22-year-old Jean-Baptiste Poquelin, also known as Moliere, is not yet the writer that history recognizes as the father & true master of comic satire, author of Â“the Misanthrope and Tartuffe, and a dramatist to rank alongside Shakespeare & Sophocles. Far from it. He is in fact, a failed actor. His Illustrious Theatre Troupe, founded the previous year, is bankrupt. Hounded by creditors, Moliere is thrown into jail, released, then swiftly imprisoned again. When the jailors finally let him go, he disappears.