Get us in your inbox


‘Spiral’ review

  • Theatre, Drama

Time Out says

Abigail Hood’s second play comes across like a perplexing remake of her first

Tom’s daughter has been missing for six months – and counting. Desperate for solace, Tom hires an escort who bears an uncanny resemblance to his daughter. The two form (you’ve guessed it) an unlikely friendship and Tom’s life ‘spirals’ out of control. Love and lust, comfort and perversion, perform a twisted dance in Abigail Hood’s flawed but occasionally disturbing new play.

‘Spiral’ is Hood’s second play but it shares a lot in common with her first, ‘Dangling’. Both feature a missing teenage daughter, lookalike escort and bullying pimp, with Hood in the central role. It’s a bit odd - this feels like a reworking of an earlier draft rather than a fresh new venture.

Glen Walford’s and Kevin Tomlinson’s production is stilted and a little unsure of itself. The scene changes are particularly awkward, as a few wooden blocks are doggedly re-arranged on Nomi Everall’s spiral-themed set. The scenes play out at a mightily high pitch: imploding marriages, abusive relationships and surprise pregnancies all materialise in quick succession. It should be harrowing but the scenarios feel stretched, the characters brittle and the dialogue guilty of one too many clichés.

Adam Morris is slightly too likeable as grieving father and teacher Tom. He’s accused of abusing his students and possibly even abducting his daughter – yet that suspicion never feels warranted. The only scenes that really tingle are those between escort Leah (Hood) and her iron-pumping pimp and boyfriend Mark (Tomlinson). It’s here that the ugly underside of this play finally surfaces, as a desperate Leah searches for love in the darkest of places.

Written by
Miriam Gillinson


£14.50-£18, £10-£16.50 concs
You may also like
You may also like
Bestselling Time Out offers