Nick (Sean Rigby) is sound asleep, in his usual spot on the sofa. In bounces Allie (Loren O'Brien), slamming down her suitcase and messing up the flat. She spots the strange man on the sofa, and closes in – leaning over, face to face, to identify him. And so we are introduced to a nicely-balanced black comedy, where the need to vent could apply to each and every character we meet.
Allie has arrived back from globetrotting, expecting to pick up where she left off with her friend Chris (Holly Augustine), but is surprised to hear that there is no room for her any more – Chris's fiancé Nick now lives here permanently. Nick and Allie are really very similar in nature, both taking full advantage of their relationship with Chris, both feeding off her natural generosity, consideration and warmth. The one who truly needs to vent is Chris herself, as she is treated like a doormat by those closest to her.
The central problem is clear: Allie went away to find herself and hasn't really achieved that, and her self-centered ways are unrelenting. In her eyes, Nick is an interloper and needs to be removed; Nick feels very much the same way about Allie. The gloves are off, yet everyone involved is secretly vulnerable too.
There is a great surprise, carefully lined up, some way into this play; sometimes a wooden performance is a good thing. In support, we meet Nick's girlfriend-less mate, Jez, and also Kitty, an almost harmless bubble-headed friend in the girls' orbit. The casting is excellent and no-one lets the side down in this production. Overall the actors work very well together, bringing just the right level of familiarity, self-interest and interaction, convincingly portraying the loose attachment levels of a Millennial group of London friends.
The tale carries a sting too, as it seems that in the final analysis Allie has met her match and (in a sense) got what she deserved. The writer (Loren O'Brien) keeps it real and the story moves along at a good pace, and – although at times it feels a little like a TV sit-com – that just confirms there are lots of giggles and belly-laughs along the way.