Forced to take employment as live-in carer for a genius quadriplegic undergraduate, failed actor Timothy Salt is not optimistic. His charge, Michael Owen, is only at Oxford to please his devoted mum. When ersatz aristo Phillip Sydney offers the leading role in his student production of Hamlet to Michael, Timothy’s humiliation seems complete. Meanwhile, fellow student thespian Anna Jenkins, deciding that Phillip is the ‘perfect gentleman’ who Mummy so wants her to find, accepts the part of Ophelia.
Then TV producer Nikki Hardbody (Kids with Cancer and Pepé: The Boy with No Nose) arrives to immortalise Michael in her latest documentary, and Timothy realizes that the only way he can salvage any self-respect is by sabotaging the production of Hamlet. Michael, meanwhile, is horrified to find himself falling for Anna. As rehearsals progress, Anna discovers that her perfect partner isn’t Phillip Sydney after all. No one is more delighted than cynical Nikki Hardbody.
The Opposite Bastard is a dark comedy of manners. An uproarious and moving commentary on love, disability, dignity, political correctness and media opportunism, it is a strikingly original and provocative debut.
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