Review: Shopping and Fucking

Fear No Colours Theatre Company
Stereo, Glasgow, 5-7 June 2017

2 Stars (2 / 5)

Are all our fantasies worthy of fulfilling?

Shopping and Fucking is a grimey black comedy about a bisexual junkie going clean and his associates including his two flatmates who are forced to work phone-sex lines to pay back an ecstasy dealer for £3000 of lost produce and a fourteen year old rent boy who has internalized his own abuse into a series of violent rape fantasies while simultaneously wanting to find a daddy to protect and own him.

There were a few poignant scenes, particularly when one character explains how, in a drug-fueled philanthropic euphoria, he is talked out of 300 ecstasy tablets. The most gruesome sex scenes are also well enjoyed even by myself, a relatively prudish theatre-goer known for lampooning media which appeals excessively to shock value and gratuity alone. Also a hilarious monologue where the antagonist: a properly-dressed drug baron with conservative views on the world, explains how money is civilization after having mercy for his debtors. Sam Skoog delivers the best performance of the evening in the lead role. Regretfully too much of the time the delivery wants for a natural feel; the characters delivering their lines in an isolated fashion rather than responsively to one another. A more generative approach would deepen the relationships between performers which are a little absent. Between its best moments the play sometimes drags its heels and ultimately a considerable cut of 20 or 30 minutes would have made for a tighter production.