The Stoned Ape

Nicki Alchin
3rd Apr 2023

There is nothing endearing or redeeming about the drug scene, predatory divorce lawyers, or females trying to profit from men by playing on their vulnerabilities or telling straight out lies. The latest show playing at The Bondi Pavillion - The Stoned Ape - has crammed into its script these and many other unflattering aspects of our society as a way to shine a light on relationships between mothers and their children, fathers and daughters, husbands and wives/defactos, as well as exposing the effect drugs and the scene's associated crimes and violence, have on society.

For me there was probably only one character that gained my sympathy - an ageing, white male by the name of Aldo (Dean Tuttle). A tragic character by any stretch of the imagination, a guy who had been done over by the system on so many fronts only to find himself at the mercy of a washed up tidbit of drug addled and addicted flotsam parading as a mercenary nurse and friend of Summer, called Tash (Jessica Maree King) who is prepared to kill him via organ donation surgery for $10k. 

The rest of the ensemble of characters were not much better, if at all. Prue Cunningham (Susan Jordan), the manipulative mother and predatory divorce lawyer; Mrs Maxwell (Sally Williams) a wife seeking divorce but also forgetting her own part in the failure of her marriage and plays into the hands of Prue who basically wants to screwover all ex-husbands on the legal battlefield no matter how dirty her tricks are to achieve this; Henry Cunningham (Barrett Griffin) the strung out ex uni student drug addict turned dealer and estranged lawyer's son sprouting drug induced theories; Summer (Veronica Cloherty),  Henry's drug addict girlfriend who buys into most ofl Henry's chatter and is open to making money in sleazy, easy ways such as being an online girlfriend to middle aged men at the same time as having an idea she wants to grow up for the sake of any future children but finds this difficult at times especially when drugs are involved; Trev (Hardy Connor) the wheedling crystal meth junkie; and an ancient bullying, double crossing stereotypical bikie (Johnnie Boxer) who looks quite comical until he acts out his nasty side.

Each and every role was acted out realistically and with conviction, making it very easy to have little to no sympathy for them. Definitely go experience it if you want to see the murky side of life and won't be triggered by scenes gearing up for a divorce case, the disenchantment of today's youth, and the disenfranchisement of men. You might even crack a smile at some of the one liners. 

Now playing at Bondi Pavillion until 13 April.