War Paint – Review by Halle Parris

If plays were bodies of water, War Paint was a waterfall.

War Paint was soul-baring yet overly ambitious. Lily’s War Paint is a one-woman play lecturing viewers on the ills of our beauty-obsessed America. As Lily put on her war paint, addressing us as cadets, she illustrated her points with personal stories from her southern upbringing to her election campaign to her sexual assaults. Unfortunately, along with too many transitions, a jarring Barbie doll scene, randomly introduced characters, pre-recorded voice-overs, and distracting audience interaction, her message felt scattered. Her play could have benefited from a deeper narrative that succinctly tied these stories together. Most of her monologues felt underwhelming, which is unfortunate because I like dramas that make me cry. With such an intimate topic, Lily could have been much more poetic, much more soulful. In turn, her message would have been less preachy and more heartfelt.

Despite all this, Lily successfully illuminated the complex relationship between women and makeup. It’s honestly something I’ve never considered before. I look forward to Lily blossoming as a playwright and actress.