Guy Benson
Welcome to our new age of civility:

The Last Supper -- Five lefty graduate students in Iowa City gather for weekly dinners to revel in their shared (and sometimes smug) world view. The first dinner we witness ignites a surprising shared mission when one of the students invites the truck driver who offered him roadside assistance to join them. This young man, a patriotic Desert Storm vet, first startles the group when he insists on saying grace before the vegan meal and then goes on to praise Hitler, alarming and repulsing the other dinners. Threats and violence ensue, and one of the hosts stabs him.

As he lies bleeding on an area rug, the quintet, after some debate and initial hand-wringing, decide that they have done society a favor by eliminating him and silencing his dangerous words. They also decide that since participating in protests and sit-ins has been a futile way to fight the power, this new dinner party/murder method may be a more effective technique in coping with right-wing adversaries.

Soon a parade of special guests is invited to dine, and when their dinner conversation proves repellent, they are given poisoned wine and buried in the backyard. Our smarty-pants grad students toast themselves for making a difference each time and feel vindicated when they learn that their first victim, the trucker, was implicated in a heinous crime. The death toll grows, and the tomato plants seen through the patio door flourish.


Sadly, the conclave's blissful parade of murder is interrupted when a right-leaning pundit marked for death complicates matters by seeming almost human:

At the opening of the play and between dinner scenes, a brash pundit, Norman Arbuthnot, is shown on the large flat-screen TV. These clever video segments are spot-on in their Fox News look and feel. When a chance meeting at an airport on a stormy night brings Norman to the head of the table, he surprises his hosts by being quite reasonable and more moderate in his views. Suddenly they aren't so sure about doing him in, but I won't spoil the ending.

Damn you, theater critic!  Why must you tease us so?  I suppose we'll have to travel to Madison, Wisconsin (shocking) to discover whether the RINO commentator survives.  Needless to say, I'm pulling hard for him.

None of this criticism is intended to precipitate a move to shut down production of The Last Supper, or anything of the sort.  Frankly, I'd consider going to see the play, if only to witness the spectacle and assess how the audience reacts to its fairly objectionable central concept.  No, the purpose of this post is not to advocate censorship, but to once again highlight yet another example of the risible and self-serving double standard liberal bien peasants have constructed for polite society.

A quick primer on the rules:  Conservative commentators, writers, and politicians who use "incendiary" language or graphics (including, but not limited to, targets and crosshairs) pose mortal threats to our civil discourse, and probably inspire violence.  Liberal venom, no matter how vile, is understood to be dispensed in furtherance of the broad goal of combating right-wing hate, and is therefore justifiable.  Either that, or it's a droll artistic expression that ironically portrays liberal death fantasies, or something.


UPDATE: You can hold off on booking your Wisconsin travel plans -- there's already a motion picture version of this play, released in 1995.  The film stars Cameron Diaz, Courtney B. Vance, Mark Harmon, and Jason Alexander, among others.



*Spoiler Alert*

If you'd like to spare yourself the trouble and time of actually watching the movie, read on: The skilled right-leaning polemicist reveals himself to be a doctrinaire liberal who only plays the role a conservative on television to generate higher ratings (because, you know, an authentic conservative couldn't possibly that sharp and unworthy of death).  He ends up catching on to the sinister plot and poisons his fellow diners as they privately deliberate over whether to kill him.  In the end, everyone perishes except for the faux-conservative media personality with a superior intellect. 

Someone get a copy of this movie to David Frum -- stat.  (I kid!)

Guy Benson

Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Senior Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson.

Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography