Magical Mystery Tour - Tickets Here! reads a sign on the wall. Ringo buys two tickets, one for himself and one for his Auntie. To the tune of "Magical Mystery Tour" they get on the Magical Mystery Tour bus, a big yellow affair with a blue stripe running horizontally along the side. It's a privately chartered bus. A "mystery tour" is a tour around the English countryside, with a secret itinerary known only to the driver, courier and tour guide. Our courier is Jolly Jimmy Johnson; our tour guide is bountiful Miss Wendy Winters. Periodically they make announcements to the passengers via a hand-held microphone affixed to the dashboard.
It's "The Trip Of A Lifetime"!
As the bus rolls out of London we meet the passengers. All the Beatles are on board, along with some old folks, a midget photographer, a child or two, some movie stars, pals, and a guy who likes to smoke and chew food with his mouth open. The bus is packed; the more the merrier! Ringo sits beside his corpulent auntie, who we learn has been eyeing all of the men aboard. Her husband recently passed away. She and Ringo bicker a lot about unimportant things.
The song "Fool on the Hill" starts up; Paul is smoking a cigarette in his seat, thoughtfully looking out the window. Suddenly he's in different clothes and standing on a mountaintop. He whirls around and around and looks at the sun while the music plays. The lyrics comment on "the fool on the hill" who's really very wise.
As the song fades out we're back on the bus. While the bus delves into the British countryside, the narrator prepares us for what is to come: "Everything begins to change.. the magic is starting to work." Along a rural road the bus comes to a halt and everyone troops out to enjoy the first stop on the tour. They visit a military headquarters where they're addressed by a humorless sergeant. He speaks in harsh and utterly incomprehensible tones, his eyes bulging, as if drilling his men. When the sergeant pauses to draw a breath, Ringo calmly asks, "Why?" The sergeant is taken aback. He raves a bit more and opens his mouth wide to scream. He screams! The camera zooms into his mouth; when it draws back the sergeant is standing in a field, surrounded by his office furniture. There's a fake bull standing behind him in the field, he turns to the bull and jabbers some more, poking at the bull with his riding crop.
Cut to all the tour passengers engaged in the Magical Mystery Tour games on a paved runway in a grassy field. An old-timey accordion plays "She Loves You." The midget photographer strolls about taking pictures. There's a big Marathon race to the bus parked at the end of the runway; everyone participates. When the passengers are on board the bus rolls away, but a team of midgets has lagged behind and now runs after the departing bus. Ringo is driving! The bus becomes embroiled in an exciting race against a Rolls Royce and some sports cars painted with Day-Glo psychedelic patterns. Finally the race ends in another field; everyone gets off the bus to pose for a group photo. The midget photographer gets behind an antique camera and ducks his head under a black cloth; the bulb flashes, and the midget pulls away from the camera. He now has a lion's head!
Back on the road, Jimmy the Courier advises everyone to look to the right: the view is phenomenal. It's aerial photography of the Arctic region, set to the tune of a Beatles instrumental track, "Flying." A view of the tops of clouds segues to the alchemical lab of 4 or 5 magicians who live on a mountaintop. They're actually the Beatles in wizard suits. The lab has a telescope, star chart, and beakers full of smoking solutions. The magicians are engrossed in their work, except for the Ringo-wizard, who asks each of his colleagues, "Where's the bus?" He's ignored by the others, or told to "Sssh." When Ringo loses his temper, the Paul-wizard, his nose brightly rouged, reveals "the bus - it's 10 miles north on the Dewsbury Road!"
Now we're 10 miles north on the Dewsbury Road, riding on the bus. The tour guide points to some ancient Roman ruins off to one side. "They really have been there an awful long time." An elderly passenger, the grim-looking Buster Bloodvessel, turns in his seat to face Ringo's Auntie and begins to court her. He struggles to make his feelings known, then blurts out "I... Love You!" A Muzak version of "All My Loving" accompanies romantic fantasy footage of Ringo's Auntie and Buster Bloodvessel frolicking on a beach like lovebirds. While Auntie stands still for a moment, Buster etches a giant heart in the sand around her.
The fantasy ends and Buster is standing at the front of the bus, holding the microphone. He announces that he is the courier, which he is not. He's delusional. "I am concerned for you to enjoy yourselves - within the limits of British decency. You know what I mean."
The Beatles are viewed through a pipe, standing on some pavement in a field, framed irregularly by gray stone walls. They're playing "I Am the Walrus," but their instruments are not plugged in. One moment they're relatively normal, the next they're dressed in animal suits. Then they're normal again. Then John pops into the air with a white bandage wrapped around his head. The editing gets faster and more confused as the song progresses. We see a bomber flying overhead. As the song fades out the Beatles in their animal suits are marching slowly behind the bus, which is rolling ahead of them. The Beatles are followed by a row of men with white bandages around their heads - mental patients - connected by a long white linen sheet with neckholes evenly spaced to accommodate them. Several British bobbies file behind, and the midget photographer tags along at their heels, snapping pictures.
On the road again, John and George in their seats are entertaining a little girl. John amuses her with silly hand games. He pulls a red balloon from his jacket and inflates it. He wants to give it to the girl, but she tells him to give it to George. He does, and George thanks him for it. Ringo has been bickering with Auntie across the aisle and suddenly loses his temper. "I can't take it any more! I'm getting off!" This outburst makes everybody laugh, even Ringo. "Don't get historical," chuckles Auntie.
Auntie falls asleep and dreams that she's in a restaurant, having dinner with Buster. John is her waiter and he's shoveling heaps of spaghetti onto her plate. She weeps and moans. "I can't breathe... not any more..." She wants to leave, and she asks John to help her up the stairs. He helps her up some stairs and onto a stage! The fake bull is standing on the stage, with some men who are chatting casually with one another.
The next stop is a tiny tent standing in a field. Everyone files into the tent, which inside is really quite spacious. There's a row of seats and a movie screen at the rear. Jolly Jimmy entertains everyone for a minute with his own brand of tomfoolery, then the movie starts - it's a video of George seated cross-legged in a misty room, singing "Blue Jay Way." During the song, each of the Beatles is seen trying his hand at playing the same white cello in a garden somewhere. Superimposed images of sparklers and hand-dances and painted children are all mixed into the heady brew of George's performance. When it's over, the film draws raucous applause. Everyone files out of the tent and back onto the bus. The bus runs over the tent on its way to... where, exactly?
We visit the magicians once more in their alchemical lab. According to their calculations, the bus is still 10 miles north on the Dewsbury Road - "And they're having a lovely time!"
There's lots of music and drinking on the bus tonight. Ringo sings "I Got a Loverly Bunch of Coconuts" and other songs are sung including "When Irish Eyes Are Smiling." The passengers sway to the music with their bottles of ale raised up high.
For the final stop, all the men go with Jimmy, and the women go with Miss Winters. We only follow the men. They visit a strip club! John and George are enthusiastic. The lounge band, dressed in tacky sportsuits, starts up a slow, sleazy number called "Death Cab for Cutie." A stripper comes out and begins peeling off her scanty clothes. She teases the lead singer, who pretends to be on the brink. After she removes her bra the view is CENSORED. The curtain falls to wild applause.
A grand finale features the Beatles in white formal wear, lightly stepping in synch to "Your Mother Should Know." They proceed down a long and winding flight of stairs set up at one end of a studio ballroom. That's Entertainment! For this big production number the whole cast and many extras are brought in to do their thing. Spanish dancing girls twirl their wide colorful skirts around and around. There are lots of women in gowns and men in tuxes. When the song's over, the "Magical Mystery Tour" theme song cuts in again while the credits start to roll.
"And that was the Magical Mystery Tour. I told ya. G'bye!"
With that humble apology from the narrator, the coda of "Hello Goodbye" takes us home.