Who’s taking care of Pinter’s crafty Caretaker?

Mar 29

Who’s taking care of Pinter’s crafty <i>Caretaker</i>?

There are all kinds of battles going on in Harold Pinter's The Caretaker – brother vs. brother, brothers vs. the tramp, the tramp vs. the truth, loneliness vs. despair, etc. – but the really interesting battle is between menace and humor. Surprisingly, at least in the sharply etched production now at the Curran Theatre as part of the SHN season, humor wins.

Pinter can annoy me faster than just about any other playwright if his work falls into the wrong hands. Happily, this production, which originated at the Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse before moving on to London's West End and a world tour, feels lived in and full of life (at least as much life as Pinter will allow amid the portentous silences and lonely drifting).

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