Now that the Playboy of the Western World is done showing and there is not chance that my comments can dissuade anyone from going, I feel it is fair to give my honest judgment of the play. I should clarify that I am taking an objective look at an experience that this play produced for me. I appreciate the time and energy that people put in, but it does not mean I found it a joy to watch. Actually, to put it simply, I did not like this play. Now like I said, this is grounded in some very good reasons that I am sure if you went you may have noticed yourself.
To start off let me point out the most obvious setback. It was incredibly hard to understand any of the dialogue, so much so that I know I could understand the conversation in Richard the III better than that of Playboy. No one should be surprised that I bring this up especially those who put on the play because why else would they have put an unhelpful glossary of Irish slang in the program unless they knew people were going to be confused. Now if you love deciphering words said awkwardly fast in a broken muddled accent, then you were one of the few who probably loved every moment of this play. If you understood what is going on and why the characters are treating each other in a certain way, you should either brush up on you Irish accents or you should just wait for the director to pick a more enjoyable play.
Sadly, that is just the beginning of the problems with this play. I fear that even if I were able to understand all that was said, I would still have found this genreless play confusing. It says it is a comedy in the subtitle and yet when you flip open the program, there is an explanation for how the play can also be sort of a drama. It is supposed to depend on how the actors perform. Yet, too many people seemed worried about getting their accents right to bother themselves with the mood of the story. So overall, it was a either a silly drama or a lukewarm comedy that neither made me laugh or cry and it definitely did not make me want to see it ever again.
I will give this play dues where they are deserved. For instance the set, built way under budget I hear, masterfully captured the atmosphere of the time period. From the moment I walked in, whenever I was not choking on the fake smoke they used to fill the theater before the show to give the feeling of a fireplace going, I felt like I was in the time period. Though I hope no one with asthma went because they surely needed their inhaler to survive the atmosphere, which honestly detracted from the show and was a little too distracting for comfort.
I have got to give credit to an IC alum, Chris Proffitt, who brought a twice murdered father to life with passion and flare! The most enjoyable parts were when Squire Prince brought some much needed comedic relief at these moments I actually almost understood what was going on when he was on stage.
Like I said earlier, I think the world of all who would commit their time and energy into following their passions, but I feel like the best way I can respect that time and effort is to give honest feedback and not patronize their art form with sweet nothings and empty compliments.