Family in Reverse

By Caroline Campen


A typical (?) family evening, except that the parents are played by children, and the children are played by adults.


2 children


(The family is seated on a couch, watching TV. Dad - played by a child - is already seated, Mum comes in to join him)

Mum: Finally, a chance to sit down.

Dad: Put your feet up dear, you deserve a rest.

Mum: So how was work today.

Dad: Oh, you know how it is, up one minute, down the next. If only the New Zealand dollar would continue to strengthen against the American, I think we could see our way to make a handsome profit in the next few months.

Mum: That's excellent dear.

Dad: And how was your day?

Mum: Well, separating Siamese twins is never easy, but I think the surgery went well.

Dad: That's excellent dear.

Child 1 (off stage): Give that back!

Child 2 : No, it's mine!

Child 1 : No, it's mine!

Child 2 : Well, you gave it to me!

Child 1 : So! I'm taking it back!

Mum: Those children.

Dad: Get in here (not angry, but quite tired and clearly this is a common ocurrence)

(Both children enter, played by adults.)

Child 1: _______ stole my _________ and he/ she won't give it back!

Child 2 : he/she gave it to me.

Dad: How about sharing it?

Child 1 & 2: (Look at each other for a bit …)

Child 1 : It's mine!

Child 2 : No, it's mine!

Mum: For crying out loud, if you can't share, then neither of you can have it (confiscates toy)

Child 1 & 2: That's not fair!

Dad: Children, if you had been more mature about this you would still have it to play with. Sometimes I just wish that you two would…grow up! Now tonight is family movie night, but you two have a choice to make. Either stop arguing and you can come and watch a movie with Mum and Dad, or you can keep arguing and your mother and I will send you to your rooms. What's it going to be?

Child 1: …movie, I guess…

Child 2: Yeah, suppose. (Both go and sit down on the couch next to mum and Dad)

Dad: Right kids - it's a choice between Finding Nemo, or Jimmy Neutron, Boy Genius.

Child 2: I thought we were gonna record the movie last night and watch that.

Dad: Yes, we were.

Child 1: …and so what happened.

Dad: Couldn't figure out how to programme the VCR.

Child 1 : Oh Dad! I've told you a thousand times! Just let me do it! Look you just press this…and then that… and then this.

Dad: Oh, I forgot about that bit.

Child 2 : Look at the instruction manual! It even says on the front… "so simple a child could do it".

Mum: More like, so complicated that ONLY a child could do it.

Child 1: I vote for Jimmy Neutron

Child 2: So do I.

Dad: Jimmy Neutron it is (puts tape in VCR and presses remote)

(possible fade out to Jimmy Clip here)


Caroline Campen, all rights reserved. The script may not be reproduced, translated or copied in any medium, including books, CDs and on the Internet, without written permission of the author.
This play may be performed free of charge, on the condition that copies are not sold for profit in any medium, nor any entrance fee charged. In exchange for free performance, the author would appreciate being notified of when and for what purpose the play is performed. She may be contacted at: