Theatre Review: Jack Goes Boating

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(Sacramento, CA)
Wednesday, July 30, 2008

This play features something a bit rare -- a swim lesson, taken by a reluctant adult.


The student is Jack – a socially-awkward, heavy-set man who’s spent his entire life avoiding water that’s more than waist deep. But Jack has fallen for a woman named Connie, and she thinks taking a row boat on a lake would be romantic. So despite his apprehension, Jack is wading in. 


Jack is a late-bloomer, with confidence issues. He wants to be in a relationship, but he’s never quite it figured out. So he’s drifted, working at low end jobs, hanging out with friends, and getting high. People get high a lot in this play. And Jack can’t get enough of his favorite tune, a reggae anthem he plays again, and again. 


This show could easily have become a cartoonish satire about stoners in swim trunks. But instead, it emerges as a well-acted, gentle comedy about a borderline loser, who matures into a full person. It’s a heart-warming transition, and it makes for a sweet evening of summer theater.

“Jack Goes Boating” continues at Sacramento’s  B Street Theatre through September 7th.