nytheatre.com review by Antonio Sacre
I loved this play. But will somebody please tell me what the hell they
are saying? I know they are speaking English, but the first ten minutes
were unintelligible to anybody not from the northern inner city of
Dublin, where Ciaran Creagh’s Blaggers takes place. I seriously
looked for subtitles or a translator, but none were to be found, just
eight measly words in a glossary in the program. Pity, too, because
Blaggers is some good crack (that’s Irish I think for a really
August 15, 2002
The play opens with Mickser (Sean O’Shaughnessy), Sammy (Tina O’Connor) and Kylie (Sinead Murphy) planning some scheme to get rich quick. They are afraid of Johnny, but they need his help. When Johnny (Macdara Deery) storms in the room (think Ben Kingsley in Sexy Beast), they tell him they need his mother to put her house up as collateral so they can buy and then sell a bunch of drugs. When Johnny says he’ll never ask his mom to do that, they settle on robbing the local welfare office because they have a man on the inside. Johnny won’t agree to drive the getaway car until he meets the man. They call in their man on the inside, Ronan (Ed Coughlan), and Johnny asks why they should trust him. Ronan freaks out, goes all psycho on everybody (American idioms for going a little crazy) and in a hilariously over-the-top scene that’s worth the price of admission, convinces Johnny of his sincere desire to want to screw the dole office for slighting him. Johnny buys it, and everybody’s ready to roll (American slang for willing to commence the job).
The second act contains the aftermath of the job, and is a gut-buster (American for really funny). It’s true there is no honor among thieves, as each of the players cross and double cross and triple cross each other, creating and breaking alliances that will keep you guessing. I won’t tell you what happens, because by then, you’ll be able to follow it all by yourselves. The writing is sharp, the acting wonderful (Deery is particularly convincing), and the play not to be missed. Check it out on the flip side, you’ll really dig it (old school American slang for "see this play"). Peace, out.