Previously in the play Helen had married Peter and had gone to live with him, Jo got engaged to a black boy in the Navy, she became pregnant but he didnt come back after going away with the Navy. Jo didnt have a very good relationship with her mother and they had moved about a lot as Helen ran every time she couldnt pay the rent. Jo met Geoff who is a homosexual. He hasnt had sexual relations with a man but he knows he is gay because he has had liaisons with other men. Jo has left school and was going to work in a pub part-time.
The play is A Taste of Honey and I am doing part of Act two scene one where Jo, Helen and Geoff are the main characters. This play is mainly set in Jo and Helens flat where the time is around the 1950s. Helen and Jo werent very well off so the flat is in a poor condition. It is dirty and there is a lot of dust. The house looks like it is uncared for because clothes are on the floor and the bed isnt made. It is a comfortless flat. If I was in the audience I would see the settee in the middle of the flat with Geoffs bedding on it, to the left of the stage would be Jos unmade bed it might have some clothes lying untidily on top of it. To the right I would see the kitchen, the sink full of dirty plates and cups, and there would be lots of things scattered about the kitchen sides.
In this section of the play the characters use actions in different ways to portray their emotions and feelings. For example: at the beginning of this section Geoff says Let me kiss you this lets us know that Geoff likes Jo as more then a friend unfortunately she does not feel the same way. This is shown when she struggles as Geoff forces himself on her. Another show of Geoffs feelings towards Jo are when he asks her to marry him, Jo just dismisses the idea and tells Geoff ¦Im not marrying anybody.
When Helen arrives she tries to be motherly towards Jo but Jo doesnt really want to know as Helen hasnt really been there for her whilst she has been growing up. I dont think she understands why Helen suddenly wants to be a proper mother so Jo starts an argument by saying what blew you in as soon as Helen comes in to the room. But Helen still tries to by friendly by asking about Geoff, she also tries to change the subject at that point when Jo asks her how she came to know about her pregnancy she replies Come on, arent you going to introduce me to your boy friend? Who is he?. I think at that point Helen hadnt come to argue with Jo and had come to see if she was alright.
When Jo and Helen are angry they both speak their mind and tend to shout when arguing. Jo talks in a steady voice and when speaking to Geoff she talks in a soft voice but her voice is stern when she is speaking to Helen as I feel she is resentful towards her. Helen talks to Jo as if she regrets having her and wishes shed aborted her like all the others, in this scene though Helen starts off friendly but finishes by chasing Jo around the room trying to hit her. Geoff is the calm one; he doesnt stand up for himself much but tries to protect Jo. When Geoff is told to do something he does it without complaining.
This play is important to theatre history, as it was the first play ever seen about real life and the problems that came with it like poverty, racism, teenage pregnancies and homophobia. This play had them all in. At the time this play was written Britain was just recovering from shortages and rationing, the rationing ended in 1952. Housing was scarce so many people had to live in flats even if they could afford better and bomb sites were still derelict. Shelagh Delaney was the author of this play and she was 19 years old when she wrote it. It was written in 1956 and censorship from the stage was removed in 1963. A Taste of Honey is what you would call a kitchen-sink drama because it is based on real life, problems, poverty and the working class.