You’d think I could sit through a two hour play on any night, even if it were without an interval. “Haunted Child,” the new show at the Royal Court, is two hours with an interval. And yet, I used the interval as my cue to leave the theater
I guess I’m losing my dedication to my blog; but I’m just not staying anymore when I want to fall asleep during the first act of a show. And this talky, dull show was once again “the play that I hate” (see Chicken Soup with Barley and Ecstasy) – a horrible, talky party in which I am stuck listening to people who aren’t interesting but still yammer on, scene after scene. Yeah, Dad (Ben Daniels) ran off and joined a cult, and now he’s talking shit, frustrating his wife and filling his kid’s head with garbage. Unfortunately I’ve had to deal of plenty of people like this and letting them go on just encourages them in their delusions. I felt no sense of pathos for Mom (Sophie Okonedo) or her bratty kid. She, like me, needed to cut her losses; I succeeded. She is strong and will get along fine on her own.
More interesting to me would have been a play about Dad’s time in the cult. But, well, I didn’t get that play. Instead, I got an interval and a nice quick trip back to Tooting.
In short, I’ll think of this as the night the Royal Court let me get a full night’s sleep. Bless those 10 quid tickets for making me not feel guilty for doing it!
(This review is for a performance that took lace on December 5th, 2011. Jack Boulter played the son and was rather wooden. Rather makes the accomplishments of the Matilda cast that more impressive. Here’s a link to Ian’s review now that he’s finished; he noted, however, that many other people in the vicinity cleared out at the interval, so it wasn’t just me.)