Do-It-Yourself Mr. Bean
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|"Do-It-Yourself Mr. Bean"|
|Mr. Bean episode|
|Episode no.||Episode 9|
|Directed by||John Birkin|
|Written by||Robin Driscoll
|Produced by||Sue Vertue|
|Original air date||10 January 1994|
Act 1: New Year Party
It's New Year's Eve 1993 and Bean is excited. He has invited his two best friends Rupert and Hubert over to his flat for a New Year party and is putting the finishing touches on his decorations, which aren't much (a circle of chairs in the living room and a bunch of balloons hanging from the front door). He greets his neighbour who is also throwing a party, and goes back inside to prepare for his guests' arrival. Soon enough, Rupert and Hubert arrive, and they realise that it's not really the party they were expecting: Bean gives his guests party hats made of newspaper, assigns them designated chairs, and the only form of entertainment is a radio. Bean then goes to the kitchen to prepare refreshments. However, he finds he has almost run out of Twiglets, and so improvises by chopping up a branch outside his kitchen window with a butcher knife and dipping the twigs in Marmite in an attempt to disguise them. He then opens a bottle of Champagne, but discovers that there is only enough to fill half a glass. As Rupert and Hubert wait in the living room, Bean improvises again by using a bottle of vinegar and adding sugar to sweeten it.
As the night goes on, it becomes apparent that Rupert and Hubert are not having a good time. They've uncovered that the "food" they've been given isn't genuine (there is a small leaf growing on one of the sticks on Rupert's plate and Hubert is repulsed by the smell of vinegar) and refuse to eat it, despite Bean eating his and pretending to like it. Bean then heads back to the kitchen and takes peanuts from a bird feeder outside and pours them onto a plate. Meanwhile, Rupert and Hubert turn the clock in the living room to just before midnight. When Bean comes back, the clock chimes and Rupert and Hubert say "Happy New Year!". Bean is also happy, saying "Doesn't time fly while you're enjoying yourself?". They then link hands (almost forgetting Teddy) and sing "Auld Lang Syne" to celebrate (although Bean over-excitedly rushes through the song). Rupert and Hubert then feign yawning and claim that they are tired, so Bean puts the doorknob back on his door (for some reason he had taken it off and put it into a fruit bowl; this is a running gag throughout the episode) and bids them goodnight. Right outside the door, Rupert and Hubert come across two women who laugh at their paper hats before heading into the neighbour's flat, where a swinging New Year's party is underway. They then ponder whether to leave or go to the party, ultimately deciding to do the latter.
Meanwhile, Bean is in bed and puts Teddy next to him before turning off the light and going to sleep. However, he hears the countdown process at the party across from him as well as everyone singing "Auld Lang Syne", indicating the real New Year has started. Confused, he turns the light back on and takes a small clock out of his chest of drawers, which indicates that it's just past midnight (at this point, the clock in the living room shows 1:40). His blood boils with anger when he finds out that Rupert and Hubert deceived him and attended the larger party next door. Just as Bean switches off the light, a person from the party shouts "Three cheers for Rupert and Hubert".
Act 2: The Sale
It's New Year's Day 1994, and Bean heads to the Arding and Hobbs department store to take full advantage of the January sales, nearly running over several pedestrians while parking. Dozens of other people have queued overnight to get there first, however Bean jumps to the head of the queue and stands in front of an alarm clock next to a sleeping bag supposedly containing someone inside of it. He then taps his watch indicating the alarm is about to go off, and it does, frightening the elderly couple sitting next to it. He then takes a beanie hiding a cabbage (The seniors think that is the real head of St. John the Baptist) from under the sleeping bag along with a modelling balloon figure which he pops, revealing that he created the "person" as a dummy and placed it there the night before in order to cheat his way to the front of the queue. The doors finally open, and Bean excitedly runs in not knowing where to go first, so he heads downstairs.
Later, Bean has purchased many items, including the armchair that was on display in the window, tins of paint, brushes and mops. After strapping the armchair to the roof, he runs into a problem: because he squeezed everything else inside of the car, there is no room left for himself. However, he manages to construct a way of driving the car while sitting on the armchair. He first places a brick attached to a string in front of the front wheel to hold the car, and releases the handbrake. He then uses a paint can attached to another string to operate the clutch, further strings for the gear stick and steering wheel, and joins his mop and broom together to form a long rod with which to operate the accelerator and footbrake. At first, all goes incredibly well, but he ends up on a steep downhill slope after swerving to avoid a roadworks barrier (and behind a parked police car). He desperately tries to keep the car under control as it starts to pick up speed, and things get worse when the head accidentally comes off the broom. Now with no way to stop the car, his only braking method is to drive it into a parked lorry delivering mattresses, creating an explosion of pillow feathers.
Act 3: Painting with Fireworks
Back at the flat, Bean begins to redecorate with the new items he bought, although it doesn't go as planned. He first realises that moving the table from in front of the hole in the kitchen wall and moving it to the other kitchen wall is impractical, as he can no longer drop objects onto it through the hole while he is in the kitchen (they just smash onto the ground). His solution: just move the hole. After getting exact measurements using three pencils (one in his mouth and one in each hand), he uses a reciprocating saw to cut out a section of the wall before moving it into the original hole. However, he neglects to consider what is on the opposite side of the wall, and cuts through a telephone cable and several pictures (including decapitating one of Prince Charles and Princess Diana) in the process. He also cuts a picture of a body builder, near the groin area.
He then begins to paint the whole living room white, but finds that the bristles on his paintbrush are dried solid. He uses a hammer to attempt soften them, but when he goes into the living room and dips the brush into the paint, the bristles disappear into the paint, annoying Bean. In a cruel improvisation, he shoves the brush handle into Teddy's rear and uses his head to paint the walls. However, he manages to only get a few lines of paint done before accidentally dripping paint onto things.
Bean then realises a more efficient way of painting the wall. He carefully covers virtually everything in the living room and kitchen (including each individual grape in his fruit bowl) in newspaper and, when he runs out of paper to cover his clock, uses the hat Hubert left behind. Bean then looks through his box of fireworks until he finds a suitable one to explode the can of paint. He places the firework in the paint can and ignites the fuse; however, as he tries to escape, he realises that there is no doorknob as he has wrapped it up and put it in the fruitbowl. He retrieves it and escapes just as the firecrackers are about to explode. Bean quickly runs out and hides behind a corner in the hall. At that moment, a tired and hungover Hubert stumbles out of the neighbour's flat covered in lipstick from the party he and Rupert attended. He is just about to leave, when he realises that he left his hat in Bean's flat and goes in to retrieve it just as the firecracker explodes. When Bean returns to his flat, he is puzzled to find his front door wide open and a trail of white footprints leading out to the stairs.
He goes inside and is satisfied that his paint bomb worked, as his whole flat is covered with white paint. However, he is shocked to discover a silhouette of Hubert getting his hat is frozen onto a section of wall as the only unpainted area. The episode ends.
The following scene was originally cut from the episode at the end of Act 2, though it was included in the early United States VHS releases.
Mr. Bean is shopping in a department store, when he sees a chair that he wishes to purchase. Upon approaching the reclining chair, he discovers that a sales assistant is already demonstrating its features to an elderly couple. In an attempt to fool them into thinking it's broken, he unplugs it, which is almost immediately noticed by the assistant.
While the elderly woman enjoyably sitting on a chair, Bean then sneaks up to a control panel on the chair's arm and tampering the wires inside, unknown to the elderly woman. As the elderly woman tries out the reclining feature this time, it folds over, sandwiching her in the middle, she yells to her hearing-impaired husband for help but is unheard despite being only a couple of metres away. In addition, Bean turns up the music playing on the store's intercom, to make it harder for her to be heard. Ultimately, she falls backward.
Broadcast and reception
Do-It-Yourself Mr. Bean was first broadcast on the ITV network on Monday 10 January 1994.
15.60 million viewers watched this episode on the original transmission. A repeat showing a year later on 7 January 1995, attracted a further 12.96 million viewers, out rating the final two episodes that aired later in the year.
When originally aired on ITV, it was 25 minutes 28 seconds long, but since the death of Diana, Princess of Wales on 31 August 1997, the part of Act 3 where Bean decapitates her picture whilst cutting a new serving hatch has been cut, only showing Prince Charles, whose head Bean cuts through with the jigsaw.
MythBusters tested the idea of painting with explosives in Mind Control after being inspired by a rerun of the episode. They first ran tests to see if it was really possible to cover an entire room with paint by exploding a firework in a paint can, but the method was proven impossible by the test.
In a later revisit in Painting with Explosives/Bifurcated Boat, Jamie Hyneman's twist on Mr. Bean's technique using a steel sphere was also busted while Adam Savage's snowflake frame twist on the idea worked, but not well enough to be either busted, confirmed or judged plausible. The scene where Bean removes the control cover on the chair and switches the wires around was adapted for The Inventor in the Mr. Bean animated series. Also Bean where he bought a chair is inspired in the Mr. Bean animated episode, Sofa.
The part of Act 2 where Bean uses a brick attached by some string to hold his car and releases the emergency brake inspired an episode of 'Mr Bean the animated series' called In the Pink where Bean tackles the fraudsters.
About twenty years later, Mr Bean makes another clip in which, he rides through some gardens next to the Kensington Palace, using the same props. 
- "Timeline". mrbean.co.uk. Retrieved 27 February 2013.
- The DVD-laser Disc Newsletter. 173-183. DVD-Laser Disc Newsletter. 1999. pp. 42–.
Also featured is Do-It -Yourself Mr. Bean, which contains the segment where he drives a car while sitting on a roof, plus his more destructive than productive efforts to redecorate his apartment. ...
- "Mind Control". MythBusters. Season 2006. Episode 52. 3 May 2006.