In an age where graphic material of any ilk can be accessed at the
mere touch of a button, this latest production from Glasgow-based theatre
company Flatrate, addressing the taboos of pornography and the porn industry,
is remarkably relevant.
Stephen Redman’s brash yet ultimately sensual showcase
The Zeros Keep Going explores the impact of sexually
explicit media upon both society and the individual.
Consequently, through tackling its subject matter head-on, albeit
in a humorous and light-hearted manner, the audience is made aware of the role
of porn in the world today: from both a male and female perspective.
To this end, the aptly-named Tony Stylez Richard Gadd delivers a
firm performance as a stereotypical industry star, as do his – equally suitably
titled – female counterparts, Lexi Kimbo Louise Stewart and Jessica Allcock
The corrosive nature of pornography is subtly reinforced as, with
glazed eyes, the protagonists look into the illuminated lens of a digital
camcorder (the same one used for family holidays?) only to be unwittingly
projected as anonymous, transfixed silhouettes.
Scores from Blur and emerging Scottish fivesome
Frightened Rabbit provide a tranquil musical backdrop to
scenes of solitude and reflection, whilst a harsh remix of Samuel Barber's
elegiac Adagio for Strings underpins encounters of a more
Redman’s 90-minute piece is certainly thought-provoking –
consistently entertaining and shocking if, at times, a tad disjointed. There
are a number of hilarious, though perhaps somewhat overdone, points of audience
participation, and although the play examines both sides of the coin; from the
fact that the films in focus “ain’t love” but rather “adolescent fantasy” to
notions of feminism; whether or not it hits the mark is, in similar fashion to
the ‘glass ceiling’, up in the air.
A generally light-hearted depiction of pornography which deals
with the controversy it arouses, The Zeros Keep Going raises
many questions and provides few answers. It is left with the audience to arrive
at their own conclusions – quite correctly, given that they are the consumers.