Weaving a world where the braying mob gets its way, Snowflakes tackles the tricky topic of Cancel Culture and certainly pulls no punches.
Tony is a writer accused on social media of sexual assault who finds himself trapped in a hotel room. He is joined by two unexpected guests who have been hired to carry out the will of the people masquerading as justice. Trapped and faced with his own mortality, Tony has one chance to make it out; win over the votes of millions of internet subscribers who act as jury as his testimony is broadcast for all to see.
A single setting play in two halves, this is a tale of trial by media and violent revenge. A world where only the extremes are relevant; guilty or innocent, right or wrong, live or die. If it sounds edgy, that’s because it is. If it sounds like it might not be for the faint hearted, well, there are more violent sequences than are often in theatrical productions, although it does stop short of the extremes of the Splatter genre.
The acting, under the direction of Michael Cottrell, is superb and Robert Boulton as Marcus and Louise Hoare as Sarah have an onstage chemistry that brings their performances to life, complimented by a standout performance from Henry Davis as Tony, who offers a truly impressive range of emotional expression.
The staging is more reminiscent of a film set than a play and this mixed in with some fantastic multimedia elements offers a crisp modern feel that’s incredibly satisfying to behold and truly captivating.
There are arguably few surprises in the plot itself and the script hints at the ending from the early stages, but this is a fine example of how the journey can be more important than the end.
Does it have anything new to say? Well, it’s not always clear what it’s trying to say as it veers away from the ‘fairy-tale’ delivery of morals and values. A rabbit hole of shifting perspectives, there is plenty of opportunity for debate over ‘who was right’ and ‘what was meant’ which may frustrate some but those who prefer not to be beaten over the head with an obvious moral statement may find this a welcome break from the usual ‘blunt instrument’ approach.
If you like your Good Guys to be good and your Bad Guys to be bad, then you may be disappointed, but darkly funny, action-packed, and beautifully presented, Snowflakes is a sight worth seeing.
It runs until the 6th of May.
Review: Damien Russell Photo: Jennifer Evans