Brock is the chief occupant of a derelict toy warehouse in Brighton: he behaves rather like Nicol Wiliamson's Merlin in Excalibur, and he's the most balanced person around. As one night wears on, his manipulations of the other folk in his sett grow more savage, factions split and realign and the fighting ultimately turns bloody. The actors are cramped on the Finborough stage, needing more space to rage in; the sensation of discomfort is heightened by Nick Burbridge's script, which leaves his audience mildly affronted that he does no more than chronicle, offering no insights or epiphanies – all of Brock's unmaskings, including his own, are specious. What he does do, he does bloody well (praise, too, for Simon Harvey's incredible mess of twitches and tics as Tod), but it can be draining without at least the occasional catharsis.
Written for City Limits magazine.
Copyright © Ian Shuttleworth; all rights reserved.
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