Script Analysis: Helter Skelter by Neil LaBute
Helter Skelter by Neil LaBute has two characters whose names are simply referred to as Man and Woman who meet in a restaurant. As the conversation starts, it is apparent that there is no table service for sometime within the eatery. The Woman is heavily pregnant, something that seems to make the man worried as they continue with their conversation. This play seems to indicate some irrational behavior that a person can have as the Woman tries to tell the Man of seeing him earlier, in the arm of his sister. As the conversation continues, Leil LaBute is careful to ensure that the Man avoids a ‘scene’ within the New York Chic restaurant, by behaving calmly. The play develops to another higher level towards the end as many issues arise between the two couples who already have two children in the past. Arguments arise on issues like children and some lost love.
The play has a good plot, as seen in an organized structure that gives the audience an easy time to follow the conversation between the Man and Woman. On the same note, there are more information that explains the actions and feelings of the characters in the play. Explanations are quite informative as they tell the reader what else happens, besides the dialogue between the main characters. This is a linear plot that indicates the flow from one scene to another, meaning that one the reader easily follows through the story as it progresses. The writer uses two characters; however, he only refers to them as Man and Woman. However, it is apparent that they are a couple who have gone into a restaurant to have a conversation. The characters in this play perform their duties well as they help in telling a story through dialogue. The Man and Woman in this play provide the platform for the conflict within the play.
The thought is one of the elements that the writer has brought out well in the play. As the Man and Woman dialogue, thought of the differences between the two comes out and is also seen in their actions towards each other. Each of them develops a certain attitude towards the other. During the play, the Woman takes much of the time talking and marveling at some of the thoughts that come to her memory. On the same note, the writer uses language to ensure that the message is passed to the audience. The words used are written in a way that makes it easy for the actors to easily project them. However, music is an element missing in this play. As much as the characters are in a restaurant, there seems to be less focus on music. The dialogue between the couple develops each time into some tension between them. The writer may have avoided the music because of the tension that the plot brings. The behavior between the Man and Woman shows an element of spectacle. For instance, there are moments when both of them are forced to leave their seats in order to drive their points. In addition, the ending of the play shows the epic of tension as the Woman chases the Man with a knife.
Helter Skelter has a short exposition that explains the characters in the play. On the same note, the exposition shows that the setting is on a chic little eatery and that time is around the holidays. However, the exposition fails to indicate what happened before the play. Therefore, the reader has to follow the play in order to catch up with the happenings. It would be prudent to indicate that the exposition in this play is fair enough but not adequate. Nevertheless, the exposition during the play is adequate as indicated by the information between the dialogues between the characters.
In this play, the inciting incident comes when the Woman stands to snatch the phone from the Man, followed by the accusations. The accusations and counter accusations between the characters are the rising actions that contribute to the rising tension in the play. The climax comes in the play when the Woman suddenly picks up the knife and plunges into her protruding stomach, at the amazement of the Man. The man tries to help but it is too late and the Woman stays motionless. The falling action occurs when the Woman stays motionless and the sound of music grows louder than everything in the restaurant.
The two characters in Helter Skelter are a Man and a Woman who are married with two children. The Woman is heavily pregnant with another child when they meet in a restaurant. At the beginning of the plot, the atmosphere is good with dialogue between the two occurring smoothly. However, things change as the plot progresses, when the woman starts accusations and counteraccusations about children and other things. To her, it seems the Man does not understand so many things taking place. The misunderstanding between the two becomes the major conflict, with women suddenly stabbing her stomach as a way of solving the situation. On the other hand, it seems the man decides to speak less and allows the Woman to speak her mind. He seems clueless as the dialogue proceeds, only to realize that the woman has stabbed herself. The thought in this play may simply be to show what a person is capable of doing at any given time, and without a warning. The music at the end of the play helps in indicating the end of everything.