The State of New York vs. Gumby

GumbySetting: Stately courtroom with polished dark wood furniture. The judge is seated behind a large desk at stage left. To the left of the judge is an empty witness box. To the right of the judge sits a court stenographer. At center stage is a table where Gumby and the defense attorney sit. At stage right is a similar table where the prosecutor is sitting.

Judge: Ms. Delacroix, you may call your next witness.

Delacroix: The state calls Pokey

An orange clay horse slides up the aisle and into the witness box. Gumby, the defendant looks at him with indignation and shakes his head. His attorney puts his hand on Gumby’s green clay arm.

Bailiff: State your full name.

Pokey: Pokey…(looks at the floor)…Pokey Glickstein.

Bailiff: Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth?

Pokey: Sure, I mean, yes, yes I do.

Abigail Delacroix walks toward the witness box.

Delacroix: Mr. Glickstein, you go professionally as Pokey. Do you mind if I call you Pokey?

Pokey: (Shoots her a dirty look) Yes, I would prefer that.

Delacroix: You have a long working relationship with the defendant, do you not?

Pokey: Yes, you could say that. I appeared in the third episode of the series. The studio liked what they saw and added me as a regular. That was in 1955. We were together for the run of the show and have seen each other on the convention circuit often over the later years.

Delacroix: So you would consider yourself to be friends with the defendant?

Pokey: Yes, we have known each other both personally and professionally for much of the past sixty years.

Delacroix: During that time, have you ever seen the defendant, Gumby engage in illegal acts with any of the female actresses on the show?

Hirsch: Objection, your honor, the witness is not an expert in the law.

Delacroix: Rephrase, your honor? During the time that you worked with him, have you ever seen the defendant, engage in inappropriate acts with any of the female actresses on the show?

The judge nods and waves his hand to continue.

Pokey: Inappropriate? Gee, things were different back then. You gotta understand that we were pretty big stars and we were practically swimming in clay. I’d say some of those young actresses were pretty inappropriate.

Delacroix: (Turning to the judge) Permission to treat as hostile, your honor?

Judge: Granted.

Delacroix: Didn’t you tell Detective Blaine that you saw the defendant on numerous occasions provide drugs, particularly Quaaludes to several women in his trailer?

Pokey: Hey, I’m not proud of it, but ludes were pretty common back then. Doctors prescribed them like candy. We all used to let off steam after a long day of shooting. Claymation is a pretty tedious process and Gumby was in almost every scene. It was shoot a frame, then reset, shoot a frame, then reset, and all under hot lights. Try doing that when you’re made of clay.

Delacroix: The defendant is accused of luring these young women with promises of helping with their careers, and then drugging them and having sexual relations with them without consent. Have you ever witnessed the defendant taking any of these actions?

Pokey: Geez, I don’t know. I mean we would all help out a young starlet when we could. Admittedly, we also were pretty big players back then. I don’t recall any of them saying no, or complaining afterward for that matter.

Delacroix: No? Maybe I can refresh your memory. Regarding your co-star Goo, did you or did you not tell my investigator, and I quote, “That Goo was Gumby’s bitch. Sometimes he would do her between takes. It took the make-up people half the afternoon to get the green off of her.”?

Gumby glares at Pokey. Pokey looks downward.

Pokey: Yeah, I said it. But I didn’t hear her complain. She ended up getting to be a regular for a few seasons. You think a fat, blue mermaid is getting that gig on her own? Now because of this publicity, they’re doing her life story…with Lena Dunham in the lead.

Delacroix: Did you ever see the defendant provide drugs to the actress Goo?
Pokey hesitates in the witness box.

Delacroix: Your honor?

Judge: The witness is directed to answer the question.

Pokey: (sheepishly) Yes, yes I have.

Delacroix: (Turns toward the jury) No further questions at this time, your honor.
Judge: Mr. Hirsch, do you wish to cross-examine?

Hirsch: Oh, I most certainly do, your honor. Mr. Glickstein, did you and my client have an altercation in a nightclub called The Potter’s Wheel…

Delacroix: Objection! Your honor, I fail to see the relevance here.

Hirsch turns toward the judge.

Hirsch: The prosecution brought up the subject of friendship, your honor.

Judge: You opened the door, counselor. Overruled.

Delacroix sits in her seat.

Hirsch: (Turning back toward the witness box) The altercation, Mr. Glickstein?

Pokey: It was nothing…a minor disagreement.

Hirsch: Minor? According to the police report, you threatened my client with a broken bottle. This is after several punches were thrown.

Pokey: We were drunk. It happens. Friends have arguments.

Hirsch: Argument? So it was more than a “minor” disagreement? You were both arrested were you not?

Pokey: No charges were filed.

Hirsch: Do you recall what the argument was about?

Pokey: (Squirming in his seat) It was about residuals from the show. I felt that I deserved a bigger share.

Hirsch: And you eventually filed suit against my client?

Pokey: That was the lawyers. It was strictly business. It had nothing to do with our friendship.

Hirsch: About this friendship, you said in an interview in Clay Nation that you also fought frequently on the set of my client’s show.

Pokey: Our show.

Hirsch: You called my client a Hummel and threatened to “bake his ass”?

Pokey: All right. Yes, we argued on the set. In the early episodes, Gumby used to ride me. I complained to the writers but he wouldn’t let them change the scripts.

Hirsch: I am confused. You appear to be a horse. Why would it be inappropriate for my client to ride you?

Pokey: Are you kidding me? He’s frictionless. We all are. That’s how Claymation works.

Hirsch: So you are saying that by being frictionless, my client required no effort or energy to move so there was no need to ride a horse?

Pokey: Exactly.

Hirsch: But doesn’t that also mean that by being frictionless yourself, there was no added effort to carry a rider, as a matter of fact, no effort or energy at all?

Pokey: (Staring at Hirsch) Can’t you see, it wasn’t about physics, it was about dignity. I didn’t get out from under him until I bought the jeep, and still I had to drive him around everywhere.

Hirsch: That is some friendship.

Delacroix: Objection!

Judge: Watch yourself, Mr. Hirsch. Sustained, jury will disregard the last statement.

Hirsch: Back to The Potter’s Wheel…this is a clay bar, is it not?

Delacroix: (Jumps to her feet) Your honor, I object to that characterization.

Judge: We’ll have none of that in my courtroom, Mr. Hirsch. Tread lightly.

Hirsch: My apologies your honor. Allow me to rephrase. While you were a regular at The Potter’s Wheel, was there a significant clay clientele?

Pokey: Sure, I suppose.

Hirsch: And many clay’s including yourself, identify as “omnisexual”?

Pokey: (Shaking his head and blows out a breath) Yes, I consider myself to be omnisexual, but in all that time, I only saw Gumby with females, and not just clays, either.

Hirsch: But my understanding is that many clays are gender non-specific.

Pokey: They still need to pick a side to have sex, and Gumby was strictly into female parts.

Hirsch: And you’ve witnessed him in this capacity?

Pokey: Dozens of times. He got more clay that anyone.

Hirsch: And he drugged them to get this clay?

Pokey: Are you kidding? They’d line up for it.

Hirsch: (Turning toward the jury box) He got more clay than anyone. One more question, Mr. Glickstein, what did the prosecution offer you in exchange for your testimony today?

Pokey: I don’t understand.

Hirsch: Weren’t you looking at charges in this matter along with my client?

Pokey: Yeah, but I didn’t do anything.

Hirsch: Still, the State declined to bring charges against you in exchange for your testimony. Is this true?

Pokey: I suppose, but I still did nothing wrong.

Hirsch: (Turns to the jury) I believe that we have heard all that we need to from this witness, your honor.

Judge: Redirect, Ms. Delacroix?

Delacroix: (Sighs) Not at this time.

Judge: The witness is excused.

Pokey exit the witness box and slides out of the courtroom avoiding eye contact with Gumby. Gumby is glares at him the entire time.

Judge: We will recess at this time for lunch. We will reconvene at two o’clock. (Bangs his gavel)

Bailiff: All rise!

Everyone stands as the judge leaves and then begin milling out of the courtroom. Gumby shakes his lawyer’s hand and heads out as well. Hirsch walks across the aisle and stands by Delacroix. She is putting her papers into her briefcase.

Hirsch: Can I interest you in lunch Abby? It seems we have some things to talk about.

Delacroix: Only if you promise not to gloat, Murray. I knew putting Pokey on the stand was a long shot, but it will get us the press and momentum we need to get a class action together from the other forty accusers. Even if we don’t, your bastard client will get murdered in civil court.

Hirsch: Fortunately, that’s not my problem. I only keep the hoi polloi out of jail. Once they get to civil court, they no longer can afford me.

Delacroix: Well, down here in the trenches, even getting a probation deal is a win for us.

Hirsch: We could wait for a verdict.

Delacroix: You know you won’t take that chance. They may hate my witness, but they hate your client almost as much.

Hirsch: It was a good strategy on your part, playing the long game. As much as I enjoy shredding a star witness, I knew you had already won. How about the Dim Sum place on 45th?

Delacroix: I was hoping for The Potter’s Wheel, but as long as you’re paying…

They head toward the exit

© Copyright 2015 – Robert O’Connell. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Robert O’Connell with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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