Re: Production (3 stars)

Re: Production

The most adorable show you'll see about evolutionary biology this Fringe

Coinciding with the 40th anniversary of the first baby born via IVF, Re: Production follows Karen and Tom, whose status as the most disgustingly endearing couple on the planet is threatened by the revelation that Karen doesn't want children, and Tom desperately does.

Despite the fact that this is an incredibly personal and painful conversation, the stakes never feel terribly high, perhaps because the tone throughout remains so determinedly breezy. Karen and Tom, played by Daryl Green and Jessie Lawrence, frequently pal around with the audience; imagined realities are set to a soundtrack of bubble-gum pop; and montages of their daily routines become superbly funny moments of physical theatre.

Moreover, the issues at the heart of the matter are frequently interposed with asides about the scientific and anthropological basis of love and reproduction, as well as snippets of friends and families weighing in. While it's certainly enlightening to position Tom and Karen's dilemma within prevailing discourses on parenthood, it also risks making them cyphers in a larger debate rather than individuals trying to make things work. As such, the conclusion is perhaps a bit slight for Re: Production's emotionally hefty premise, but ultimately it's impossible not to be won over by the sheer force of their charm.

ZOO Southside, until 27 Aug (not 15), 5.15pm, £10–£12 (£8–£10).

Re: Production

  • 3 stars

Karen and Tom met and married when they were really young. They're grown-ups now. It's time to join the club, isn't it? Their friends are painting the spare room sunset yellow and waking up before midday on Saturdays. It's what everyone wants, isn't it? Flexible working hours, sleepless nights, baby yoga, PTA meetings…

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