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He Aint Heavy : Synopsis

Devon has just turned seventeen. He has it all, looks, personality, confidence, captain of the football team. His older brother in Jeremy (Emy) who is mentally challenged with the mind of a seven year old. Devon has had to look after Emy as far back as he can remember. They both live with their mother, with the occasional visit from their good-for-nothing father. One day Devon's perfect life comes crashing down when he is involved in a car accident and ends up in a wheelchair. Now the roles are reversed, Emy must look after Devon. This is a story about life, relationships, it's about turmoil and change, but most of all it's about brothers.


He aint Heavy

DEVON
Emy, help me get out of this thing before dad gets here.
	(trying to get out)

JEREMY
Where are you going?

DEVON
Help me into the bench, quick before mom comes out. 

JEREMY
No. . Stay in the chair Devon. . .you have to stay in the 
chair. .

DEVON
I donít want dad seeing me like this. . .Emy, help me. . . 

Jeremy goes over and helps Devon to get into the picnic 
bench.

JEREMY
Youíre not supposed to. . . .careful. 

DEVON
Easy. . . .
	(he makes it onto the bench.)
ou. .  . Christ that hurt. 

Jeremy sits next to him and starts rocking because heís 
upset. 

JEREMY
Devon hurt. . Devon hurt. . .

DEVON
Okay Emy, Iím alright. . . Iím alright. . 
	(trying to settle him down)
Letís see that DVD. . 
. 
Jeremy stops rocking and hands him the DVD. The gate opens 
and Gary enters. Jeremy takes the DVD and goes over to him.

GARY
Hey, now thereís my boys. 

JEREMY
	(Getís up, showing him the DVD)
Look dad, itís a new DVD. 

GARY
	(Dismissing him)
Yeah. . 

Gary walks around Jeremy and goes straight to Devon.

DEVON
Hey dad.

GARY
	(Placing his hand on his shoulder)
Look at you, out of that chair and sitting around. Youíre 
looking good man. .  .a darn site better than when you were 
in the hospital, thatís for sure. 

DEVON
Iím doing okay Dad.

Jeremy goes over to Gary again.

JEREMY
	(Talking about the DVD)
It was just released yesterday. 

GARY
	(To Devon)
Can you stand yet?

DEVON
Emy has a new DVD dad.

GARY
Oh, yeah. . 
	(taking it from him)
Now, what you want to do go wasting your money on that for, 
itís not even a good movie. 

JEREMY
Itís a remake of the original from nineteen sixty-four 
staring. . . 

GARY
	(Ignoring Jeremy, speaking to Devon)
Have your friends been over to see you?

DEVON
Just Woody, he left a few minutes ago. He came over in a 
wheelchair, got mom all crazy.

GARY
Heís a dick. 

JEREMY
I got the original last year, it was on sale at. . . 

GARY
You do? Great, I like the original, I got an idea Jerry, 
why donít you go inside and find it and put it on, Iíll 
come in, in a few minutes and watch it with you?

JEREMY
	(Excitedly)
Yeah, Iíll go find it, put it on. . . you come in and 
watch it with me. . .Devon too. 

Jeremy goes inside.

GARY
Iíll be there before you can shake a leg at it. 
	(Back to Devon)
Peace at last! So, youíre doing well?

DEVON
Yeah, but sitting around here all day, Iím bored to 
death.

GARY
Bored! Why didnít you call me man, you could have come 
to the racetrack with me last night?

DEVON
I did call you, you said you were busy. 

GARY
Did you? Oh yeah, come to think of it I had to meet a 
business partner there, so it probably wouldnít have 
worked out anyway. Still, come on lets go now. Where do 
you want to go?

DEVON
I canít go anywhere right now.

GARY
Sure you can, come on. . Look, if I want to spend time 
with my son I should be allowed, right! 

He goes over and brings the wheelchair to him.

DEVON
Dad! Iím kind of tired right now, besides momís made 
dinner. 

GARY
She wont mind, 
	(He lefts him into the chair)
Here we go. . . and donít you worry yourself about this 
chair, youíll be rid of this in a few months and back to 
scoring touchdown for the Packers before the end of the 
school year.

DEVON
I donít think Iíll be able to. . 

GARY
Sure you will, man, Iím counting on it. 

Devon looks guilty. Bonnie comes out.

BONNIE
What are you doing?

GARY
Thatís a nice welcome from the woman who shared my 
matrimonial bed.

BONNIE
A moment of weakness.

GARY
Eight years?

BONNIE
Iím a slow learner, and besides I wasnít the only woman 
using OUR matrimonial bed remember. 

GARY
Thatís it, kick me in the balls when Iím most vulnerable. 
Iím taking Devon out with me for a while.

BONNIE
Gary, Iíve made dinner. 

GARY
Itíll keep. 
	(going over to her)
The lads bored okay, itíll do him good to get away for a 
while. Donít worry Iíll bring him back in one piece. 

BONNIE
Devon, are you alright to. . . 

DEVON
	(Frustrated) 
Yeah, Iím not a kid mom, okay. 

GARY
Donít sweat over this Bon, a bit of father son bonding. . 
we wont be long. 

BONNIE
And what about your other son, will there be any boding 
going on there too? 

GARY
Oh, youíll explain things to him wont you Bon? 

BONNIE
Oh no, youíre not getting away that easy! You can tell 
him. . . 
	(Going inside she calls Jeremy)
Emy!

GARY
Come on, Iíll get you in the car and come back. 

They exit. Jeremy comes into the yard. He looks around and 
stands at the gate. The car is heard pulling away.  

BLACKOUT. 

Scene 8
Scene opens later that night. Jerry is still in the yard 
sitting at the bench. The gate opens and Garry and Devon 
enter.

GARY
I think itíll work out really well Dev, and I know your 
mom. . .

JERRY
Hello Dad, did you have a good time Devon?

GARY
You still here?

DEVON
I went to see dadís new apartment, heís moving in a 
couple of weeks itís great.

Bonnie comes out.

BONNIE
Itís late Gary, you should have called. You look tired 
Devon.

GARY
Ah, heís fine. We had a good time eh lad?

DEVON
Yeah Dad, we did. 

BONNIE
Emy, take your brother inside for me please. 

GARY
Night son, donít forget what I told ya about those leg 
exercises. 

DEVON
Yeah dad, night.

Bonnie scowls at Gary.

GARY
Ah, thereís that look, Iíve missed that look. 

BONNIE
Iím trying to get him into a routine. Heís recovering 
from a very serious accident. 

GARY
I know that? Listen Bon, sit down, I want to ask you 
something..

BONNIE
Oh no, I always get nervous with the ďsit down I want 
to ask you something, routine.Ē 

GARY
You donít know what it is yet.

BONNIE
I donít have to, the answers NO. 

GARY
Give me a break. Itís about Devon. 

BONNIE
Devon?

GARY
My son.

BONNIE
ONE of your sonís Gary. 

GARY
Just listen will ya. Iím moving to my new apartment in 
two weeks and well, I want him to come and live with me. 

Bonnie stares at him.

GARY (CONTíD)
I know I havenít always been there for him but things are 
going to be different from now on. Seeing him lying there 
in the hospital, helpless. . it put it all into perspective 
for me. It made me realize, we almost lost him. I know I 
can help him Bon, I want to try to be the dad I know I can be.. . . . 

Bonnie continues to stare at him. 

GARY (CONTíD)
Well, what do you think?

BONNIE
You done?

GARY
Yeah.

BONNIE
No, 
	(Getting up)
anything else.

GARY
Thatís it, NO, no discussion?

BONNIE
Thereís nothing more to say Gary, the answers no, we can 
discuss it for the next month if you like but the answer 
will always be no. 

GARY
I wont mention it again.

BONNIE
Good.

GARY
But Devon might.

BONNIE
You didnít. . . .you did didnít you? You slimy piece of 
shit! You talked about this with our son before you talked 
to me about it. Why did. . . . 

GARY
Of course I did, I had to ask him if he wanted. . .

BONNIE
Have you given this any thought at all? The boys in a 
wheelchair, he has to be cared for day and night. He canít 
do anything for himself. He goes to physiotherapy three 
times a week. 

GARY
I know, but heíll be starting back to school next week and 
the physioís not going to be for ever, once he gets back 
on his feet. . . 

BONNIE
And what if he doesnít? 

GARY
He will.

BONNIE
WHAT IF HE DOESNíT?

GARY
	(Thinking)
Then thatís something weíll have to live with. Listen, I 
know you think Iím a complete moron, but I am perfectly 
capable of looking after my son, or at least as capable 
as you are. 

BONNIE
Say what you like Gary, but donít EVER compare your 
parenting skills to mine! What would you know about 
being a parent? Your total parenting experience 
consists of the occasional, and I say occasional to be 
as fair as possible, half hour visit with your sons 
every blue moon. 

GARY
What are you talking about? I take Devon out as often as 
I can.

BONNIE
And Jeremy? Or did you forget about your OTHER son? You do 
have two sons Gary. Does Emy come to live with his father 
too? 

GARY
You know I canít. . . .

BONNIE
Canít what? 

GARY
We canít upset Jerry like that, taking him away from his 
home. You know how close he is to you, Jerry and I. . . we 
just. . .

BONNIE
Oh, I know. I remember the look on your face when the 
doctor told us he was autistic. That look never left you 
Gary. 

GARY
I donít want to go there again Bon, that has nothing to do 
with Devon coming to live with me.

BONNIE
There! Thatís the reason right there why I know Iím right 
when I say what a terrible mistake it would be because it 
has EVERYTHING to do with it. When things donít go according 
to plan you give up. When things get too heavy you run away 
and bury your head. 

GARY
I donít bury my head. 

BONNIE
How can you take on the care of a teenager in a 
wheelchair when you canít commit to anything? You canít 
keep a job, an apartment, you certainly canít commit to 
a relationship. Commitment Gary, youíre afraid of it. 

GARY
It wasnít me who left this marriage, YOU threw ME out 
remember. 

BONNIE
You were screwing your best friends fiancť. 

GARY
Tammy was screwing me. Sheís a psychologist Bon, she. . .
did things to my mind, hypnotized me or something, I had 
no control.

BONNIE
Sheís an animal psychologist you moron.

GARY
	(A feeble attempt to be funny)
She is? That explains why I stopped sniffing the cats 
butt after that. 

BONNIE
Pity it didnít stop you sniffing around other butts too, 
like Pauline. 

GARY
You and me had finished at that point.

BONNIE
Er. . .

GARY
In my mind, if not physically, you and me had finished. 
This WILL work Bon, itíll be good for him and before you 
know it heíll be up on his feet and running around this 
yard. 

BONNIE
And thatís another thing, I hope this is not some pathetic 
attempt on your part to CURE him because you have to realize 
heís in the best care he can have at that clinic and I donít 
want you interfering with it. 

GARY
I know he is, but itís normal to want to see him walk again 
isnít it? I want to take Devon to live with me. . .and he 
wants to come. 

BONNIE
He wants to come?

GARY
Ask him, go on, ask him. 

BONNIE
Right!

Bonnie goes inside. Jerry comes out. 

JEREMY
Hi Dad.

GARY
Hey there Jerry, come and sit with your dad.

Jerry goes over and sits next to him. 

JEREMY
I waited for you, to watch the movie. 

GARY
Yeah, sorry about that, I forgot all about it. Hey, have 
you seen that new second world war DVD set by Time Life?

JEREMY
No.

GARY
Yeah, itís twelve hours long and contains never previously 
seen footage of actual battles at Vimmy Ridge and Dunkirk, 
I thought of you, how would you like me to get it for you? 

JEREMY
No thank you 

GARY
No? Oh.

JEREMY
I donít like documentaryís. I got Saving Private Ryan, 
Tom Hanks, directed by Steven Speilberg, thatís about 
the war.

GARY
Yeah but itís not real. Oh well, suit yourself, saves me 
Eighty-nine bucks. Listen, I got to tell you something. 
Devon is coming to live with me. 

JEREMY
	(shocked)
Live with you?

GARY
Yeah, your motherís finding it hard looking after him in 
his situation, so heís coming to live with me for awhile. 

JEREMY
Me too?

GARY
I donít think thatís a good idea, You wouldnít want to leave 
your mom all alone here by herself now would you? 

JEREMY
She wont mind. I have to help my brother.

GARY
I donít have the room and. . . Truth is, I mentioned you 
coming too but Devon doesnít want you there. Lets give him 
some time to get used to it and settled in and weíll talk to 
him again about it okay? 

JERRY
	(Getting upset)
Devon doesnít want me? But I look after him. 

GARY
Well heís got me now, but weíll be over to visit you as 
often as we can. 

Jerry starts to cry.

GARY (CONTíD)
Ah come on, donít start that now, donít be so selfish, 
youíll upset your mother.

JEREMY
Iím sorry.

GARY
You want whatís best for your brother donít you. . . well 
donít you?

JEREMY
Yeah.

GARY
There you go. Now wipe your eyes before your mom comes out 
and sees you like that and gives me shit. 

JEREMY
Devon takes me to the Y.

GARY
Iíll take you to the frigginí Y, when do you go?

JEREMY
Wednesdayís.

GARY
Howís this then, Iíll come by every Wednesday and take you 
to the Y, and Iíll even come in with you, spend a bit of 
quality time with my boy, what doíy think?

JEREMY
Devon too?

GARY
Sure. 

JEREMY
Okay. 

Bonnie comes outside. 

GARY
Jerry, give your mom and me and minute to talk will ya. 

JEREMY
	(Sadly)
Yeah.

Jerry exits. 

BONNIE
Whatís wrong with Emy?

GARY
Oh, you know how he gets. Well, did you talk to Dev?

BONNIE
You sure did a number on him didnít you?

GARY
What are. . 

BONNIE
A new computer, a game system, youíre promising him things 
you canít deliver on Gary.

GARY
They arenít the reason why he wants to come, I just got 
carried away.

BONNIE
He knows that, he said he never expected any of it. He 
knows you too well. . . . But he said he still wants to go. 

GARY
And what did you say?

BONNIE
What can I say? Heís almost a man. He thinks heíll be 
happier with y. . . 
	(she breaks down)

Going over to her

GARY
Bon.  .Bon. . .Donít cry. . . 

He goes to hug her but she puts her hands up defensively 
and backs away. 

BONNIE
You hurt him. . .you hurt him in any way and Iíll kill 
you, doíy understand?

GARY
I wouldnít hurt. . .

BONNIE
You get him the end of the month and not before. . youíd 
better go in and tell him. 

GARY
Thanks Bon, you wont regret it.

He goes inside. 

BONNIE
I already do.

She sits down, defeated and stares at nothing. 
 
BLACKOUT.