Thursday, January 13, 2011

Peak Performances and their Awkward Sexual Moments: Side Show

(Please note that the videos I use in this post are not mine. Credit goes to the respective owners.)

Side Show-March 2010-Alexander Kasser Theater
Okay so this is the only play I did see not live (but boy I really wish I did!) so I apologize if I get any information wrong. However, I have seen a good number of videos on YouTube and read up on the story to understand the basic premise. Interestingly enough, even though I did not see this production live, I have noticed that it contains the most sexually awkward intense scenes out of my whole series, so let’s get started. Basically the storyline is about conjoined twins Daisy and Violet Hilton who are joined at the hip and (brace yourself) buttocks. They work at a Freak Show and are eventually founded by talent scouts Terry Connor and Buddy Foster to make them big time celebs. These two guys eventually become the girls’ love interests. This is where the fun begins.

*Beware of Spoilers*

• Buddy asks Violet to marry him: Okay so this part really irks me so I could not wait any longer to write about it. The twins wonder if they will ever find love being in their condition, so to make Violet happy Buddy proposes to her to prove that he loves her. This eventually goes awry because he reveals towards the end that he cares for her and loves her but not like she loves him. I know that sex isn’t the only factor to make a successful marriage, but sex is important in a marriage regardless. How was Buddy planning on making love to Violet while she is still attached to Daisy? That’s just…that’s just awkward. There’s no other word to describe it. Was he hoping for a threesome every time? And what if she gets pregnant? What would labor be like with Daisy attached to her? And what makes this whole idea even more awkward is that Buddy suggests to Terry to marry Daisy. What every man wants—another man is his marriage bed, because this means four people sharing a mattress, correct? Awkward. Here is the scene:

Another additional thing that has been bothering me but has nothing to do with the plot: How do Daisy and Violet use the bathroom? Sorry but I just had to ask that.

• “Private Conversation”: Aside from my bathroom question, this actually leads to my next point. Poor Terry. It turns out he actually does have feelings for Daisy but, get ready for this, he doesn’t have the GUTS to tell her! I can understand that he wants her alone, just the two of them together, which is the point of this song. The song is depressing because he really likes her and cannot have her to himself due to the circumstances. He doesn't know how to go about having a relationship with her, so this is why he restrains himself. It also shows that he is too shy to reveal these feelings in front of everyone, leading you to kind of sympathize with him because this is something people can relate to. He imagines what it would be like to be alone with her and plans in his mind what he would say and do. But wait, doesn’t he openly flirt with her and kiss her in scenes before this? He practically makes it known that he likes her, so why is he so saddened? Also, I find it hard to fathom how a fully-grown man has this many issues courting a woman. In a later scene he makes it a point to tell Daisy that he wants to spend time alone with her and give her the attention she deserves, so isn’t that proof enough that he does indeed like her? He doesn’t have to verbally say it because every scene they are in together he flirts up a storm with her. In fact, from what I've seen, I don't even think he ever acknowledges Violet whatsoever because he places his whole focus on Daisy in every scene. He even quits his job to be with her more! And yet he denies his feelings for her, even to himself. It is obviously an “obvious connection” between the two! What exactly does Terry think he is hiding? I just don’t understand why he is that bent out of shape. Check out the song here and maybe you can tell me:

But be warned, it’s a beautiful song that is beautifully sung, but it can be a real tearjerker. Well it was for me anyway when I first watched it. By the way, you will see Daisy apart from Violet in this scene. This is only a figment of Terry’s imagination. Just as an added bonus: I love the way she sings the line at 2:48. I like the way she sings a lot of lines in this song and other songs, but that’s my personal favorite.

• “One Plus One Equals Three”: What makes “Private Conversation” that much more depressing is the fact that this song is performed right after, with Terry solemnly walking off the stage. Sung by Buddy and the twins, this song announces the engagement between he and Violet. Buddy knows that he is inheriting Daisy as well, so this explains the title. This song is so offensive and distasteful to me because it is such a slap in the face to Terry, who was just crying about Daisy seconds earlier, and it is just seems to further prove that Buddy is looking forward to having not one but two women in his bed every night. It’s like he’s saying to Terry, “Haha! I have my girl, and yours too, so you can’t have her!” The whole concept is just plain irritating. Regardless of how much I dislike the song itself, it was still very well done. You can check out this song here:

Another thing the song suggests is that Buddy is only marrying Violet for his own benefits, which makes me kind of hate it even more.

• The whole “Tunnel of Love” sequence: Along with “Private Conversation,” “Tunnel of Love” is my favorite song of this show. It is an awesome scene and once again very well done. The day before the wedding the foursome decides to take a relaxing ride in the Tunnel of Love. This whole scene is when each character’s emotions come to a head, leading to all kinds of awkward for the characters and complexity for the plot. Finally Terry gives into his emotions and begins to feverishly make out with Daisy in this ride, something that Daisy has been asking for since the beginning of the play, so she obviously enjoys herself throughout this scene. Of course, Terry cannot hold back any longer and feels comfortable to kiss her because the darkness of the tunnel daunts everyone’s vision, therefore he has her “alone.” Now his concern is being able to keep this heat up when they exit the Tunnel of Love. Buddy is having the opposite issue of being intimate with Violet with her sister by her side, which is odd considering how in broad daylight Buddy doesn’t have a problem showing the shy Violet his affections. In this way in seems like the four should switch partners depending on personality. As the four are hovering in mid-air, dancers do a routine underneath them on the stage. After the first refrain, ecstatic screams are heard (which to me seems kind of random and odd) and these dancers begin to undress a little bit, suggesting that perhaps people are possibly having sex in this tunnel. Either that or it's just symbolizing the sexual tension among the main characters. This is one of those suggestive scenes that has potential to be acknowledged as suggestive but often goes unnoticed as such. For some reason, when I saw it, I didn’t consider it a scene for children to witness. Kids definitely wouldn’t be scarred by it, but it’s just my opinion and first impression of it. I think I just consider it a bit more adult oriented. Check it out here and decide for yourself:

Here is the same scene from a different angle:

• Every time Daisy flirts with Terry: Daisy is the flirtatious of the two twins as she quickly falls for Terry and flirts with him any chance she gets, while he returns the favor. She asks for a kiss, he gladly obliges. However, when Buddy proposes to Violet, it is assumed that Terry is going to propose to her, because apparently these two guys come as packaged deal like the girls do now. What? Just because Buddy is marrying Violet automatically Terry has to marry Daisy? Now, maybe the whole thing with Terry is that he wants to get to know her before making any significant moves. That is the smart thing to do and yet Daisy is constantly annoyed every time Terry does not give in to her marriage proposals. Don’t women normally want a guy to take it slow? I just feel like the whole time she is pushing him whereas Terry prefers to take appropriate time and not rush into things. He likes her but maybe he is just not ready for a commitment just yet. Her flirtatiousness (and Terry's) is very obvious in this clip:

Tomorrow: The Seagull. :)

Check out the previous post of this series: Polaroid Stories and As You Like It.

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