Kill the Critic!

2nd Place at the McLaren Comedy Playwriting Competition. 2nd Place in the Robert J. Pickering Award for Playwriting Excellence.

Trevor Stanton is an impulsive young actor about to make his Broadway debut. There's just one problem: Bertram Finch, New York City's most powerful theatre critic. Bertram has never liked Trevor's work, and it's guaranteed that the infamous...
2nd Place at the McLaren Comedy Playwriting Competition. 2nd Place in the Robert J. Pickering Award for Playwriting Excellence.

Trevor Stanton is an impulsive young actor about to make his Broadway debut. There's just one problem: Bertram Finch, New York City's most powerful theatre critic. Bertram has never liked Trevor's work, and it's guaranteed that the infamous Barracuda of Broadway will use the occasion to pen a scathing, career-destroying review.

The solution is obvious. Trevor kidnaps Bertram and plans to hide him in his dressing room until the next day, preventing the critic from writing his review. But when Bertram begs for a drink, Trevor accidentally switches the bottle of rat poison in which his boozing co-star Jack keeps his scotch with a real bottle of rat poison.

By the time Trevor realizes his mistake, it's too late. Tortured groans emanate from the wardrobe where Trevor has stashed his victim, and as a parade of outrageous characters make their way to his dressing room, Trevor must take increasingly desperate measures to hide his horrible deed.

Trevor soon finds himself proposing marriage to not one but two women. First to accept is his girlfriend Melanie, the ditzy daughter of a wealthy exterminator, who unwittingly gets a cheap prop ring instead of the real one Trevor meant to give her. Sylvia, a cougarish diva who happens to be Jack's girlfriend, is just as eager to accept Trevor's proposal, and she ends up with the real ring Trevor was holding onto for Jack and which Jack had planned to give her.

Melanie's father Tony "The Tiger" shows up, and when Trevor lays eyes on the brawny, pinstripe-suited brute, he realizes exactly what kind of "exterminator" the man is. Tony gives Trevor an ultimatum, demanding that he replace his daughter's ring with a real and very expensive one before the night is through.

A pair of bumbling cops arrive to question Trevor about Bertram's mysterious disappearance. Before long, the hapless corpse is revealed to all, and in the ensuing chaos, it takes more than a gun to subdue Trevor. It takes a masterfully-handled frying pan.

Only then does Bertram prove to be the greatest actor of them all...

Run Time: 80-100 minutes
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Kill the Critic!

Development History

  • Reading
    ,
    Theatre of Note, Los Angeles, CA
    ,
    2016
  • Reading
    ,
    McLaren Comedy Festival, Midland, TX
    ,
    2013

Production History

  • Community Theater
    ,
    Stage Presence Players, Austin, TX
    ,
    2015
  • Community Theater
    ,
    Tri-Lakes Center for the Performing Arts, Palmer Lake, CO
    ,
    2013
  • Community Theater
    ,
    Black Box Theatre, Colorado Springs, CO
    ,
    2013

Awards

Finalist
,
Annual Play Contest
,
Rover Dramawerks, Plano, TX
,
2014
Runner Up
,
McLaren Memorial Comedy Playwriting Competition
,
Midland Community Theatre, Midland, TX
,
2013
Runner Up
,
Robert J. Pickering Award for Playwriting Excellence
,
Branch County Community Theatre, Coldwater, MI
,
2013