Welcome! This is your first free article. Get more free articles when you sign up with your email.


“Filthy, funny and vital”

Months after the acclaimed television adaptation, and weeks after the tickets for this run were snapped up in a record-breaking ten minutes, Phoebe Waller-Bridge brings the Fleabag back to Soho Theatre.

This is filthily funny monologue that started it all back in 2013. The unnamed protagonist is a clever, witty, and desperately lonely young woman, battered by grief after losing both her mother and her best friend and left rattling round London, numbed to almost all emotional connection.

Only sex can chisel through the brick wall, and then only briefly. The writing is full of sexual frankness and staggeringly whip-smart dark humour. It also explores the desire that women often feel, to be free of the need to assess your every thought and deed on its feminist credentials; Fleabag’s too clever to think feminism doesn’t matter to her but too sad to do much about it.

Waller-Bridge and Fleabag’s director Vicky Jones, regular collaborators, used to run new writing evenings exploring how best to manipulate an audience: how to make them love a character, hate them, pity them; how to make them laugh and then feel shocked at themselves for laughing. Nowhere are those skills better employed than here. While the – excellent – television adaptation has more time and room to expand the character’s world, the play’s brilliant liveness, performed on a plain stage, more than makes up for that.

As both writer and performer, Waller-Bridge knows how to work a crowd, and from the show’s bittersweet beginning to its devastating end, she has the entire room in the palm of her hand.


Related to this Review

Phoebe Waller-Bridge wins 2016 Groucho Club Maverick award for FleabagPhoebe Waller-Bridge wins 2016 Groucho Club Maverick award for Fleabag

Production Details
Production nameFleabag
VenueSoho Theatre
StartsDecember 5, 2016
EndsDecember, 16, 2016
Running time1hr 5mins
AuthorPhoebe Waller-Bridge
DirectorVicky Jones
Set designerHolly Pigott
Lighting designerElliot Griggs
Sound designerIsobel Waller-Bridge
CastPhoebe Waller-Bridge
Production managerCharlotte Mcbrearty
ProducerDrywrite, Soho Theatre
VerdictReturning to the London stage, Fleabag proves itself as funny, filthy and vital as ever
Add New Comment
You must be logged in to comment.

Lauren Mooney

Lauren Mooney

Your subscription helps ensure our journalism can continue

Invest in The Stage today with a subscription starting at just £3.98
The Stage
© Copyright The Stage Media Company Limited 2020
Linked In