Underbelly Med Quad (Venue 302)
12, 14,16,18,20,22,24,26,28th Aug
This was a show that really fucked with my head. So please bear with me while I try to write something when I don’t know how to.
I cannot in good faith say I enjoyed the piece. The dialogue was clunky, the lowest common denominator saturday night tv references struck me as lazy and banal, I felt like I was listening to an audio version of the gay Gavin & Stacey (in terms of other people think this is hilarious and i acknowledge that but i don’t get it). Yes, I’m aware of the hypocrisy of using a TV show reference, we’ll pass that off as irony, shall we?
The characters annoyed me, the storytelling, everything just chafed and I was ready to plan my escape from this venue (which also felt all wrong for the show).
Then came the twist in the tale and I was gutted. Suddenly I saw that everything that proceeded was exactly the only way it could be, I was overwhelmed with guilt, pity and a disgusting morbid curiosity for details that left me with a very bad taste in my mouth.
I found myself giggling outside afterwards, a hysterical reaction to my shock, which no doubt would seem inappropriate to someone else. I’m just very glad 2 people I know were going as well and I didn’t see this alone. Now that I think of it there was a guy sitting in front of us who was on his own and while we were getting out of our seats he hung around, not wanting to walk out on his own perhaps. I felt another twinge of guilt that I didn’t recognise his need and act on it at the time. Why didn’t I ask him to join us?
I want to give it 5 stars but that would be out of pity or guilt for the events portrayed in the show. I want to give it 1 star but that would devalue a play that made a tremendous impact on me and I admire the courage and tenacity involved in adressing the issues raised now.
And so the star rating (massively overrated as the system is and with its inability to reflect nuance) must represent both balance and limbo.
Theatre should be challenging, yes. Just maybe a room full of puppies for the audience afterward would have been an idea (take note, Underbelly).