Smalltown Pizza Co

By Nick Hoobin

Screenplay and Illustration

Smalltown Pizza Co title illustration by Nick Hoobin

JUDGE: Good morning everyone on this fine Tuesday the fourteenth. I hope you all have wonderful plans for after this hearing. I’m thinking of getting a bite—


JUDGE: (Clears throat) Yes, well… We’re gathered to hear statements for The State v. The Defendant. Will the prosecution list the accusations?

PROSECUTOR: The defendant is accused of denying service based on religious—

DEFENDANT: (Raises hand) Your Honor—

PROSECUTOR: The defendant is accused of denying—

DEFENDANT: (Raises hand) I’d like—

JUDGE: Let the prosecutor speak.

PROSECUTOR: Religious reasons. Under the constitution of the state this is considered a crime. The constitution guarantees service to all residents and visitors—

DEFENDANT: It’s really important. I want the—

PROSECUTOR: Visitors the right to service regardless of religious beliefs, among other protections.

DEFENDANT: (Raises hand) But I need to say something—

JUDGE: (Rolls eyes) What is it?

DEFENDANT: I want that table moved. Can we move that table?

JUDGE: The table.

DEFENDANT: Yes, that table (points to the table on the prosecutor’s side).

JUDGE: You want to move that table (points to table)?


JUDGE: And why is that?

DEFENDANT: There’s a plastic bag on it.

JUDGE: There’s what?

PROSECUTOR: I have a plastic bag containing some files on my table.

DEFENDANT: That’s right. I want that table moved.

JUDGE: You want that table moved.

Smalltown Pizza Co tagline by Nick Hoobin
We share your values.

DEFENDANT: For religious reasons. I want that table moved; it violates my beliefs. The court has to accommodate my religious needs.

JUDGE: You have a religious complaint against tables—

PROSECUTOR: No, I believe it’s against the bag.

JUDGE: The bag?


JUDGE: (Looks at the defendant) The bag?

DEFENDANT: Yes, my religion states that bags are the—

JUDGE: You’re serious.

DEFENDANT: Yes. My religious—

JUDGE: The bag. You want to move the table because of the bag.

PROSECUTOR: Yes, Your Honor, that’s the reason behind this hearing—

JUDGE: The defendant is offended by bags.

DEFENDANT: Yes, and I’m offended by the prosecutor too. The prosecutor is a filthy—

JUDGE: Where’s your representation?

DEFENDANT: I fired my representation.

PROSECUTOR: The defendant has waived their right to legal counsel based on religious grounds.

JUDGE: You fired your lawyer, based on religious reasons.

PROSECUTOR: Yes and they also denied service to a group of constitutionally protected people based on religious reasons. That’s what this hearing is about.

DEFENDANT: (Clears throat) Can we get back to the table? I want it moved out of my sight. I can’t stand that inflammatory holy symbol

JUDGE: The bag?


JUDGE: We will not be rearranging this courtroom, Defendant. If you are offended by the bag—

DEFENDANT: Holy symbol.

JUDGE: If you are offended by the bag then look away. Let’s get back to the hearing. Prosecutor, please repeat what this hearing is about.

PROSECUTOR: The defendant is accused of denying service to a group of people based on religious reasons. This is against the law under our state’s constitution. The defendant has also waived their right to legal representation.

DEFENDANT: (Inaudible)

JUDGE: Speak up!

DEFENDANT: They’re all baggers. Being a bagger is against nature and my conscious.

JUDGE: A bagger?

PROSECUTOR: People who worship plastic bags, Your Honor. Or it seems anyone who even possesses one.

DEFENDANT: The plastic bag is an inflammatory holy symbol, a false idol, just possessing one means you’re worshipping it. Your Honor, the prosecutor is making fun of my religious beliefs!

JUDGE: A bagger? Is that a slur?

PROSECUTOR: Yes, Your Honor. The defendant is using the word as a slur. Although, I’ve never heard it used before taking on this case.

JUDGE: I will not have slurs used in this courtroom. Defendant, do not use slurs when describing people of a certain religion. Prosecutor, you will not criticize the defendant’s religious beliefs.

PROSECUTOR: Sorry Your Honor.

(Judge looks at Defendant, expecting an apology. The defendant fidgets in silence.)

JUDGE: Defendant, did you deny service to a group of people based on your religious convictions?

DEFENDANT: Yes Your Honor. They were baggers.

JUDGE: Bag worshippers.

DEFENDANT: Yes Your Honor, they worshipped those filthy plastic bags.

JUDGE: What is it that you do?

DEFENDANT: I run a local pizza shop. We pride ourselves on our American values and freedoms. Our customers feel like they’re at home and share our family morals. Baggers—

JUDGE: (Clears throat.)

DEFENDANT: Bag worshippers have no place in this free country. They’re unnatural and I don’t believe in them.

PROSECUTOR: Your Honor, the defendant talks about American values, yet utterly disregards the freedom of religion—

JUDGE: Do you run Smalltown Pizza Co?



JUDGE: I’ve heard that shop’s pizza tastes great.

PROSECUTOR: We shouldn’t use this courtroom to—

JUDGE: Yet you would deny customers a chance to eat your wonderful pizza based on religious reasons?

DEFENDANT: Yes, they don’t have a right to exist. They worship those filthy bags.

JUDGE: Hmm. Prosecutor, you had something to show?

PROSECUTOR: Yes, Your Honor, I have a copy of some menus from the establishment.

DEFENDANT: You brought them in a plastic bag?


DEFENDANT: (Enraged) You bagger!

JUDGE: Defendant, there will be no yelling and no slurs used in my court—

DEFENDANT: The prosecutor is a bagger. A filthy bagger.

JUDGE: Order.

DEFENDANT: I brought menus too.


Freedom Munch $17.49

Meat, veggies, cheese. American, not Swiss.

Blue Collar Veggie $11.99

Mom always said to eat your vegetables and value hard work.

Ma and Pa Melt $13.49

The backbone of our famous pizza shop. Cheese melted on top of steak.

Hawaiian State Barbecue $16.49

A tropical island barbecue on a pizza, without having to leave the USA.

Sunday Potluck $12.99

Our leftover meats bring their praise to this pizza.

Great Plains $15.49

Pork, potatoes, corn, and Wisconsin cheese. As flat as the real thing.

PROSECUTOR: In a paper bag no less.

JUDGE: Order. You brought menus?

DEFENDANT: Yes, I brought menus to give to the audience. (Starts handing out menus to the audience.) As you can see we’re currently running a special.

PROSECUTOR: That’s what I was going to bring up.

JUDGE: You’re handing out menus to the audience. Stop that!

DEFENDANT: (Continues handing out menus.) Correct, I’m also running a special.

PROSECUTOR: About that special, as you can see—

JUDGE: Stop that. You are not to hand out menus. This is a hearing. You are being charged with a violation of the state’s constitution. This is not a commercial.

PROSECUTOR: (Walks up to Judge and hands over a menu.) You see, Your Honor, the defendant is running a special. If a customer comes in and destroys a bag—

DEFENDANT: (Continuing to hand out menus.) Holy symbol.

PROSECUTOR: If the customer destroys a bag they will receive a free pizza. This is a gross and obvious form of hate speech.

JUDGE: A whole pizza? That’s an expensive promotion—


JUDGE: Yes. I see the discriminatory offer. Defendant, stop handing out these hateful menus. This is not an appropriate venue to promote your business.

DEFENDANT: I’m not handing out menus. Look this person is a bagger. I’m not handing them a menu, I’m skipping over them. In fact, I think the whole audience looks like baggers. I want my menus back.

JUDGE: Do not give the defendant the menus back. Defendant, do not refer to the audience using a slur.

DEFENDANT: I didn’t call them a bagger. I said they looked like a bagger.

JUDGE: You said they looked like a bagger.


JUDGE: I mean, you said they looked like a bag worshipper.


JUDGE: First you want the audience’s patronage, and now you want to discriminate against them based on your religious beliefs?

DEFENDANT: No, I want everyone to visit Smalltown Pizza Co. Just not the baggers.

JUDGE: You don’t want people’s patronage.

Smalltown Pizza Co restroom sign by Nick Hoobin

DEFENDANT: Only the baggers. They’re against nature and my conscious. My lawyer, this prosecutor, and this audience are all baggers. (Looks at Judge) You’re probably a filthy bagger too.

JUDGE: Well—

PROSECUTOR: Don’t answer that.

JUDGE: Well, if all it takes to be a—

PROSECUTOR: You’ll just fan the flames of hate. Don’t give in.

JUDGE: (Looks at Prosecutor) I can take care of myself just fine, thanks. (Looks at Defendant) In order to be a bag worshipper, I must be in possession of a plastic bag, correct?

PROSECUTOR: (To Defendant) Don’t answer that.

DEFENDANT: (To Prosecutor) Your Honor asked me a question. (To Judge) Yes. Filthy baggers, like this prosecutor, have bags. Don’t tell me you’re a filthy bagger too.

JUDGE: I may have in my possession—


JUDGE: (Pulls out a plastic bag) One plastic bag.

DEFENDANT: (Yells) A bagger!

JUDGE: Yes, I am a bagger.

PROSECUTOR: A bag worshipping person. (To Judge) You shouldn’t have given in.

DEFENDANT: I knew it! The whole system is rigged against me!

JUDGE: Rigged?

DEFENDANT: My lawyer, the prosecutor, the audience, the judge, everyone is a bagger. I call a mistrial.

JUDGE: I’m not granting you a mistrial. You obviously have some problems getting along with persons of faith different than your own

PROSECUTOR: It’s not even a real religion. The defendant is making it up.

DEFENDANT: See, Your Honor, there’s a bagger conspiracy. They have a bagger agenda and are infiltrating our politics and Free American Soil.

JUDGE: You do realize that you’re talking about freedom yet denying people religious free—

DEFENDANT: I will not listen to the bagger propaganda and agenda.

JUDGE: I can assure you that I do not have—


JUDGE: (Raises voice) I can assure you that I do not have a bag—


Smalltown Pizza Co pattern by Nick Hoobin

JUDGE: Order! You will not insult—

DEFENDANT: My lawyer, the prosecutor, the audience, the judge, even the courtroom itself are all part of the bagger agenda. Mistrial!

JUDGE: I will not be granting a mistrial. You obviously—

DEFENDANT: I want my menus back!

JUDGE: The audience will not be giving you your menus back.

DEFENDANT: I don’t care, I’m leaving.

JUDGE: You’re leaving.

DEFENDANT: I’m leaving.

PROSECUTOR: They’re leaving.

DEFENDANT: (Leaving) Don’t forget to grab some pizzas from Smalltown Pizza Co—

JUDGE: You said you wouldn’t serve the audience yet you’re still—

DEFENDANT: Don’t forget Smalltown Pizza Co is having a special. Destroy a bag and you get a free pizza! (Exits courtroom.)

JUDGE: (Beat) What just happened?

PROSECUTOR: I’d say this hearing is over. (Beat) May the Plastic Bags bless you with their convenient storage capabilities.


Smalltown Pizza Co promo by Nick Hoobin
Destroy a bag, get a free pizza. For our future and children. Limit 1 pizza per customer. Offer valid through 2017.

This Screenplay and Illustration is even more awesome in print.

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