King’s Head Theatre and Making Productions
by Robert Chesley
Directed by Ben Anderson
King’s Head Theatre
30 October - 23 November 2019
NB Note 8.45 start time
Review by Clive Burton
Spunky would also prove an appropriate description of this joyless gay two-hander (Oh, Matron!), a separate production performed almost three decades after it was written.
Robert Chesley’s Jerker is a collection of telephone calls made by queer men in San Francisco hoping to make contact with other thrill-seeking gays looking for instant sexual gratification.
Phone sex formed part of a portfolio of possibilities that included clubs with ‘anything goes’ back rooms, toilet sex, on-street cruising, gay movie houses and all the other specialist opportunities available to gay men before the decimation of their community from AIDS started to take its toll.
Described as ‘a pornographic elegy’ this short (and graphic) 80-minute one-acter proves entirely un-erotic in its depiction of the passionless passions enacted between Tibu Fortes as Bert and his homo hook up, J.R. (played by newcomer Tom Joyner with all the joyless enthusiasm of a genuine porno star).
Even the services of an Intimacy Director fails to revive this limp excuse for such an indulgent piece. And, for all its talk of erections, dream on…