Bubba and Luvvie is the tale of a man and a woman who meet on an ocean cliff top on the eve of a court case in which they are both pivotal players: the former is the accused, the latter the key witness. Throughout the 90 minute play a series of “stories” disclose details of the characters, the case and their relationship.
The key to this play should be the electricity and dynamic between the two performers and yet despite their best attempts there is no chemistry nor much logic to the drama as it unfolds.
The staging is sparse; only the actors – Mia Soteriou (Luvvie) and Gerard Mc Dermott (Bubba) – a park bench, the intermittent sound of waves and sporadic projections entertain. The dénouement exposes an extensive and intense relationship yet the dialogue illustrates none of this intimacy. In fact during the first 40 minutes the characters act as though strangers. Any motive behind this lack of acknowledgement is further lost against the urgency both should profess to solve a “whodunit” before dawn that could potentially ruin them. The cat and mouse game which works so well in other scripts simply doesn’t ring true leaving one dubious of any romance which might have tied this plot together. Further Luvvie is determined, to the point of recording the exchange, to resolve a loss yet as the play concludes appears to inexplicitly wipe this from her mind.
The Press Release tells us to expect the magnetism of Taylor and Burton. Sadly I don’t believe Soteriou and McDermott even had a chance to aim for that pinnacle.
Finally kudos must go to Mc Dermott and Soteriou who do their utmost to bring life to a flawed drama and on the night I attended performed in absolutely stifling conditions.
The King’s Head
115 Upper Street
London, UK, N1 1QN