An Alien Called Roger


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175 in stock


By Zekria Ibrahimi

ISBN: 978-1-78382-201-0
Published: 2015
Pages: 89
Key Themes: Mental Health, Mental Illness, Play, Script, Social Issues, Schizophrenia


‘An Alien Called Roger’ is an intentionally twisted play about the way Irish travellers are bullied and humiliated by blinkered British society, which is unable to tolerate those daring to be free and generous and beautiful. Travellers are hounded from one broken down site to the next by councils and police. The tragedy of Dale Farm was an example of how they can be crushed by the myopic petty prejudice of the settled population.

In ‘An Alien Called Roger’, the action occurs over just one night. An Irish traveller woman, Theresa Doherty, who is basically a low grade prostitute, meets, on the streets of London, an alien- and his name is Roger! She has just stolen a phone and a wallet from a Brummie punter, Roy. Roger hopes in vain to convert Earth to the peace and gentleness of which it is incapable. To his own horror, he ends up killing Roy, a bully blinkered by dim-witted unfeeling egotism, a thug threatening Theresa with the police in her own grubby East Acton flat. Roger the Alien and Theresa the Irish traveller leave Earth in his flying saucer as bleak lovers- and bleak fugitives- across the galaxy.

This play is about the role of the outsider and the role of the unexpected…

It is a whimper of hope in a London that is full of the discord of despair…

Join the unbelievably reckless Theresa Doherty, as she exchanges her caravan on the A40 for a spaceship all the way to Sirius!

And realize the sadness, the degradation, of never being able to belong…

About the Author

Zekria Ibrahimi (born in 1959) is defined by his schizophrenia. It first hit him long ago, in his late teens. He is fifty six years old now, grey and frail, almost a pensioner, with all the aches and injuries of age, incontinent and impotent, lame and with constant tinnitus; he has shattered his right arm, which will never recover. He is always stiff, painful and weak.

He does not always want to remember how, as an adolescent in the late 1970’s, he suddenly became afraid of everything surrounding him, and, worst of all, of himself. He would run around the countryside and knock at the doors of strangers because he feared the apocalypse was pursuing him … He would pick up rubbish outside in alleys and streets and hoard it in his not very palatial lodgings … He was always wandering away from home, searching for … what would never be found again … the straight route, the level way … He was a tramp, freezing during the nights in public toilets where he had various unsavoury insects as company on the cold concrete …

There were years of pain when his schizophrenia became almost his only companion- albeit a sadistic one, punishing him even as he hugged it. Perhaps, to echo both R. D. Laing and Emily Dickinson, it is the entire globe, it is general society, that is truly insane. Schizophrenics simply burrow all too deeply under the surface. They reach the very core of the savage reality in everyone. Most varnish over the anarchic truth within through the superficial sham paraded as ‘civilization’. Schizophrenics prefer to be uncomfortably honest barbarians.

Eventually, after much psychotic shouting on Hammersmith Broadway, the hapless Zekria was confined at the Charing Cross unit in the West London Mental Health Trust. Following the unsafe unstable freedom of his schizophrenia, came the restrictions of Section 3. He would not have survived without the multi- racial compassion of the individual doctors and nurses in Charing Cross. Yet the overall SYSTEM remains an ogre of rules and restraints, and the INSTITUTION of psychiatry can be as cold and vicious as in the days of lobotomy and insulin shock.

He is an extreme liberal socialist, despairing of the tendencies towards cruel inequality and vicious intolerance across this planet.

Zekria is very elderly, but still he muses about being locked up, drugged up, about how, with schizophrenia, the treatment can be worse than the disease…

Book Extract

(There is a table in the centre of the stage, with two chairs at either end. The green and plastic table is rather worn and grotty, as are the vaguely wooden chairs. Upstage, there is a huge map of Ireland on the wall, across which is inscribed the word, in cruel red letters, NOWHERE.

The action will vary between the perpetually unsafe streets of London and a depressing run- down flat on a depressing run- down estate. At the moment the context is the streets, though the scenery will remain the same, whether the characters are in the streets or in the wreck of a council flat.

A woman enters. She is aged about twenty five, large but not yet seeming fat. She wears curling, quite voluminous ear rings, and probably has been trying to look rather fancy in a less than bashful manner. She is an Irish traveller, and everything in her personality appears to tend towards generosity and extravagance, just as everything in her situation veers alas in the direction of poverty and restriction. She is wearing violet hot pants and a T- shirt with the inscription LOVE ME. She has black leggings, but they are laddered in places. She appears as if she may have been at a party- or maybe she usually dresses in this manner, that is, to be sadly candid, of a whore.

Unfortunately, she cannot avoid reflecting, absorbing, the depressing, run-down situation in which she is located.

She walks to the edge of the stage to talk to the audience. She is scarcely shy, yet her brashness has a certain brittleness to it. Her name is Theresa Doherty. She is far from being some flower of demure politeness. There is a flagrant if somehow grim eroticism about her, which marks her out as desirable and doomed at the same time. She always maintains that air of someone not at ease with, even opposed to, society. Theresa is, maybe without knowing the fact herself, an inevitable rebel).


Another night thieving from some feen who was thinking only of sex. As if my pussy were instantly for sale.

(Theresa shrugs dismissively)

Men. They’re all bastards who have dicks instead of brains.

(Theresa becomes pensive, perhaps somewhat timid all of a sudden)

I always tell them I like shagging. The same as some slut in the sewer. Maybe I’m lying, to them and myself. Yes, it can seem so thrilling, to be close to someone, to feel him inside me, to be, to look, intimate. But men are such bullies in bed- and traveller men are the worst tyrants of all, in every bloody way. They think they own us girls, like their cars and their caravans.

(She sighs, half- bored, half- miserable)

Traveller men are interested only in money and fighting. We women are for them just like a PS to a letter, nothing more. We are their property.

(She smiles, with a sad awkwardness)

I’ve been with all sorts of men- white, Asian, West Indian, African, the lot. They all are creatures of the dick.


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