P.O. Box 1401
Rapid City, SD 57709
By: Thor Hopper
Cast: 4 flexible, opt. extras
Performance Time: Approximately 60 minutes, 37 pgs
HORROR/SATIRE. Adapted from the short story “In the Penal Colony” by Franz Kafka. An esteemed foreigner arrives at a penal colony and is asked to witness an elaborate torture and execution device that inscribes into a prisoner’s skin the law he has broken before letting him die, a process that takes 12 excruciating hours. An Officer who is the sole defender and advocate of the apparatus gleefully shows off the device to the Traveler and describes the current system of absolute justice in which the accused is instantly found guilty with no opportunity for a defense. The Officer begs the Traveler to vouch for the device to the new commandant so that the brutal executions may continue. When the Traveler refuses, the Officer frees the Prisoner and sets up the machine to inscribe “Be Just” into his own flesh. But due to its advanced state of disrepair, the apparatus begins to malfunction and stabs the Officer to death, denying him the transcendence the machine is supposed to deliver to the condemned. Upon seeing the Officer’s face, he remarks, “His face is as it had been in life. What all the others had found in this machine, he has not.” This provocative, timely play mixes horror with gallows humor and provides an opportunity for a tour de force performance by the Officer.
Freeviews: To read play excerpts click here.
About the Story: To read more about the story click here.
Scripts: $7.95 each
Prompt Book: $16.00
Poster Package: $50.00 (50/pkg)
Distribution Rights: $60.00
Artwork Rights: $50.00
Play Pack: $162.00 (7 scripts for cast/crew, 1 royalty, 50 posters, 1 prompt book)