From its origins and throughout its history, Western theatre has engaged, represented, and/or attempted to affect the course of history. Phrynichus and Aeschylus wrote plays on the Persian wars when they were still fresh in the memories of their auditors—too fresh in the case of Phrynichus, who was censured by the Athenians. Early in the sixteenth century French sotties commented on Papal politics; late in the same century Elizabethan playwrights began to exploit contemporary crime stories. During the French Revolution hack writers issued dramatic accounts of Marat's death within a month of its occurrence. Astley's had spectacular recreations of Crimean War battles on stage almost before they occurred. In the twentieth century, technological innovation has stimulated this tendency and extended it throughout the mass media in numberless examples of reality-driven representation.