Review – NSFW

****

The Space @ Niddry Street

21-26 August (11:25am)

Shy intern Sam (Joe Callahan) begins work at lads mag ‘Doghouse’, under the leadership of imposing editor Aidan (Alexander Lopez), and alongside compromised feminist Charlotte (Laura Pieters) and ‘banter’ merchant Rupert (Chris Alldridge). Following the accidental publication of a topless image of a fourteen year old girl, Sam is out and begins work at women’s magazine Electra, finding similar wolves in different clothing.

Lucy Kirkwood’s biting satirical script invites us to consider who is to blame for the increasing objectification of women, and asks whether we need to sacrifice principles to get ahead in the cut-throat world of media. The script is brought to life by a strong cast, performed with energy and pace.

Lopez’s Aidan owns the stage, with more than a hint of Matt Berry in his larger than life depiction of the wheeler-dealer, unlikeable, but undoubtedly good at saving his own skin. Callanan as Sam is just the right level of niceness to really make the script sing. Miranda (Grace Maria) is utterly believable in her character and painfully familiar. I would have liked to have seen more of Doghouse worker Charlotte  who compromised her feminist ideals in order to be published and earn a living. She was sometimes lost amongst the larger than life characters.

There are some lovely details; when the girls father, Mr Bradshaw (Matt Aldridge) arrives, he has a copy of the Sun in his plastic bag. The rotating office space was slick and effective. I adored that when the desk was rotated the topless photo was revealed to have been censored by the letters NSFW. It was comic, and the details add up to a great whole. Costuming was great – particularly capturing the style conscious but powerful Miranda.

The show asks more questions than it answers, starting big discussions.  The company made a great selection in choosing to bring this piece, with much to comment on in the modern world to the Edinburgh Fringe. It’s well worth getting out of bed for.

For more details and to book tickets click here.

 

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