The Mission Theatre
28.05.2017 – 19:30
As a writer it is hard for me to see a performance which is so terribly let down by its script. Sadly, Those Legs by Noel Clarke was just that, a confusion of plot after plot firing off one after the other, shifting the focus from character to character. The actors did their best with it and managed to give each character personality and emotional involvement, but there were just too many strings connecting pins on the cork board.
The premise of the play was interesting and solid, a young woman, Georgia, is involved in an accident which leaves her paralysed and in a wheelchair. After two years and a succession of carers, she has still not come to terms with her situation, her negative outlook putting strain on her two housemates and fiancé.
However, despite the actors giving it their all, emotions were painstakingly explained in longwinded, unnatural sounding dialogue, letting the air out of any possible action. This was pushed further by unnecessary characters and scenes. The too direct plumber and emotionally unstable carer were played for comic relief, rather than showing the prejudice and loss of independence which someone with a disability experiences. They did, however, cut time away from the core group of flatmates.
As well as this, scenes just seemed to come out of nowhere. The sudden dream sequence where the main character was able to walk again, randomly appeared before she was helped into the shower. The whole performance seemed to rush by while sluggishly knocking knees along the way.
Those Legs had a good idea behind it, but was mixed with poor structure and writing. I hope with further development of script and directing, the actors can have a more concise premise to work with.
** – Two Stars