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Ninjapug, Chapter 1:  "The Deadly Start of the Great Warrior Pugs!"
by Julian X  /  scripts  /  14 May 2008

TITLE SEQUENCE

 

The Ninjapug title sequence should consist of various shots of the grown Ninjapug jumping and killing people, sometimes savagely, with blood gushing.  The point here is that he is a ferocious ninja.  I imagine great use of speed lines, in the style of many Japanese animated shows.

 

It’s probably a good idea not to animate the title sequence until after a few episodes are complete, in order to make sure that Ninjapug’s motions in the title sequence are similar to how he is animated during the shows.  His motion should be very much that of a pug – he really is a dog, not a typical animated, personified, talking animal.  On the other hand, he’s dressed like a ninja, in black, and is killing people.

 

Every few seconds, after an image of violence, we get an image of Ninjapug doing something cute:  gobbling his food, wagging his curly tail, running to the camera and licking it, playing with his toys, etc.  At the end of the sequence, a circle comes from outside of the frame and centers him within it – much as in the fashion of Looney Tunes.  The logo appears over him, and he looks very cute.

 

Over this juxtaposition of violence and cuteness plays Japanese pop music.  The lyrics are translated as follows:  “Who is the pug who kills all of the evils?  Oooh, Ninjapug, oooh, Ninjapug!  What is like a divine wind who descends?  Oooh, Ninjapug, oooh, Ninjapug!  He is the hope of all Japan, a Chinese pug dog surpassing all other warriors!  Oooh, Ninjapug, oooh, Ninjapug!  Bow down to him and he may incline himself to spare you if you give him silk.  Oooh, Ninjapug, oooh, Ninjapug!  Ninjapug!”  Each refrain of “Oooh, Ninjapug, oooh, Ninjapug!” is the cute portion of the imagery, while the main lyrics play over scenes of horrific violence.

 

The animation style shouldn’t be realistic – it can’t be.  It would look too ridiculous.  I imagine big round white eyes, a very iconic and geometric style.  But he’s still obviously a pug – not anthropomorphized at all.

 

 

INT. PUG BEDROOM IN CHINA

 

Pugs lay lounging around on ornate silk pillows.  Some of the pugs are adults, but some are just puppies.  They are being hand-fed, fanned, and petted by various attendants.  Their life is clearly one of sumptuous luxury.

 

A man arrives, speaks some untranslated Chinese, and takes several pug puppies away.

 

 

EXT. ANCIENT CHINESE DOCKS

 

The man holding the pug puppies goes up the plank to board the ship, carrying them onboard.  One pug puppy looks back, possibly sadly, at the city being left behind.  This is the pug puppy who will become NINJAPUG.

 

The ship soon casts off.

 

 

EXT. ANCIENT CHINESE SHIP ON STORMY SEA – LATER

 

Lightning crashes.  The ship shakes.  Waves crash loudly, battering the ship.

 

 

INT. ANCIENT CHINESE SHIP ON STORMY SEA

 

A silken pug bed, filled with pug puppies, rocks with the ship.  The camera tilts back and forth.  The sound of the waves is audible.  A pug puppy falls out of the bed, looking cute as he does.

 

 

EXT. ANCIENT CHINESE SHIP ON STORMY SEA

 

The ship is tossed on the waves.  A powerful wave broadsides it, and it breaks apart.

 

Men spill out, floating amid the waves, as the broken ship sinks, leaving various debris in the water.

 

Some of the pug puppies are amid the debris, cutely dog-paddling as if robots amidst the sea’s tumult.  (If you’ve seen pugs swim, you know the robotic style with which they paddle – as if the motion is evolutionarily programmed, as if it’s a mode that turns on and then becomes involuntarily.)

 

 

EXT. JAPANESE SHORE – LATER

 

A middle-aged Japanese man, clad in a black robe like a monk, walks along the shore.  His name is ARUCHI.  He is clearly contemplating.

 

He looks down and sees a pug puppy lying on the beach.  This is the dog who will become Ninjapug.  He has seaweed on him and looks half drowned.

 

Aruchi kneels slowly and lifts up Ninjapug.  The old man looks at the pug’s wrinkled face, which clearly means something to him.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

A pug who is a dog!  By Mount Fugi, I cannot believe it.  I must take such a find home with me.

 

Aruchi carefully cradles the pug in his arms and proceeds to leave.

 

TITLE:  “Chapter 1:  The Deadly Start of the Great Warrior Pugs!”

 

 

EXT. BLACK NINJA CAMP – LATER

 

Aruchi arrives with the puppy in his arms.  We see various ninjas, clad in black, doing some exercises around the camp.

 

Aruchi walks to his house and enters with the pug.  There is a koi pond and a zen garden around the house.

 

 

INT. ARUCHI’S HOUSE

 

Aruchi lays the pug down on the floor, then prepares some hot water for a bath.

 

Aruchi brings the hot water to the comatose pug.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

I am sorry, most honored pug dog!  For I have been to China and know you to be royal, yet I have only this humble home with which to provide for you.

 

Aruchi gently lifts the pug and puts him in the bath, then proceeds to bathe the dog.  Slowly, the pug opens his adorable eyes.  He licks Aruchi’s hand in thanks.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

You’re welcome, my lord.

 

Aruchi continues to bathe the pug.

 

 

EXT. ARUCHI’S HOUSE – LATER

 

Aruchi is working on his zen garden, perhaps raking some stones.  Behind him, we see some of the black ninjas practicing jumping and punching.

 

Aruchi looks up and sees Ninjapug, still a puppy, sniffing the water on the edge of the koi pond.  The open door to Aruchi’s house is visible behind him and to our left, suggesting that he’s wandered out.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

I see you are feeling much improved.

 

Aruchi continues his work, but looks up occasionally to check on the pug.  Each time he looks up, the pug is thrusting his right paw out suddenly, as if he’s swatting at a fly or something.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Is something amiss with your paw?

 

Aruchi approaches Ninjapug and picks him up.  Ninjapug licks the man’s face.  He inspects Ninjapug’s right front paw, but nothing is wrong.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Your paw has fine appearance.  Was there something, perchance, to paw at water’s edge?

 

Aruchi notices that Ninjapug is straining to look over the human’s shoulder and is again doing the same thing with his right front paw.

 

Aruchi lifts the pug away to observe him doing this:  the pug repeating this motion, staring at something intently as he does.  Aruchi then looks over his shoulder at where the pug is staring.

 

It’s one of the black-clad ninjas, practicing punching some sort of wooden construction.

 

Aruchi looks back at the pug, who is clearly imitating the ninja.

 

Aruchi sets the pug down in the middle of the zen garden on the raked stones.  The dog continues to stand on all fours, pawing in imitation of the practicing ninja.

 

Fade to:

 

EXT. ARUCHI’S HOUSE – LATER

 

Ninjapug, now a bit older, stands in the snow in the zen garden, practicing as before.  Except now he is more clearly punching, not simply pawing.  His movements are still that of a dog, however – this isn’t anthropomorphized.  He then executes a jump combined with a punch.

 

Aruchi stands watching with KAIMUCHI, one of the clan elders.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

This pug is very much my protégé.  He learns more by himself than any of us humans.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Remarkable, I admit.  But Aruchi, he is only a dog!  He cannot be ninja!

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Master, this is no mere dog.  Royal blood courses through him.  His line is worshipped in China.  His face and tail reveal it.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

This is not China.  He does tricks.  If he can wield swords like a ninja warrior, I will put a costume on him myself.

 

Aruchi kneels beside the pug, who stops practicing.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Great pug, I do not know what brought you to me.  But you have a decision to choose your fate.  Do you want to be a ninja?  If you do, it will not be easy.  It must burn in your heart.  Do you, pug?  Do you want to be a ninja, little pug?

 

Ninjapug cocks his head sideways in the way that dogs do when they don’t understand and are trying to listen better.

 

NINJAPUG

(translated in subtitles from dog-like intonations)

Huh?

 

 

INT. ARUCHI’S HOUSE – LATER

 

Aruchi is slicing up a fish, preparing sushi.  Ninjapug jumps up and approaches.  Aruchi puts down the knife and pushes the pug back.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

No, my lord.  You like fish?  Let me finish preparing it for you.

 

Ninjapug persists, but Aruchi pushes him back again.  Ninjapug comes forward again.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Very well, my lord.  If you would rather dine on uncut fish, it is your royal prerogative.

 

Ninjapug ignores the sushi, going over to the knife instead.  He grasps it cutely, almost pathetically, between his front paws.

 

Then, in a sudden gesture, he throws it to the side, where it imbeds in the floor.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

I see.  Truly, you are a dedicated umbrella.

 

 

INT. ARUCHI’S HOUSE – LATER

 

Aruchi walks through the house.  A knife suddenly spins past him, imbedding itself into the wall near his face.

 

Aruchi turns to see Ninjapug, panting with his head slightly cocked, looking as if he’s smiling.  The room around him is filled with holes from various knife tosses.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Please be careful, my lord.

 

Aruchi walks over to a wall and takes down a Japanese short sword.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

I have a gift for you, my lord pug.

 

Aruchi brings the sword over to Ninjapug, kneeling before the dog and presenting it ritually.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

This was my grandfather’s short sword.  Now, it is yours, if you will have it.

 

NINJAPUG

(translated in subtitles from a bark)

I like it.

 

Ninjapug tries feebly to grasp it with his paws, then drags it off in his mouth like a dog with a new toy.

 

 

EXT. ARUCHI’S HOUSE – LATER

 

Ninjapug practices in Aruchi’s garden.  The dog jumps with the sword in his mouth.  He shakes his head like he’s killing a rat, violently side to side with enthusiasm.

 

We pull back and see both Aruchi and Kaimuchi watching.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

You said that you would make him a ninja if he could wield a sword.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

He does not wield sword.  He merely plays.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

He is royal.  He is a dog.  He is remarkable.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

When he can defeat a ninja in combat, then I will make him ninja myself.

 

 

EXT. NINJA COMPOUND – LATER

 

Ninjapug holds the sword in his mouth.  Facing him, in preparation for combat, is a generic ninja of the clan, in a black uniform.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

It was not easy to convince this man to face your little pet dog.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

I understand, master.  But as you have seen, this is no normal dog.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

We see.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

And if he wins, you will fulfill your promise?

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

I will put a uniform on him myself.  In front of everyone.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Then let us start the battle.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Begin!

 

The generic ninja adopts a stance and approaches Ninjapug.  Ninjapug does not respond.

 

The generic ninja approaches further.  Ninjapug does not respond, but merely stands looking cute with the sword in his mouth.

 

The generic ninja stabs downward at Ninjapug, who runs between the ninja’s legs.  The ninja spins around, but Ninjapug slashes the tendon on one of his legs.

 

The ninja falls and suddenly Ninjapug is at his throat, holding the sword in position to deliver the killing stroke.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

I cannot believe it.

 

Ninjapug lets the sword drop from his mouth and barks at the generic ninja he has beaten.

 

NINJAPUG

(translated in subtitles from a bark)

You forgot to bow before the match!  I do not expect such dishonor in the future.  Now let’s chase birds!

 

The generic ninja wipes the pug’s slobber off his face.

 

 

EXT. NINJA COMPOUND – LATER

 

At a ceremony, Ninjapug sits beside Aruchi.  All the clan’s ninja stand watching, though not in any formal formation.  We see that one has his leg’s tendon bandaged.

 

Kaimuchi unfolds a pug-sized black ninja uniform and approaches Ninjapug.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

I did not want to believe it.  But you have proven yourself a true ninja.  We now accept you as a member of our honored clan.

 

Kaimuchi puts the uniform on the dog, then steps back.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Arise, Ninjapug!

 

Ninjapug stands and the camera zooms dramatically  We see Ninjapug as such for the first time – looking cute in his costume.

 

Kaimuchi speaks to everyone assembled.

 

KAIMUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

Anyone who does not accept this pug will answer to me!

 

 

INT. ARUCHI’S HOUSE – LATER

 

Aruchi serves Ninjapug a bowl of ramen / saimin and some sushi.  Ninjapug, in uniform, begins gobbling it enthusiastically, looking very cute as he does.  He keeps his short sword nearby him at all times.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

You know, my lord, that I never had any children.  I have no son to take my name.  In my time, I was a great ninja from a great line.  Now, I am the clan’s old man.

 

Aruchi kneels and pets the pug as he eats.

 

ARUCHI

(translated in subtitles from Japanese)

You are my son, Ninjapug.  My family’s honor continues in you.

 

Ninjapug keeps gobbling.

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Screenplays by Julian Darius:
Adventures in Celebrity Biography
Transgression
Dog Viagra
The Meaning of Life (part 1 of 2)
The Meaning of Life (part 2 of 2)
Corrupt (part 1 of 2)
Corrupt (part 2 of 2)
Ninjapug, Chapter 1:  "The Deadly Start of the Great Warrior Pugs!"
Ninjapug, Chapter 2:  "The Sad Reconnaissance of the Other!"