By Darryl Pring
A funny thing happened on the way to Tarragon Theatre to take in Steven Gallagher’s first writing endeavour, Craplicker. I was struck with the fear that I would not be able to relate or even understand the subject matter. I was wrong.
Craplicker is the story of Josh as he deals with first times, first loves, coming out and even cancer. Played by Caden Douglas, Josh is a fully realized and enticing protagonist who is both beautiful and kind. He is surrounded by a gaggle of energetic, supportive friends.
There’s Neil, played to near comedic perfection by Jeff Miller, as the older understanding boyfriend. David Gale portrays the elder of the group, Patrick, who has a flare for the dramatic, and knows it. And then there is Alan, the cynic with a heart or gold, who has a serious relationship with his phone. There is also a fifth character, Donald (Wesley Connor), but he is underused and therefore seems tacked on.
Mary Francis Moore’s direction is sleek but heavy on style and light on substance. A couple of transitions were wonky and I see no need to visualize a surgery, let alone show it twice.
The script itself is a great first effort. It provides some genuinely funny moments but lags when it delves into anecdotes and reminiscent opining. I get that we are shaped by our past, doesn’t mean we have to hear about every minute of it.
Strong acting, yes. Good story, sure. Funny moments, absolutely.
Director: Mary Francis Moore
Audience: Mature Audience
Warning: Content, Language
Thu, July 8 5:45 PM – 148
Fri, July 9 5:15 PM – 155
Sat, July 10 11:30 PM – 165
Sun, July 11 Noon – 166