A Zed & Two Noughts

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A Zed and Two Noughts is a 1985 film about twin zoologists who lose their wives in a car accident and become obsessed with decomposing animals.

Written and directed by Peter Greenaway

Alba Bewick[edit]

  • In the land of the legless the one-legged woman is queen.
  • Imagine that, the body - in all its delicious detail - fading away leaving a skeleton with iron legs.

Oliver Deuce[edit]

  • Pregnant women are notoriously unreliable. Especially when they're trying to procure an abortion.


Oswald Deuce: How fast does a woman decompose?
Oliver Deuce: Six months, maybe a year? Depends on the conditions.
Oswald Deuce: Does being pregnant make any difference?
Oliver Deuce: No.
Oswald Deuce: And the baby?
Oliver Deuce: How far gone was she?
Oswald Deuce: Perhaps ten weeks.
Oliver Deuce: Then you'd never know.
Oswald Deuce: [long pause] I cannot stand the idea of her rotting away. [short pause] What is the first thing that happens?
Oliver Deuce: The first thing that happens is bacteria set to work in the intestine.
Oswald Deuce: What sort of bacteria?
Oliver Deuce: [matter-of-factly] Bicosis populi. There are supposed to be 130,000 bicoses in each lick of a human tongue; 250,000 in a french kiss. First exchanged at the very beginning of creation when Adam kissed Eve.
Oswald Deuce: Suppose Eve kissed Adam.
Oliver Deuce: Unlikely. She used her first 100,000 on the apple.

Alba Bewick: I am about to become a mother, and you are about to become a father... or fathers.
Oswald Deuce: You what?
Oliver Deuce: You are?
Alba Bewick: I am.
Oswald Deuce: Good lord.
Oliver Deuce: You can?
Alba Bewick: Of course! Is leglessness a form of contraception?
Oswald Deuce: I'm not sure.
Alba Bewick: You're not sure!
Oswald Deuce: I'm delighted!
Alba Bewick: You are delighted! [suspiciously] A pregnant cripple and you are delighted? Think of what it will do to my sense of balance!
Oswald Deuce: It might help! Give you more stability.
Alba Bewick: Then you recommend it? Recommendation's one thing. A womb on crutches is another.
Oliver Deuce: So... who's the father?
Alba Bewick: Well, well, well. Why don't you discuss it between yourselves?
Oliver Deuce: Why, don't you know?
Alba Bewick: Grand dieu! Does an animal behaviorist need to ask such questions? As far as I'm concerned, you both are.
Oswald Deuce: But you...
Alba Bewick: NO BUTS! [smiling] You're brothers, aren't you? What's a few spermatozoa among brothers!


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