‘Boy Gets Girl’ intense, revealing

  • Dale Burrows<br>For the Enterprise
  • Monday, March 3, 2008 12:03pm

It’s a new day, guys. If we think we know where women are going, we don’t. But there is help. The help is Rebecca Gilman.

Gilman wrote “Boy Gets Girl,” the sex-in-the-city drama directed by Gregory Magyar and currently on stage at Historic Everett Theatre.

Fundamentally, “Boy Gets Girl” could translate boy gets back at girl; torments her, terrifies her and very nearly annihilates her for having the good sense not to give in to him after a blind date. The dude starts out as a bore who turns into a jerk then transforms into a stalker.

However, the story properly focuses less on the why’s and wherefores of a sicko who can’t take no for answer and more broadly on the ways men and women see each other.

An absolutely brilliant Carissa Smit stars as Theresa Bedell, a feminist and magazine writer, who has a drink with a computer nerd at her girlfriend’s urging. Eating, drinking and sleeping her career 24-7, Bedell has no time for a social life but isn’t so desperate that she can’t see her date is a no-go and says so.

Smit takes an uncompromising feminist and accomplished professional and shows her as a vulnerable, valiant human being who claims, stakes and holds her personhood in time of clear, present and senseless danger and, at no time and in no way at any cost to her womanhood. Where have all the stereotypes gone?

Scot Garrett is Tony Ross, the wimp-weirdo-wacko. Garett spends very little time on stage but uses it subtly and masterfully to suggest the twisted workings going on inside Ross’s mind.

Asa Sholdez’s Mercer Stevens profiles a contemporary professional man; happily married and climbing the corporate ladder but still saddled with occasional sexual fantasies about the women he sees and questioning why he does.

Sholdez makes it clear. A threat to women, his Stevens will never be. But a puzzle and a mystery, his manhood will likely be for some time to come.

The likeable, well-put-together bachelor-boss and dutiful son who took in mom till she died is William H. Bowen’s Howard Siegel. Bowen’s soft, comical, unassuming, amiable touch kind of blunts the show’s sharp, cutting edges.

As does CariAnn Schoenmaker’s ditsy, dizzy, blonde bombshell and office receptionist, Harriet.

However, for plain, pure, uproarious comedy and a show unto himself, there is Scott Mitchell as septuagenarian and porn filmmaker, Les Kenkatt. Kenkatt’s films have been making millions fixating on women’s breasts for years.

What Carissa Smit and Scott Mitchell make of a serious feminist magazine-writer interviewing an unabashed and unapologetic dirty old man, is not to be missed. In fact, if she saw these two in action, I can’t imagine playwright Gilman not laughing herself silly. I’m still resonating.

Also, Laura Kessler as an investigating police officer drives home the need for legislation with teeth to deal with stalkers.

This is drama that engages with something to say. It’s astutely staged and articulately acted. Women can say, “At last;” and men can start to get what they mean.

Reactions? Comments? E-mail Dale Burrows at grayghost7@comcast.net.

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