Reviews from Paul's pen

Reviews from Paul's pen



Review by: Paul Towers, 24 May 2018
Blink by Phil Porter
An Upstairs at the Western and Selfless production
Directed by Josh Rai
Upstairs @ The Western, 24th – 25th May 2018

“Blink tries to make sense of  modern romance.”

What is love? What is a relationship? How does modern technology factor into it?
Blink tries to make sense of  modern romance.
Sophie (Katie Amanda Smith), a software developer, has been nursing her terminally ill father in the house. Once he has passed she uses the money he left her to divide the house into two flats. She takes the upstairs and lets out the downstairs to Jonah. Jonah (John Saxton) is an unworldly, na├»ve farmer’s son. His mother has died and he has left the security of  the "self-sustaining religious community" to experience life in London. By chance he ends up renting the bottom floor of a converted house in Islington with the legacy his mother left him to escape his father’s cloying ways.
So far so good. But where it takes a bizarre turn is that she leaves the baby video monitor that she had used to keep an eye on her father connected. Obviously intrigued by her new lodger she posts the receiver for the baby monitor to him and he takes to watching her as she goes about her normal day. This would be very creepy if it wasn’t for the fact that she, the watched, instigated it and he, the watcher, is unaware that she knows or even that she is his landlady. That is, until one day she drops a load of things on the floor just as he is watching her and he puts two and two together.
Now that they both know that she is watching and that he is complicit they start a remote relationship, eating meals together, watching TV together all courtesy of the magic of wifi.
Gradually they start to go out to places together, but still not together. Not interacting. Until eventually they decide to take things a step further and move in together. But of course it doesn’t work. Their voyeur/exhibitionist relationship is as close as they can handle.
This may all seem very odd but, if it works for them, who are we to judge?
John Saxton and Katie Amanda Smith do a fine job of bringing this idiosyncratic couple to life with comedy and pathos.
Blink is on at Upstairs at The Western again tomorrow, Friday 25th May and tickets are still available

Upstairs at The Western

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