Beginning with a bang

Sex Shop

Brisbane Arts Theatre

January 6 – 15

Between the appropriately-propped red hot set and pre-show soundtrack of ‘Sex Machine’, “I Was Made For Lovin’ You’ and ‘Like a Virgin’ et al, the scene at Brisbane Arts Theatre is well and truly set for the naughty night out that is independent artist and theatre-maker, Jake Moss’ one act play, “Sex Shop”. While initially it is unclear if the on-stage character bobbing along to the tunes is an employee or customer, it is soon apparent that the self-proclaimed sex beast is the former, about to hand over the shift to 18-year-old Adam (Eamon Kingston).

The tongue-in-cheek play follows the journey of Adam as he navigates his first day on the job at an adult store. Through a series of vignettes of varying length, we meet the variety of characters that Adam interacts with on his initial day, discovering also their many different stories. Under Moss’s nimble direction, things move swiftly through the show’s series of often very funny scenes. But there is also some surprise poignancy to layer things and allow us time to stop for breath.

The show is all about Adam, and Kingston certainly holds the show together, virtually never off stage. As he struggles within himself as a virgin giving product advice to others, we can certainly feel his awkwardness. And his recreation of iconic movie movements in attempt to fill the boredom of no-customer slow moments in the day, is very entertaining, particularly his mimicry of Alan Rickman’s signature vocal cadences. 

On the whole, “Sex Shop” is very cleverly written. Humour also comes from Adam’s physical reactions as much as his verbal interactions with customers, with verbalisation of his interior monologue often capturing the collective audience thoughts at the time. Accordingly, at 60 minutes’ duration, this millennial sex farce is an accessible, easy-to-watch show for open-minded audience members not easily offended by its rude and crude subject matter.

As its promotional materials warns, the production contains coarse language, adult themes and is DEFINITELY not for kids. For those who dare, however, “Sex Shop” is a wonderfully naughty start to new year.

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