''Code 21'' is a play written by Russell Schneider, a local actor in the Twin Cities. The full version takes place in the adolescent psych ward wherein four young patients are staying. The play looks at the current system of psychiatry with a critical eye. Though the psychiatrists and counselors want to help the patients, the play questions whether or not the current system is really capable of doing it. The play currently exists in two versions: a full version and an abridged version with fewer characters created for the 2010 Minnesota Fringe Festival. The original performance of the full version can be found [[http://www.youtube.com/user/FogMachineTheater here]].
!''Code 21'' provides examples of:
* AbusiveParents: Rebecca has these. Sara's mother is also emotionally abusive.
* AdultsAreUseless: If you're lucky. If not, they [[spoiler: kill your pets.]]
* AloofBigBrother: Jesse, Sara's big brother, becomes this somewhat accidentally after [[spoiler: his suicide attempt.]]
* BigBrotherMentor: Jesse to Sara.
* BittersweetEnding: Many of the characters get relatively hopeful endings. Jacob and Alexander have parents who want to help and will probably be okay, Sara has [[spoiler: Jesse]], and Rebecca [[spoiler: has come clean about her past.]] She ends up [[spoiler: lying to get out of the hospital]] and it is unclear whether [[spoiler: her dad will get caught and she will get the help she needs]] or not.
* BrutalHonesty: Rebecca's speech to Song in the abridged version shortly before [[spoiler: the code]].
* ChekhovsGun: The [[spoiler: code 21 that happens halfway through the play]] was inserted with this very trope in mind.
* CodeEmergency: The code 21 which is the actual code name used in hospitals to indicate that a patient has become unruly and needs to be sedated.
* CriticalPsychoanalysisFailure: Disturbingly averted. In the full version, Dr. Song explains to Cassandra that he/she (depending on the version) cannot become personally involved in the lives of each patient or else he/she would become incapable of doing his/her job.
* CrossCastRole: In the first staging of ''Code 21,'' Jacob and Alexander were portrayed by female actors because no male actors were available. Dr. Theodore Song became Dr. Teresa Song. WordOfGod says that Dr. Song's gender is irrelevant.
* DarkAndTroubledPast: [[spoiler: Rebecca]] has one of these.
* DawsonCasting: Averted in the abridged production where a genuine 16-year-old was cast as Sara. Played straight in the original production where college students played the teenage patients.
* DrJerk: Dr. Song could be considered this. Rebecca and Sara think so anyway.
* EmoTeen: De-constructed in a speech from Sara to Rebecca.
* EvilMatriarch: Both Sara and Rebecca's mothers are good examples.
* FriendlyEnemy: Rebecca to Sara.
* TheFundamentalist: Rebecca's mother.
* HearingVoices: Jacob.
* KnightInSourArmor: Cassandra in the full version, possibly Alexander as well.
* LesYay: WordOfGod confirmed that the feelings between [[spoiler: Rebecca and Sara]] and between [[spoiler: Dr. Song (who was originally a female) and Cassandra]] were intentionally made ambiguous because the characters were not supposed to have clearly defined sexual orientations.
* LoveRedeems: Sara and Rebecca debate this concept. Losing hope that this is true causes [[spoiler: Rebecca to reveal her secrets.]]
* NoMedicationForMe: Sara and Rebecca both try to fight Dr. Song's insistence that they take medication. Sara, at least, [[spoiler: is forced to take it in order to be let out.]] After Rebecca explains what happens to people she's met when they go on meds it becomes a JustifiedTrope.
* NosyNeighbor: Rebecca, only she's more like a nosy roommate.
* OurAngelsAreDifferent: In Sara's story, an angel helps the boy she loves pull off [[spoiler: a successful school shooting]].
* ParentalFavoritism: Sara's main emotional issue is that her mother favors her brother over her.
* TeensAreMonsters: Played straight with Sara's classmates. Challenged when Sara and Rebecca both explain why they are the way they are.
* ThereAreNoTherapists: Averted. They just aren't very good.
* TheUnFavorite: Sara.