Grandma Duck is Dead

Grandma Duck is Dead $13

Larry Shue

Published by Dramatists Play Service

4 Male 2 Female

The time is 1968, the place, a room in a college dormitory occupied by Woody and Ben Davidson, two graduating seniors

Woody is trying to finish a term paper while his roommate naps, but they are both frustrated by the arrival of their manic friend "The Badger," who wants to "play" - which means one of the wildly imaginative flights of make-believe which he and Woody have concocted

This time their fantasies range from Woody's being a talking panda to ragging Ben about the imaginary girlfriend they have created for him, but things really get strange when Tim Esperanza, a black drop-out, comes by and agrees to let Woody hypnotize him

Once he is "under," Esperanza believes that he is Ringo Starr of The Beatles, which leads to a number of hilarious developments. But the fun is dampened both by the arrival of Badger's lady friend, Paula, who considers their behavior juvenile, and by the scary fact that Woody is suddenly unable to bring Esperanza "back"

The tension is broken when Esperanza not only comes to, but admits that he has been putting them on. But the sudden fear he has aroused has left its mark, and underscored the poignancy of their situation - that the antic joys of college days will soon be behind them and, considering the disjointed world that awaits, will surely never be regained

Filled with the zany, wildly offbeat humor characteristic of its author, this long one-act play is also affecting and revealing as it uses the high jinks of a group of college seniors to point up their underlying concern with more serious subjects, from impending marriage to the ongoing nightmare of Vietnam

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