Prime | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

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Merattic Theatre Company, at Zebra Crossing Theatre.

The first thing we learn in Noel MacAoidh's Prime is that the narrator, a likable, philosophical janitor named Man One (ably played by Matthew Dion), divides the world into pissers and shitters. Shitters spend all their time sitting around, mulling things over. Pissers get on with things.

I have no idea what this has to do with the play that follows. But then this play is full of moments I don't understand. For instance, Woman One (no relation to Man One) and Man Two think they've just killed Man Three during a botched robbery, so why do they spend so much stage time blathering about it? They go on and on and on about how nervous they feel, wondering what they're going to do, saying oh God, this is awful. Why don't they leave town or dispose of the weapon? Classic shitters, I guess.

After they discover they haven't really killed the guy, why do they decide they have to go back and finish him off? Why does Man Three, who gets shot three separate times, insist on staying in his dangerous neighborhood? (Another classic shitter?) And why would a company do anemic material like this if it can attract fine non-Equity actors like Cindi Heimericks and Brian Posen? They do pretty well with what they're given, but they could really shine if their characters made sense. This gassy, plotless, pointless play has juvenile written all over it.

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