what the butler saw
by joe orton
New Theatre, Sydney
Libidos run riot in this darkest of farces, stuffed full of twists and turns, mishaps and changes of fortune, coincidences and lunatic logic, as six characters gradually lose the plot, their wits and/or their clothes.
Orton lays out a smorgasbord of politically-incorrect taboos in deliberately bad taste, attacking society’s hypocrisy and the established order with his delicious brand of outrageous and subversive provocation.
Highly controversial when it premiered in 1969, What The Butler Saw retains its ability to shock, even though what society deemed unacceptable 50 years ago has fluctuated over time. The play remains a joyous and very, very silly celebration of queerness.