Abigail Bryant reviews FAG/STAG at Underbelly, Edinburgh
Re-defining masculinity and the notion of the ‘modern man’ has been in public discussion for some time, but rarely does the platonic relationship between gay and straight men get explored and represented in the arts. FAG/STAG provides a refreshing take on male friendship, simply comprising of two guys on a stage, each (not) talking about their feelings and narrating the same story but from differing perspectives.
Written and performed by Jeffrey Jay Fowler and Chris Isaacs, the duo display undeniable chemistry as Jimmy and Corgan, and capture the dynamics of masculine rapport with authenticity and intelligence. The writing is slick, convincing and full of wit, with concealed depths where justified alongside hilarious anecdotes about sex, melons and Donkey Kong.
FAG/STAG is a perfect combination of funny, thought-provoking and authentically human. It gives an important insight into the male psyche around issues such as break-ups, self-esteem and loyalty, while intelligently exploring the dynamic of gay/straight friendship. The narrative is also fluid and compelling, with twists along the way and a particularly poignant dance scene that is guaranteed to fill you with joy. Fowler and Isaacs have brought a gem of a show from Perth to Edinburgh, so ensure that you catch it while you can.