Ten interlocking scenes present separate sets of lovers, each semi-ironically riffing on different ‘aspects’ of love. The platonic ideal. ‘Simple’ carnal lust. Tortured archetypes (‘Actor’ and ‘Journalist’) playing out and struggling with their desires, counter-desires and the simple physical fact of their bodies.
F*cking Men is a reflection on what it means to live out what could queasily be termed the ‘gay male experience’ surrounding sexuality and perception, commitment and relationships. The title is something of a red herring. Whatever nudity there is remains secondary to the ideas surrounding the aforementioned themes. The bodies are used as props, showing the way that the relationships depicted subtly morph and modulate under external and internal pressures and strains.
The way that sex and body can be subtly weaponised is also deftly explored. It’s a messy, fraught exploration that deals with the ugly, implicit guilt and repression in denied sexuality. The one scene without any sex (the meeting between ‘Journalist’ and ‘Actor’) is a meeting point between paranoia, fear and self-loathing, all focused on the body and messy sexual desire. Yet resolution isn’t found in the act of sex, either. As each scene shows, it is the sheer multiplicity of desire that makes it such a complex field of enquiry. Whether it is denied or temporarily fulfilled seems to make no difference. Resolution is as far away as ever. (FG)
F*cking Men played at Assembly George Square Studios - https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/f-cking-men
Being Gay: Politics, Identity and Pleasure- http://banmarchive.org.uk/collections/newformations/09_61.pdf
Homophobic? Maybe you’re gay?- http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/29/opinion/sunday/homophobic-maybe-youre-gay.html
Evolution of Gay Theatre- http://www.juilliard.edu/journal/evolution-contemporary-gay-theater
Fringe: Queer Art & Film Festival- http://www.fringefilmfest.com/