The Son review – Frightening tale of teen depression

24th September 2019

By: Sabrina Lemer

The Son

The Son written by Florian Zellercompletes his trilogy of plays about a single family entity.  Following its sold out run at the Kilm Theatre, the play has moved to theThe Duke of York theatre until  the beginning of November. The good news is you don’t need to see all of the other plays to enjoy this one.

The Son is extremely powerful and well acted. Dealing with mental illness, teens and just the everyday struggles that we face trying to navigate through this journey called life are the topics at hand.

The Son looks at fractured relationships, broken marriages and the idea of new beginnings.   Can you ever really start again? Can we just press rewind and have a do over? Really learn from our mistakes and do it right…the second time? Where can we find that t blueprint too managing to be a perfect partner and parent? 

In this case it’s Nicholas,  a well to do teenager whose struggling but know one can really understand why. Nicholas can’t quite cope with school and his day to day life.  His mother has reached her breaking point turns to her ex husband for a much needed break from the darkness that has permeated her life. Nicholas turns to his father, Pierre. Pierre made a fresh start in his own life and has a new love and a new young son to try and find the normalcy he craves but can’t seem to find. Although Pierre tries to be the father he believes is his best, things have already spiralled out of control.  There’s a lot about this idea of being middle class and really nothing to complain about but the pain is unexplainable for Nicholas and this pain reverberates onto the entire family. Though there is this very linear feeling of cause and effect within the story I still really enjoyed it.

I loved the way in which the set was used, the perfect Parisian apartment immaculately decorated which slowly starts to accumulate mess and debris  and know one is even aware that’s its happening. Just like Nicholas, it’s slowly falling apart yet everyone is too caught up trying to do the right thing to notice the place crumbling around them.

This play that runs an hour and forty-five minutes with no intermission ( my favourite type of show) should not be missed.  If you don’t mind a tale that’s dark, deep,  very real and messy, this is one for you.

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