John Stillman is an unassuming CIA station chief posted in the Congo in 1960. His lagging career gets an unexpected shot in the arm when he receives a cable from the Eisenhower White House telling him to assassinate the Congo's Prime Minister, Patrice Lumumba. Dr. Felix Bender, a CIA assassin, will be coming to supervise a plan that is to include poisoned lipstick, a dinner party and the attempted seduction of the Congolese leader by an American agent. Stillman is horrified by the assignment and is further shocked when his wife, Patience, a preppie social climber, declares that killing Lumumba would be a great career move. When Bender's assistant takes sick, it is Patience who must step into the breach and seduce Mr. Lumumba. Into this mix come Bud Bradshaw, an auto parts salesman from Schenectady, and his dizzy wife, Alice. They are searching the Congo for their daughter who has run off with an African exchange student. The night of the dinner party arrives, but John gets cold feet. As Patience does her level best to seduce the Prime Minister, John cracks under the pressure and announces to everyone what he's been assigned to do. Bud and Alice, who have crashed the party, are swept into the farce with deadly results: poor, hapless Bud ends up giving Patience mouth-to-mouth, only to die from her lip poison (and revive later when it wears off). Disillusioned, John resigns, and he and Patience leave for the states, though not together. At the gate, he attempts a mock assassination of his wife, but after all she's seen, his Lady Macbeth is just not impressed. JUNGLE ROT can be performed by a cast of 10 with the actress playing Patience Stillman doubling as Miss Rendelbaker.
"A rollicking farce with the darkest of souls…it combines highly intelligent political humor with broad physical comedy…the clever JUNGLE ROT offers plenty of cynical laughs." —Variety. "JUNGLE ROT sends up Cold War tensions and CIA shenanigans with exuberant wit and grand style…it's also daring enough to ask the audience to think about geopolitical strategy, class envy and the curdling effects of amorality." —Cleveland News-Herald.