Back again to The Hope which is always full of quintessential good writing and interesting drama.
Kicked In The Sh*tter is by Leon Fleming and directed by Scott Le Crass who are known for Sid which previously played at the Sherman Theatre, Cardiff . The play aims to look at the welfare state, at mental health, the two coinciding and in between this, relationships and trying to live.
The production is ambiguous and simple in its attire – Fleming notes this in the programme as making the narrative be relatable and able to be placed anywhere but also to not avoid drawing attention from the storyline. And this all works well – a lot of productions at the moment are adhering to this and it is welcomed when a lot of productions think that special effects and pomp and circumstance is needed to make an impact. While as a theatre creator myself, these are all aspects that I like to explore, something so realistic and relatable does not need such accessories if it is good writing.
The performers of course do a great job – switching from their younger days to current day, they manage to change their approach to show the distinction. The fact that they bounce off each other works well for a brother and sister relationship and when emotion is needed, awkwardness, a sense of struggling to help or accept help, we can relate to how they portray these.
A weird and subtle addition that I really liked was the stage movement – the sister does this always, with the brother watching, adhering to the essence that she has been left all responsibility. Subtle and small but I loved the attention to detail.
Despite all these good points, it was a good piece of theatre and I enjoyed watching but it did not astound me. But I cannot understand why. The elements were all there and Kicked in The Sh*tter should definitely been seen, if not only to be entertained but informed in the issues highlighted… there was just a spark that was missing for me.