*Trigger Warning: Includes sexual violence, inappropriate sexual relations, teenage sex, mental health, suicide, and graphic language.
*Possible Spoilers to Play.
On Thursday, November 18th, I went to see the current play being put on by the Cal Lutheran Theatre Department, John Procter is the Villian. John Procter is the Villian is about a group of suburban teens reading The Crucible in their English class set in 2019. While reading The Crucible, multiple allegations of sexual assault come out in their community. This is when the teens begin questioning if John Procter was really the amazing guy society has made him out to be, and use that in context to their English teacher Mr. Smith after allegations come out about him. Everyone talks so highly of both John Procter and Mr. Smith because of their involvement in the community and the good things they’ve done. However, whenever they did bad things, they got brushed under the carpet because of how ‘good’ the individuals are. The teens in this class begin to see The Crucible in a different way than how it has been analyzed in the past and begin to express how John Proctor was never actually the good guy.
Overall, I really enjoyed this play. One of my favorite parts was the character development in the individuals, especially the character Beth. The attention to detail in what Beth wore throughout the play really helped show the audience how she was changing and becoming her own person. I also really enjoyed how Beth and Shebly’s relationship grew during the play. I loved how even after what Shebly did to Beth, that Beth still backed her up when she came out about their English teacher having relations with her. Ironically enough, this story was kinda similar to something that happened in my high school. As a sophomore, I had a teacher fired for sexual relations with another student, and I think this play really brings light to how hard it is to be that student and still go to school afterward. While I didn’t know the girl personally, I cannot imagine what she went through after that. I would hope she had a friend like Beth to help her through that experience. I also think this play was very important for the theatre department to bring light to sexual harassment after they had their own issues with sexual harassment a few years back. By bringing light to these types of issues, we can encourage people to get help and to not stay silent. Thank you to the Theatre Department for putting on a play to raise awareness of sexual assault and for dealing with these tough issues shown in this play.
If you are in need of help there are multiple resources the school provides for students.
CLU CAPS – Counseling & Psychological Services 805-493-3727
Office Hours (Mon-Fri: 8am-12pm and 1pm-5pm)
CLU Student Wellness
Sexual Violence Prevention & Sexual Health Services
CLU Title IX (Reporting Sexual Harassment and Discrimination)