Jacqueline Morse



The Wife of Bath and Her Characters

la la la la,

Tonight with Chaucer,

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la la la laaaa.

chaos reigns when characters meet,

'cause Tonight with Chaucer

can't be beat.

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La la… la… laaaa.

HOST: Hello there and welcome to "Tonight with Chaucer"! I'm your esteemed host, Jackie Morse, and I'm here today to bring you the characters from the story told by the Wife of Bath, and even the renowned Wife herself! Now, please welcome, the Wife of BATH!

(crowd cheers, and the Wife of Bath enters.)

HOST: Hello there… uh… Wife of Bath?

WIFE: Hey there! I know that my name is a little bit odd, so you can call me Bow if you want, that's what all of my friends call me.

HOST: It's great to have you on the show.

WIFE: Mmhm. And it's great to be here Jackie! Just the other week I was thinking of how nice it would be to be on a talk show, and then, speak of the devil, or think, if you will, you called me up! It's so great to be here! You don't understand how unappreciated I am, ALL THE TIME! My husbands just didn't understand that. Oh yeah, I was the one wearing the pants in the family, sure, but they didn't really care about me, they just wanted me, 'ya know? Do you ever feel that way? I was talking to my friends about it, and they recommended this great psychologist, Dr. Phyllis who-

HOST: Well, thank you for that wonderful… dialogue. Shall we get started then? I'd like to ask you a couple questions, to give our viewers a little background info on you.

WIFE: Sure! I love questions! I have so much stuff to talk about!

HOST: Great… Anyways, it says here that you've had five husbands so far, that's quite a number. How come?

WIFE: They were old, and then they died, honey. I didn't do nothin' to 'em, except make them wonderfully happy, while they were still alive of course. Now they're dead and gone and there's nothing that I can do about it. Oh well. That makes me remember! I was thinking about writing a book about how hard my life's been, with all of my husbands and all. Those kinds of books are always best-sellers, right? I could call it, "the Trial of Five Husbands," or, "My Struggle Towards Love," or-

HOST: I think I know why your husbands died…

WIFE: What? Or maybe something simple, like, "My Struggle." But that's kind of gloomy, isn't it? It makes me think of people who were starving or had some kind of fatal disease. Ohh…

HOST: Well, Ms. Bath, we're out of time for the moment! We'll be back after this short break! Keep Watching!

(crowd claps, and commercial break begins)

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WIFE: -and then she was telling me about how she met these fantastic guys, but they were both in love with her. Then one of them died and she felt obligated to-

HOST: WELL! We're back on the show now, and everyone's waiting for the rest of your story, Ms. Bath!

WIFE: Call me Bow, everyone does, although my 4th husband did call me Wifey, but I don't think that you want to call me that, because he called me that 'cause I was his wife, not 'cause my first name is Wife. But that might not have been the reason… now that I think about it, he might not have even known we were married! He was preeeetty drunk at the ceremony…

HOST: (clears throat) Umm… I'm sorry about that, but we have to move on, you see the focus of today's show is on your tale, and we're short on time, so, bring in the characters!

(the Wife of Bath sniffles as crowd cheers again, and a beautiful woman, an old lady, a knight, and a Queen enter the room)

HOST: Welcome, all!

QUEEN: Hello.


LADY: Good evening.

KNIGHT: Hey dude. When can I leave?

HOST: You just got here!

KNIGHT: Life's a b****. I have an appointment at the hair dresser's in half an hour, so you're gonna have to deal, lady.

LADY: But you promised to come! You know what'll happen if you don't stay, don't you? And don't swear.

KNIGHT: Yeah… but that's not fair! I already said I'd come. I'm here. Now can I leave… please?

LADY: Are you questioning me?


HOST: Well… it seems as though the end of the story didn't turn out to be so blessed by Jesu Christ after all… are you guys having problems with your relationship?

LADY: No! He's a wonderful guy, and I love him a lot… but sometimes he doesn't listen to me or he doesn't keep his promises and that makes me angry. He should honor me and know that he is only kept from being a completely pitiful creature through my good graces.

KNIGHT: I guess that's right...

LADY: What.

KNIGHT: She's completely correct. Sorry. (whispering) Stupid lady.

HOST: I think that we should start at the beginning. Don't you? Our viewers deserve to hear the story in full. Why don't you start, young woman.

WOMAN: …Sophie.

HOST: Alright, Sophie, don't be shy.

SOPHIE: Um… the knight, he, uh, attacked then, uh, raped me. He did horrible things. It got out, and the King was going to kill him, but the Queen said no… now I'm going to this great psychologist, Dr. Phyllis, and she's really helped me out. I was only able to come today because of her. I used to be a nervous wreck. I had a stutter and everything. But why would the Queen let him go? He's a criminal! It just makes me SO FREAKING ANGRY! I'm getting so worked up! I need to call my psychologist. Excuse me, please.

(Sophie exits)

HOST: Well, it's good that she's getting better. But sadly, before we talk to the Queen we have to take a short commercial break. Be back soon!

(crowd claps, with the Knight and the Woman arguing in the background, and commercial break begins)

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(crowd claps, and commercial break ends)

HOST: Hey there, and welcome back. We just left off with our wonderful little Sophie telling us of her terrible ordeal at the hands of the Knight. But it turns out that the Queen didn't even put him in jail for the act, much less execute him. We're about to ask her why. So, Queen, why?

QUEEN: Well… I pitied him, I suppose. Or at least, that's what everyone expected me to do, being a woman and all. But really, I never thought that he'd get the answer to the question right, you see, I was kind of hoping that we could off him. It would have made everything easier.

HOST: Knight, how does that make you feel?

KNIGHT: What are you, my freakin' psychologist?

LADY: answer the question.

KNIGHT: Right… well, I'm kinda indifferent. I know that I did somethin' bad, but whatever, right?

HOST: Umm… not bad? Well, tell us about your quest then. What happened when you were looking for the thing that all women love most?

KNIGHT: Well, I had to walk a freakin' TON. All these stupid peeps kept telling me all of this c***, and all of it was different. I had no idea what the h*** I was going to do. Then I saw these girls dancing in the woods. When I walked closer they went POOF and disappeared. I musta been drunk or somethin'. Then in the same clearing there was an old lady. Real ugly one, too. She told me that she'd tell the Queen what it is women most love if I did whatever she asked. So I asked myself, slavery or death? I almost chose death. That thing was hideous, and fat too.

QUEEN: Excuse me, but is it permissible for me to leave? I don't want to bask in this filth any longer than I have to. (under her breath) No one was supposed to save him.

(the Queen exits after glaring at the Old Woman)

HOST: And now you're married to a young lady, who for some reason is old at the moment, and are, apparently, still alive. How'd that happen?

KNIGHT: Well, the Old Hag told the Queen that-

LADY: Old hag? Is that what you said, darling?

KNIGHT: Uhh, no I said 'the Young Beautiful Princess Lady.'

LADY: Sure.

KNIGHT: Anyways, and she told the Queen-lady that women love to have power over their husbands most. The Queen seemed to like that answer. I think I even saw her nudge the King. Haha, I feel bad for the dude. Well, then the Old Woman asked me whether I wanted the old faithful her forever, or a young beautiful maid, whom would attract all other men. I told her she could choose, 'cause what do I care? I don't really like her. I'd just leave if she chose to be old, and find another girl as pretty as she would be as a young woman.

LADY: That's what you thought? You didn't take my words to heart after I saved you from being executed?

KNIGHT: …no?

LADY: Why are you like this? I do EVERYTHING for you!

HOST: (loudly, over argument of Knight and Lady) Our time here is almost up, so we'll cut for a short commercial break and come back for a short recap! See 'ya!

(security guards rush onto the scene, pulling the Lady away from the Knight, who was being slapped, crowd clapping, commercial break begins)

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(crowd claps, and the commercial break ends, with all of the characters off of the set)

HOST: Well, today we had quite the interesting story. An almost beheading, five husbands and an Old Woman… hopefully we'll have a show like this again soon! Join us next time on "Tonight with Chaucer" for a thrilling interview with the Nun's Priest, and the extremely important guests from his story!

la la la la,

tonight with Chaucer,

la la la la,

la la la laaaaa.

Now it's done,

It's time to end-the-fun,

Aaand now it is time to go

La la laa.