Pinnocchio: A Nose for the Flesh - We Won't Lie... This One's Dark...! | Script Revolution

Pinnocchio: A Nose for the Flesh - We Won't Lie... This One's Dark...!

Pinocchio:  A Nose for Flesh

Pinocchio is back.  But this time he’s bad, really bad.

Honesty.  Hard work.  Achieving one’s deepest dreams.

In most people’s childhood memories, Pinocchio is a comforting tale about how Bad can be turned to Good. How a person may reach their goals if they keep their nose to the grindstone and do right by others in their world.  Disney’s 1940 variation of the 19th century Italian fairy tale definitely presented a feel-good version, with Pinocchio’s character arc echoing hope for individual success in post-depression USA. 

But James Barron’s Pinocchio:  A Nose for Flesh offers up a very different version of the human wannabe and his progenitor, Geppetto.   Set in a rural Italian home in the late nineteenth century, this variant is a story of religious fanaticism, unequal gender roles, infantile male rages, and terrifying violence.

The story begins as many of us probably remember. Geppetto creates a wooden figure that he imbues with life and calls his son.  Pinocchio begins his life good, polite, and grateful for the opportunity to embrace Geppetto’s family as his own. 

As for the old man himself – he’s convinced his creation is divine, a gift from God.  But his daughters fear otherwise, and beg their father to consult a priest. 

Geppetto ignores his daughters’ pleas, and soon loses interest in his new work. He’s repulsed by the sight of Pinocchio’s growing nose, and irritated by the boy’s polite insistence that he receive the attentions that any real boy deserves:


Father, have I offended thee—


(turns to Elisa)

Make it stop speaking to me.

Pinocchio practically vibrates with shame and anger.


I... don’t understand.


Cast your glance elsewhere, beast!

When sent from the cottage to collect firewood, Pinocchio’s short-lived happiness rapidly transforms into something much more sinister.  He’s determined to return to Geppetto as the real boy that his maker once envisioned.  No matter what it takes.

But, if Pinocchio’s petulance persists, he could destroy the very fabric of the life he so craves. 

If you’re looking for a very dark rendition of this beloved tale…one where “happily ever after” is not an option, look no further than this work. Pinocchio: A Nose for Flesh is your twisted cup of tea!

The Script

Pinocchio: A Nose for Flesh

Desperate to become a real boy, Pinocchio must first learn to curb one particularly unsavory eating habit.

About The Reviewer

Julia Cottle's picture
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Julia Cottle is a cultural anthropologist living in Chicago. She has worked for years as a university instructor and researcher for organizations committed to social justice. She always has loved to write, but only recently has discovered the joy of film and stage writing.Read more

About The Writer

James Barron's picture
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I love to write comedy along with the occasional horror/thriller. My work is frequently showcased on Janet's Shootin' The Shorts Blog (which is now part of Script Revolution too!) Feel free to check out more on my website: more