Ambushed! In Deep Space!

Full-Length Melodrama Single Set – 2 Men, 2 Women, 5 Either (Plus Olio, Minion Roles)

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Photos courtesy of the University of Arkansas, Little Rock, Theatre Arts Department

Description: Stranded on a moon in a remote corner of the galaxy, Captain Ray Gunn and the beautiful Princess Betty must fight against the evil forces of the Dark Mange!

Synopsis: In this extra-terrestrial melodrama, Princess Betty and Captain Ray Gunn crash on a small moon. Helping them is right-hand man Mr. Ploop, conflicted android Ruba the Robot, and two Extra Ensigns. Our heroes must foil a band of evil aliens led by sinister villainess Man-gala. Aided by an alien named Tath, Minion Bik, and several wicked Minions, Man-gala spins a web of deceit and treachery that threatens to permanently ensnare Captain Ray Gunn and Princess Betty on the lonely moon.  Cheer the heroes and boo the villains as this exciting space adventure unfolds!

Why It Was Written: While I was at UNLV, fellow scribe and director Bob May played the villain in Under the Lamplight during that melodrama’s summer revival. A few years later, Bob was a theatre professor at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock and wanted to stage a summer season. He thought a similar melodrama, complete with oleo acts between scenes, would be the perfect summer production, and he asked if I would write it. I thought it would be a nice next project for a Jens Barrett play. One of us came up with spoofing Star Trek, Star Wars, and B science fiction movies. I released my not-so-inner geek, so it was a lot of fun to write. Bob liked the script, and he produced the melodrama at Little Rock in the summer of 2001. (Which is why the sub-title is called 2001: A Space Travesty.)

The production went very well, and I planned on sending it around to publishers. But our second child was born earlier that year, I had another production at Steppingstone Theatre that fall (The Finger Dance), and I was deep into research on my William Franklin play (Independency). There was a lot going on. So I put the play in my drawer (mistake!), hoping to get back on the project when I had more time, and instead the play got lost in time and space. Boo, sigh, hiss. If you don’t have much of a budget and like sci-fi farce, take a look at this script. Laser guns not included.

Read the First Ten Pages: Script Sample