Struggling with body dysmorphia, Simon reverts to extreme body modification to recreate his image. Facing prejudice and judgement from family and strangers alike, Simon embraces an underground subculture which helps him develop his physical image of perfection. Yet the mental demons still torture his mind.
As the only male in a house full of women, Simon (17) is surrounded by his mother (Sally-Ann Marston) and three sisters (Rebecca, Louise & Abbey) with their never ending dieting attempts, exercise trends and frequent failures. Causing Simon to become neurotic about his own body, this paranoia grows with the uneasy decisions of career, college or university.
He sadly sinks into depression, feeling rejected by his mother, whose main concern is the forthcoming wedding of his eldest sister. (Rebecca – 24) The dieting becomes paramount in the house and Simon turns to self-harm as his grades suffer. Ceases to eat for days on end then binges and purges and finally drops out of college. Much to his mother’s disgust.
Simon hits rock bottom when he attempts suicide, his mother is furious, accusing him of being attention seeking, risking ruining Rebecca’s wedding. However, Simon’s youngest sister (Abbey – 16) supports him, even sharing a naughty little secret. A cheeky cherry tattoo at the top of her butt.
He is diagnosed with body dismorphia while recovering in hospital and it is during this time that Abbey introduces him to her boyfriend (Frog – 28) a tattoo artist.
With the mounting stress over the wedding of the year, their mother has little time for Simon and his silliness. During a dress fitting, the cheeky cherry tattoo is spotted by the eagle eyed mother and all hell breaks loose and it is Simon’s turn to support Abbey.
[Need to include background information about the father]
On his 18th birthday Simon inherits a substantial amount from his late father’s estate. Which he promptly uses to get his first tattoo from Frog.
Over the following months (building up to the wedding of the century) Simon becomes heavily addicted to tattooing and piercing…
On the plus side:
- He develops a strong relationship with Abbey
- Frog becomes a father figure to him
- He starts to eat properly, seeing his body as a canvas
- Something to decorate instead of punish
- His friendship circle expands
- He becomes interested in art
On the negative scope:
- He is dreadfully bullied because of his appearance
- His mother & eldest sisters reject him
- He is shunned by society
- He is rejected from college and university
- His career options are limited
- He is beaten up by Louise’s boyfriend
[These events need to be presented in a juxtaposition]
Simon becomes unrecognisable and is finally banned from Rebecca’s wedding. Which is when he leaves home and moves into Frog’s spare room.
His body dismorphia is transformed from self-hate to a craving to develop perfection through the use of extreme body modification. Expanding beyond tattoos and piercing and moving into branding, scarification, sub-dermal implants etc…
He has a powerful vision during a suspension experience, where he sees himself as perfect, the last modification he craves is a tongue split. He also meets Molly at this event, a timid Goth chick, known as Mog-Mog. Quite plain by his extreme appearance, yet she is drawn to him and they develop a fond relationship.
Frog offers him work in this tattoo studio as an apprentice and helping to run other suspension events. Simon’s life starts to flourish, even though the relationship with his mother is strained.
Instead of getting his tongue split professionally, Simon attempts this procedure himself and accidently cuts through the lingual veins. He faints, the wound untreated causes him to bleed out and sadly his body is discovered a few hours later by Frog.
End Scene – Simon’s Mother, standing with his sisters at the grave side. When Frog, Abbey, Mog-Mog and many other weird and wonderful tattooed and freakish friends arrive to pay their respects for a very loving popular young man.
Anne Harrison 15.19.16