Climbing a Ladder of Kisses is a script loosely based on the life and death of Rasputin. It tells the story of Viktor Rodion, a peasant in Miisukhanistan who is exiled from his village. He wanders to the capital, finding out he has some gift of healing along the way. Viktor meets the Margrave and Margravine who rule Miisukhanistan, and helps their son, who has some kind of illness making him weak. However, Viktor is also prone to drinking, sex and interventions in politics, and the nobility hate him for it. Plots are soon made against the New Man in Miisukhanistani upper circles...
Climbing a Ladder of Kisses contains examples of:
- Anti-Hero: Viktor Rodion wants equity in Miisukhanistan, and he heals people, but he also get drunk and has sex repeatedly while in power.
- Disproportionate Retribution: Arguably Sveta. [[spoiler: She tries to assassinate Viktor for leaving her, drinking too much, and having sex with people.
- Grey and Gray Morality: Viktor Rodion is a man fighting for equality for the peasants...who also gets drunk and has sex with any consenting (and some debatably consenting) women around. His would-be assassins are infuriated by his excesses and drunken offenses...and are mostly nobles who also fear the loss of their privileges in Viktor's reforms..
- Hammer and Sickle Removed for Your Protection: Miisukhanistan is a very obvious stand-in for Tsarist Russia. The enemies of the Margrave are just called 'revolutionaries'.
- Once Is Not Enough: On the case of Viktor's death.
- Rasputinian Death: Obviously, though it is a toned-down, more 'realistic' version of the original legend of the real Rasputin.
- Revolvers Are for Amateurs: Most of the nobles have them, though they don't seem particularly good at using them.
- What the Hell, Hero?: Sveta calls out Viktor on his abuses of power.