The so-called 'mooning incident' had taken place at the Rydell High School Dance, which was being broadcast live by the TV show National Bandstand and hosted by the TV star Vince Fontaine. After the climatic dance-off, the winners, Danny Zuko and his recently-acquired partner, Cha-Cha DiGregorio, took center-stage for their victory spotlight dance. The slow, romantic dance began to the tune of "Blue Moon", the classic popular song by Rodgers and Hart and later made popular by Elvis Presley. The lights in the gymnasium-cum-dancehall dimmed, and a lone blue spotlight illuminated Danny and Cha-Cha in the midst of the awestruck crowd. It was then that Doody got the brilliant idea to 'moon' all of America. He quickly convinced Sonny and Putzie that the lyrics of the song were perfectly suitable for a classic bare-behind sighting. The others laughingly agreed. They all rapidly tore off their leather jackets and wrapped them around their heads to mask their identity. They unbuttoned their levis and, at Doody's cue, leaped into the spotlight between the dancing couple and the National Bandstand cameras, dropped their jeans and displayed their own 'blue moons' for all of the nation to admire. By the time the cameras pulled away, the three bare backsides had been emblazoned on all American televisions for about five seconds.
In homes across America, mothers squealed, fathers gasped, daughters covered their eyes, and sons laughed delightedly. At Rydell High's local diner, the Frosty Palace, waitresses gathered around the television in shock and bemusement. "I wonder who that is on the right," one of them said, admiring Putzie's Adonis-like backside.
The three bare-assed rascals quickly donned their trousers and raced out of the nearest exit, amidst laughs, jeers and squeals from their classmates. Coach Calhoun, raced after them for about twenty yards, but he was no longer the athlete that he was in his prime, and promptly had to give up the chase. The lads were out of sight.
Vince Fontaine quickly stepped before the teetering camera to announce "Ladies and Gentleman, National Bandstand will now take a quick, unscheduled break. Be with you soon." He finished with a signature wink.
The cameras cut. All was mayhem and pandemonium in the high school gym. Danny and Cha-Cha were all but forgotten in the ensuing moments. The lights were switched back on. Principal McGee and her assistant, Blanche raced over to the out-of-breath football coach.
"Did you catch them? Did you see who it was?" She asked, her heart racing.
"No," Calhoun panted. "They were too fast. Just too fast."
Vince Fontaine, now off the air, approached with a menacing look in his eye. "Say, what's the meaning of this? Are you trying to get me fired?"
"Let me assure you, Mr. Fontaine, this was as much a shock to me as it was to you," McGee began. "And, further, I guarantee you that the perpetrators will be caught and brought to justice."
"How?!? They're too fast," Coach Calhoun coughed out, bent double.
"I don't know how, but we'll manage," McGee stated.
"Right," Blanche agreed, nodding vigorously.
"It's a disgrace to the school," McGee intoned.
"Indeed," Blanche nodded.
"It's a disgrace to the state," McGee asserted.
"True," Blanche seconded.
"It's a disgrace to the country!" McGee declared. "And what's more..."
"It's a disgrace to the world at large...?" Blanched stuttered.
"Be quiet, Blanche!" Principal McGee commanded. "And what's more, it has no doubt soiled the image of National Bandstand. Allow me to express my profuse apologies, Mr. Fontaine, to our great nation, by going live and commenting on this national scandal."
"Well, we certainly have to say something," Vince Fontaine conceded. "Most of America are currently glued to a blank television screen awaiting the end of the dance. But, look, I know television. Give them a short, quick apology and then move promptly back to the dance. That's what their tuned in for anyway."
"I couldn't agree more," McGee replied.
"Roll cameras!" Fontaine yelled.
"Rolling!" Shouted the camera-man.
Principal McGee placed herself directly in front of the cameras, with a very serious look. Blanche peered over her shoulder and imitated her fierceness.
"Ladies and gentleman, I am Principal McGee of Rydell High. Allow me to apologize for the shocking images you were subjected to just moments ago. Let me assure you that the young men in question will be severely punished for their antics. And now, let us proceed with the celebratory victor's dance. Maestro?" Principal McGee turned to the band and they began to play at once. The students, all looking rather awestruck and amused, began to awkwardly dance again.
Meanwhile, around the corner, near the entrance to the boys' locker room, Sonny, Putzie and Doody were giggling uncontrollably in fits of hysteria.
"I can't believe we got away with it," Sonny chuckled.
"Hey, what if they notice we're gone?!? They might think it was us!" Putzie whispered.
"No, no," Doody assured his compatriots. "We just saunter back in, one at a time maybe two, three minutes apart. Makes it look like we've just been to the bathroom."
"Yeah," the boys agreed.
That is exactly what they did. No one asked any questions. The three lads couldn't have been more pleased with their mission.
"We have pictures of you so-called 'mooners'," Principal McGee's voice boomed from Rydell High's PA system. Throughout the school, everyone paused to listen, and many to giggle. "Just because the pictures aren't of your faces, doesn't mean we can't identify you. At this very moment, those pictures are on the way to Washington, where the FBI has experts in this type of identification. If you turn yourselves in now, you may escape a federal charge."
Overhearing this ominous message whilst working away in the school autoshop the next day, Putzie, Doody and Putzie did their utmost to conceal their backsides. They stuffed rags, tools, whatever they could find, into back pockets while stealing furtive glances at the nearby students to see if anyone might suspect their rears to be the rears in question. Whereas before they had been going about their business completely unaware of their bottoms as they bent over to shine hubcaps and inspect engines, now they were careful to bend at the knees rather than the waist.
After a minute or so of this behavior, Putzie ensured that Mrs. Murdock, the shop teacher was well outside of the range of hearing before whispering "What do you guys think? Should we turn ourselves in?"
"What, are you crazy, Putz?" Doody inquired. "They're just talkin' big talk, they'll never find out it was us."
Putzie wasn't convinced.
Two days later in Washington DC, FBI Agents Donovan, Fox and Wilson of the Body Part Identification Unit, sat around a table to investigate three photographs sent in by Principal McGee of Rydell High. As they opened the envelope, they found three nearly identical photographs of youthful male backsides all in a row.
"Oh, yeah," Wilson started. "I remember this. A few nights ago on National Bandstand. They were at a high school dance and these three clowns thoughts it would be funny to drop trou in front of the camera."
"I saw it too," Fox stated.
"I must've missed that one. Too busy," Donovan boasted.
"What does the letter say?" Fox inquired.
Donovan read allowed: "Dear sirs, firstly allow me to apologize for the shocking nature of these photographs. The local police commissioner assured me that it's nothing you haven't seen before."
The FBI agents laughed
Donovan continued: "You may or may not be aware that the television show National Bandstand recently filmed our school, Rydell High, for their...blah blah blah," Donovan skipped ahead.
"We know all this," Fox stated impatiently.
"Here we go: 'As the culprits have not yet been found, we would be grateful for any assistance you might offer. I realise you are busy people in the FBI, but as this is a national issue, I trust you will see the importance. Yours sincerely, Principal McGee'."
Looking closely at the photos, Wilson asked "If someone had told me ten years ago that I'd earn my living looking at pictures of teenage boys' bottoms, I never would have believed them."
All three FBI laughed aloud.
Fox stood up and said, "Right, guys, looks like we're going to Rydell High."
Two days later, Principal McGee's voice again boomed over the PA system: "All senior boys are instructed to report to the gymnasium immediately. I repeat, all senior boys to the gymnasium."
"What's this about?" Danny Zuko asked, turning to Sonny.
"Probably some sort of graduation surprise," Sonny conjectured. "Could be our robes or our hats."
Danny nodded, finding it hard to focus on anything but Sandy, who had left the dance in a huff less than a week before. He had been unable to speak to her since.
Sonny, Putzie, Doody, Danny, and Kenickie all made their way to the gym, with the fifty or so other male seniors. Everyone was grateful to be out of class temporarily. Everyone, that is, except Eugene, the complete nerd who loved test tubes or textbooks the way the other boys loved cars or a tight cardigan on a perky-breasted blond.
All the boys shuffled into the gym and took a seat on the wooden stadium seating on one side of the basketball court at Coach Calhoun's entreaty. Once all the boys were seated, roll was called and all boys were accounted for. The Coach locked the main doors before escorting in the three FBI agents, who had been hiding behind the door to the boys' locker room.
Gasps and murmurs rippled through the crowd of seated 17-year-olds.
"Who are these jokers?" Kenickie asked, staring over his shades in confusion.
The three briefcase-bearing men were suited and booted. They certainly look like anyone the boys of Rydell High had seen before. The male seniors, who usually considered themselves tough in their leather jackets and sunglasses, all quickly became hushed and nervous little schoolboys.
The three agent approached a table in the middle of the gym upon which Coach Calhoun had set up an overhead projector focused upon a screen at the other end of the hall. Before saying a word, Donovan pulled something out of his briefcase and slapped it on the illuminated screen of the projector.
The boys were confronted with the familiar sight of three sets of youthful male buttocks in a row. Everyone promptly burst into laughter.
"This is no laughing manner!" Coach Calhoun threatened.
The boys fell silent.
"Now, these three gentlemen, Agent Fox, Agent Wilson and Agent Donovan are from the FBI," Calhoun continued. "They are here to investigate what we consider to be a very serious matter. As most of you know, the recent dance was spoiled by three of you who decided to display your rear ends for the National Bandstand audience. The agents are here to help us determine who the offenders are so that swift and sound justice can be delivered. I expect complete attention and compliance with the agents, or you'll be spending some time in my office touching your toes. Understood, gentleman?"
There were nods of assent throughout the auditorium. Most of the seniors knew all too well what the coach was implying. Coach Calhoun kept a large wooden paddle in his office, with holes drilled into it to speed its progress as it descended toward a pair of PE-short clad buttocks. He reserved the use of the paddle for only male students, both offenders on the PE field and general trouble-makers sent to him by Principal McGee.
"Thank you, Coach Calhoun," Agent Donovan began. "We don't need to explain to you the national impact of the actions of these three hooligans." Here he pointed at the enlarged image of the three bare bottoms. "No doubt you all know that these images have been seen far and wide across this great nation. The television show National Bandstand has had letters of complaint from Southern Baptist church ladies, disgusted Boston lawyers, Wisconsin schoolteachers, and many, many others expressing their outrage. The overwhelming message from these viewers is a cry for blood. They want heads to roll. Not the head of the Philadelphia studio who runs National Bandstand, not Vince Fontaine, not even your beloved Principal McGee. No. They want these three miscreants publicly named and shamed."
Agent Fox, annoyed by his colleagues fire-and-brimstone sermon, interrupted here, "Look boys, you know what you did was wrong and we'd encourage you to turn yourselves in now."
"Judges are inclined to look more favorably upon people who turn themselves in," Agent Wilson added.
The silence hung in the room palpably. Sonny, Doody, and Putzie all shrunk a little lower on the bench, not anxious to make any sort of eye contact with the FBI agents who had been sent in to weed them out.
"Gentleman, we can do this the easy way or the hard way," Fox instructed. "If you don't come forward now and turn yourselves in, we will have no choice but to bare each of your behinds for inspection and comparison."
The fifty boys all looked nervously around at each other, eager to avoid the humiliation of having to bare their rumps in front of their entire class.
"Right," Donovan broke in. "We'll do this three at a time. Starting with the front row, I want three boys at a time to approach Agent Fox, Agent Wilson and myself, unfasten your pants, slide them down to your knees, place your palms on the edge of this desk and bend over like the youths in this photograph. When you see the boy before finish, please take his place and assume the same position. We'll start with you three." He pointed to a trio of clean-cut squares in plaid shirts and khaki trousers sitting on the right end of the front row.
The three boys, all blond and Harvard-bound, nervously approached the table, unbuttoned their khaki pants and slid down their trousers and underpants to reveal three adorable, squeaky-clean backsides. They bent over as requested, thrusting out their hindquarters for inspection. The FBI agents approached, one behind each of the Phi-Beta-Kappas-to-be, knelt down about two feet the denuded buttocks and stared intently, alternating their glance from the naked flesh before them to the projected image above.
The FBI experts quickly discerned that the bottoms before them were the same as the bottoms in the picture and sent the goody-goodies back to their seats, doing up their trousers en route.
"Next three," Donovan commanded.
This time three jock stood up, among them Tom Chisum, who had recently been a fling of Sandy's. Danny looked in disdain as Tom dropped his gym shorts, of course he'd been running when the announcement came, to reveal two beautiful mounds framed by a jockstrap. He dutifully bent over for Agent Wilson, resting his elbows on the table and arching his back, eager to prove his unsullied reputation.
Wilson glanced down at the jockstrap-framed derriere and commanded "Jockstrap down too. I want an unobstructed view, pal."
Tom stood up and pulled down his jockstrap well past his cute bubble butt and resumed his bent position. Wilson took a while with this one, seeing remarkable similarities between it and the photographed bum on the right. The other two jocks were sent back to their seats and the two other FBI agents crowded around Tom Chisum's backside for a closer inspection. Tom considered this a surprisingly embarrassing position to be in. Nude from the waist down and bent over the inspection of three FBI Agents and his entire senior class. All the boys in the gym began inspecting the rear themselves, many agreeing that Tom must be one of the culprits. Sonny, Doody and Putzie began to see a ray of hope.
Danny was surprised at the shapeliness of Chisum's caboose. He began to see what Sandy had seen in him. Athletic thighs, firm chiseled ass. He couldn't really blame her.
Coach Calhoun approached the agents, "Normally I would vouched for young Mr. Chisum's behavior. But at the moment, all I can remember is how quick those kids ran away when I chased them. I hasten to add that Tom Chisum is the star runner of Rydell High's cross country team."
Tom peered over his shoulder at Coach Calhoun, hurt and betrayed by his suspicions.
"I'll also say, I've spent some time looking at Tom's behind while applying a motivational paddling and I don't think that's his backside up their," the Coach continued, fearing he'd lost the trust of his star athlete. "A little too fleshy if you see what I mean."
"Tom, pull up your pants and stand to the side. We'll have another look later," Donovan instructed.
And so they proceed through the rest of the senior boys, each taking his turn to bare his rear and proffer it for inspection. Sometimes the Agents had to lift shirts, slide down undies, poke or prod a buttock to test firmness, rub a cheek for plumpness factor, or give a quick smack for bounce-effect. Reluctantly, each boy took the position and showed his nether regions to the experts and his class. One arrogant young man, bent over to reveal a reddened bottom with upraised blisters.
"That's my handy-work," Coach Calhoun informed the agents. They duly congratulated him on a job well done.
Eugene Felznyk had an amazingly skinny ass that he was humiliated to have to display in public. Kenickie had a welt-striped backside, due to a recent encounter with his father's razor strap. Danny Zuko's rear end was as pert and well-shaped as it appeared in those tight pants of his. He found it unspeakably uncool to have to drop is pants for a bare-assed inspection by three men.
Finally the Agents came to Sonny, Putzie and Doody. The three offenders nervously approached the table, simultaneously unbuttoned their jeans, and dropped their pants. The stuck out their fannies and placed their palms on the table. It didn't help that they'd lined up in the same order as the photograph. But the Agents were called experts for a reason and as soon as the three rumps were revealed they knew they'd found their men.
They said their apologies to Tom Chisum for the prolonged inspection and sent him back to his seat.
"These are three young men in question," Wilson told Calhoun.
Calhoun nodded and jotted down their names. Putizie, Sonny and Doody all looked at each in dismay, their hearts sinking. "What does the Coach have in store for them?" they wondered.
That night, the three offenders were kept in a jail cell, fearing the worst. In the morning the three buttock-inspectors returned.
Agent Fox started the ball rolling, "Now what you did was a serious crime, boys. It's called indecent exposure. That means, you could be tried in court and sentenced with jail time. Now, because of your age we're prepared to negotiate. The nation is crying out for a public apology and chastisement of some sort. If you boys are prepared to apologize on TV to the same audience you offended the other night, we'll agree to forego the official charges."
The three boys nodded, "Yeah, we'll apologise. No problem. We are sorry."
"Good. One thing more..." Agent Wilson began, the lads hearts sank. "The issue of chastisement. Your Coach gave us a good idea the other day. He said there's nothing boys your age respond to better than a good old-fashioned butt-busting. Since you boys are so eager to display your bare backsides to all of America, we've determined it's only fair to give you three a firm bare-assed paddling on the next episode of National Bandstand."
"No way, chicks watched that show. We'll never get laid again," Doody argued.
"It's either that or legal action, boys. Take your pick," Fox stated flatly.
The cameras began rolling.
"Good evening, Ladies and Gentlemen, I'm Vince Fontaine. Welcome to National Bandstand. This week, before proceeding with our usual revelry, we must address the issue of last week's show. We have received countless letters this week telling us how shocked and appalled you were last week by three young men who dropped their pants on our show. National Bandstand apologizes for the inconvenience and mortification caused and reminds viewers that these events were planned or intended by our Station. We were equally shocked and upset. I am happy to inform you that the culprits have been caught by Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigations and have been brought here tonight to make an official apology and to face public punishment. In an effort to make the punishment fit the crime, it has been determined that the three youths will be subjected to a fierce paddling on their bare backsides. If this causes you shock or grief, can we please ask you to switch off your televisions now?"
All across America, not a single television was switched off. Not in the homes of morally upright Southern Baptist church goers, or in the homes of the legal-mined Boston lawyers, or in the homes the Wisconsin school teachers. All eyes were glued to the screen.
The three FBI Agents dragged Putzie, Sonny and Doody onto the stage. The boys looked suitably repentant and fearful. They had felt Coach Calhoun's paddle before and were not excited at the prospect of having it applied again, to the bare, and in front of thousands of strangers.
Putzie looked into the camera and said "Ladies and gentlemen, my friends and I apologize for our actions last week. It was senseless and immature. We are sorry for the shock and grief that it has caused. We sincerely hope that following our spanking you will see it in your hearts to forgive and forget this incedent. Thank you."
All the while Sonny and Doody stared at the floor in shame.
At her home, planted in front of the TV with the Pink Ladies at her side, Betty Rizzo extinguished a cigarette and chuckled, "Serves 'em right, the little chain jerkers."
"Enough of this," Marty implored. "Cut back to Vince."
"Vince and Marty, sittin' in a tree," Jan began.
Frenchy said, "I feel so bad for them. It was only a joke."
Meanwhile, the three T-birds had turned around and dropped their trousers to their ankles as they had rehearsed earlier that day with the National Bandstand crew and waited for the paddle to fall. One camera stayed focused on their bare behinds, an image that looked remarkably similar to the one transmitted just a week before. A second camera circled around for a close-up on their faces. Putzie looked terrified, Doody shrugged it off, acting cool and Sonny clenched all his facial muscles (and coincidentally his gluteal muscles) in sworn determination.
The three FBI agents each took a turn paddling an errant youth. The boys were completely unprepared for the strength and power of an FBI agent soundly trouncing their rear ends.
Agent Donovan went first, of course, and delivered ten spine-breaking ass-paddled to Sonny's bare and slightly chubby bottom. In spite of his determination, after about four licks all of Sonny's resolution was gone and was quickly replaced by tears dripping down his cheeks and off his nose. By the end, Sonny was a blubbering wreck with a bright red and puckered rump.
Agent Fox took the paddle and placed it against Doody bare cheeks. Al of Doody's coolness disappeared in a flash.
"Please don't," he implored.
CRACK! The hole-drilled maple paddle landed on the boys upturned fanny. America was enthralled by this public display of what they usually kept so private. Mother's nodded, father's warned sons of a similar performance, daughters covered their eyes and sons rubbed their behinds in sympathy.
Nine more powerful cracks followed the first and at the end, Doody was shouting in pain and humiliation.
Agent Wilson took the paddle last. As he glanced down and Putzie snow-white buttocks next to the reddened pairs of his friend, he felt a wave of compassion. He regretted that he had to do what his own father and school teachers had so many times done to him. He looked back at his colleagues. Donovan gave him a look that clearly implied "if you don't go through with this, I'll do the same thing to you." Grabbing the paddle handle firmly, Wilson placed the wooden blade flush against Putzie's powder-white cheeks. The cameras pulled in on both sides, perfectly framing his face and ass respectively.
Ten ear-bursting cracks of the paddle rained down on Putzie's pinchable backside, turning from pure and white to a deep shade of red. Blisters formed in the crevices where the holes been drilled. His glute muscles spasmed in response. Tears streaked down his cheeks and dripped off his chin. His bottom lip trembled as child-like groans issued from his mouth. Finally the horrible ordeal ended. The boys were instructed to stay in position as Vince Fontaine gave the band their cue.
The familiar chords of "Blue Moon" pervaded the air. The singer approached the microphone and, as all of America leaned forward toward their television sets, he crooned "Red Moon! I saw you standing alone, without a dream in your heart, without a love of your own..."