For the holiday season this past winter, we at Real View Mirror really wanted to do a cheesy twist on a Christmas Special. As the co-host and resident writer of the show, it was my duty to cobble together some semblance of a story for this.
I’m not really sure when we decided it would be a murder mystery, but it was definitely my idea (mostly because Kuhan had no ideas what to do for the holiday special). I wrote some of this over Thanksgiving Break while we were still doing Real View Daily, and so parts of this were written in the middle of the desert or in Vegas. The structure on this script isn’t as tight as it is on the rest of my work, as I worked closely with Kuhan as far as pacing and editing went.
Please enjoy “Real View Christmas: Murder on the Slopes of Utah.” Alternatively, you could listen along to it at this link.
- Joe – a private investigator and podcaster
- Naaim – a podcaster and private investigator
- Nick – professional fan of things
- Caleb – angry gay fan
- Sal – stuck in the woods
- Colton – ancient fanboy
- OMGneji – not a sidekick
- Shannon – snowboarder and possibly captain america
- Zack – Naaim’s ride
- Roberto – podcaster
- Barry Obams – possibly the president
- Stan Lee – comic writer lo
- Kal Penn – actor and white house cabinet member
- Joey C – 90s radio host
- MC Sangoku – 90s radio host
- DJ Northstar – 90s radio host
- Barry Allen – police forensics investigator
DJ Northstar: I…can see the light! It’s cold! I can’t feel my toes! Rosebud! Alas, Poor Yorick. I knew him, Horatio. (Improv Northstar dying slowly and painfully)
Dear Insert AKA Naaim Here,
I would be privileged if you would join me at the Snowbird in Utah ski lodge in scenic Denver, Colorado (incidentally, owned by one of Sal’s distant Jewish uncles) for a weekend of podcasting, entertainment, and celebration. The holidays are a time to be in good company, and you are the best company I can imagine (actually bothering to open this invitation).
See you there,
Naaim Siddiqi aka Kuhan
Kuhan’s friends have just gathered at the Snowbird in Utah in Denver, Colorado as instructed. Caleb and Sal have just arrived. Let’s see what they’re up to!
Caleb: I’ve gotta say Sal, I’m really looking forward to learning how to ski. It’s the new gay holiday sport, and I simply must learn in order to fit in come springtime.
Sal: You know, I’m pretty sure it’s been the gay holiday sport in the past, and it’s just recurring now.
Caleb: Stick to the script, asshole.
Sal: Yeah, anything to get out of the woods. The other day I think I saw Meryl Streep eat a squirrel.
Caleb: Definitely. Let’s get checked in so we can get these bags into our room.
*some thudding noises, and the sound of a car’s trunk being slammed*
Sal: Wait, Caleb, I think I see something. It’s kind of bloody.
Caleb: Is that a corpse?
Sal: Dear Jewish god, I think it is.
Joe: NOBODY TOUCH ANYTHING! I’m here to investigate the murder.
Caleb: Josie? Wait, Kuhan didn’t invite you to go skiing?
Joe: Oh, I’m here because Kuhan invited me; I wouldn’t miss ski archery for the world. But I’m also here to investigate the murder. Can you gentlemen do me a favor? I need you to gather everyone from this list and get them into the East Wing.
Caleb: What about the West Wing?
Joe: I’m not Aaron Sorkin; Figure it out. I have some questions to prepare for this investigation.
The East Wing
Joe: First up, I’m going to read off this list and when you hear your name I want you to say ‘here.’
- Caleb – “Here”
- Sal – “Here”
- Colton – “Here, YOU FUCKER!”
- Neji – “Here”
- Nick – no response
- Anne of Geek and Sundry – no response
- Shannon – “Here”
- Zack – no response
- Roberto Villegas – “Here”
- Barry Obams – “uh, Here”
- Stan Lee – “HERE! I’M STAN LEE.”
- Kal Penn – “Hi guys I’m Kal Penn. I’m here. I have to go now.”
Joe: Right, now that I know who’s here, I’ve gathered you all here to talk to you about the death of DJ Northstar.
Caleb: Is that the guy we found dead in the snow, or are you talking about an X-Man?
Joe: That’s not what I…wait, where’s everyone else? This is only like, half the guest list.
Sal: It’s everyone we could find.
Shannon: There’s a guest list? Naaim was that organized?
Joe: Ahahaha…no…I just assumed who would be here based on the six people who talk to Naaim. And also Vincent Villegas. But seriously guys, I have reason to believe that DJ Northstar’s killer is in this very room right now. Now, I’m going to split you all into groups and ask some individual questions. First up is Caleb and Sal.
Joe: So, Caleb, why did you accept Kuhan’s invitation to go skiing?
Caleb: Skiing has become the new gay holiday sport that I must learn – in order to fit in come springtime.
Joe: And Sal?
Sal: Caleb needed a ride.
Joe: …Right. And you two just got here when I arrived at the crime scene, correct?
Sal: That’s right.
Joe: Hm…Northstar was already dead at that point, so I’m going to let you guys go for now. Don’t skip town.
Joe: Shannon…you’re here and Naaim isn’t?
Shannon: It’s not really a surprise.
Joe: To be fair, it takes skill to accidentally bail on your own skiing retreat. Aside from spending time with Naaim, what are your reasons for accepting the invitation to the ski resort?
Shannon: I like to snowboard?
Joe: Right. You’re free to go; don’t skip town.
Joe: Colton and Neji. How are you two?
Colton: Well, I’m alive…for now.
Neji: I’m great!
Joe: So, Naaim invited you two here because we’re going to be recording the PSPR Christmas Special to be released in June of 2015. Any other reasons you accepted the invitation?
Colton: A tornado ate my parents and I had to move out.
Neji: Colton needed a ride. But also, a tornado ate the entire state of Oklahoma and we had to move out.
Joe: …Well, I don’t see either of you as capable of killing a Canadian, so you’re free to go. Don’t skip town.
Joe: Roberto Villegas…Is this our first time speaking?
Roberto: I think so?
Joe: Ah. Well allow me to introduce myself. Joe Cuevas. Leverage and Associates Consulting. Massive fan of My So-Called 8-Bit Life. I’ve listened to exactly three episodes. Incidentally, Kuhan was on every one of them.
Roberto: I’m glad to hear that?
Joe: So what are your reasons for accepting Kuhan’s invitation to the ski resort?
Roberto: He said he wanted to do an episode of ‘My So-Called 8-Bit Life,’ and so I agreed.
Joe: Right. I’ll be in touch if I need anything, just don’t skip town.
Colton: Hello? HELLO? Neji, is that you? Naaim? Jose? *Colton gasps a little, stabbed in the back*
Colton: FUCK! I had so much more to live for! The next Super Sentai! Multiversity! ROSEBUD!
*frantic footsteps. The murderer exits, and Neji enters.*
Neji: Colton? COLTON? CRAP, COLTON’S DEAD.
Joe: –and that’s why I don’t reasonably see Q as simply a—HOLY CRAP COLTON’S DEAD. Neji, did you do this?
Neji: What? No!
Joe: Are you suuuure?
Neji: YES! Why would I kill Colton? I invited him to my birthday.
Joe: Right, well don’t touch anything. I need you to call somebody, and—
*Joe’s ringtone starts playing*
Joe: Crap. I have to take this. Uh, here, call this phone number. I know a guy who can test this crime scene for evidence. His name is Barry Allen, and he—
Barry: My name is Barry Allen, and I AM THE FASTEST MAN ALIVE.
Joe: …Is very good at anticipating phone calls. Barry, check the scene. I’ve got a place to be.
With the further complication of Colton’s demise, Joe is unceremoniously carted out to the front of the Snowbird Inn before he can investigate Colton’s death.
Naaim: I’m finally here, guys!
Joe: Hey Naaim!
Shannon: Hi sweetie!
Naaim: Well, it’s hard to get from Missouri to Colorado without a car.
Zack: Hey guys. Naaim needed a ride.
Joe: Hey, Naaim, can I talk to you really quickly?
Naaim: Sure, what’s up? Wait, why the fuck are you wearing a trenchcoat? Are you cosplaying Castiel? God dammit Joe, I said NO WEIRDLY REFERENTIAL COSPLAY.
At this very moment, Kuhan puts on a trenchcoat and straightens his tie, dressing as John Constantine.
Joe: Not important. So, uh. Northstar is dead.
Naaim: The Alpha Flight Member?
Joe: I have reason to believe his killer is responsible for the demise of Colton, too.
Naaim: Wait, DJ Northstar isn’t just Colton pretending to be a chainsmoker?
Shannon: Uh, guys? I turned around for a few minutes to talk to Cyd, and then when I looked back Zack was dead.
Naaim: Well shit. I guess I have to investigate the mysterious string of murders surrounding my Christmas getaway. THANKS, JOE.
Joe: Welcome to Dresden Investigations?
At this point, Nick and his coworker, Anne, arrive at the Ski Resort. Joe and Kuhan aka Naaim are out front anyway, and go to greet their fellow podcaster.
Joe: Hey Nick! What’s up?
Nick: Nothing much. Naaim invited me so I figured I may as well scout the Rockies.
Naaim: …do you mean the team or the place?
Nick: Yes…Oh, I actually do mean both. I’m checking out the team for Rain Delay–
Joe: (which I am in no way paid to promote)
Nick: and Geek and Sundry is doing a show here in Colorado.
Anne: Yeah, we’re location scouting.
Joe: Wait, do you know Felicia? What’s Nick’s favorite flavor of pizza? What sort of pizza does Felicia like? Also, can I come in next Friday?
Nick: Wait, who told you about Pizza Friday?
Naaim: Also, why are you here too?
Anne: Nick needed a ride.
Joe: Right. Okay then. Oh, Nick, did you hear? DJ Northstar got murdered.
Nick: …The fictional X-Men character?
Joe: What? No. I mean the actual person who did a nineties version of a show Naaim and I do.
Nick: …You guys aren’t going to drag me into some weird detective cosplay insanity, are you?
Naaim: What? No! That’s our job.
Joe: Claimed it. Alias Investigations.
Naaim (overlapping): X-Factor Investigations.
Naaim (overlapping): Alias Investigations.
Joe (overlapping): X-Factor Investigations.
Nick: I think you guys need to coordinate that more. I’m gonna go check in. See you at Coors Field later Naaim?
Joe: Wait, I don’t get to go with you guys to the baseball stadium?
Naaim: No. Joe, you don’t even watch baseball.
Joe: I’d take you to a Sharks game.
Naaim: That’s not even relevant!
Joe: Wow, that little faith in the Blues, huh?
Naaim: Is that even a real team?
God dammit, Kuhan! Him and Joe are gonna go on like that for a while. Let’s follow Nick for a bit.
Nick: Right, well, it looks like Northstar, a guy named Colton who looks and sounds exactly like Northstar, and a guy named Zack are all dead. History check I guess?
MC Sangoku: Hello? Testing, one two three.
Nick: Who are you? I thought the narrator was a guy named Frankie?
MC Sangoku: Hello, Nick, and welcome to Dungeon Radio! I’m your DM, MC Sangoku. I may or may not have hacked into the narrator’s radio frequency. What did you get on your insight check?
Nick: Dammit, I hate dice games. *rolls 1d20* <15>
- 1 – You are not sufficiently convinced anyone has died. Also, you trip and fall.
- 2-8 – These people have, in fact, died. Oh, by the way, you failed your insight check.
- 9-16 – These people have died and two of them look alike.
- 16-19 – There does not appear to be any connection between the deaths.
- 20 – These deaths have no connection. Also, you are reasonably sure of who the killer may or may not be.
Nick: Right. I go to the scene of Zack’s death. Perception check? <1>
- 1 – What body? Also, you trip and fall.
- 2-9 – You are not convinced that is a real body.
- 10-15 – That’s a body, alright.
- 16-19 – That is a body, and you notice tire tracks.
- 20 – There is a body, you notice tire tracks, and also the car which left them.
Nick: Interesting. Okay, so where is Northstar’s corpse? One last perception check. <20>
MC Sangoku: You go to the site of Northstar’s body. Roll. *rolls 1d20*
- 1 – That is not an X-Men character. Also, you trip and fall.
- 2-7 – You do not believe that is a corpse. You are sufficiently convinced that instead, it is a lifelike wax sculpture.
- 8-14 – The corpse exists.
- 15-19 – The corpse exists and smells faintly of off-brand drugs.
- 20 – The corpse exists and smells of off-brand drugs. You know who his dealer is.
Alright, I’m back. I don’t get this Dungeons and Dragons bullshit. Let’s go see what Kuhan and Joe are up to.
Joe: Wait, eunuch and neckbeard? You guys are here too?
JuRY: We’re leaving! It’s a murderpalooza in there!
shwood: Die in a fire; see you next Tuesday!
Naaim: I have no idea what that was about.
Joe: Okay, Naaim, I have an idea.
Joe: Well, the first victim was DJ Northstar, right? He’s never been seen without his co-hosts MC Sangoku and Joey C.
Naaim: …Well, he’s also never been seen in the same room as Colton, but go on.
Joe: Well, I was looking over who checked into the hotel, and Sangoku and Joey C checked into the Snowbird earlier this week, along with DJ Northstar.
Naaim: And you’re sure that these people aren’t just nineties versions of us?
Joe: Well, if they aren’t, then they’d have information about DJ Northstar’s last couple of days, wouldn’t they?
Naaim: Well, I suppose it wouldn’t hurt. Let’s go.
Kuhan and Joe ascend to the room that Sangoku and Joey C are checked into. Naaim raps on the door.
Naaim: *freestyle raps*
…Raps. As in knocks.
MC Sangoku: Uh, hello?
Naaim: Holy fuck you’re real.
Joey C: Hey! If it ain’t our millennial counterparts, duuude.
Naaim: Do you guys know where Northstar went?
Joey C: The X-Man?
Joe: No, you idiot. Your chainsmoking pothead co-host.
MC Sangoku: Ah, him. Yeah, no idea.
Naaim: Any idea when the last time you saw him was?
Joey C: Well, he was gonna go skiing. And he never came back so we assumed he found like a dealer in Colorado or something.
Well, I’m bored again. Let’s go check on what Nick’s been doing.
…Shit, is Nick dead? Holy shit. Nick is dead. I miss EVERYTHING. Okay, I’m not missing anything from here-on out. I’m going to wait for Joe and aka Naaim to show up.
…Okay, so an hour and thirteen minutes later…Joe and aka Kuhan show up dressed as…the Blue Beetle and Booster Gold? WHAT THE FUCK? WHEN DID YOU GUYS CHANGE CLOTHES?
Naaim: Dude, it’s been like an hour. Lots of stuff happened.
Joe: Who are you talking to?
Naaim: Nobody! Holy shit, Nick is dead! How the fuck are we supposed to get to the bottom of this if we can’t stop people from dying?
Joe: Naaim, calm down. It’s okay.
Naaim: It’s not okay, Joe! This is my Christmas party! I’m going outside to catch some fresh air; maybe that’ll help me put the clues together.
Musical Number! (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-836TtoF_5I)
Clue by clue, piecing it together
Crime by crime, only way to tear the scene apart
Evidence all makes a contribution
Assuming little details, there’s a start
Pretending that you’re psychic’s no solution
Regardless of your elocution
piecing it together, that’s what counts!
Scene by scene, piecing it together
Every clue, hoping this case doesn’t fall apart
Not doing this just for the validation
Of podcasting as a fine art
Accounting for room accommodations…
But what about asset liquidation?
Claiming to be psychic’s no solution
Because you suck at elocution
The only way to tear this scene apart
Is piecing it together, clue by clue
Crime by crime
Scene by scene by scene by scene
is how we’ll solve all these crimes!
That was fuckin’ weird, yo. You know, we haven’t checked up on Caleb or Sal for a while. What’s up with them?
Caleb enters the room. Sal is sprawled across the bed, red smeared across his chest.
Caleb: Hey Sal! I got the rat poison to handle the rat infestation in this crappy hotel Kuhan rented! Sal? SAL? OH GOD, SAL IS DEAD! I’M SORRY I INSULTED YOUR DISTANT JEWISH UNCLE’S INN. I DIDN’T MEAN IT!
Caleb drinks the rat poison
Caleb: There! I drank the rat poison! Now we can be together in death!
Sal wakes up
Sal: Huh? Oh, hey Caleb. I got a sandwich downstairs but smeared ketchup all over my shirt, so I went upstairs to change but wound up taking a nap instead. Did you get the rat poison?
Caleb: Uh, yeah, funny story abou–*dies* OH I AM SLAIN
Sal: Caleb? CALEB? SHIT, CALEB IS DEAD! GOODBYE, CRUEL WORLD!
Sal fumbles around, eventually finding a plastic butter knife.
Sal: Eh, it’ll have to do. GOODBYE CRUEL WORLD! *he dies* OH I AM SLAIN
Enter Roberto. Flourish.
Roberto: Crap. Caleb and Sal are already dead.
Roberto exits, pursued by a bear.
Joe: So, have you guys heard anything about Northstar?
Carol Corps 1: The X-Man?
Joe: No, he does like a nineties radio show or something.
Carol Corps 2: Ah, then no. Say, have you read Captain Marvel #10 yet?
Joe: Of course I have! It’s so great! I like the part when—
The Carol Corps members have a conversation…without Joe.
Carol Corps 1: I like the part where Lieutenant Trouble tells her story and how she even has her own cat!
Carol Corps 2: That was so cool! It’s great that Kelly Sue understands that girls who see Captain Marvel will want to be like her; Carol is a great role model!
Joe: I thought it was cool when–
Charlie: And how Jessica’s dynamic with Carol was explored a little bit further?
Joe: Well I really liked that part when
Naaim: Come on Joe, we don’t have time for this. Wait, was that the Carol Corps?
Joe: Yeah, we have a squadron up here in Colorado because of how close it is to the Air Force Academy. That’s the Squadron Commander and the XO.
Naaim: Ah, that makes sense.
Frank: Kuhan is mugging but nobody can see it because this a radio play.
Naaim and Joe return to the site of Colton’s apparent death to see if Barry Allen ([faintly, in the background] THE FASTEST MAN ALIVE) has finished his forensic investigation. Barry is dead, and Colton’s body is missing.
Joe: Barry, why are you sleeping on the job?
Naaim: Yeah! …Holy crap, Barry Allen’s dead! And he’s dressed as the Flash for some reason?
Joe: He might have a pulse. I can’t tell because he’s vibrating too quickly.
Naaim: What happens when speedsters go into cardiac arrest?
Joe: Uh, he’s stopped vibrating and he doesn’t have a heartbeat. Does that mean he’s dead?
Naaim: Yes, Joe. When people’s hearts stop beating they are usually dead. Crap Barry Allen’s dead! How will we ever know how Colton died!
…Wait, when we were talking with Nick, did you say ‘flavor of pizza?’
Joe: There’s only one person who could’ve done this. The scion of a rival comics company…
Naaim: Stan Lee of Marvel Comics?
Joe: Actually, I was thinking of Rob Liefeld, of Image Comics, but your idea’s better, since Stan is actually here.
And so Joe goes to confront Stan Lee. Naaim goes with him, and they find Stan Lee, Barry Obams, and Kal Penn at the hotel bar, called Puzzles.
Joe: Stan Lee! J’Accuse!
Stan: Jack Cubes? That’s a great name for the secret identity of my new superhero Cheese Man! Thanks, Scott!
Joe: My name is Scott Aukerman, and this is my partner Adam Scott!
Naaim: That’s right! I was in Parks and Recreation! Umm… Are We Having Fun Yet?
Joe: I know you killed DJ Northstar because he has the same name as a character from Marvel Comics! And then Barry Allen, because he’s from DC! And then Colton’s there too…haven’t worked out where that fits in. Also Zack because he liked Spider-Man too much I guess?
Barry Obams: I always liked that Allen kid. I hear he’s the fastest man alive.
Naaim: Shut up, Barry.
Joe: And you made Kal Penn and Mr. President accomplices to this string of murders!
Naaim: His name’s Barry Obams and he may or may not be the president sometimes.
Kal: Hi I’m Kal Penn. We’ve been at the bar the whole time; you can check the security camera footage. Alright, I have to go now.
Barry Obams: Kal Penn is my Secretary of Quinceneras. You can take his word for it.
Stan: That gives me an idea for a superhero! Quincenerawomanman!
Joe: Wait, but since everyone else is dead or uninvolved that means…
Naaim: The killer must be…Roberto Villegas? That doesn’t make any sense.
Joe: It makes perfect sense! He wants to take us out for doing a bad homage to 8-Bit Life!
Naaim: Hey, that episode wasn’t –that- bad. You weren’t even on it.
Joe: Exactly! That’s why it was bad.
Naaim: Whatever, let’s go talk to him.
Joe: We know you killed Northstar and everyone else!
Naaim: Joe thinks you definitely killed Northstar and maybe other people like Caleb and Sal!
Roberto: No, you guys weren’t paying attention to ANYTHING. The deaths were all unrelated. Northstar died of smoking complications, Zack got run over by a car pulling out, Nick got killed by a really shitty dice roll and rocks fell on him, Caleb and Sal killed each other, and Barry Allen had a heart attack due to his hyper-fast metabolism. Like, his heart literally exploded. It was really just bad luck. I was conducting my own investigation on the side, and discovered EVERYTHING.
Naaim: That actually makes sense. Joe, let’s take these trenchcoats off.
So what’s the moral of the Christmas story? It’s ‘don’t pretend to be an asshole in a trenchcoat when you can be yourself.’ You see, Naaim and Joe didn’t solve the case, because they were pretending to be John Constantine and Castiel, until they were the Blue Beetle and Booster Gold? Roberto was himself the entire time, and he found out that all of the deaths were unconnected. Nick might have, too, but he died, so we’ll never know.
…Wait, what happened to Colton’s corpse?
MC Sangoku: Heeeellllooooo everybody! Live from the Snowbird in Utah in scenic Denver, Colorado because we got deported from Los Angeles, it’s Sentai Radio! On 105.9 THE CAT!
Joey C: I don’t think we can legally say that anymore, duuude.
MC Sangoku: Joining me, as always, is my faithful co-host, Joey C! How’s it goin’, Joey?
Joey C: It’s snowing, maaan. I don’t get it.
MC Sangoku: Also joining us, as always, is DJ Northstar! Back from the dead. How was the afterlife, Northstar?
Colton: Guys, I’m not DJ Northstar. I don’t want to be here. My name is Colton Clayton. I’m thankful that you guys saved me from a near-death experience and dressed my wounds and everything, but Sentai Radio is DEAD! Guys? GUUUUYS?
*fade out to Keep it Going*
- Joe Cuevas as Himself.
- Kuhan AKA Naaim Siddiqi as Kuhan as Himself.
- Nick Appelbaum as Himself.
- Anne Jennings as Nick’s coworker.
- Caleb as Himself.
- Sal as Himself.
- Colton Clayton as Dead Asshole.
- OMG Neji as Himself.
- Shannon Sifrig as Herself.
- Support Squadron Sparklefist as the Carol Corps
- Zackery Allen Brinkley as Kuhan’s Ride.
- Roberto Villegas as vincent404.
- Brian Brushwood as shwood.
- Justin Robert Young as JuRY.
- Barry Obams as Himself.
- Stan Lee as Himself.
- Kal Penn as Himself.
- Joey C as Himself.
- MC Sangoku as Himself.
- DJ Northstar as Dying Asshole.
- and Introducing… Grant Gustin as Barry Allen.
I’ve been your narrator, Frankie Mateo.
Real View Mirror hopes you have enjoyed this presentation.
Real View Christmas: Murder on the Slopes of Utah has been a production of Real View Mirror and iamkuhan.com.