“This…is…going to happen”
Maybe it is due to some as yet unexplored childhood trauma, but I really don’t like puppets, whether human or animal, I just don’t like ‘em. I can just about cope with Avenue Q type cuddliness, but more realistic ones by and large freak me out which is why I have never seen War Horse. So when a new play by the same company Handspring, was announced at the Cottesloe in the National Theatre, I decided to seize the bull by the horns or the puppet by its strings and go to see Or You Could Kiss Me. This was an early preview and I’m not sure what I was expecting, it wasn’t this.
On a bare traverse stage and to the sound of a live accordion, the action starts with a narrator who takes us through the story of Mr A and Mr B, two men who have lived together for over 60 years but with Mr B near death, are struggling to get arrangements in place and to fully articulate the depth of their love for each other. Our narrator takes us, and them, back to the beginning of their relationship in a time when homosexuality was much less accepted and we see these two young men with their hunger for love and happiness but also the necessity of their intense privacy, something that haunts them for the rest of their lives.