It’s gen­der neu­tral

The Jewish Chronicle - - REVIEWS - THEATRE JOHN NATHAN

a univer­sity. There is, for in­stance, the epony­mous Teddy, a geeky gay loner who, de­spite indulging in the some­what uned­i­fy­ing habit of ex­pos­ing him­self online for the grat­i­fi­ca­tion of oth­ers, nev­er­the­less claims to feel ter­ri­bly ex­posed by a room-mate’s we­b­cam pointed at his bed.

Shinn ex­poses the cul­ture of vic­tim sta­tus that says you’re no one un­less you’re an op­pressed mi­nor­ity. But with­out wish­ing to be guilty of my own mi­cro (or macro) ag­gres­sion against LBTGQ com­mu­ni­ties (“We’re run­ning out of letters,” says Marsh’s droll Pres­i­dent) it all feels like one of those so-called ground­break­ing Chan­nel 4 se­ries from the 1980s that de­fined its char­ac­ters more by their sex­u­al­ity than their, well, char­ac­ter.

In fact, the whole multi-stranded thing would prob­a­bly have been bet­ter suited to TV. Lo­ca­tion changes are in­el­e­gantly han­dled. Some­times char­ac­ters are stranded and in­ert in one part of the stage while a pool of light drags our at­ten­tion to the ac­tive scene else­where.

More prob­lem­atic, how­ever, is that, while the play ex­poses the par­tic­u­lar brand of sophistry used to pro­mote a so-called wor­thy cause, un­like Mamet’s at­tack on po­lit­i­cal correctness, no one re­ally suf­fers as a re­sult here. The univer­sity’s pres­i­dent will prob­a­bly be­come a sen­a­tor, Gabe will move on too and those with a vested in­ter­ested in pro­mot­ing them­selves as vic­tims will carry on do­ing so, only pos­si­bly with more toi­lets than they need. The evening ends in a shrug of so what.

at the Don­mar

PHOTO: MANUEL HAR­LAN

Matthew

Marsh and the cast of

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.