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© 2023 by Tyler Reece. Proudly created with Wix.com

Synopsis

Middle/High School Version

College Version

ACT I: Early January

Scene I: It’s the Monday morning after the Christmas holiday break, and Katie, her parents and her younger sibling are eating breakfast before school and work. Both parents have started on their own diets, and Katie is about to get ready for school when the character of ED (the Eating Disorder) appears to convince her to start her own diet in the song A Fresh Start. She's reluctant, but intrigued by the promise of greater self-confidence and popularity promised by ED. She chucks breakfast and heads to school.

Scene II is lunchtime at school, and Katie's friends have decided to start The Cracker Club to help them lose weight for Spring Break and prom. ED is thrilled at this development since it reinforces his contention that losing a few pounds will help Katie feel better about herself. Now she has support since

her friends are all doing it. They promise to "motivate each other," so Katie skips lunch and her diet is off and running.

Act II: Three Weeks Later

Scene I: The Geometry test. After three weeks of starving, Katie's brain is not working and time appears to slow down as her classmates finish their tests and exit, while Katie's mind is blank. As she panics, ED sings that the pain in her gut and her light-headed sensation is The Feeling of Success.

Scene II: Track meet that afternoon. As Katie is running on empty, freaking out that her body isn't working right, ED sings a reprise of The Feeling of Success. Katie's sub-par performance causes her school to lose the meet. Her coach reprimands her, and Katie feels defeated and depressed.

Scene III: Later that afternoon. Katie is home alone with ED. They decide to watch a reality show called "Dieting With The Stars." The lights come up across the stage as the hostess introduces famous stars and models who compete for audience votes, singing the hilarious Young, Thin and Beautiful.

Scene IV: Later that evening. Katie is famished and obsessed with thoughts of food. She spots a video someone posted of her eating lunch and people start "liking" and commenting. Humiliated that everyone will see her "stuffing her fat face," she weighs herself and starts researching her BMI and diet tips online. Starving and at the end of her rope, she grabs a bag of cookies and finishes it off. Emerging from her food trance, she realizes that she has blown three weeks of hard-core dieting. She sings the song Disgusting. ED offers the solution: she can re-establish control by getting rid of the food she just ate by throwing up. She agonizes over this decision, holds her swollen belly, then runs offstage to purge. ED smiles. Curtain closes.

ACT III: Three Months Later

Scene 1: ED sits before a lit-up mirror, transforming from attractive seductive guy into "wife-beater" mode. As he sings Our Little Secret he reveals himself to be the body-hatred and food-obsession that torment so many of us. He shares this secret: that he recruits his victims through promises and lies, eventually crushing their souls. Back-up dancers step on scales and sing his chorus.

Scene II begins as a repeat of the beginning of the play: breakfast at Katie's house. This time you can cut the tension with a knife. Katie picks a fight with

her parents, her little brother runs out of the room and Katie storms away from the breakfast table, leaving her parents in shocked anguish. They sing

the soulful What's Eating Katie? and are joined by her friends, coach and teacher. They all try to understand and explain the changes that have happened to Katie over these three months, alternately blaming the media, her peers and themselves. During the song, Katie and ED dance a slow dance illustrating how ED is now firmly in control of Katie.

The final scene takes place in a therapist's office. ED tries to convince Katie to keep their secret, but she slowly opens up to Dr. Milton, sharing the story of

how her problem started and evolved. Dr. Milton explains that struggling with an eating disorder is like being in an abusive relationship, and she encourages Katie to confront ED. As Katie speaks up, she metaphorically silences ED. Once he's been subdued, Katie starts to reveal the anxieties she feels as a sensitive 13-year old coming of age in a tumultuous and high-pressured world. The therapist reassures Katie that she'll be okay, and that she is not alone in this journey. In the final song, Katie's parents, friends, teacher and coach return to the stage, singing the uplifting Good Enough, encouraging Katie to see herself through the eyes of those who love her instead of listening to ED. Surrounded by those who love her and no longer in the isolating grip of ED, Katie's journey towards recovery begins.

THE COMMERCIALS

1. McHerby's Fast Food: A young man (Football-player-type) extols the virtue

of the ridiculously large amounts of yummy high-fat, calorie-laden food one

can get at this fast food restaurant.

2. WannaBee Jeans: three young women (Popular-girls-types) ask us: " Wanna

be unique? Wanna be like us? ... Wear WannaBee jeans...in sizes Zero, Double

Zero and Triple Negative Zero" as they hold up tiny doll-size jeans.

3. Anorexifloxicam Diet Pills: Man in labcoat (Geek-Type) advertising a new

diet pill, "tested on animals and proven safe...for animals." Lawyer reads

extensive list of horrific side effects.

4. The Butt-Crusher: Fit woman (PE-teacher-type) touting expensive new

piece of exercise equipment guaranteed to take you from "Flab to Fab."

5. Bingeables Brownies: Sexy seductive woman promoting the Organic, fat

free, Sugar Free, Carb Free, gluten free Chocolate, Caramel.....Bingeables

brownies. They are bite-size, "so you can eat one, or you can eat the whole

box."

6. Quick Fix Surgery Center: Doctor shares latest breakthrough 3-in-1 surgery

that combines gastric bypass, liposuction and tummy tuck, all doable "during

your lunch hour." It's robotic, so the doctor can perform the procedure

remotely from his iPad!

ACT I: First Day of College

Scene I: It’s the day Katie is heading off to college at the local state University and the family is enjoying a final breakfast together. As they discuss how they will deal with their eldest child leaving the nest, Katie’s mom announces that the family is “going Paleo” after a lazy summer, and warns Katie about the Freshman 15. As Katie is in her room, sadly packing up her final belongings, the character of ED (the Eating Disorder) appears to convince her to start a diet in the song “A Fresh Start.” She's reluctant, but intrigued by the promise of greater self-confidence and popularity promised by ED. She chucks breakfast and gets

ready to head to college.

Scene II: Lunchtime at the college. Katie meets three other freshmen girls who have been “besties” since grade school. They give her the scoop on sorority rush, and inform her that being thin is the ONE thing she can control about getting into the sorority of her choice (“The skinny one...” as ED reminds her). They share their best diet secret: the fact that they essentially subsist on the no-calorie buzz of coffee and invite her to join them in the song “The Coffee Club.” ED is thrilled since it reinforces his contention that losing a few pounds

will help Katie feel better about herself. Now she has support from her new friends. They promise to "motivate each other," so Katie skips lunch and her diet is off and running.

ACT II: Three Weeks Later

Scene I: As a pre-Med student, Katie’s about to take her first Organic Chemistry test. After living on very few calories and lots of caffeine for three weeks, her brain is not working right. Time appears to slow down as Katie’s classmates finish their tests and exit, while her mind is blank. As she panics, ED sings that the pain in her gut and her light-headed sensation is “The Feeling of Success.”

Scene II: The next scene is at the fitness center after the test. ED tells her that a stint on the elliptical machine will lift her spirits, but she is running on empty. In the reprise of “The Feeling of Success,” Katie is alarmed that her body isn't working right. She feels light headed and dizzy, collapsing on the floor. The trainer calls out for water. Stating, “I’m fine...”she stumbles off, with ED in tow acting disgusted.

Scene III: The next scene takes place late that afternoon. Katie is back in the dorm room, alone with ED. Miserable about the test and embarrassed about collapsing at the gym, they decide to watch a reality show called "Dieting with the Stars." The lights come up across the stage as a talk show hostess introduces 3 famous stars and models who sing the hilarious ”Young, Thin and Beautiful.” Afterwards ED plants the seed, explaining to Katie that one of the models stays thin by throwing up her food~

Scene IV: The final scene of Act II takes places later that night. Katie’s friends come by, drunk and ready to party with some fraternity boys.  She is hesitant (EMPTY CALORIES!) but decides to join them.  The next scene is a wordless scene of guys and girls drinking, dancing, partying to the music.  Katie starts dancing with a guy.  They are getting closer as they dance...she hesitates but he grabs her and forces a kiss on her.  He grabs her hand and leads her offstage.  The music is a driving, pounding beat...next the party fades away and Katie, with ED in tow, shows back up in her room. She is disheveled, her clothes and hair indicating that something might have happened.  She tells ED what a creep that guy was; he tells her that she was "rude" in leaving the way she did, that she had led him on.  Panicked by the thought that SHE was to blame, she starts looking for some food to distract herself. Starving and at the end of her rope, she grabs a bag of cookies and finishes it off. Emerging from her food trance, she realizes that she has blown three weeks of hard-core dieting. She sings the song “Disgusting.” ED offers the solution: she can re-establish control by getting rid of the food she just ate by throwing up. She agonizes over this decision, holds her swollen belly, then runs offstage to purge. ED smiles.

ACT III Three Months Later

Scene I: ED sits before a lit-up mirror, transforming from attractive seductive guy into "wife-beater" mode. As he sings “Our Little Secret” he reveals himself to be the body-hatred and food-obsession that plague so many of us these days. He shares his secret; that he recruits his victims through promises and lies, eventually crushing their souls. Back-up dancers step on scales and sing the chorus.

Scene II: This scene begins as a repeat of the beginning of the play: breakfast at Katie's house. She'd arrived home for Thanksgiving Break the prior day, shocking her parents with the weight that she’s lost. You can cut the tension with a knife as she refuses to eat the pancakes that her mother has lovingly prepared. Katie picks a fight with her parents and storms away from the breakfast table, leaving her parents in shocked anguish. They sing

the soulful “What's Eating Katie?” and are joined by her friends, the athletic trainer and her college professor. They each try to understand the changes that have happened to Katie over these three months, alternately blaming the media, her friends and themselves. During the song, Katie and ED dance a slow dance illustrating how ED is now firmly in control of Katie.

Scene III: The final scene takes place in the office of a therapist in the College Counseling Center. ED tries to convince Katie to keep their secret, but she slowly opens up to Dr. Milton, sharing the story of how her problem started and evolved. Dr. Milton explains that struggling with an eating disorder is like being in an abusive relationship, and she

encourages Katie to confront ED. As Katie speaks up, she metaphorically silences ED. Once he's been subdued, Katie starts to reveal the pressures and anxieties that she feels. The therapist reassures Katie that she'll be okay, and that she can learn healthy ways to cope with her feelings and fears. In the final song, Katie's parents, friends, teacher and trainer return to the stage, singing the uplifting “Good Enough,” encouraging Katie to see herself

through the eyes of those who love her instead of listening to ED. Now that the secret has been revealed, Katie's journey towards recovery has begun. Surrounded by those who love her and no longer in the isolating grip of ED, we know that Katie will be okay.

THE COMMERCIALS

1. McHerby's Fast Food: A young man (Football-player-type) extols the virtue of the

ridiculously large amounts of yummy high-fat, calorie-laden food one can get at this fast

food restaurant.

2. WannaBee Jeans: three young women (Popular-girls-types) ask us: " Wanna be unique?

Wanna be like us? ... Wear WannaBee jeans...in sizes Zero, Double Zero and Triple Negative

Zero" as they hold up tiny doll-size jeans.

3. Anorexifloxican Diet Pills: Man in labcoat (Geek-Type) advertising a new diet pill, "tested

on animals and proven safe...for animals." Lawyer reads extensive list of horrific side

effects.

4. The Butt-Crusher: Fit woman (PE-teacher-type) touting expensive new piece of exercise

equipment guaranteed to take you from "Flab to Fab."

5. Bingeables Brownies: Sexy seductive woman promoting the Organic, fat free, Sugar Free,

Carb Free, gluten free Chocolate, Caramel.....Bingeables brownies. They are bite-size, "so

you can eat one, or you can eat the whole box."

6. Quick Fix Surgery Center: Doctor shares latest breakthrough 3-in-1 surgery that

combines gastric bypass, liposuction and tummy tuck, all doable "during your lunch hour."

It's robotic, so the doctor can perform the procedure remotely from his iPad!