Presumed Innocent


This ten-minute experimental play opens as the Dead Person re-enacts several methods of death, in order to get attention.  But when the Demoness and Demon drag a freezer from Hellmart onstage, the Dead Person lays still and watches.  As the Demoness and Demon complain about being “presumed innocent” and argue about how to get the freezer working – in order to preserve for crime-scene investigation the dead body that they each want to claim as their own “kill” – the Dead Person invisibly torments them.


In return, the Demoness and Demon threaten to chop up the Dead Person, in order to fit her into the too-small freezer.  Finally, the Dead Person “reveals” that she is neither the Demoness’ kill, nor the Demon’s kill, but rather is a long-dead post-mortal sent by their tricky cousin Otis to torment them on the long way up the Corporate Hell hierarchy.  And yet, as the two devils resign themselves to hunting for their next mortal to kill, the Demoness wonder if, despite the plausibility that Otis would harass them, the Dead Person is perhaps in fact just a very tricky dead mortal exacting revenge for the fact that she was killed too young.




Cast size:




2 females, 1 male


The afterdeath.


Somewhere on the way to hell.  Maybe there’s a roadsign with devilish misdirection.



A mostly bare stage.  The main prop is a “freezer” dragged onstage by the Demoness and Demon.



Demoness and Demon wear something befitting their would-be devilish stations.  The Dead Person wears casual day clothes, perhaps with indications of multiple causes of death (blood, gunshot holes, noose around the neck, etc).







Production History


Presumed Innocent received its premiere production as part of 14/48: The World’s Quickest Theater Festival, produced by 3-Card Monty and One World Theatre at the Capitol Hill Arts Center in Seattle, Washington, on July 15, 2006.  The play was directed by Beth Raas, with Costume Design by Stacey Bush, Props Design by Heather Mayhew, and Music by the 14/48 Band; and was performed by the following cast:




Samara Lerman


Gary Zinter

Dead Person

Nicole Boote