‘Honeypot’ is comprised of a series of vignettes following modern iterations of famous fairytale characters, and uses this format to dissect contemporary themes of feminism, women’s voices, and prejudice. Diverse and daring, it’s not one to miss.
The cast is extremely talented, putting on characters as fast and as perfectly as if they are favourite hats. Ariel, the little mermaid, is taking part in a silent protest until she realises that silence does not, and will not, protect anybody. Rapunzel is confined to (what appears to be) a psych ward because she is struggling to share spaces, so used to being alone as she is. Belle and her Beast seem to be living the perfect life, but the public life is slowly rotting her from the inside.
Each of them are compelling individuals, and the combination of excellent writing and performances ensures that you are engaged throughout. I wanted it to go on for longer; I could have easily spent another hour with these characters, and with a wealth of choices throughout traditional storytelling and folktales, it is possible to create further content for this show. I will be first in line to see what they make next.
I am thankful that the discussion of feminist themes is not pandering or glib; it does genuinely dig into the sometimes uncomfortable depths of modern issues of equality in a way that does not need to patronise its audience, instead respecting their intelligence and capability to be challenged. Sometimes I struggle with shows that aim to tackle feminist themes only go as far as to demonstrate feminine empowerment (and a very specific, white middle-class type of empowerment) that naively overlooks the dangerous gaps in popular feminist activism. ‘Honeypot’ is a relieving antidote that, despite its grim content, takes us closer to a real place of change.
‘Honeypot’ is a refreshing, smart, and funny piece of theatre that demonstrates the power of a voice, and re-interprets tales from days gone by into something immediate and crucial.