BY BOB WRIGHT
AUTHOR'S NOTE: ALF is a registered trademark of Alien Productions and Paul Fusco. Lone Starr, Dark Helmet, and other related characters and indicia are registered trademarks of Brooksfilms and MGM. Apologies that I can't shrink the text here in the beginning even smaller to make the joke better, but what you see is the best I could do (although if you couldn't read it, you probably would have less of an idea what was going on here without the blatant back story you'll get in a minute). And now, on with the story.
ONCE UPON A TIME WARP…
IN A GALAXY VERY, VERY, VERY, VERY FAR AWAY, THERE LIVED A RUTHLESS RACE OF BEINGS KNOWN AS…SPACEBALLS.
FOUR YEARS HAVE PASSED SINCE MEGA MAID WAS DESTROYED. PRINCE LONE STARR HAS SETTLED DOWN WITH HIS NEW WIFE PRINCESS VESPA, EAGER TO START A NEW LIFE.
UNBEKNOWST TO OUR HERO (BUT KNOWNST TO US), HIS MORTAL ENEMIES THE SPACEBALLS HAVEN'T GIVEN UP YET. AFTER DESTROYING THE PLANET OF THE APES, THE EVIL LORD DARK HELMET HAS LED AN EXPEDITION TO TAKE OVER THE PLANET EXODOSUS, NEIGHBOR TO PLANET DRUIDIA, AND TURN IT INTO A WAR ZONE. NOW, HE AND HIS ASSOCIATES ARE ALL BUT READY TO UNLEASH THEIR MOST TERRIFYING WEAPON YET UPON THE UNSUSPECTING DRUIDIANS, SAVE FOR ONE LAST KEY INGREIDENT TO THEIR DEADLY MIX, SOMETHING ONLY THEIR FORMER VICTIMS CAN SUPPLY TO THEM……..
(If you can read this, you don't need glasses.)
The residents of Planet Druidia didn't usually look out to their neighbors in their little section of the universe. Safely content behind their air shield, they lived comfortable and happy lives, convinced the threat that had once threatened to destroy their planet had passed for good. After all, they had collected up the remains of Spaceball 1 (a.k.a. Mega Maid) and refused to sell them to their unholy neighbors. And little word had come of any news of any kind from Planet Spaceball for months. So as far as the Druidians were concerned, no news was good news.
Had they turned their telescopes to the neighboring planet of Exodosus, they might have noticed a different story. For the surface of the large, once deserted planet was now dotted with numerous Spaceball military installations. Neutron artillery guns, interstellar transports, hover tanks, and other prime examples of Spaceball military might dotted the landscape, and that wasn't counting everything that had been set up below the surface.
From their main control tower on the tallest mountain on the planet, the two architects of this buildup surveyed their work through futuristic binoculars. Lord Dark Helmet lowered his after a moment. "Well Colonel Sandurz," he confided in his associates, "Soon we'll be at full capacity for Operation Open Druid Season—meaning the end of Lone Starr, too."
"Absolutely, Lord Helmet," Colonel Sandurz agreed with the evil villain, "And best of all, the Druidians have no idea that we're doing…"
Helmet lifted up his visor, revealed his unbelievably nerdy true self. "Sandurz, we know already," he told the colonel, "Don't get repetitive."
"Sorry sir," Colonel Sandurz apologized.
The TeleWall to their right lit up. "Lord Helmet, this is Commanderette Zircon reporting from the research wing," the attractive young officer on duty told them, "Count Cuckoo would like to inform you that he's run into a slight snag with his T.A.R.G.E.T. research. He requests you join him now."
Helmet pulled his visor back down for a moment. "We'll be down immediately, Commanderette," he told her in his authoritative voice. Once Zircon had signed off, he yanked the visor up again and asided to Sandurz, "I knew we shouldn't have assigned Cuckoo to the research for the T.A.R.G.E.T.s. That idiot couldn't design a weightless coffeemaker let alone our new ultimate weapon of destruction. I don't even know why I took him as my apprentice."
"Well we couldn't overrule President Skroob, you know sir," Sandurz pointed out, "He isn't the most respected despot in the Frankfurt Galaxy for nothing."
"Well, let's go see what the problem is this time," Helmet said, leading Sandurz toward the elevator. A short 256 story flight straight down took them to the very heart of the research center of the base. Count Cuckoo, a hunchbacked being with a white face with red polka dots and a uniform that looked like a clown's, greeted them with a voice not unlike Peter Lorre's once they'd entered his wing. "Lord Helmet, Colonel Sandurz, I'm having problems getting the explosives to be as catastrophic as you and the president wished," he informed them.
"What's the problem with it?" Helmet asked him.
"We need Melmacian hair, sir," Cuckoo said to his master, pointing to a boiling greenish liquid in a large vat before them, "It's the one thing that'll make this all the more explosive and planet-killing. Unfortunately, I don't have any here."
"All right, Cuckoo, we'll look into it," Helmet said, "Sandurz, go to Melmac and shave all the hair off as many of those worthless things as you can find."
"Uh…," Sandurz looked very weak, "Lord Helmet, there's something I probably should have told you a long time ago."
"What?" Helmet didn't like the sound of this.
"Uh, could we discuss this in private?" Sandurz gestured toward a broom closet nearby.
"If you insist," Helmet followed his associate into the closet and closed the door. As Cuckoo listened curiously, his master shrieked at the top of lungs, "WHAT DO YOU MEAN MELMAC BLEW UP, SANDURZ!!??"
"It was just a slight miscalculation, sir, news travels so slowly in this part of the galaxy," Sandurz said, running out of the closet with his hands covering his crotch. Visor down, Helmet stormed after him, his cobra-headed Ring of the Schwartz already on his finger and aimed to destroy all in its path. "Well you'd better hope that some of the Melmacians survived, Sandurz, or all the president's horses and all the president's men won't be able to put you back together again!" the evil leader threatened, lowering the ring.
"President Skroob doesn't have any horses, Lord Helmet," Cuckoo pointed out.
"Don't try me, Cuckoo," Helmet thrust his ring at his apprentice. After making sure he wasn't going to get another peep out of him, he raised the visor and said, "OK, no problem, we'll just see if we can find any survivors. Sandurz, check the computer."
"Right sir," Sandurz strode over to the nearest console and announced out loud, "Computer, show the locations of every known survivor of Melmac documented over the last five years," he ordered it.
"Please deposit five spacebucks in marked slot," the computer told him.
"What?" Sandurz's expression dropped, "Why do you need spacebucks?"
"I need to put my kids through college," the computer told him, "No money, no information."
Sandurz sighed and gave the computer the requested money. "Thank you," the computer buzzed and proceeded to show THREE MATCHES FOUND.
"Where are they?" Helmet rushed up to the screen.
"It looks like there's one colony that settled on a place called New Melmac, one group around Sedna-5, and one questionable one around this yellow star that we haven't named yet," Sandurz said, reading the information on the screen.
"Why haven't we named it?" Cuckoo asked.
"There are so many yellow stars like it in its galaxy that we're nowhere near naming them all," Sandurz told him.
"Well, it's a start," Helmet said, "We'll have to examine them one by one. Sandurz, gather up the elitist of our task forces and deploy them toward the yellow star. We'll see if we'll find pay dirt there. Cuckoo, call Spaceball City and tell the president of this."
"Yes, Master," Cuckoo galloped off.
"Sandurz, prepare Spaceball 2 for immediate departure," Helmet ordered the colonel, "We're shoving off as soon as possible. We need to be back here with the Melmacian hair in three weeks when the perfect alignment with Druidia exists."
"When we're lined up with the air shield door, right?" Sandurz asked.
"Exactly," Helmet said, flicking another switch on the wall that gave him a perfect view of Druidia. And since King Roland gave us the combination last time, it'll be a simple matter to open it and leave the planet a sitting duck for our T.A.R.G.E.T.s."
He walked across the research room to the prototype of the T.A.R.G.E.T.: the Technically Advanced Rebuildable Gigaton Exploding Transgalaxator. A flattened saucer-shaped red metallic vehicle with a wide opening in the front for the huge warhead to be placed. It was an ominous sight. "Upon impact," Helmet rambled on, "It'll suck up every ounce of fresh air within its range, and the air probe'll return to the home ship unscathed. Once we've got all the air, we'll send in the Widowmaker model to destroy Druidia, and with it Vespa and Lone Starr." A devious smile cross his face. "And once we destroy Druidia," he said, "We'll spread out across the galaxy and make everything subject to our rule. No one will mock Planet Spaceball again."
"Of course not sir," Sandurz laughed, "Assuming the Melmacian or Melmacians we find cough up the hair we ask for."
"Sandurz," Helmet snickered, "What Melmacian wouldn't give up once he gets a load of us?"