Playing Fate is the story of a relationship told in reverse. It begins with the couple discussing whether or not to break up. Their history is then told in gradually regressing chunks right back to when they first met one another.The overall affect seems to be an attempt at a romantic comedy style relationship devoid of any theatrical merit.
However the play fails to create any interest in the lives of these characters. It is very hard to care about a relationship when you know the ending and do not feel any connection with the characters on stage. This is not helped by the complete lack of chemistry between the onstage couple. Every moment of affection felt scripted and forced and devoid of any intimacy. Both characters were so unlikable that it was impossible to care what happened to them.
The staging throughout was awkward; at times both actors delivered their lines upstage sitting with their backs to half the audience for an entire scene. There was never any passion; the audience was never given a reason to care about this nondescript couple and why there should be any interested in their relationship coming to an end. There is no passion and the inclusion of gimmicky card tricks used as elaborate romantic symbols does not create any. The repeated use of ‘baby’ as a term of endearment felt awkward to the point of feeling almost painful. It felt so forced and unnatural that any small sense of intimacy or connection that might have developed was immediately destroyed.
The play felt much like an exercise in futility, characters that were impossible to care about combined with the climax that has already revealed. Individually the actors were not bad but combined they failed to connect and create depth or meaning in the production.