I never read John Milton’s poem Paradise lost. I never was that enthralled by the personified battle between good and evil in order to actually spend time on it. It was Lucy Peacock cast as Satan that made me want to see the play without even knowing what to expect. Plus I really like Avon’s Studio space. I am very glad I did go. Because how can you take a religious tract and not just transform it into a play but also into something that isn’t rank with pathos and sickly religious diatribe.
Well, ask Jackie Maxwell. She took the bland concept of good vs evil and gave it new life, calling it jealousy because God chose Jesus as his heir and not her, thus leading to her wish to destroy God’s new toy, humankind. It is when Adam and Eve get bored that the wish to eat from the forbidden tree of knowledge is born – with a little help from the snake 😉 . Knowledge in this case is awareness, and sexual awakening and the punishment an all knowing entity who knew what would happen from the beginning doles out seems irrational and over the top (…and then we’re creating a new people that which will be identified by removal of their foreskin… Adam: Excuse me, WHAT????) and so Adam and Eve leave the garden of eden with very little hope other than prayer to live lives in peril and pain and small mindedness, and Satan goes back to rule over hell and leaves them there as a constant reminder to God that they don’t worship him enough to follow his one rule… not to acquire knowledge….
“And here you are, with your fistful of seeds.” Satan’s last words in “Paradise lost”. A curse in itself. But maybe also a promise?
And damn but I’d follow Lucy Peacock wherever she would lead. She is a charismatic, fascinating, cunning and brilliant leader, when she runs circles around the angels who have developed distinctly cult like behaviour over time, who follow God’s word and worship him with empty phrases and gestures, still dumb, still unaware, so different from Satan and from the two humans that have been given free will…