Blow (3 stars)

This article is from 2015


Fantasy meets reality in black comedy with a blow-up sex doll

It’s quite a sight seeing a blow-up sex doll pumped to life onstage but this is Penny, the silent lead in the aptly titled Blow from Chiasmus Productions. Less sordid than its name suggests, this black comedy monologue is less about the sex and more about the fantasy.

Mack is a successful novelist, married to a model, living in his own apartment in NYC. It’s almost unbelievable his mother says. And she’s right. It’s not true. So Mack does not want his parents crashing his fantasy world and turning it to reality.

While the tension builds with his parents’ impending visit and his agent and landlord’s constant phone calls, this production also suffered a blow of its own which left playwright Florence Read performing a reading of her play on opening day. While obviously not the intended finished product, this rock-solid script holds up very well.

Mack attempts to rewrite his life as he does his novels to ensure he gets the last laugh against his childhood bullies and his parents who never provided the childhood trauma requisite for a serious writer. Peppered with cleanly drawn characters, so bad they’re good similes and a sinister twist, Blow reveals a man whose actions must catch up with him.

Read certainly has promise and is one to watch. Her play Twin Primes, winner of Best Script and Best Production at the 2015 Oxford New Writing Festival, also played the Fringe.

George Next Door, run ended.