Stuck

Ennui's a bitch in Jessica Hatlo's new play. Its central conceit—based on actual events—is of a heroine so terrified of real life that she retreats to the squalid familiarity of the bathroom in the apartment she shares with her boyfriend. In the hands of WET's top-notch performers and tech crew, Stuck is more than a cautionary tale of slacker-dom: It's a modern horror story. Amy and Danny (Kay Nahm and Alex Matthews) have stripped their lives down to the essentials of pizza, soda, and 24-hour cable TV, with Amy unwilling (and finally unable) to leave her perch on the toilet. She is a case-study in retreat, courageous enough only to bully her boyfriend and pontificate from the pot. Danny, on the other hand, is a fellow who just might make something of himself one day—if only he wasn't shackled to Amy by guilt and his prodigious talent for enabling. Hatlo enlivens the icky claustrophobia with visits from a succession of spectral advisors (all played by Chris Maslen and Qadriyyah Shabazz) straight out of Amy's imagination and TV Guide. Howie Mandel, Dr. Phil, Oprah, and others try to talk her down from the porcelain tree. So what is the point here? Everyone has a "stuck" place in their lives, Hatlo implies. It's a place where we hate to look, where resentments and broken dreams are stacking up, where we simply observe their accumulation in mute despair. KEVIN PHINNEY

Mondays, Thursdays-Sundays. Starts: March 16. Continues through April 9, 2012

 
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