F*ckboys For Freedom (Pandorum Theatre Company: Sweet Grassmarket)

Filthy, brutal and unashamedly goes there, this play is perfect for a late night crowd who love to laugh at the controversial, the rude and the politically relevant. I must be clear, this is not a collection of gross jokes for cheap laughs. It is so much more! The talented cast have an important message to tell you and aren’t scared of addressing the elephant in the room. The elephant being the f*ckboy.

Although it is easier to just pretend these types of people do not exist, what with the current political climate, they are everywhere! F*ckboy is a term referring to young men who love their snapbacks, weed, ass and tits. They churn out terms like ‘Friend-zone’, ‘Men’s rights’ and ‘All lives matter’ and of course, not forgetting, they are misogynistic pigs.

As a young woman who calls myself a feminist I had my reservations, as I’m sure many would with the name and theme. I really hoped it wouldn’t be a problematic production and that they would handle the subject matter with care. Well.. although there is nothing careful about this production, it never made me feel uncomfortable or ‘triggered’. They openly mock and highlight the issues with this lifestyle and criticise how society perpetrates this culture. And manage to fit in a lot of dick jokes too. Reminding me of a British ‘Always Sunny in Philadelphia’.

The young, incredibly talented cast takes us on a fantasy journey to the ‘Temple of Poon’ complete with a ‘dildo-corn’, a side-kick wizard and a quest for the ‘Golden Snapback’. Filled to the brim with pop culture references, this play constantly shifts into the comically absurd. Adding surprisingly complex movement and lighting sequences which gave it a professional polish.

The cast thoroughly enjoyed every second, feeding off the audience’s laughter and shocked energy. The chaotic nature of the play is confidently handled by our narrator, Debi Pirie, who steers us through the tale. Our protagonist, a gormless, wide-eyed bumbling idiot grows up in front of our eyes. And no he doesn’t get the girl in the end, thank God! James Hughes, captures the awkward ignorance of the character with perfect comic timing. Emma Lynne Harley proves a vast range and a great sense of humour. Not every actor can say they played an inexperienced penis.

The only moment the audience holds its breath is the introduction to the creepy mentor, Kanye West. Played by enthusiastic Jack Midgley, the impression crosses a line. A white man doing a worrying impression of a black rapper, however due to Midgley’s artful and extreme stage presence the audience forgave him and saw the funny side. An incredibly energetic, standout performance.

As well as the silliness, the play also mentions the wage gap, tampon tax and has a special appearance from Brock Turner. At the end the cast collected for ‘Campaign Against Living Miserably’, a male suicide prevention charity. Thus highlighting that these are real issues being discussed and instead of demonizing the ‘F*ckboys’, acknowledging the subject is more complicated.

A must see!

https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/f-ckboys-for-freedom

 

 

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Rhona Mackay

Rhona Mackay

A 23 year old, working as an actor, writer and director. Born in Glasgow and moved to Edinburgh five years ago to study Acting and English at Edinburgh Napier.

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