Tag Archives: satire

All Bite: Scena’s Sink the Belgrano! reviewed

Nothing shores up a foundering head of state’s popularity among the electorate like a quick war, decisively won. The British response to Argentina’s 1982 invasion of the Falkland Islands looks from three decades on something like what the Bush Administration promised the seven-plus-year-old war in Iraq would be: The Falklands War lasted only 74 days, and the U.K.’s victory helped propel the Conservative government of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher to big electoral gains the following year.

Sink the Belgrano!, a 1986 play by British actor and director Steven Berkoff, is not a cool-headed history of the conflict or anything close. It’s an astringent piece of agitprop condemning what Berkoff sees as a violent overreaction by Thatcher — called “Maggot Scratcher” here, in the plainest example of his appropriation of sing-songy, infantile language — whom the playwright argues rebuffed all attempts at diplomacy, knowing her political aims would be better served by bloodshed. The title refers to an episode a month after the Argentine invasion, wherein the British nuclear submarine HMS Conqueror fired upon and destroyed the vessel ARA General Belgrano, killing 323 crewmen.
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Woolly Mammoth’s “Full Circle,” review’d

Woolly Mammoth's Full Circle

Michael Russotto, Sarah Marshall, Daniel Escobar, and Jessica Frances Dukes

When we say that Woolly Mammoth’s production of Charles L. Mee’s decade-old satirical farce Full Circle is a sprawling affair, we don’t mean merely that it’s forever threatening to collapse under its own allegorical girth.

As directed by Michael Rohd, the show is performed promenade-style, appropriating almost every public area of the building as a stage wherein a dance party might erupt or a trial be called to order. A fresh-faced chorus of student demonstrators double as traffic cops, shuffling us through the theater’s rehearsal rooms, lobby, and auditorium as the narrative — a chase, more or less, through Berlin in the chaotic days after the Wall came down, 20 years ago this month — progresses. Continue reading