To quote Eliza Doolittle: “Words, words, words, I’m so sick of words!” In Kristian O’Hare’s new play, a “mildly” depressed and reluctantly gay man named Stagger (Robert Crozier) descends into a semihallucinatory wonderland of giant insects, gyrating men (in colorful zentai suits) and Walt Whitman. Amid the zaniness, O’Hare gives the play a relatively strong pair of bones, drawing suggestive connections between a fear of insect infestation and the threat of AIDS. But the first act bombards the audience with such a dizzying array of verbiage—holistic recipes, dictionary definitions, scientific terms in Latin—that the ten-minute intermission comes as a relief; and the Fringe production’s minimalist direction and design make the clunkier chunks of dialogue seem even more disjointed and difficult to digest. Some crisp, bright moments help redeem the second act, but like the insects that Stagger obsesses about, they are all too short-lived.—Chris Corbo
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