roofus and ryan

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5 characters, any gender. Approximately 10 minutes running time. Short play about resilience.

Everyone knows that one kid who always makes good choices, and everyone also knows that one kid who always makes bad choices. Which one has the greatest resilience when life is tough? Audiences may be surprised by the answer.

This play teaches students that no one is perfect, and that making mistakes are okay. They are part of learning and part of growing up.

The play also includes discussion questions and director’s notes on casting and set design.

Excerpt from the play:


RYAN— (M/F) always does the right thing, an adult favorite
ROOFUS— (M/F) always makes the wrong choice, scolded by adults
KID #1— (M/F) there to speak his/her mind, strong, and kind
KID #2— (M/F) there to speak his/her mind, strong, and kind
NARRATOR— (M/F) professional, dramatic, and cheesy

(The action takes place in modern times on an empty stage.)

(Lights come up on three actors on stage. Narrator stands confidently in the middle with Ryan a bit away from him/her stage left, and Roofus a bit away from him/her stage right. Ryan stands with a smirk on his/her face, and Roofus is slouched and looking all around in a distracted manner.)

This is Ryan (pointing at Ryan), and this is Roofus (pointing at Roofus). Ryan makes always makes good choices.

(proudly) I do.

Roofus always makes bad choices.

(smirking) It’s true.

This is the story of Roofus and Ryan.

(irritated) Well, let’s get this started so I can just go ahead a fail.

Don’t be so pushy, Roofus.

Oh, Ryan the perfect has spoken, and Ryan is always right.

(smugly) Why thank you.

(irritated) Can you honestly tell me you NEVER make mistakes?

(proudly) Never.


Never. Only fools make mistakes.

That’s it, (stamps foot and starts to head aggressively toward Ryan) it’s time.

(smugly) What’s the term all the kids are using?  “Come at me, bro?”

Oh, it’s on.

(jumps in the middle of the two) Easy, friends. Let me tell the story.

Correct. He’s/she’s the narrator. Let him/her tell the story.


To your corners, friends. Our story begins.

(Ryan and Roofus move further apart of stage staring at one another in anger. Narrator addresses the audience.)

Like I was saying, Ryan makes always makes good choices, and Roofus always makes bad choices. Perhaps inviting other kids onto the stage will help illustrate this point. (searches the first row of the audience as if looking for kids. Kid #1 and Kid #2 are sitting in the front row and raising their hands to be chosen) These two looks like healthy, All-American kids. Come on up here.

(Kid #1 and Kid #2 jump up enthusiastically and dramatically onto to stage.)

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