This play was in the recommended reading list and I chose to read this play, as it has a different theme to what I tend to read. In my drama class, we’ve studied this book in a bit of detail – and some of the dramatists have done the duologue as part of their Year 12 exam. I found the overall story of the book quite interesting, and so I wanted to compare my first impressions to my impressions after reading it.
The Pillowman was written by Martin McDonagh and it is based around a writer, Katurian, who is interrogated about murders that have taken place and the similarties between the crimes and his gruesome stories. Katurian has a younger brother, Michal, who has learning difficulties and has had a hard childhood. Katurian was encouraged by his parents to start writing, and so he’d write very happy stories. But at night he’d hear sounds of torture from the room next door, which led to many dark and disturbing stories being written – and he finds out later that his parents are torturing his brother in order for him to become a better writer.
At first I thought this was a serious play and that it would be more of a straight forward play. But after reading it, I found that the play contains dark humour – which I personally think McDonagh has done well and it has made this a brilliant masterpiece. I think the twist and the turns of the story makes me more motivated to keep moving forward with the play, as it makes you wonder what is coming next. I also found the stories that Katurian tells are very gruesome and that they could make you wonder how people could be so cruel. I feel that McDonagh has carefully formed this play, so in the end we are left wondering who we should feel sorry for; and I felt this way after reading it.