Dan Duling

The Last Straw

What happens when the last in a long line of career criminals falls for the daughter of the hard-as-nails chief of police? At 27, Alex Straw has never been in trouble. An Eagle scout, he’ll chase down a purse snatcher just to make the point that it’s better to be “nice.” But as his tenth high school reunion approaches, a strange thing is happening to Alex: he’s having overtly criminal nightmares. The time has come for him to learn from his mother about the family curse: His father, grandfather, even great grandfather all were crooks, albeit clumsy ones. At the reunion dance, Alex reconnects with Della, the one girl from high school he really cared about. As the evening progresses, all signs are pointing to this being the girl of his dreams. Trouble is, Della’s dad is the city’s hard-line law-and-order chief of police, and once he finds out who she’s interested in, he’s ready to mobilize the entire police force to keep them apart. For Alex and Della, love becomes the ultimate crime and they’re forced to take desperate measures just to get better acquainted. It’s going to take all their cunning and the help of everybody including the purse snatcher to ensure a warm fade-out for this biting romantic comedy.

DANE: How many times do I have to tell you the three fatal mistakes made by victims of random violence: location, location, location!!

MOLLY: Your father a crook, your grandfather a crook, your great grandfather...a legacy of criminal ineptitude handed down from generation to generation in your family. And now I’ve got to accept the fact that in spite of all my efforts, in all probability, fifty percent of your blood is decent and fifty percent is crooked. Most people have family trees. In your case, it’s more like a hanging tree.

Looking ahead in 2012.

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A little extra...

Duling’s plays have been produced throughout the United States. Most recently, “Monstrosity” received staged readings at the Skylight Theatre in Los Angeles as part of the Inkubator reading series by the Katselas Theatre Company. Before that, “Monstrosity” also received a staged reading at Innovation Theatre Works in Bend, Oregon. The search for theatres interested in producing “Monstrosity” continues in earnest in Los Angeles, Chicago and New York.