This is a confusing play.
While mental health and sexual assault are both worthy topics of discussion, the script for Hers Is the Head of the Wolf is sketchy and unorganized, with no character development, and the audience is left wondering just what the story was about. We are given little initial information about main character Elise’s situation, and it remains that way for much too long. What has caused Elise (Raven Newbolt) to be in a state of constant fear? What does Danny (Riley Leonard) have to do with it? Why is her therapist, Dr. Hamilton (Michael Tingley), so forthcoming and accommodating? Does Elise suffer from PTSD, schizophrenia, or both? Slowly feeding the audience tiny morsels of information over time is an often-used playwright’s convention to keep us engaged, but there isn’t enough substance here to use that tactic. We are left frustrated and hungry.
The actors aren’t given much to work with. Elise and Hamilton are one-note characters, and Danny gets two: concern and anger. The conclusion is just as bewildering. One moment Danny is on the phone, and the next, he’s on the ground. When did he even get inside her home?
I’m sorry to say it, but there are too many other good shows playing at Fringe to give this one a recommendation.
Produced by Monument Theatre Company
- Monday, Aug. 20, 7:30 p.m.; Tuesday, Aug. 21, 9 p.m.; Wednesday, Aug. 22, 6 p.m.; Saturday, Aug. 25, 1:30 p.m.; Sunday, Aug. 26, 6 p.m.
- Indy Eleven theater at the IndyFringe building