The play’s historical sections are hampered by the character of the ambitious young Heath. He proves intractable on stage. An intelligent, laconic, elusive and entirely humourless mummy’s boy, Heath never reveals himself. Nor does the play threaten his defences or present him with choices that would force him to open up. My guess is that Graham has been bewitched by late-vintage Heath, the Incredible Sulk, who glowered like a toad on the green benches for three decades.
But Heath in his heyday was refreshing and approachable. For starters, he was called Ted, like some bloke down the pub. His signature attribute was his bonhomie. Everyone in the country could impersonate him. You just had to roar with laughter and let your shoulders trampoline up and down. Compared with the shifty and neurotic Wilson, he was attractive and colourful (yachtsman, maestro), and he gave the impression of being fun to be around. But in this play Heath shows no trace of psychological complexity. He’s like Billy Bunter impersonating a cagey swat. And the script reaches puzzling conclusions about the evolution of the Tory party. If anything, it seems that life was easier for gay Tories in the past. When the closet was the only place to be, that’s where the shrewd politician stayed. And Heath had plenty of time to rehearse credible answers to tricky questions. As I recall there wasn’t much talk of his homosexuality in the 1970s. All the gossip centred on another notorious bachelor whom everyone ‘knew’ was gay: Prince Charles.
That "z" is annoying, isn't it?
Almost as annoying as those three grinning poshos in that photo, though maybe that's the point?
"You blue-rinsed bitch!"
Blurb! In the wake of the deep Conservative divide exposed by the recent vote on gay marriage, National Youth Theatre brings its hit production back to the West End after a sold out run at Soho Theatre in 2008. Tory Boyz is a bold and astute political comedy that takes us behind the scenes of the corridors of power at Westminster where saving face and avoiding scandal is the order of the day.
PS The Torygraph wet their Calvins and gave it five stars!
Fagburn is a Richard Smith production. Now widely acknowledged as Britain's leading homosexual libertarian communist absurdist thinker, Fagburn is for a ruthless gay criticism of everything existing. He has been banging his head against a brick wall since April 2010, and is spokesbot for the made-up Gay Media Watch. Always grateful for tip-offs about stuff. Contact fagburn (@) safetycat.org. Follow me on Twitter @fagburn. Or don't. I'm not that fussed, really. Fagburn was nominated for Publication Of The Year in the 2013 Stonewall Awards - so NERR!