Zoo (4 stars)

Zoo

credit: Idil Sukan

Female friendship dissected

After years of seeing unhealthy female friendships built on a foundation of jealousy and insecurity portrayed in the media, seeing the mutually supportive and beneficial connection shared by Carol and Bonnie in Zoo is heartening and refreshing. The generic notion that women come in pairs of one perfect and one messy friend (who has to be fixed) is replaced by two equally flawed characters who use their wisdom to help each other: Zoo offers an account of friendship far closer to the way in which most women experience it.

Zoo also manages to make several important points about how women are treated in the workplace, in romantic relationships and within families while maintaining a good pace and sense of humour.

Romance is a minor consideration; the never seen 'Ian' haunts the character's personal and professional lives, and is portrayed through light, sound and voice over. Clever, funny and touching in places, this is a truly special production worth recommending to anyone with an interest in friendship, hurricanes or North Yorkshire bats.

Assembly George Square Studios, until 26 Aug (not 13, 20), £9.50–£11.50 (£8.50)
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Zoo

  • 4 stars

Anteater and Something for the Weekend By Lily Bevan. A tale of animal instinct, fight or flight and a woman trying to trap 47 flamingos in a urinal… Until today the most dangerous event at the zoo was the tapir’s caesarean section. When a hurricane heads straight for Miami, Bonnie hurries to keep her animals safe.

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