Monday, April 12, 2010

POW! (Play Of The Week)

by Karl Gajdusek
Samuel French, 2010
Acting Edition: $9.95

F*cked Up Beyond All Recognition. An apt expression for the action of this play, even if the title is awkwardly placed into the dialogue.

When choosing my play of the week I had three or four possibilities in mind. I chose FUBAR because it seemed the most truthful; not that I can necessarily relate to these characters, but when analyzed against the backdrop of my older friends, who are in their mid-thirties, the play seemed to be an accurate portrayal of a generation.

Mary and David have moved to her recently deceased mother’s home in San Francisco. When Mary was a child, the domestic violence between her mother and father scarred Mary to the point that she can't even trust her own relationship with David. The thing that she can't get around is how her mother forgave her father, and lived a happy and fulfilled life after his death.

She refuses to unpack the boxes because with them comes the pain of reconciliation. David meanwhile meets up with his old friend Richard, an upper middle class white collar drug dealer, and Richard’s wife Sylvia, a free spirit, wannabe-esoteric sage-medium-realist. David takes up recreational drugs as a way to escape his problems with Mary, and his desire to, every once and a while, pop her one.

After Mary is beaten up by a mugger, she starts going to the gym to learn how to fight, while David plays his old high school games and gets involved with Richards wife.

FUBAR takes the Gen X crowd and shows the quiet desperation behind a solitary life, but elevates it beyond the traditional kitchen sink drama. Or maybe the kitchen sink drama has moved on and developed into the more contemporary hour long television dramedy of today, with a little humor here, a little sex there, some drugs and some domestic sparring.

Regardless, it's a good tight script, with lots for an actor to draw from.

Cast: 3M/2W, late 20s - mid 30s

Scenes/Monologues: Several good sized monologues for both M & W, great scenes for 2 and 3 people

Reviewed by Adam


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