Yes! This superb play from National Youth Theatre is back and ready to make your mind muddy and turn a black and white issue fuzzy. As straightforward as consent is – yes means yes and no fucking means no – this play from Evan Placey boldly sets out a teacher-pupil relationship that shakes perceptions on grooming and who ‘grooms’, victimhood, power and just how complex situations get when you simply add humans. And what a great time for Consensual to return: since it’s first run in 2015, the #MeToo movement has happened – how will it read today? The two halves are roughly split between perspectives, which made for a noisy interval, and even noisier exit, as the audience grasped for clarity. Standing in the queue for the toilets it was hard to avoid the depressing truth that all generations feel short-changed by their school’s sex education and most can recall a dodgy teacher who crossed vital boundaries.
By Amy Smith