Everyone agreed the new "Where's Taraji?" puzzle game wasn't very challenging.


Everyone agreed the new "Where's Taraji?" puzzle game wasn't very challenging.

HIDDEN FIGURES

The Abridged Script

FADE IN:

INT. HAMPTON, VIRGINIA - 1961

TARAJI P. HENSON, OCTAVIA SPENCER, and JANELLE MONÁE are on their way to work when their car breaks down.

A WHITE COP approaches.

WHITE COP

Ah, I see you’ve already pulled over in anticipation. What are you coloreds up to?

TARAJI P. HENSON

We work for NASA. I’m a mathematical genius despite being a woman and black.

JANELLE MONÁE

And I’m a brilliant engineer despite also being a woman and also black.

OCTAVIA SPENCER

And I’m contractually obligated to be in every movie dealing with old timey racism despite being an Oscar Winner who is a black female as well as being black and a female.

WHITE COP

Whoa wait a second! You're telling me women-- more specifically BLACK WOMEN-- were genius mathematicians that worked for NASA and not jobless welfare queens?! Clearly this is more Hollywood PC feminist social justice warrior Blackwashing!

TARAJI P. HENSON

Or, and bear with me here, we're real people whose heroism went largely unnoticed for decades for reasons that rhyme with "tastism".

WHITE COP

Hmmm. Well I suppose I could start things off by being a racist piece of shit and harass you for being innocent black people, or I could escort you to your job like an upstanding model of white American authority.

Surprisingly, he does the LAST part and not the FIRST part.

OCTAVIA SPENCER

Also I manage to fix our car by hitting it with Dark Force lightning because I am a wizard.

INT. NASA’S BASEMENT

All the BLACK WOMEN you might think of as FIGURES are being HIDDEN here.

KIRSTEN DUNST approaches.

KIRSTEN DUNST

Octavia, I need you to manage the colored women while forgoing the title of manager or the extra money that comes with all the increased labor you are doing.

OCTAVIA SPENCER

So I’m a contemporary working class American then.

KIRSTEN DUNST

Exactly. I will also throw shade at you and look down on you every chance I get because I’m a stuck up dickhead and I need an arc.

JANELLE MONÁE

Okay, so we’ve presented one good white person and one asshole white person. We need another good one to put us ahead.

WHITE FOREIGN ENGINEER GUY

Janelle! You are intelligent person! Become engineer!

JANELLE MONÁE

Dude, I’m a black woman in America in the 60s. I have about as much chance of becoming a NASA engineer as a B-Movie actor has of becoming president! It’s impossible!

WHITE FOREIGN ENGINEER GUY

I am Jew whose parents die in concentration camp and now I build space ship! Anything is possible!

JANELLE MONÁE

Wait, you’re Jewish? Shit, that doesn’t count as a “good white character” since blacks and Jews are basically the same thing.

INT. SPACE MATH ROOM

TARAJI is summoned to NERD HEADQUARTERS.

KEVIN COSTNER

Taraji, we have been trying to figure out how to safely get John Glenn into space and back using inferior math. I am calling you in to help because the Space Race is more important to me than that other kind of race so I need you to check everyone’s work.

TARAJI P. HENSON

Great! I finally get a chance to use my nerd brain to help America and make history!

RACIST JIM PARSONS appears.

JIM PARSONS

The hell? I’m the obligatory racist guy? Aw fuck man that sucks. Do I HAVE to be racist? Why can't Kevin be the racist?

KEVIN COSTNER

Because my roles in The Bodyguard and Black or White make me exempt. I was even in a movie with Ice-T for chrissakes, so the racist prick has to be you Jim.

JIM PARSONS

SHIIIIIIT!!!! At least tell me I don’t have to say The N Word.

TARAJI P. HENSON

No, that would trigger too many snowflakes. Instead you’ll be more subtle and underhanded about it. You know, like modern racists.

JIM PARSONS

Oh. Well in that case

(stares at Taraji with The Scowl of Racism)

TARAJI P. HENSON

Thaaaaaat’s more like it. Now I need to pee. Where’s the bathroom?

JIM PARSONS

There are no colored bathrooms in this entire building. You will have to run 40 miles to the nearest colored bathroom every time you need to relieve yourself.

TARAJI P. HENSON

JESUS CHRIST ON A BIKE! Hopefully we Americans won’t be so obsessed about where people pee in the future!

JIM PARSONS

You hope in vain, Taraji.

TARAJI P. HENSON

Well given that knowledge and despite being a math genius I had better fill my bladder with coffee.

JIM PARSONS

Oh, no. You can’t use our coffee pot. Apparently we scientists can calculate the trajectory of orbital space rockets but we can’t share a pot of coffee with a black woman, so we’re forcing you to drink from a pot we rescued from a dumpster outside a leper colony. We were even nice enough to get it laminated with the word “colored”. Enjoy!

TARAJI P. HENSON

Um, but, that’s, well raci--

JIM PARSONS

WHOA! WHOA! WHOA! How DARE you try to GUILT us! A certain kind of milk-colored guilt in fact!

TARAJI P. HENSON

But, come on dude, you have to admit that leper coffee pot thing is pretty damn racis--

JIM PARSONS

Taraji!!! Why can’t you see things from our perspective? You’re coming into our space one might categorize as “safe” with all your black womanness. Can’t you understand how uncomfortable you’re making all us grown intelligent men? Besides, it’s not like we’re lynching you or anything. We’re the real victims here, agreed?

TARAJI P. HENSON

But, you, well...

(suffers blatant injustice in silence)

JIM PARSONS

There’s a good negro.

INT. TARAJI’S HOUSE

TARAJI comes home to her THREE ADORABLE DAUGHTERS.

TARAJI P. HENSON

Holy Christmas, I have to put up with all that bullshit at work AND take care of three kids?

HER DAUGHTERS

And our daddy died some time ago so you’re a single mother!

MAHERSHALA ALI

And I’m a handsome soldier who wants to sweep Taraji off her feet!

TARAJI P. HENSON

Stop it guys, this is too heartwarming. The audience paid to see this on MLK weekend to see my valiant struggle to achieve intellectual equality in the face of mathematical patriarchy, not to see me get my groove back.

So...

INT. BACK AT NASA

JIM PARSONS

(slaps Taraji with The Glare of Bigotry)

TARAJI P. HENSON

That’s more like it. Now let me check your math.

JIM PARSONS

Of course Taraji! But I’ve redacted all my papers with a cheap Dollar Store Sharpie just to make your job that much harder because I am a son of bitch.

TARAJI P. HENSON

Well I’ll just hold the papers up to the light and LIGHTBULB! I’ve mathed that our math can’t math the right math for John Glenn’s capsule to math!

KEVIN COSTNER

Hmm, I am skeptical of your apparent brain power. Are you a Russian spy?

TARAJI P. HENSON

No, I’m black.

KEVIN COSTNER

That’s good enough for me. Top Secret security clearance granted!

OCTAVIA SPENCER

Meanwhile I’m struggling to deal with being put out of a job once NASA’s brand new IBM computers show up. Maybe I can read up on how to program them and thus maintain job security. To the library!

RACIST LIBRARIAN

Sorry blacky, these books are for white eyes only.

OCTAVIA SPENCER

Oh dear, well in that case I’ll kindly leave in a calm and orderly YOINK!

(steals the book)

JANELLE MONÁE

And while that’s going on I’m going to apply for an engineering position I’m more than qualified for.

KIRSTEN DUNST

Janelle, you’re a woman and black and a woman, you’ll never get that job. Plus you need to take special courses that are only taught at a white-only university. Give up, Janelle. When you’re black and a woman that glass ceiling might as well be made out of adamantium.

JANELLE MONÁE

Eat a dick, Mary Jane. I’m going to plead my case in front of a judge who hopefully doesn’t wear white robes on his off time.

WHITE JUDGE

Janelle, the law says blacks and whites can’t go to school together. Why should I make an exception for you?

JANELLE MONÁE

Because I actually did some research on you and found out you come from a long line of badass history makers. I may be a lowly negro woman but I’m smart and determined and I’m just trying to leave my mark on this country by following my dream and being the first in my field just like you were.

WHITE JUDGE

Holy shit, you actually won me over with a compelling and impassioned argument that didn’t make me feel guilty for being white and/or male! Access granted!

JANELLE MONÁE

(pulls out score card)

Okay folks at home, if you’re keeping score that’s 3 good white characters and 3 shithead white characters. It’s all tied up!

INT. SPACE MATH ROOM

KEVIN COSTNER

Alright guys, not only did the Russians hack the DNC but they also put a guy in space. We need to math the shit out of them and we need to do it NOW! Hey, where’s Taraji? Where the fuck does she go for 40 minutes every day?

TARAJI P. HENSON

Wait, have you seriously not realized I have to catch two buses and a train to get to the colored bathroom all this time? You know what? Fuck all of you. I know it’s not nice to remind you all how fucked this segregation bullshit is but I would be able to do my job 10x faster if I could go to the fucking bathroom ten steps away and drink from a nice coffee pot. Can’t you guys have the slightest bit of empathy for me?

KEVIN COSTNER

Em... Pa... Thy? What’s that? It sounds like a venereal disease.

TARAJI P. HENSON

Imagine all the bullshit you’ve all put me through and then imagine I was a straight rich white guy.

KEVIN COSTNER

Dear God. We’re monsters! Bathroom ban lifted! We all pee the same color!

RUSSIAN HOOKERS

Da. Even your future presidents! We should know!

TARAJI P. HENSON

Phew! Now that I can pee and drink coffee I can devote 19 hours a day of my life checking NASA’s space math--

JIM PARSONS

Sorry, the math has changed. You wasted your time. Here’s the new math.

TARAJI P. HENSON

Well okay, I’ll just waste another 19 hours of my life on this new math--

JIM PARSONS

Sorry the math changed again, you wasted your time, here’s the new new math.

TARAJI P. HENSON

You know this would go a lot faster if I could just sit in on the math meetings with you guys.

JIM PARSONS

Taraji, maybe no one has told you this yet but you are black, and a woman, and black, but mostly a woman. Having you sit in with The Suits is unheard of.

KEVIN COSTNER

Look Jim, I’m not going to let this racist sexist bullshit get in the way of me flinging John Glenn into the cold black of space. Taraji, you’re in.

THE SUITS

(ogles Taraji with The Gaze of Sexracism)

TARAJI P. HENSON

(writing on chalk board)

So guys, if you use math to get the math, you can calculate the math of the math and reach maximum math!

JOHN GLENN

Wow, this is one smart cookie. I refuse to launch unless the girl checks the numbers!

KEVIN COSTNER

Which girl? There are a lot of girls here-- ha ha! Not really, but seriously which girl?

JOHN GLENN

The chocolate one from Empire with the grandma glasses.

TARAJI checks the numbers and JOHN GLENN goes into space! But oh no! His capsule’s CHECK ENGINE LIGHT comes on!

KEVIN COSTNER

Oh no! What do we do?!

TARAJI P. HENSON

Just unhook the battery and hook it back up, that should take care of it!

JOHN GLENN returns to Earth safely! America wins!

JANELLE MONÁE

And I graduate and become America’s first aeronautical engineer who’s black and a woman!

OCTAVIA SPENCER

And I go on to be NASA’s first woman supervisor who is also black! Plus Kirsten stops being an asshole to me!

TARAJI P. HENSON

And my calculations help get Apollo II to the moon and back! I’m awesome!

JANELLE MONÁE

(pulls out score card)

And thanks to John Glenn racism loses 4 to 3! In your face racism!

END

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