Farce with US and NZ cast awaits a final improbable act. Scene one ...
Directed by John Keystone
FBI Headquarters, Washington DC. The director of the FBI is being briefed by his top agents.
Director: Well, men, what's this week's clear and present danger?
(Agents consult their briefing books.)
First agent: Uh, bearded Islamist terrorist masterminds hell-bent on destroying everything we hold dear.
Director: Same as last week, then?
First agent: Yes, sir.
Director: And the week before that. And every week for the last 11 years. I mean, how many Islamist terrorist masterminds can there possibly be? The drones take out a couple of dozen every week, but they just keep popping up.
Second agent: That figure includes collaterals.
Second agent: Yes sir. People killed in drone strikes who aren't terrorist masterminds. Technically speaking.
Director: Well, who are they then?
Second agent: Family - a lot of these guys have multiple wives ...
Third agent: Like Mormons?
(An awkward silence. The director gives the third agent a cold stare.)
Second agent: As I was saying: family, babysitters, neighbours, passers-by, lonely goatherds, hermits with a cave-sharing arrangement ...
Director: I get the picture. Listen up, men. The public's getting bored with jihadist terrorists, and if they're bored, they're no longer scared. It's a short step from there to feeling safe and secure, and we all know what that means. We need a new bogeyman.
Third agent: Leaving aside terrorists, the Chinese, the Russians, the French, illegal immigrants, Latin American dictators and Simon Cowell, who do the American people fear and loathe most?
(The others exchange puzzled looks.)
Director: Hell, I don't know. Who else is there?
Third agent: Germans!
Dotcom's mansion, Coatesville
Kim Dotcom talks on his cellphone as he drives to the letterbox in a Hummer.
Dotcom: You'd like me to refer to you as Mr Peninsula? Say no more. As we say in my native country, a nod's as good as a wink to a blind fledermaus.
GCSB Headquarters, WellingtonAn intelligence officer sits in front of a bank of electronic equipment listening intently through earphones. His eyes light up.
Intelligence officer: If that's not code, I'm a banana. Something's afoot.
(He removes the earphones, picks up the telephone and jabs in a number.)
Intelligence officer: Operation Sauerkraut is go. Repeat, Operation Sauerkraut is go.
A country pub
The buzz of conversation is suddenly drowned out by an almighty commotion from outside. The door bursts open; a man in full body armour wearing a balaclava and carrying a sub-machinegun enters. The pub-goers stare at him in slack-jawed confusion.
Man in balaclava: Would anyone happen to know where a fella called Kim Dotcom lives? Big bloke, some sort of foreigner. It's somewhere around here apparently.
(There's a tense hush. Eventually one of the patrons steps forward.)
Patron: He's up in Coatesville, mate. Just head up the Coatesville-Riverhead highway. Biggest bloody house this side of Buckingham Palace - you can't miss it.
Second patron: Wanna bet?
Dotcom has the headphones on, singing along to Weird Al Yankovic's Fat.
Dotcom: The pavement cracks when I fall down, I've got more chins than Chinatown.
(The music's so loud that he's oblivious to the uproar outside. His wife enters in a panic.)
Wife: Kim, what's happening? Why are all those men outside?
(Dotcom pulls off the headphones and rushes to the window. There are tanks on the lawn and helicopters hovering overhead. Commandos are pouring out of the convoy of military vehicles backed up down the drive.)
Dotcom: Gott in Himmel! Dahlink, did you forget to reregister the dachshund?
The Beehive, Wellington
A Cabinet meeting is taking place. An aide enters and whispers in the Prime Minister's ear. He stands up.
Prime Minister: Ladies and gentlemen, Operation Sauerkraut has been successfully carried out. The multimillionaires in Hollywood can sleep soundly tonight. The threat to civilisation as we know it is over.
Deputy Prime Minister: What about the threat to our parliamentary majority?