The Melancholy Death of Filbert’s Pet Plant

Filbert

So for Halloween, I thought I should do something special. Namely, look back at my previous articles, find something I only touched upon briefly, and then look at it in more detail.

You may recall last year I looked at the five most fucked-up creatures from British kids’ telly; a showcase of the most horrible monstrosities on British TV since Bruce Forsythe. I only said a few words about the shows, though I did look at Rainbow in more detail later, but this time, I think I’ll look at Wizadora a bit more in detail, specifically the episode I mentioned in the article. Here’s what I said last time:

Wizadora concerned the adventures of the titular woman training to be a wizard, and yeah, if your show’s premise involves someone tampering with the dark forces of Satan, there’s going to be something offsetting about it. Most of Wiz’s friends had something wrong about them – there was Tatty Bogle, a scarecrow that looked like Ray Bolger in The Wizard of Oz crossed with an insane hobo, Phoebe, a telephone that bore more than a passing resemblance to those face banks, but the worst of the lot was fucking Filbert up there.

Yes, one of the supporting characters in Wizadora looked like one of Audrey II’s faeces. With his eternal smile, bulging eyes and odd movements, Filbert’s design seems more appropriate for a villain than a supporting character – he wouldn’t look out of place as an antagonist in Doctor Who, something that turns people into plants or something. What’s worse about him is that he’s more or less a retard, speaking in squeaks and some unexplainable language. He’s pretty much Lennie Small in puppet form, as evident here:

Filbert likes plants as much as Lennie loved small animals, it seems, as when his “pet plant” dies, Filbert plum acts like it’s the end of the world. He even asks Wizadora to use her magic to bring the plant back to life (she can’t, which makes her a pretty shitty wizard. I mean, how are you going to raise an army of zombies if you can’t even resurrect a stupid plant?) And he cries while smiling. That fucking smile. Maybe he’s sad about his plant dying because it didn’t outlive the entire human race like he wanted.

TLDR: Wizadora was about the eponymous wizard and a mutant onion called Filbert, and in one episode “Cheer Up Filbert”, Filbert’s pet plant died and they tried to cheer him up with a party. And that’s the episode I’m going to look at today. In fact, I’m going to do something different. I’m going to novelise the episode. It just feels right to do.

The Melancholy Death of Filbert’s Pet Plant

By The Terror of Tiny Toon

Adapted from the script by Don Arioli and Carolyne Cullum

The first thing Filbert noticed when he went out to the garden that day was that although it was sunny, there was still a bit of a chill. Surely if the sun was out, everything should be warm, shouldn’t it? In winter, Filbert didn’t see the sun, but then, he thought, what was lighting the world if there was no sun? Maybe when the sun is cold, it’s invisible? But the sun is visible now…

All thoughts of the sun dried up when Filbert saw his friend, Tatty Bogle the talking scarecrow, ready to do some gardening. Filbert was helping Tatty with the back garden, watering the plants. Every flower would drink on the life-giving fluid and Filbert would know when they were sated, for being a talking vegetable meant that he had a link with the plant world, and he could sense their auras.

That’s why he loved his Pet Plant so. When he saw it at a nursery not too long ago, he noticed it had a special aura unlike any other plants he had seen. It was an aura that was sweet to taste; something like a mixture of cinnamon and strawberry jam. Filbert’s friend – the wizard Wizadora – couldn’t buy the plant soon enough, and Filbert had spent many merry days with the plant by his side. They had gone to movies together, they had sat beside each other in the garden, and that’s why Filbert looked forward to watering the plants every morning.

Water the marigold. Water the daisies. The Pet Plant gets the lion’s share of the drink, as its satisfaction is the greatest of all.

But wait…

Fibert couldn’t feel the Pet Plant’s aura. No cinnamon, no jam, no sugar, no comfort, no anything. Usually it filled the garden, dominated it even, but the aura was nowhere to be found now. Perhaps Wizadora had moved the plant, thought Filbert. Then he tried to find the aura, and thought that he could sense a tingle of it in the air. He could taste the cinnamony-jammy spell. The Pet Plant was still here, it had to be here.

So Filbert said, in his own little language, ‘I want to water my Pet Plant.’

‘Good idea,’ said Tatty Bogle, and off Filbert trotted to where he usually kept his Pet Plant. Yes, that tingle of the plant was growing stronger – or was it? Filbert hummed a little song as he went along, if only to silence his doubts. Then he beheld his Pet Plant and screamed.

The aura was gone entirely. What was once a bright green plant was now a filthy orange husk, drooping to the side of its pot as if trying to escape from the soil. The Pet Plant’s firm branches were now limp, and its leaves had begun to fall off. No cinnamon or sugar could be felt from this scene; instead it felt like Filbert’s insides were being devoured.

‘Plant,’ was all Filbert could say, ‘Plant!’

Tatty ran to the scene, only to collapse to his knees when he saw the plant. As much as Filbert hoped he wouldn’t, Tatty said, ‘I’m afraid your little Pet Plant’s died, Filbert.’

Death. Filbert was young, but he knew about death. He thought that death only happened to bad people – when the evil witch died in fairy tales, she was gone forever and the heroes would live happily ever afterwards. Death wasn’t something that could happen to the Pet Plant. That special aura of his couldn’t be eradicated eternally. Not so young. Not when Filbert still needed him. Being a retarded vegetable creature wasn’t something that got you a lot of friends, and the Pet Plant was the only one who really understood him.

‘I think the cold’s killed it,’ said Tatty, ‘Young plants can’t stand the cold.’

Filbert wept, but the tears brought no comfort. They couldn’t fill the void that the Plant left. All he could say to Tatty on the matter was, ‘I’m sad.’

He burst into the house, just so he didn’t have to see that horrid corpse any more. Waiting in the house were some of the few friends Filbert did have. Phoebe the talking telephone. The Old Fish. Wizadora the wizard.

Wizard? A tiny idea popped up in Filbert’s brain.

‘What’s the matter, Filbert?’ asked Wizadora.

Filbert said that his Pet Plant had died. Then he added, ‘Can’t you magic it back to life?’

In his mind’s eye, he saw Wizadora nodding, with her saying in a soothing voice, ‘Oh, of course I can, Filbert. There, there, don’t cry.’ Then she would get out her wand and say a spell, ‘Wizardy hop, wizardly jump, wizardly wiggle, wizardly bump, wizardly husband, wizardly wife, bring Filbert’s Pet Plant back to life!’ Sparks would fly from the wand and onto the plant corpse. It would spring up again; its orange would make way for its former vibrant green, and its aura would fill the garden once more. Filbert would cuddle the Pet Plant – Phoebe would coo, ‘Look how happy he is now that his Pet Plant is alive again’ – and he would never take his eye off it again.

But none of that happened. All Wizadora said was, ‘I’m sorry, Filbert, but I can’t. There are some things that even wizards can’t do.’ No more aura. No more Plant. Though tears provided no release, Filbert continued to cry. ‘It’s okay to be sad, Filbert,’ said Wizadora, ‘We’re sad too.’

No, they weren’t sad.

There were party things out. Balloons and cakes and sweets.

They weren’t sad.

Sitting at the table was a clown. A clown with bright orange frizzy hair and a threadbare hobo jacket, not unlike the clothes Tatty Bogle wore, complemented by a big red spotty tie. Wiping away his tears, Filbert stared at the clown as it waved at him, smiling joyfully. ‘Hello, Filbert,’ said the clown in a soft voice. ‘Time for din-dins.’

The corpse of the Pet Plant was on the clown’s plate.

‘Yummy for my tummy,’ said the clown.

Filbert looked around for Wizadora, but she, Phoebe and the Old Fish had vanished.

As a distorted version of ‘Entry of the Gladiators’ played non-diagetically, the clown yanked the Plant out of its pot and ripped it in half with his teeth. He chewed the first half with his mouth open, all the while taking the soil apart to get at the Plant’s roots. Then he bit his teeth into the second half and violently tossed his head around with the plant in his mouth, looking like a dog tearing apart a piece of meat. After he had eaten most of the plant, he grabbed the soil and the fallen leaves, and threw them about the room like confetti.

Filbert could only stare as the clown neared him.

The clown smiled. ‘Your little Pet Plant is dead.’

The clown’s eyes turned red. Its teeth became fangs. Its tongue became that of an adder.

FOREVER!

It turn let loose a torrent of high-pitched laughter which made Filbert cover his eyes.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA

HAHAHAHAHA

Then it stopped.

Filbert uncovered his eyes and found himself in a lush green field. Though he saw no trees, the wind rustling in the leaves was the only sound he could hear. He looked up and saw that the sky was a pale, plain blue without a single cloud or bird. He looked down and saw several daisies at his feet.

Right in front of him was a gravestone.

Rest in Peace

Filbert’s Pet Plant

Filbert could indeed sense the body of his Pet Plant in the ground, and he kneeled. At least, he thought, now the Pet Plant is at peace, and has a lovely spot to be buried in.

The sky was then clotted with dark red clouds. The grave burst open, revealing a gigantic demon with crimson skin. Its head was nothing but a mouth full of fangs, framed by two black horns. It was obese, with a giant eyeball in its stomach, and a wizened human head lodged in its skin above the eyeball. Instead of legs, it had thick, writhing tentacles, covered in green slime. In its arm it held a black trident. Impaled on the trident’s prongs were a cute little squirrel, a Smurf, and a Teletubby’s severed head.

‘I am the Demon of Doom,’ said the demon, though it was the human head on its torso that was speaking. The huge mouth that made up its head only grinded its teeth. ‘And I have reaped the soul of your Pet Plant.’

Filbert shuddered, holding himself tightly.

‘Do you think he went to Heaven?’ sneered the Demon of Doom. When Filbert forced himself to nod, the Demon yelled, ‘Well, you’re wrong! He’s in Hell!’ The Demon conjured up a giant mirror almost as big as his entire body. In the mirror was what looked like Filbert’s Pet Plant, only more so. He now had eyeballs and a mouth, and said eyeballs had nails in them and said mouth was being tugged to its torso by rusty hooks. More hooks were holding the plant above a pit of giant snails with writhing tentacles instead of antenna, which were now crawling over the plant’s body. Filbert shuddered more, squeaking sadly.

‘Why are you sad?’ asked the Demon of Doom. ‘It was you that put him there! You put him in a vulnerable spot where he would die of the cold. You could have put him in a warmer spot, but you didn’t! I think you wanted him to die!’

Filbert turned around to see Walter White from Breaking Bad approach him, Walter’s face scrunched up in pure hatred. ‘You could have saved him, but you didn’t.’

‘When you die and go to Hell, Filbert,’ the Demon continued, ‘you’ll still never see your Pet Plant again. You’ll hear his screams, you’ll constantly be reminded that you killed him, but you’ll be all alone with your torment.’

Filbert ran to the giant mirror, as if he could just leap in and grab his Pet Plant, but then a shackle wrapped around his foot, pushing him away. A tall pale man, wearing a black robe and with nails in his head arranged in a neat position, appeared. ‘He is in his own Hell, child, just like you will be in yours.’

Filbert could do nothing but cry.

‘Aw, no tears, please!’ said Pinhead, ‘It’s a waste of good suffering.’

‘Still,’ said the Demon of Doom, ‘you’ve got to admit it’s pretty fucking hilarious that he’s crying over a stupid plant!’

Pinhead shrugged. ‘Yeah, I guess so,’ he said as he got out a hammer and hit Filbert between his eyes. Walter White then kicked Filbert in the face and pressed his foot down on Filbert’s nose. When Walter removed his foot, the clown reappeared and threw a custard pie at Filbert’s face. All the while, the Pet Plant’s screams grew even louder.

When Filbert removed the custard from his eyes, he saw an array of tiny devils crawl from the ground. They, the clown, Walter and Pinhead all formed a conga line, gleefully dancing around Filbert, laughing at his suffering. Distorted music filled the air, and the Demon of Doom clapped along with it. The mirror grew bigger, with the Pet Plant having a red-hot skewer driven into his skull. ‘Filbert!’ screamed the Pet Plant, ‘You did this to me! I’ll kill you! I’ll fucking kill you!’

‘Ooh!’ said the Demon of Doom, ‘So much for your loving Pet Plant, eh, Filbert? In fact, I have an idea!’ The Demon, the clown, Walter, Pinhead and the tiny little devils then shot lightning out of their palms, aiming at the mirror. The mirror exploded, revealing a transformed Pet Plant. He had become a muscular green monster, with moss-covered flesh peeling from his body, an exposed brain with screws driven in it and a mouth which stretched to his stomach. Worms and tentacle snails crawled all over his body. “Little Boy, You’re Going to Hell” from the South Park movie started to play as the Pet Plant roared at the sky.

Filbert tried to run, but he couldn’t. Filbert tried to scream, but he couldn’t.

‘Filbert!’ screamed the Pet Plant, ‘Look at what you have done to me!’

The Demon of Doom laughed. The clown laughed. Walter laughed. Pinhead laughed. All the tiny little devils laughed.

‘Filbert! If I’m in Hell then I’m taking you with me!’

Faced with this grotesque parody of his best friend, Filbert could only close his eyes and wait for Hell to take him. He tried to think about the good times he shared with his Plant, but could only think of how the blazing fires of Hell would feel, and what torments would be awaiting him, and how he had failed one of his true friends.

‘Filbert! It’s time for…cake.’

Huh?

Opening his eyes, Filbert found himself back home. No Demon of Doom, no monsters, just Wizadora, the Old Fish and Phoebe, along with lots of party stuff. As it turned out, the party wasn’t to celebrate the death of his Pet Plant after all, but to celebrate Filbert’s birthday. So they ate cake and opened presents and had lots of fun!

THE END

Yeah, that’s pretty much exactly how the episode went.

What do you mean ‘no, it’s not?’ What do you mean ‘they wouldn’t include Pinhead in a kid’s show?’ He was too in this episode, they even got Doug back, just look at the video.

Wow, you actually watched this episode? And you’re still saying it wasn’t like my novelisation? My novelisation is exactly like the episode! Just ask Frederick, the spider that lives in my brain.

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About jabberw

A writer of short stories and reviews, who likes to dabble in other creative media as well.
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