Set in a cottage on the North-West coast of Ireland during the early 1900s the play tells the story of Christy Mahon, a young man supposedly running away having killed his father. Following Christy's arrival at the cottage the locals are more interested in vicariously enjoying his story than in condemning his morality. When The Playboy first opened in Dublin it was the cause of riots as Catholic protesters voiced their objections to the portrayal of rural Irish Catholic morality.
mour.] -- If it is, when we're wedded in a short while you'll have no call to complain, for I've little will to be walking off to wakes or weddings in the darkness of the night.
PEGEEN -- [with rather scornful good humour.] -- You're making mighty certain, Shaneen, that I'll wed you now.
SHAWN. Aren't we after making a good bargain, the way we're only waiting these days on Father Reilly's dispensation from the bishops, or the Court of Rome.
PEGEEN -- [looking at him teasingly, washing up at dresser.] -- It's a wonder, Shaneen, the Holy Father'd be taking notice of the likes of you; for if I was him I wouldn't bother with this place where you'll meet none but Red Linahan, has a squint in his eye, and Patcheen is lame in his heel, or the mad Mulrannies were driven from California and they lost in their wits. We're a queer lot these times to go troubling the Holy Father on his sacred seat.
SHAWN -- [scandalized.] If we are, we're as good this place as another, maybe, and as good these times as we