POST: 'Fool for Love' - the toxic nature of their relationship
What it’s about?
Set in a motel room in the Mojave Desert, Fool for Love is about May and Eddie, two people who are bound together by a complex and very tumultuous love.
What'd I experience?
Every once in awhile I like to do something that I otherwise actively avoid doing. This weekend, I doubled up and did two such things: 1) saw a show on Broadway and 2) braved Times Square to get to said Broadway show. The purpose of this exercise was to keep my days from feeling too comfortable and routinized and that purpose began fulfilling itself as soon I ascended from the subway into Times Square and was greeted by one frustration after another.
My first wave of frustration arose when a slip of paper in my playbill informed me that Nina Arianda, the star who I REALLY wanted to see for reasons unbeknownst to even myself, was not going to be in this performance. I wasn’t as dismayed with the news of Arianda’s absence as I was with my own disappointment with the news. Would Arianda really have made my experience of the show any different - or better - when the story and characters remain the same?
My second wave of frustration was a big one. It came as soon as the show started and lasted till it ended. The first scene opens with Eddie, the rugged cowboy: the very embodiment of traditional American machismo, possessing strength and charm, and May, the beautiful Western heroine: strong enough to speak for herself, yet somehow still in need of rescuing by a man.
What frustrated me about Eddie and May was not the passe story line of the damsel in distress, but the toxic nature of their relationship. The hour and a half of the play consisted of Eddie and May alternating between yelling at each other, flinging furniture around the room, and intensely making out as it is gradually revealed that the pair go way, way back in their rocky relationship and actually share the same father. They are the couple that can’t seem to let go of each other even when they spend more time fighting each other than working to improve their partnership. They are the couple that constantly separate only to reconcile for a brief period of bliss and then separate again. They are the couple that blurs the meaning of love.
I don’t know much about love, but I have a feeling - a hope, rather - that it’s not about being repeatedly torn apart only to be haphazardly pieced back together, losing a bit of yourself each time.
Hopelessly romantic as one could argue Fool for Love is, I just cannot accept that all of the pain and uncertainty of a such a dramatic relationship is ever worth the sparse seconds of solace a lover’s embrace might bring.