A Series of Unfortunate Events: The Musical – “Hook-Handed Man and Klaus”

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Being rightly suspicious of Count Olaf, the Baudelaires go to the Justice Strauss’s library on nuptial law. Since reading upon law is boring, Violet and Sunny go outside for a break. Meanwhile, the Hook-Handed man arrives to retrieve the children since Olaf wants them to do some chores. There, he frightens Klaus telling him,  “The only reason Count Olaf hasn’t torn you limb from limb is that he hasn’t gotten hold of your money. He allows you to live while he works out his plans. But ask yourself this, you little bookworm: What reason will he have to keep you alive after he has your money? What do you think will happen to you then?” This implies that once Count Olaf has their fortune, he intends to kill them, raising the stakes even more.  After sneaking in the book on nuptial law, Klaus pulls an all-nighter. And while he may occasionally doze off, the Hook-Handed Man’s threat remains strong in his mind which will keep him up and remind him why he needs to continue his research.

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A good song for this is “Pilate and Christ” from Jesus Christ Superstar where Pilate meets the savior himself. Here he’s basically telling Jesus what’s in store for him if he doesn’t say anything now. Though Pilate is seen as a neutral character since he’s a Roman governor and a pagan, he’s not exactly nice. And he often delivers his lines in a snobbish and menacing tone. Still, given how the Hook-Handed Man is a threatening but later becomes the most fascinating of Count Olaf’s original theater troupe, the Pilate tone fits perfectly.

 

“Hook-Handed Man and Klaus”

Hook-Handed Man:
What are you doing here, reading in the library?
What’s that book in your hands?

Klaus:
Some book on
Nuptial law.

Hook-Handed Man:
Why read a book like that?
I am really quite surprised.
You’re twelve years old.
An orphaned boy.
I guess you must suspect
The boss wants
Your inheritance.

Klaus:
Your words, not mine.

Hook-Handed Man:
If he’s not torn you limb by limb
He don’t have your money.
You’re deep in trouble friend.
Baudelaires,
Know what I mean.
He’s working out his plans to get your fortune in his hands.
But ask yourself, you bookish elf
Once he he’s got your cash, why would he let you last?
What do you think
Will he do then?

Troupe:
Hey, orphans, come back in, and please do your chores
Boss is real mad and how
Hey K.B., K.B. please explain to me,
You had everything.
Where is it now?

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