Writer: Philip Stokes
Director: Philip Stokes
Reviewer: Deborah Klayman
The Public Reviews Rating:
Fringe favourites Horizon Arts are back with this new play, Razing Eddie, written and directed by company Artistic Director Philip Stokes. Bad lad Eddie is out of prison after four years and swears he is a changed man, but despite this claim immediately seeks out ex-girlfriend Shauna who is doing her best to move on. A piece about guilt and loyalty, the pair are literally haunted by their past and trapped in a vicious circle of heartbreak and violence, unable to break free of it or each other.
Although a production that has been proving popular with the Edinburgh audience, Razing Eddie is a piece that lacks the punch of Heroin(e) For Breakfast or the humour of Laundry Boy. The beginning is slightly stilted and oddly staged, but the entrance of Lee Bainbridge’s Eddie brings energy and confidence that lights up the stage. Unfortunately, this cannot sustain over the full seventy minutes, as the story becomes strangely predictable – despite its unusual premise – and descends into wall-to-wall sobbing. There are numerous funny and moving moments, and complimenting Bainbridge’s central role Aiden Ross gives a fantastically infuriatingly performance as Billy, with the re-enactment of their complex relationship coming to its believably tragic conclusion.
Ultimately this is a play that has the best of intentions but fails to deliver all that it is capable of. The introduction of Billy’s zealous sister seemed to serve an expositional role, as she enters and promptly begins wrapping up any plot points that were in question. She also brings God into the piece, which seems reasonable given there are ghosts present, but this leads Eddie to a fairly disingenuous desperate prayer, after which he launches into a monologue which asks how he could have been any other way coming from his background. Sometimes inspired but frequently trite, this new piece just fails to hit the mark.