant hand and lifted into the next scene; His workplace.}

VOICEOVER: Jim works a steady pace at a 9-5 with Rosenberg Industries, as their senior accountant.

JIM: It pays to kill your superiors until you've climbed to the top, kids!

{Jim gives an unconvincing wink to the camera. Rosenberg's fake drone and Stephanie enter his office.}

VOICEOVER: Look! Here comes the main man himself, James Rosenberg!

ROSENBERG: Jim, I'm glad you could join us today. How was your weekend?

JIM: It'll never compare to the joy I take from working here, sir!

VOICEOVER: Kiss-ass.

JIM: {To Voiceover} Quiet, you!

STEPHANIE: Quiet whom?

JIM: Uh...

ROSENBERG: Whatever the case, I have a special assignment for you today.

JIM: More prestigious than counting every dollar you make?

ROSENBERG: Quite, for you see, Jim, I've reason to believe that there are those among my many investors who are failing to repay in kind, and are having misgivings about choosing Rosenberg for a better life. To that effect, I've decided that I need to get eyes and ears wherever I can help it to ensure that everyone is giving their all for the hard, hard work I've put in for them. This is your calling, Jim.

VOICE: Well, will you look at that! Mr. Rosenberg himself has just asked Jim to go run his errands!

JIM: Wow, really? You mean like, go out to meet all of your investors and make sure they still want to invest in the company?

ROSENBERG: Not just that, I want you to be the man who's selling the company. Kind of like the new face of Rosenberg Industries.

JIM: Oh, sir, I'd be honored!

ROSENBERG: Perfect! Stephanie will brief you on everything and then you'll be right off to do your work! This may take you all week, so don't worry about coming into the office, just get through as many of the investors as you can each day.

{Jim and Stephanie exit the office room. As soon as the door closes, the drone powers down.}

VOICEOVER: I was wondering when Rosenberg would get that thing fixed!

{Cut to Jim and Stephanie.}

STEPHANIE: Very well, you have any number of the eighteen investors to get through in the next week. They're scattered amongst the various sectors of town, and make sure you show them this {flashes badge} Rosenberg Industries badge when you arrive.

JIM: Perfect! Is that all?

STEPHANIE: Sort of. We've also gotten you a new outfit to complement the look and solidify your position in the company. Think of it as a gift from us to you for the work you've put in.

{Stephanie brings him to a display case which has a finely crafted black suit with blue accents on display. The glass pane covering it slides open.}

JIM: Oh, wow! I'll only wear it to drive to church on Sundays!

VOICEOVER: Jim is also a good Catholic, that's important here.

STEPHANIE: No no no, we insist. Wear it out to your meetings! It's a statement of the company that we want you to represent.

JIM: Well, when you put it that way, I think I've gotta try it on right now if I wanna make a good impression at my first stop!

{Stephanie calls some robots to give Jim the suit and take him off to try it on. Stephanie heads into the office and meets with the real Rosenberg.}

ROSENBERG: Has he taken the bait?

STEPHANIE: Unfortunately. It's a shame, Jim was probably our best employee.

ROSENBERG: Now, now. There's as good a chance as any that he'll survive these business meetings.

STEPHANIE: {Visibly annoyed} Of course, you do know everything.

ROSENBERG: What? A little anal retentive today, aren't we?

STEPHANIE: Do you really think it's fair to make an employee masquerade as you and then send him to your former investors looking to collect the money they owe? He'll get killed if he gets near some of these people!

ROSENBERG: I wouldn't send Jim off on this job if I didn't have the utmost faith in his survivability, Stephanie, and you know that.

STEPHANIE: Very well, then. But when you've lost your most precious accountant of seven years don't come crying to me.

ROSENBERG: You'd find yourself hard-pressed to shed tears in a giant cryogenic holding cell.

STEPHANIE: At least you're still in chipper spirits.

ROSENBERG: And you should be, too! We should all be so happy for Jim! He's doing us a great service and he should definitely expect a warm welcome and a modest reward for even partially completing the task.

VOICEOVER: Well, what do you know! It looks like Jim was hand-picked by Rosenberg specifically for this task. But will this life-or-death impersonation job be the end of Just Jim?

{Cut to Jim, who's down to his skivvies being fitted by the Robots.}

JIM: What was that?

VOICEOVER: Oh, uh, I said "Will this job be the," uh, "bend of Just Jim?"

JIM: What does that even mean?

VOICEOVER: I think it's time we moved onto the job, then.

{Cut to the exterior of Rosenberg Industries. Jim emerges in the suit and proceeds to his car, driving off into the cityscape.}

VOICEOVER: Normally the morning commute isn't so bad for Jim, as he lives in the Regulatory District of the town, as his job allows him to, but now he's been tasked to go to the three other Districts that make up Midway; The traffic can be less than unforgiving in these areas.

{Jim is driving along when a car from the opposite lane instantly doubles back and speeds past him, almost crashing right into him.}

JIM: Boy, golly! I almost got hit there!

{Jim adjusts his mirror, and when he looks back out, his entire surroundings have changed and he's now the one going sideways through the street. Many horns are blaring at him.}

JIM: I almost forgot what it's like to live in the other sectors of town.

VOICEOVER: Oh, boy, do you have a lot to learn Jim!

JIM: Hey! I thought we were doing it for the viewers!

VOICEOVER: Consider it a learning experience for everybody.

{Jim is now on top of a pile of cars.}

JIM: You know, I'm feeling more like biking or walking today.

VOICEOVER: Jim; The smart commuter.

{Jim carefully gets out of the car and pulls his bike out of the trunk. He proceeds to slide down the pile-up and bikes into the next district. The scenery has doubled over, and the city looks more normal over the futuristic core of the Regulatory District.}

VOICEOER: Ah, this must be the Business District, then. Home to Midway's most persuasive and enduring entrepreneurs and business owners.

JIM: Right, then, I'm looking for a Mr. Andre DuTempi. Now, what kind of a business would he own?

{Jim eyes some of the businesses, which get progressively more Italian as he rides along.}

JIM: That's weird, there's two of the same exact pasta restaurant right across the street from each other.

{As soon as he bikes past it, two fat Italian men in suits pop out of them and begin fighting in the streets.}

VOICEOVER: The Russos and The Russos just never got along, really.

JIM: This is weird, I swear I've been in the Business District before and I've never seen things so, uh...cultural before.

VOICEOVER: Jim's never left Midway before.

JIM: Does that really matter?

VOICEOVER: No, every good citizen would foster his pride in his city by putting his time and resources into it!

JIM: I just wonder how I missed this entire Italian part of the District, is all.

VOICEOVER: Things can change, friend! You don't fear the change of seasons, do you?

JIM: Well, I'm not a big fan of shoveling snow...

{Jim thinks too long and veers off course. He slams into the brick wall of a building, only to realize he's made it to his destination. The sign reads "DuTempi's" on it, and fills it's own lot. All of the people on the street are staring at Jim.}

JIM: Oh, uh, I've got an appointment in here now. Uh...

{Jim retreats into the building in a panic. Cut to the interior of the building, which betrays its dimensions a bit, to the point where it's almost disorienting. One half of the store is imported goods that appear almost as spoils of war, and the other half is a borderline-black market setup with weaponry and sundries lining the walls.}

JIM: Uh...

VOICEOVER: Jim's entered a cultural hotspot in the Business District! Perfect! Midway has always been a beacon of diversity in the eyes of it's citizens.

{Jim is approached by two burly Italian men in suits with contrasting patterns to his; Red with black accents.}

JIM: I, uh, I think I've come upon the wrong business.

???????: {New Yorker accent} On the contrary, you've managed to finally show your face in the right place, Rosenberg.

{A short Italian man stands out among the crowd, carrying a cane and walking with an elegant stride, despite the hobble in his step due to his crippled leg.}

DUTEMPI: Nice to see your face, you big lug, glad I'm finally worthy of your attention!

JIM: Me? Oh, no, I'm no-

DUTEMPI: But that badge on your lapel, is that not the crown symbol of Rosenberg Industries?

{Jim inspects the badge.}

JIM: I suppose it is...

DUTEMPI: Well, suppose I ain't in the mood for supposing! You Rosenberg or not?

JIM: Uh...

VOICEOVER: Well, this is quite a pickle Jim's gotten himself into here! It seems he's upset some of the locals.

JIM: {To the Voiceover} Upset the locals? I've hardly done anything! Don't pin the blame on me like that!

DUTEMPI: I ain't pinning no blame on you, calm down, Rosenberg.

JIM: I'm no-

DUTEMPI: Look. I ain't in no mood to argue with the leading authority of the town. I figure you want your cut of the protection money.

JIM: Protection...?

DUTEMPI: Of course, you know we offer "protection" from the others in the area. That's how we get a foothold over most businesses, after all.

JIM: Wait...

DUTEMPI: Then after we've established that foothold, we slowly work our way into the business until we're able to take it over completely.

JIM: But what happens if someone doesn't pay protection?

DUTEMPI: Well, then we ice 'em and take their spot over. It's a win-win for us!

VOICEOVER: Wow, how enduring. Jim's already adapting to the vibrant Italian-American community in the Business District!

JIM: Hardly call it adapting...

{DuTempi becomes visibly angered.}

DUTEMPI: We don't call it nothing. And you don't get in our way so long as we give you 40% of the profits, remember?

JIM: Uh...yeah...

DUTEMPI: Very well, then. Though, there is one thing you can help me with.

JIM: {Under his breath} Oh god don't make me kill a man...

DUTEMPI: My daughter has recently come off of a rather, hm...bad relationship.

JIM: You mean she was dumped?

DUTEMPI: Sort of. You see, he dumped her because we dumped him. Turns out he was a little rat for a rival family. We made ratatouille out of him, and now my little girl's all down in the dumps.

JIM: Are you saying you want me to...hook your daughter up with somebody?

DUTEMPI: Nobody too big, just somebody with a good smile that has a few connections. Hopefully he can shut her up with his money and we can get some more connections.

JIM: Uh, I'll talk to some people. I know a few senators with sons that they're just begging to get rid of.

DUTEMPI: I feel you, having an heir to your family business is pretty daunting, especially when you're a little paranoid of 'em. That's why you cut your son off, right?

JIM: Did I?

{DuTempi gives him a weird look.}

JIM: {Panicking} Oh, oh! I mean, yeah, yeah I did.

{Jim takes a relaxed stance on a nearby gun rack. He leans on it wrong, causing it to fall over.

JIM: Oh. Uh...

{DuTempi breaks out in laughter.}

DUTEMPI: I knew I liked you, Rosie. Glad we're finally deemed worthy enough for you to visit us in person. Stay off your feet and get back to me with that potential connection, we'll wire you the money by sunset.

JIM: Uh...Wonderful! I've gotta get going then, plenty of business appointments today.

DUTEMPI: Wouldn't expect anything else from the most powerful man in Midway.

{Jim backs out of the shop cautiously and gives a weak smile to DuTempi before slowly leaving out the door, and then running off as fast as he can when he's out of earshot.}

VOICEOVER: Well, poor Jim's not taking too well to the diversity of Midway, apparently.

{Cut to Jim, who's running down the street.}

JIM: Diversity!?! There's obviously a mafia here! What would Rosenberg do with a full on mob?

VOICEOVER: Rosenberg wouldn't leave just a mafia here, Jim. Clearly he wants them around.

JIM: I'm not so sure I want to do this job anymore...

{Jim crashes into into a billboard for Rosenberg Industries. He steps back and notices that all of the billboards are for Rosenberg Industries.}

JIM: I uh, I suppose I don't have a choice, do I?

{Jim sulks and carries on the road.}

VOICEOVER: After having a change of heart, it appears that our Just Jim is going to finish his job after all! Like a good hard-working citizen would.

{Jim begins walking along the road, attempting to hitchhike. Eventually a truck catches up to him and pulls over.}

TRUCK DRIVER: Where you headed?

{Jim pulls out a piece of paper.}

JIM: I've got an appointment with a Mr. Sound on the other side of the city. Can you get me there?

TRUCK DRIVER: 'Spose I can.

{The truck driver spits out the window. He gives a look at Jim, who reciprocates and spits himself.}

VOICEOVER: Well, now look at that! Jim's fitting right into the blue collar culture.

{Jim looks skyward, giving a scowl. The truck driver looks upward, curious at what Jim's focused on.}

JIM: {Catching himself in his own act} Oh, right. Let's go then!

{Jim climbs in the truck and is brought into the inner city. He hands the truck driver a $10 bill before hopping out.}

JIM: Don't go and spend that all in one place, you hear?

{Jim lets out a weak chuckle. The driver clenches the money tight in his fist. Jim is taken back, and closes the door to let him on his way.}

VOICEOVER: Ah, the inner city! A culture founded on closely-knit urbanites that embodies community.

{The image before Jim is shown to be mostly dilapidated buildings and sirens ablaze almost nonstop.}

JIM: So, uh, I'm looking for a Youth Center, right?

{Jim pulls out the instructions and almost passes by what is arguably the most pristine building in the area, a large complex that is painted greys, blues, and whites.}

JIM: Wow, this betrays the setting a little.

VOICEOVER: Nothing but the best in Midway! We care about our community!

{The Rosenberg Industries logo pops up in the bottom right corner of the screen and lingers for a second.}

JIM: Alright, I'm a lot more confident about this business!

{Jim walks inside. The interior doesn't fail to break the illusion, as it is as immaculate as the outside. Plenty of children are milling about, all dressed in white outfits.}

JIM: Oh, wow! This is a lot more legitimate than I thought it would be.

{Jim approaches the counter and rings a bell. A woman rolls out of the room still in her chair, and then stands up to affirmatively greet Jim.}

SECRETARY: Hello, and welcome to the Sound Center.

JIM: Hello! I'm here on behalf of Rosenberg Industries. {Jim flashes the badge} I'm senior accountant and I've been sent to make sure that you're still following up with your "payments."

{The Secretary pulls out a phone and dials a few buttons.}

SECRETARY: Let me just make sure Mr. Sound isn't busy, and we'll make sure we get you straight to him to discuss the matter!

JIM: Excellent!

{Jim turns around, and takes in the atmosphere. The children all bear blank expressions, and don't seem to be intent on doing much of anything but milling about. Those that are seated seem to be listening to music, the whole lot of them.}

JIM: ...These children sure are well-behaved.

SECRETARY: {Getting off the other line} Yes, the Sound Institute strives to ensure that children in the community are the best and brightest.

JIM: That's heartwarming, it really is.

SECRETARY: Well, Mr. Sound said he had an appointment that never did show, so he's willing to take you now if you would like.

{Jim acknowledges this, nods his head, and takes off in the direction of the office.}

VOICEOVER: Hopefully Jim doesn't give the wrong impression to Mr. Sound!

{Jim trolls the hallway, as he observes the various rooms. He notices that the children in the rooms are seated and all viewing screens. He only catches glimpses of the screens, which portray various propaganda.}

JIM: What the...

{Jim turns a corner and observes a number of rooms that seem to be forcing the kids into a particular posture and motion.}

JIM: What is going on here?

VOICEOVER: Only the best in Midway's conversion!

JIM: Conversion!?!

{There is but one room that contains teenagers. They wear white suits as opposed to the children's regular clothing. They appear to be in some sort of open circle preaching session. They all possess the same tame haircuts and expressions.}

JIM: Oh god this is a cult, isn't it?

{Jim finds the office he's looking for, and knocks.}

?????: Oh, stop with that racket! It's far too loud! I thought I told you kids t-

{An old man, dressed in a white suit himself with long white hair answers the door. He notices it's Jim, and tries to reel it back in.}

?????: Ah, our client from Rosenberg Industries! Please, come in.

{He bows respectfully as Jim enters. The room is almost entirely white, with the other colors of the building being scarce but accentuate. The man sits down in his chair and adjust his hearing aids.}

?????: Stephen Sound, head of the Sound Center for Child Growth and Development. I understand you're here about that money I owe Rosenberg?

JIM: Y-yeah...

SOUND: Is something the matter?

JIM: Uh, do you mind my asking what you're doing with these kids here?

SOUND: Well, I suppose it's fair to give you a rundown of the Center and it's history. Although, if you were a good guest, you'd have done your research beforehand.

VOICEOVER: Research never was Jim's strong point.

{Jim becomes a little aggravated when he hears that. Sound stands up and begins pacing.}

SOUND: You see, in an almost cruel sense of irony, I was born deaf. My poor parents tried their hardest to get rid of the ailment. To my misfortune, they succeeded, and my hearing became incredibly sharp - almost too sharp. I've had problems hearing too much too loudly since I was but a babe, and I decided that the best way to usher in an era of silence would be to do it myself. So I funded and built this soundproof center to educate kids on being well-behaved and prepare them for the new world, a world of what I hope to be silence.

{Jim mouths through the monologue and pieces it all together.}

JIM: So, this is like a cult or-

{Sound turns around in anger.}

SOUND: I'll have you know that only a degenerate would refer to our venture as a "cult!" We're the foremost in youth centers the world over! We have the highest approval ratings!

JIM: Well, does that have anything to do with the fact that you brainwash the people who approve of you?

{Sound walks over to Jim and picks him up out of the seat.}

SOUND: I can't believe I even wasted battery life on my precious hearing aids to listen to this dreck. Get out of my office - tell Rosenberg that after this he shan't expect a dime from me.

{Jim is escorted out without relatively any harm. After he is brought to the sidewalk by the security, he attempts to get a word in edgewise, but they punch him in the stomach and return back inside.}

VOICEOVER: Oh, no! Jim's succumbed to his emotions. His feeble, feeble, emotions.

JIM: {In obvious pain} Can it! I'm just trying to make sure I can make proper sense of this town! It's like I don't even live here anymore...

VOICEOVER: Well, we all know that you should never succumb to your emotions in the world of business. That's the Rosenberg Way.

JIM: Gee, then I think I'm beginning to question the Rosenberg Way then.

VOICEOVER: Oh? Well then that's a shame, we were just starting to enjoy you, you were just barely getting there, Jim.

JIM: What?

{The camera goes to static and after a while, in which the sounds of an obvious struggle can be heard, the Rosenberg Industries logo appears onscreen.}

VOICEOVER: Poor Jim, in the end I suppose he wasn't as Just as he truly claimed to be. But worry not!

{A cheap 50's-era slide of a man in uniform pointing at the viewer appears onscreen.}

VOICEOVER: YOU can be the exemplary citizen of Midway! YOU can conform and make no difference! YOU can bring Midway back to it's former glory! And if YOU do, you're guaranteed to not end up like our friend Jim...

{Cut to a slide of what appears to be a monster in Jim's old suit that easily betrays the image, clearly not representative of Jim.}

VOICEOVER: So please, when you're looking to choose a bright and happy future, to become part of the most bustling city in the world, choose Midway!

{The slide changes again to a slide with various credits and the logos of the companies represented. Jim's name is clearly crossed out.}

VOICEOVER: Thank you for watching, thanks to our sponsors. Remember;Live Life, The Rosenberg Wa-Er, I mean the Midway Way!

{Fade to black. Open back up to Jim, clearly beaten and bruised, running through the outskirts of town.}

JIM: I can't believe any of the copious amounts of crap that have gone on today.

{Jim stops for a second to catch his breath and pulls out the list of investors.}

JIM: If I can't go back to Rosenberg, then maybe one of these people can help me...

{Jim notices a name at the bottom of the list.}

JIM: Byzantium...? Like, the empire?

{Jim begins walking forward, but he collides with something.}

?????????: Well, well well.

{Jim looks up to acknowledge a figure mostly obscured by darkness. It's easy to tell that he's in a full suit from the silhouette.}

JIM: Wha? Who are-

{The figure pulls out a badge that shines strong in the dark. It's platinum with blue and yellow accents, with the eagle crest of Byzantium emblazoned on it.}

?????????: I've heard you're interested in our cause. I considered it an utmost priority to find you, Jim.

{He helps Jim up. He is revealed to be a chiseled African-American man in a blue blazer with black pants and white shirt.}

?????????: Please, call me Recruiter.

JIM: No first or last name, or...

RECRUITER: Just Recruiter.

JIM: Oh. Uh, I'm not so sure this was the right idea.

RECRUITER: Please. Let my men at least give you a ride home.

{A Byzantium-accented limo pulls up and the driver opens the door. Jim, a little fascinated, allows himself in.}

JIM: Okay, okay. I may be willing to talk. I assume you're all about learning about the other investors?

RECRUITER: Far from it. We've got plenty of eyes and ears for that. We just want to talk.

{Jim observes his surroundings.}

JIM: ...Well, I guess I can try to fit in, if not get used to it.

{Recruiter steps into the limo and the door closes as it takes off into the darkness.}