In this essay I will be portraying many different acts of emotion. Love and kindness can come very easily, but it’s just as easy to endanger and threaten it. Each of my paragraphs will represent a different play. The first play is called ‘Love is a many slendoured thing’ by Alan Bleadsale. It’s about two teenagers, Mickey and Dawn, who are set a project by their English teacher in which they have to work as a pair. Their target is to find out what ‘young love’ means to a number of people. Mickey has intended to spend his time watching his team Liverpool play at home.
Mickey, throughout the play remains cynical towards Dawn and all girls. This is probably him feeling inadequate compared to the more mature and more confident Dawn. This is shown on the first page when Mickey says, “He made us sit next to a girl. A girl! Urgh! ” This instantly shows his scepticism and curiosity towards the other sex. Later on Dawn and Mickey are having an argument about boys being less mature than girls. This is when Dawn makes a very significant remark, “No one in their right mind would fall in love with you. ” This instantly sets alarm bells of in the readers mind.
This shows that Dawn has very intermit feelings towards Mickey and is trying to hide them. When the interview about ‘young love’ falls on Dawn’s divorced Sister Janet, the growing bond between Dawn and Mickey is threatened. Janet sarcastically states, “Young love? You want to know about young love? I’ll tell you about young love. It’s all lies, from beginning to end. ” That was a crucial point in the relationship between Dawn and Mickey. Later on Mickey is trying to get out of the whole ‘reporter act’, in order to go to the game. Surprisingly Dawn offer to go with him.
At first Mickey is resentful but soon finds out she is also a Liverpool supporter. This is a major leap in their relationship. Near the end Dawn admits her love towards Mickey. As expected Mickey receives a massive shock and runs of. In the end they both accept it. Their love for each other. The next play is also about the relationship between two people, but in a very different mood. It is called ‘On the face of it’ by Susan Hill. Set in an old man’s garden, it is about a fourteen year old boy, Derry, whose face has been badly disfigured in an accident.
He climbs into the garden, trying to escape the harsh realities of life. He then comes face to face with the old man, Mr Lamb. He expects him to be put of by his face (as most people are), but instead he engages Derry in a conversation about a variety of things. Mr Lamb isn’t startled at all by Derry’s face. This reaction is very kind but also much unexpected. Derry is at first suspicious and bitter, thinking Mr Lamb is only changing the conversation. Gradually though as the old man reveals that he to is handicapped (he lost a leg).
He starts asking Derry many unexpected question. Always showing kindness. Derry then begins to relax and admits that he’s enjoying his time with Mr Lamb. He still remains somewhat cautious, but Mr Lamb has given him a new confidence and enthusiasm for living. Derry then happily volunteers to help pick Mr Lamb’s crab apples. Instantly Mr Lamb tells him to instruct his mother where he is (because it was getting late). As he arrives home he explains about the eccentric old man.
She instructs Derry to stay at home, Derry replies with some very powerful words, “If I don’t go back there, I’ll never go anywhere in this world again. ” His mother is the obvious threat between Derry and Mr Lamb relationship. He runs back to the garden only to find that Mr Lamb had got the ladder and begun picking the apples, fallen and died. Derry is isolated by his disfigurement and is bitter about his fate. Mr Lamb is also an isolated, old solitary man. From Mr Lamb Derry learns to have a positive attitude to life, and at the same time gains confidence within him. We are left to ponder whether what Derry has learnt will be undone by the old man’s death.
The next play’s called ‘Mr Bruin who wants drove the bus’ by Don Haworth. This has more of a light hearted theme to it. Kindly Mr Bruin drives a bus which, every day makes a circuit of a number of villages, picking up school children and taking them to school in the nearby town. So kind is Mr Bruin that he gives lifts to those who need them. Here Mr Bruin explaining to the headmaster about picking up pedestrians, “This poor old chap at Bench Road ends…….. ” The headmaster then states, “But it is against regulations to give lifts. ”
He is also kind enough to wait for the kids who are late. This immense kindness is what is threatening his job. The result in all this is that the bus is getting to school late, meaning the kids miss part of the school day. Mr Bruin shows his kindness when he takes up the case of an overweight boy. He took him to the headmaster to find out if the child could do different things in certain lessons. Take woodwork, Fatty Foggon always hits things to hard or bends up breaking things due to his size. Mr Bruin wants him to be normal and do more constructive things with his time.
Under pressure from a local councillor, the director of education and parents, the headmaster tells Mr Bruin to drive faster and keep better time. His subsequent speeding only brings in more complaints, but his final undoing comes when he dresses up as an elephant as part of an advertising stunt at the local supermarket. For this last act he is deemed ‘irresponsible’ and is fired. Being the kind person he is, he walks away without a fuss. The final play is called ‘Our day out’ by Willy Russell. It’s about a school outing for a progress class in Liverpool.
This is set in the inner city of Liverpool, a concrete jungle. The class were being taken to Conway in north Wales. In charge of the pupils is easy going Mrs Kay. Fearing what may result from her tolerant attitudes, the Headmaster sends the very uptight and strict Mr Briggs. Throughout the play there’s a contrast of reactions between the two teachers towards the children’s behaviour. There are countless incidents with the children for example, staling sweets and animals from a zoo and a cafi?? and later gallivanting around at Conway castle.
There are many other relations apart from the running battle between Mrs Kay and Mr Briggs. For example, the relations between the two younger teacher and the older boys and girls. Also the pressing problem of Carol, the girl to whom life offers so little in inner city Liverpool that she’s prepared not to go back. It’s her threatened suicide that brings out a new Mr Briggs, a kinder and more fun person. At the end of the trip Mr Briggs learnt a far more important lesson than the children, he learnt to live.