Great War Theatre

Examiner of Plays' Summary:

The point or problem of this play is a very serious matter of the conjugal relation and is presented with great frankness, while the general tone is one of comedy. As a whole it is a remarkably good play, strong and clean in its outlines. Jack La Bas's wife, Edie, is immersed in various good works for the War, as she was formerly in the feminist movement, and no longer fulfils all the marital relation. They sleep in different rooms. Jack is still fond of her, but his nature is passionate and is starved for want of its natural outlet. This condition of affairs is plainly set forth by a young woman friend to Edie's sister. Then a beautiful woman, Daphne Grea, a widow, appears. Jack makes love to her passionately. There is an incident of his possession himself of her latchkey, which she had dropped; she refuses to go so far as this implies, and when two youngsters, a young private and a middy, Jack's son and a pal, come in she insists on their finding it and Jack has to give it up. One of them sees the action and discusses it afterwards with the other and the son is grieved for his mother: this is not in the best taste, perhaps, but is perfectly natural. Then Jack has a strong scene of reproach with his wife. She takes this to heart, and when he comes back from the pantomime with the boys she has prepared a jolly supper for them and over it talks of their honey-moon (it is the anniversary of their wedding) and afterwards makes Jack understand that she wants to be his wife in everything again and they go to the bedroom from which her paraphernalia of writing and telephone etc has been removed. This last part is punctuated by the noise of guns - a raid is going on - which is quite unnecessary and serves no purpose except that the 'all clear' at the end of the play is effective. The serious matter for consideration is the frankness with which this problem of married life is presented. Instances are in act I, pp 12, 17, 38 and particularly Jack's protest in act II, p.34. I think that in these days there is no reason for quarrelling with it and so spoiling a good play. It is quite different from the suggestiveness of a vulgar revue. The play is seriously meant and the moral good. The subject of it may be thought unsuitable to the theatre. But so far as my judgement goes, it is recommended for licence. G. S. Street

Licensed On: 28 Jun 1918

License Number: 1644


British Library Reference: LCP1918/11

British Library Classmark: Add MS 66193 Y


N/A Wyndham's Theatre, LondonUnknown Licensed Performance