Radiant Vermin
Closed 1h 35m
Radiant Vermin

Radiant Vermin NYC Reviews and Tickets

(73 Ratings)
Members say
Great acting, Clever, Original, Funny, Entertaining

About the Show

Part of 59E59's Brits Off Broadway fest, Philip Ridley's dark comedy is about one of the defining social dilemmas of our time: the need for everyone to have a family home.

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Show-Score Member Reviews (73)

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774 Reviews | 246 Followers
Entertaining, Great acting, Original, Relevant, Intense

See it if You appreciate a brilliant biting satire with incredible acting. You want to leave the theater feeling "wow".

Don't see it if You are uncomfortable having your values questioned.

271 Reviews | 47 Followers
Clever, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting, Original

See it if you are a fan of Ridley's work, and are a fan of writing (and acting) that pushes past the comfortable.

Don't see it if you need a traditional script and/or genre, or cannot keep with a pace that starts fast and speeds up from there.

62 Reviews | 37 Followers
Absorbing, Funny, Great acting, Great writing, Thought-provoking

See it if An original show with some dark teists made light, makes you think, great pure acting with no set and changing accents

Don't see it if You don't like ridley, you don't like British comedy, or entirely minimalist shows

442 Reviews | 127 Followers
Clever, Entertaining, Great acting, Relevant, Hilarious

See it if you enjoy somewhat dark British humor and are not offended by murder; you like over-the-top acting and story line with a relevant message.

Don't see it if You don't like any of the above; you do not like unrealistic story lines.The last "party scene" was waaaay too long, but well presented.

215 Reviews | 34 Followers
Clever, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you enjoy great acting on a bare stage. Very inventive.

Don't see it if You have trouble suspending disbelief.

612 Reviews | 148 Followers
Absorbing, Clever, Funny, Dark, Original

See it if you want to see wonderful, physical acting, you like topical themes such as the housing crisis and materialism, you have a good imagination.

Don't see it if you are not interested in dark satire, the condemnation of the consumer society, beautiful sets are necessary for your enjoyment of a play.

408 Reviews | 86 Followers
Entertaining, Great acting, Edgy

See it if you like dark comedy and intense acting. The storytelling is very satirical, engaging, and has important subtext and social commentary

Don't see it if you were expecting an elaborate production, don't like crude dialogue or dark humor

127 Reviews | 888 Followers
Great acting, Dark, Funny, Quirky, Original

See it if you like dark comedy; you want to see what two energetic young actors can do on a bare set; you envy your neighbors with nicer apartments.

Don't see it if you prefer drawing room comedies or plays about relationships.

Critic Reviews (27)

The New York Times
June 8th, 2016

"Directed at a bouncy pace by David Mercatali...'Radiant Vermin' is a blithely told fable for the age of unaffordable housing...A little over 90 minutes, it is probably too long for its pithy purposes. Once you grasp its basic conceit, there aren’t too many places for it to go…'Radiant Vermin' by Mr. Ridley’s standards is unusually blunt in its moralizing and unusually direct in implicating its audience. Still, it makes for nasty and energetic fun."
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Lighting & Sound America
June 8th, 2016

"A witty, if overextended, black comic sketch...Johnson and Verey have the knack of creating a pair of cartoon figures who are just enough like real people to make them impossible to dismiss....Director David Mercatali has found exactly the right satirical tone...'Radiant Vermin' makes its points early and often, but Jill and Ollie make a fine pair of unreliable narrators, and their tale is presented with considerable verve and wit...It's impossible not to feel the sting."
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Talkin' Broadway
June 7th, 2016

"Ms. Johnson and Mr. Verey are excellent as Jill and Ollie, but, at least as directed by David Mercatali, their characters are basically cartoonish caricatures out of an ironic fairy tale. Thus, the play foregoes a sense of creepy horror that might have raised our level of concern…It is Jill and Ollie's ability to self-justify their every greed-driven decision that gives the play its only real bite, even as it all-too-gently attempts to make the audience feel complicit in the enterprise."
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June 8th, 2016

"Johnson and Verey nail the yuppie vibe in their chipper and tireless performances…Original, entertaining, and witty, in addition to offering what is probably a field day for its nimble performers. The play is stymied, though, as it becomes mired in contradictions. The story is so absurd that it's hard for it to have a strong, resonant emotional impact. Meanwhile, its darkness curtails the humor that could be found in this absurdity."
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Theatre is Easy
June 10th, 2016

""Often hilarious and at times rather poignant, Ridley’s contemporary new play is a 90-minute frenzied fall down one couple’s materialistic rabbit hole...It’s in the performances by Johnson and Verey, and their complete physical involvement in describing every detail, that we are able to vividly imagine what each scene must look like...Director David Mercatali is a genius in his direction of 'Radiant Vermin'...A wildly hilarious, dark, and incredibly fun look into serious first-world obsession."
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Theater Pizzazz
June 7th, 2016

"Superb, playful writing, zany, magical plot arcs, pristine characterizations, and acutely rhythmic and cleverly paced humor throughout. Ridley adroitly manages to be paradoxical, ironic, satiric by using hyperbole and understatement in tropes that hit the bull's-eye of truth...It’s the marvelous divine comedy with all its beauty and ugliness and you won’t stop talking about it much after the lights come up at the end."
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Front Row Center
June 9th, 2016

"'Vermin' is a cheeky and sanitized allegory taking aim at young parents who will do anything in the name of their new baby…Verey and Johnson convey the tale directly to the audience with ample amounts of physical comedy and high-speed patter…More a storytelling machine than fleshed-out characters, Verey and Johnson run the risk of becoming unsympathetic, or worse, uninteresting. Fortunately, Ridley gives each role one dollop of depth, just enough to be likable."
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Front Mezz Junkies
June 7th, 2016

"It’s a superbly funny abstract comedy...I was blown away with the final birthday party scene, in full amazement of their ability to give us the rapid-fire delivery of all these characters and moments without missing a beat...My heart was racing when, magically, they stop and revert back to asking us directly, 'What do we value the most? Property or life?' And then, they ask us our verdict. My verdict was a standing ovation."
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