Monday, April 15, 2019

Play a Day: The Bloodless Jungle

Peter Lawson Jones
For Monday I read The Bloodless Jungle by Peter Lawson Jones and available at New Play Exchange.

Jones is a Cleveland icon, not only a playwright and an actor of the stage and screen, he is also a lawyer with an extensive record of public service, and he pours a great deal of his lifetime of professional experience into this play script about a State Senator running his first campaign for U.S Congress.

Bloodless Jungle was written a couple years back, and it is amazing (and demoralizing) how much has changed in such a short amount of time, but there is nothing dated about the plot. Our protagonist, Ethan St. John (great name) is a Frank Capra character, that rare politician who will not compromise his ideals in order to win an election.

Political dramas have become very popular. What I most enjoyed reading Jones's play is that he presents a slate of characters with varying agendas, from the unpaid volunteers to the highly paid operatives, each with distinct, vivid personalities. He doesn't traffic in types, providing each sympathetic arguments. It's hard to take sides, especially knowing what we know in today's political climate.

The unhappy question in the real world is, will "Mr. Smith" ever again even get to Washington?

Who should I read tomorrow?

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