John Osbourne, who died in 1994, is remembered as a playwright who liberated modern British drama from genteel explorations of upper-middle class life. His work is said to have opened doors to English social and political realities that few authors since Shaw have presented on stage. This study of Osborne's plays gives an analysis of his reception and proposes an argument about his aesthetics. It is sectioned so as to evoke the divisions of a "well made play" suggesting that "Osbourne, the playwright" is perhaps his own best creation. The text covers the quick and perturbing rise to success, the masterworks, the slow descent with a number of relative failures, and the apt resolution with a play that returned to the opening scene of Osbourne's career.