Dangerous Obsession

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Previewed 5 November 1987, Opened 9 November 1987, Closed 23 January 1988 at the Apollo Theatre
Transferred 26 January 1988, Closed 27 August 1988 at the Fortune Theatre

A major production of N J Crisp's thriller Dangerous Obsession in London starring Dinsdale Landen, Jeremy Bulloch and Carol Drinkwater.

A sunny afternoon in the Home Counties and Sally Driscoll is watering her plants in the conservatory of her luxurious home. Suddenly a stranger appears at the door. Sally does not recognize him, but it seems that the Driscolls and the stranger have met before. Then, after Sally's husband, Mark, arrives it becomes apparent that this stranger is 'dangerously obsessed'. The cast features Dinsdale Landen as 'John Barrett', Jeremy Bulloch as 'Mark Driscoll' and Carol Drinkwater as 'Sally Driscoll'. This production is directed by Roger Smith with designs by Shelagh Keegan.

"There are several good reasons for going along to see this latest thriller by N J Crisp of Colditz/Secret Army fame. The chaps will have ample opportunity to admire swimsuit-clad Carol Drinkwater's voluptuous figure. The cosily-predictable plot will not over-burden anyone's brain, and is warmly recommended for people that like a story they can follow while mentally drawing up their Christmas card list. Finally, there is the outstanding acting of Dinsdale Landen, who has that Cheshire cat ability to combine the sleek with the sinister... Mr Landen makes the most of the black comedy, intentional and otherwise. Jeremy Bulloch makes the most of a pair of overhanging eyebrows that cover a multitude of sinful looks. But I'm afraid my Christmas card list provided far more suspense." The Daily Express

"N J Crisp's Dangerous Obsession at the Apollo is a perfectly competent thriller about moral responsibility... The less said about the plot the better, for obvious reasons. But I can reveal there is a short uneventful first act in which an innocuous-looking Dinsdale Landen insinuates himself into a lush conservatory occupied by Carol Drinkwater in a black bathing suit. He has met her casually at a business convention in Torquay. When her rich husband (Jeremy Bulloch) returns home, the interloper proceeds to seal off the exits, bore them with stories of his wife's involvement in a fatal car accident, and produce a .22 calibre Smith and Wesson from his briefcase to ensure that they, and we, are still there after the interval. This is not one of those creaking, Christie-type whodunits nor one of those chic charades in which bodies come back from the dead and everyone turns out to be in drag. Mr Crisp's play is closer to JB Priest1ey's Dangerous Corner, which it echoes both in theme and title, in that it is about moral guilt and the uncovering of unpleasant truths.... The main interest lies in watching Mr Landen who starts out as a cross between a commuter and a computer and who gradually reveals himself to be a monomaniac avenger seething with inner rage: a good performance from an actor who is much more than a dapper farceur." The Guardian

"Early warning signs of audience restiveness appear in the first half of this new thriller because the author. N J Crisp, teases us with menacing details concerning the unwelcome visitor and his unusually capacious briefcase, but there are dangerous delays in indicating the facts behind the menace. In next to no time the gun has gone off, impressively smashing a tumbler of gin, and we have reached the interval... The second act so powerfully applies the tricks of suspense that the audience dared not cough for fear of missing the next turn of the screw.... Crisp's stranger as superbly played by Dinsdale Landen... Carol Drinkwater displays her stalwart sunny thighs and aims too many of her lines at the audience, emphasizing the artificiality of her character. Jeremy Bulloch's boorish husband has to play the character on one note to keep the outcome uncertain; his final moments are unexpectedly moving, therefore, and Roger Smith's direction builds powerfully to this climax." The Times

Dangerous Obsession in London at the Apollo Theatre previewed from 5 November 1987, opened on 9 November 1987 and closed on 23 January 1988, transferred to the Fortune Theatre from 26 January 1988, closed on 27 August 1988.