Search

Wild, Hampstead Theatre, review: ‘Doctor Foster writer’s comedy a diverting outing’

PUBLISHED: 12:00 30 June 2016

Caoilfhionn Dunne (Woman) and Jack Farthing (Andrew) in Wild at Hampstead Theatre. Picture: Stephen Cummiskey

Caoilfhionn Dunne (Woman) and Jack Farthing (Andrew) in Wild at Hampstead Theatre. Picture: Stephen Cummiskey

© Stephen Cummiskey 2016

A clever black comedy echoes the Edward Snowdon case but despite a stunning set fails to animate its arguments says Bridget Galton.

In a Russian hotel room, a US government whistleblower with obvious similarities to Edward Snowdon is visited by the kooky British representative of an organisation very like WikiLeaks.

Later a creepily intense second man, will visit the American, claiming to be from the same organisation, but denying knowledge of the previous woman.

For no obvious reason, the pair mess with his head. Do they want him as a spokesman for their loosely anarchist group?

Are they winding him up? Spooks? Figments of his fevered imagination?

Charles III and Doctor Foster writer Mike Bartlett is trying to keep him and us guessing about who to trust and who’s watching who in our surveillance society.

Arguments about Andrew’s and the organisation’s motives and beliefs, about the slippery, shifting contract between governments and their spied upon subjects in the name of keeping us safe, and about how we’ve relinquished our own privacy in return for free stuff, are rehearsed in a string of dialogues.

Despite James McDonald’s efforts to inject tension, it’s a mite too smart-talky and static.

Some of it would work just as well on the radio.

Caoifhionn Dunne as The Woman does her best to mine the piece’s flip humour, veering from sarcastic and needling to menacing.

But she doesn’t always strike the right balance between them.

And Jack Farthing as the fugitive computer geek turned public enemy segues from wary to paranoid as he realises how completely he’s relinquished his own freedom.

Miriam Buether’s set provides a spectacular coup de theatre that metaphorically and literally rips away the foundations for Andrew’s beliefs and embodies his limbo.

But all of the playing around with who is who, necessarily ditches characterisation and Andrew becomes merely a blank canvas on which to throw ideas.

A diverting rather than riveting night out.

Wild is running at Hampstead Theatre.

Rating: 3/5 stars

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Hackney Gazette visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Hackney Gazette staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Hackney Gazette account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Latest Hackney Stories

The contrast between the two managers during their post-match interviews could not have been more pronounced. While tired-looking Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger bemoaned bad luck but refused to address the gulf in class between the two sides – as Manchester City routed the Gunners 3-0 at Wembley to deservedly lift the 2018 Caraboa Cup – Pep Guardiola spoke powerfully and eloquently about Catalonian independence and his support for jailed politicians.

Arsene Wenger bemoaned bad luck as his team were utterly outplayed by Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City as they beat sorry Arsenal 3-0 in the Carabao Cup final at Wembley Stadium on Sunday.

Arsenal took on Manchester City in the 2018 Carabao Cup final at Wembley Stadium on Sunday. Read Arsenal reporter Layth Yousif’s PLAYER RATINGS from the showpiece match.

Pep Guardiola won his 22nd trophy as a manager as his Manchester City side comprehensively beat Arsenal 3-0 in the Carabao Cup final at Wembley on Sunday.

Premier League: Crystal Palace 0 Tottenham Hotspur 1

Yesterday, 14:24

Ben Pearce reflects on Spurs’ important Premier League win at Selhurst Park earlier today

Yesterday, 10:20

Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger replied immediately when asked the question.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Sunday’s League Cup final is eagerly-awaited by a large number of Arsenal fans. Read on as a number of loyal supporters explained to Layth Yousif what the trophy means to them.

PROMOTED CONTENT

To celebrate LGBT history month, Hackney resident Amanda talks about her journey to becoming a foster carer, with the council’s support and training.



Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read entertainment

Show Job Lists