by Ed Malin · August 4, 2014
The Blood Brothers Present series of horror and brain-exploitation continues at The Brick with a new set of plays by Nat Cassidy, Mac Rogers, and Mariah MacCarthy. Bedlam Nightmares Part Three: Losing Patients resembles its title.
To set the scene: the white-faced, red-eyed Blood Brothers (Pete Boisvert and Patrick Shearer, also the directors of this rampage) have been caught doing ghastly, graphically violent deeds and are now inmates in Hospital One, the mental emporium run by Doctor Queen (the chilling Kristen Vaughan). As the series has progressed, the Brothers have fallen more under the control of Doctor Queen and her assistant, Mintz (Roger Nasser). Since we still don't know who watches the watchers, Queen and Mintz show their sadistic side, experimenting on their other patients and unafraid to use the murderous Brothers to achieve extreme results.
In Who's There by Nat Cassidy, one of two Cops (Rebecca Comtois) who infiltrated Hospital One in an earlier episode is talking to her partner via walkie talkie, telling all sorts of scary anecdotes, and assuming they will both make it out of there alive. If this were an afterschool special, they might.
Mac Rogers contributed Leslie and Sonia Forever, in which the patient Leslie (Ivanna Cullinan), no longer troubled by long-term memory, continues to be exploited by Doctor Queen. Brother Blood (Patrick Shearer) finds a way to use the blissful patient, forever ready to abuse herself on demand, for his own ends.
In Incitement by Mariah MacCarthy, our youth stalk each other on the internet. Samantha (Sarah Matteucci) is approached online by a female classmate, Shannon (Stacey Raymond). Shannon, who has a loveless family life with her mother (Ivanna Cullinan), is a bit physically and emotionally needy when interacting with Samantha, going as far as to invite her to an evening of Rocky Horror and fluid sexuality. Choosing the heteronormative high ground, Samantha breaks off her friendship with Shannon, but is super-excited to flirt online with Kevin (Colin Waitt). Kevin, as we can see, is just another personality developed by Shannon. Since Samantha can never meet Kevin, Shannon also creates the fake FBI agent Maude (Stephanie Cox-Williams) to raise the stakes and coax Samantha back to her side. FBI? WWW? Two such misguided young women might really get in trouble. I am really glad how uncomfortable this piece made me feel.
Mac Rogers closes out the program with Losing Patients. We know there will be another, final-sounding installment in this series come October, but Doctor Queen is already bent on extracting some results from the Brothers before presuming to execute their sentence. At Hospital One, the Brothers are joined by Sister Blood (Rebecca Comtois). Queen has Brother Blood (Pete Boisvert) conditioned to a novel regimen of brutality which does not necessarily include his sister. If she didn't know him by now, she may never never know him. There commences a new kind of depravity for the audience to enjoy.
This is only the third Blood Brothers show I've gotten to see, but this one had the biggest cumulative psychological cloudburst. Perhaps less reliant on onstage ultra-violence than other episodes I've witnessed, this one clearly advanced the scientific plan to somehow neutralize our heroes. Hopefully, as with such villains as Freddy Krueger, Michael Myers and Strom Thurmond, there will be no way to stop the sanguine protagonists' reign of terror. In the mean time, I hope you will enjoy the excellent writers' latest stab at your conscience.