Home » London Theatre Reviews » We Are Monsters x Glass at Barons Court Theatre

We Are Monsters x Glass at Barons Court Theatre

In this double bill of dark comedy plays, there’s a reliance on the art of storytelling, rather than any special effects. Take the costumes, for instance: in We Are Monsters, Caitlyn (Laura Mugford) and Kyle (Joseph Ryan-Hughes) are dressed as some sort of sea creatures, and in Glass, Brody (Conor McCrory) is in a cowboy outfit. They look like the kind of cheap(ish) fancy dress outfits that can be easily purchased online, though this works in the show’s favour, for narrative reasons, despite the two plays having very different contexts.

We Are Monsters
We Are Monsters

Things are deliberately kept somewhat vague and mysterious in both plays, and rather like watching proceedings in the House of Commons, just because someone states something to be true, it does not necessarily turn out to be so, to the point where one is tempted not to believe anything anybody says at face value. The plays are, more than anything, psychological mind games – in We Are Monsters, when Wesley (Moses Alexander), a ghost-whisperer, literally and metaphorically shines a light on Caitlyn and Ryan, it’s the beginning of a verbal and mental tug of war.

The multifaceted plot includes a number of twists, some more predictable than others. It’s also a well-written play – “I know the story!” Wesley exclaims, more than once, in reference to a mythical tale. The audience, of course, does not (or if there are patrons who do, suspension of disbelief kicks in), so the play finds ways of ensuring the story is told regardless.

Glass
Glass

Glass is the more curious of the two plays. It almost immediately impresses by allowing the audience to hear both sides of a telephone conversation – regular patrons of the theatre will be familiar with usually only being able to hear one. But as one conversation wraps up, another one begins, and so on, and with the phone constantly in use, I began to wonder whether the play would have worked better as a two-hander, which is effectively what this one-man play is.

Brody has tablets on prescription to help with his mental health. I didn’t catch the precise condition in the dialogue, although there is a note in the programme about panic disorder – Glass does well to highlight the plight of people who suffer from anxiety, whose likelihood of having an episode increases if they are spooked in some way during the Halloween season. More harrowing than anything supposedly scary in the show is that Brody’s anxiety is a source of amusement for certain work colleagues, as well as the persistent phone caller, though I should add, spoiler as it is, the latter apologises, unaware of the severe impact of his choice of words. In other words, the antagonist is not altogether nasty, and protagonist Brody, as it turns out, has a proverbial skeleton in his cupboard.

Elsewhere, the dialogue ends up being more cryptic than necessary, at least partly because of Brody’s caller’s habit of not finishing sentences off – at one point, Brody persists in questioning what it is that the man on the other end of the phone is talking about, but it’s not something that can be sustained with every dropped line.

For a scary season double bill, the fright factor is tame – I wouldn’t classify the show as ‘horror’, and nobody at the performance I attended jumped out of their seats. Rather, the production revels in its absurdity whilst bringing to light some moral and ethical issues in a spirited but never flippant manner.

3 Star Review

Review by Chris Omaweng

Just a Regular House presents a double bill of two new short plays this Halloween.

Caitlyn and Kyle enjoy playing pranks and scaring campers on Lake Windermere, but their harmless fun turns into trouble when they’re tracked down by a nearby ghost-whisperer in ‘We Are Monsters.’

Upon the ninth floor of a skyscraper on Halloween night, a terrified Brody Jenkins receives an ominous phone call from a stranger on a broken-down train, in ‘Glass’.

Just a Regular House is back again this Halloween in the one and only basement of the Barons Court Theatre, this time with two brand new plays that are fearful, funny, and filled with ghost stories!

We are an emerging theatre company that has been shortlisted for the 2023 LET Award, received an OFFCOM Commendation, been nominated for two OFFIE awards, and also received two London Pub Standing Ovation Nominations.

We write, direct, act, fight, cry, and play, just like any other regular house of people. We would love for you to join in.

We Are Monsters x Glass
24 October – 4 November 2023, 7.30 pm
By JOSEPH RYAN-HUGHES and CONNOR MCCRORY
https://www.justaregularhouse.com

Related News & Reviews Past & Present

  1. Review of Imprisoned at Barons Court Theatre
    Before Imprisoned gets underway, the atmosphere created is contrary to what one might expect, with pre-show recorded music in the form of (amongst…
  2. Masque of the Red Death at Barons Court Theatre | Review
    Roberta Fox (Katerina Novakova) has brought together several people to her house. I could only ascertain roughly when this version of The Masque…
  3. Slippery When Wet at Barons Court Theatre
    Having never worked in a supermarket I have no idea what the normal custom is with regards to personal relationships in the workplace….
  4. Review of Kevin Lee’s Different Class at Barons Court Theatre
    If the North/South divide could not have been less subtle in Different Class, any other variations between Maria (Harriet Grenville) and Andy (Duncan Mason)…
  5. Morveren at Barons Court Theatre
    According to a friend who holidayed in Cornwall, “everything” in Cornwall is Cornish – that is to say, there are far more products…

Author

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top