Intolerable Side Effects (4 stars)

This article is from 2019

Intolerable Side Effects

Rabbit-based sex shenanigans

Claire Parry's irrepressible rabbit Diane just wants to have sex and not have children. Rabbit contraception, however, has a few nasty side-effects and her tinder boyfriend won't take responsibility. After another 'fennel flush' abortion, Diane decides to take action and, with the help of celebrity advice columnist Belinda Bunny, ushers in a new world order of contraception without added 'benefits' where men recognise that birth control is their problem, too.

Parry brings a dash of Lecoq physicality, a couple of musical numbers and a series of sketches to bear on this serious topic, without ever losing a sense of playful fun. The plot is simple and the humour straight-forward, disguising the educational polemic beneath bouncing, hopping jollity. Yet the show is unafraid to wear its feminist intentions proudly, and has a clear message that demands a change in public attitudes towards sex and sexual agency.

While the entertainment is a sweet coating for the bitter pill, the dramaturgy is familiar: like a series of sketches pulled into a coherent narrative, it shows the influence of live art and cabaret, leaping to conclusions and suggesting that even an apparently flippant hour can hold out hope for a fairer future.

ZOO Southside, until 26 Aug, 6.35pm, £10 (£9).

Intolerable Side Effects

  • 4 stars

A one-woman show about contraception and its ‘Intolerable Side Effects’: a serious issue set in an absurdly funny world… Diane is a millennial rabbit. She’s keen to find love but she’s not keen to have a litter. At the GUM clinic she’s advised to take ‘Celery’ as a form of ‘Vegetation Separation’. But Celery causes some…