I am a modern woman with modern tastes. I am a testament to my generation and its greatness, so it should be no surprise that “Fleabag” is my favorite show, aside from the West Wing. Since “Fleabag” is my favorite TV show it should also follow that “Fleabag” is my favorite one woman show. “Fleabag”, for those of you who do not know, is an Amazon original, based on Phoebe Waller-Bridge’s one woman show. Phoebe Waller-Bridge holds the distinction of being the writer, creator, and star of the Prime original, as well as the writer/producer of “Killing Eve,” and, of course, she’s a down-ass bitch. Aside from being my woman crush everyday, Waller-Bridge sold out theaters in the West End, was nominated for eleven Emmys, and hosted SNL.
Therefore, you can imagine how excited I was when I scored two tickets to a screening of Phoebe Waller-Bridge performing her one woman show in the West End. A movie theater that specialized in airing pre-recorded plays, was selling the tickets. Having purchased two tickets, I decided to make a friend and invite them. I bought the tickets in September, giving me ample time to make the cuts in my friend groups (I can’t say a singular group because they are not a unit, because I compartmentalize), and by that I mean I picked from a group of three people. I decided to invite my good friend Sofia from my creative writing class, who I thought would appreciate the one woman show.
She was really excited for it, as was I, but she had actually not seen the “Fleabag” TV show. I still do not understand the mythical ways of the subway system, so she planned the logistics of the trip. I do not know when to get off, which subway to take, how to know when you have reached your destination, how many blocks each subway goes and so forth. If I take the subway, there is a very good chance that I will end up in Nova Scotia.
Fortunately, Sofia is the type of person who knows when to get off the subway and which subway you must take from there. Me, being the girl who got lost in her one story house as a child, let her take the lead. So with Sofia as my sherpa guide, we ventured into the city. We were delivered to the Leonard Nimoy Thalia Symphony Space Theater safely, and found some good seats.
As we were sitting there, waiting for the production to start, it occurred to me that I might not have pregamed her for the raunchiness and the obnoxiously oversexed humor of Phoebe Waller-Bridge. For those of you who think that this is no big deal, I would just like to state that the line I remembered the best from the show was “there is a hand print on my wall from when I had a threesome on my period.” I later learned that Sofia’s favorite film was “Inglorious Bastards” and was glad to discover that our taste in performing art was more distatesful than wholesome.
The play was excellent. I can’t get over how talented and witty Phoebe Waller-Bridge is. Her monologue was exceptionally written but it was enhanced by her impeccable line delivery. She completely commits to the joke as shamelessly as her character believes the things that she says. Naturally, I also love the intensity of her female-perspective, which she spouts without alienating her male audience. A one-woman performance seems unfathomably hard, but Waller-Bridge made it look easy.
I was also surprised to see how many 50 and older people came to watch the show, since much of it was just stuff that you would joke about with your friends inside your living room. Yet there was an ornery old woman, doing a decent Methuselah impression and shushing people before the show even started. This isn’t to say that there was no depth to her work. It is actually a dark comedy about a depressed woman in the wake of her friend’s death, with a plot twist at the end.
I 10/10 recommend watching it. After the show, we went to “5 Napkin Burger,” a restaurant that we had both been to before. If you like eating a burger that is almost the size of your head and drips burger juice down the length of your arm, then this is the place for you. We ate and then thanks to Sofia, we took the right train back. We sprinted across Grand Central Station and reached our train right before it pulled out, and we were way too proud of that fact. All and all, I had a great time with my friend, watching Waller-Bridge crush it in a pre-recorded live performance.
Hoping for more of this energy for 2020.
The Tragic Queen,