The Mercy Seat
From: Tuesday, 30th August 2011
To: Sunday, 18 September 2011
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In a time of national tragedy, the world changes overnight. On September 12th 2001, Ben Harcourt finds himself in the downtown apartment of his lover, and boss, Abby Prescott. They should have perished in the attack on the Twin Towers, and now Ben contemplates using the tragedy to run away and start a new life. Together they face a terrible choice, and the phone won t stop ringing...
5 September 2011
Tragedies have a habit of blunting with time; as the ten-year anniversary of 9/11 approaches those three numbers have been used and abused for every political purpose imaginable, and something of their raw edge has worn away. Neil LaBute’s play is still ragged and subversive enough to cut a swathe through the majority of artistic responses to that day, but here The Mercy Seat feels muted and muffled, and those ten years feel like an eternity.
Ben is a New York businessman having an affair with his boss, and the attacks on the World Trade Centre provide him with the perfect excuse to vanish from his loveless marriage. As his missed calls from his desperate family mount up in his voicemail, Ben leaves the phone ringing as he and his lover Abby engage in a war of increasingly bitter recrimination.
An analysis of confused passion and the inescapable power dynamics of sex and secrets, LaBute’s play is underscored by the constant presence of devasta...
Latest User Review
CoralB - 5 September 2011:
Couldn't agree less. O'Neil plays the perfect foil to the hyperactive, over acting actress, in this poorly written, barely directed show....