The grim punning of Stay at Home Dead
’s title had me expecting a black comedy. Boy, was I wrong. The play begins with the psychological evaluation of ex-businessman Dave (Andrew Chandler), who has done A Terrible Thing (alert audiences will guess his crime). Unfortunately, Dave’s more complex criminal motivations, such as his parenting insecurities, are shunted aside for a gambling addiction which provokes more questions than it answers.
The acting is good, the direction clever, but Stay at Home Dead’s script doesn’t satisfy. The luridly prolonged final moments have a penny-dreadful quality, affecting audiences’ stomachs more than their minds. “Why did he do it?” teases the Stay At Home Dead write-up in the Fringe guide. Why did he do it? I’ve seen the play, and I still don’t know.
60 Minutes, $10
North Street Church Theatre
Sunday Sep 9, 6:45 PM