Review: Lungs

She hasn’t realized that babies don’t come from a stork in the sky.

She hasn’t realized that babies don’t come from a stork in the sky.

Photo courtesy of B Street Theatre

2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Thursday, 7 p.m. Friday, 8 p.m. Saturday, 1 p.m. Sunday, 7 p.m Tuesday and Wednesday; $26-$38. B Street Theatre, 2711 B Street; (916) 443-5300; Through June 18.
Rated 5.0

As Duncan Macmillan’s play, Lungs, opens, M has just asked W if it’s finally time to talk about starting a family.

A baby!” she replies, launching into a long diatribe about how this is the wrong time to bring up the subject up and how she’s not ready. She’s a pingpong ball bouncing off the walls, and we learn that the two of them are standing in line at Ikea—definitely making this not the proper place or time to start this serious discussion.

Lungs, currently playing at B Street Theatre, stars the incredible duo of Jahi Kearse as M and Dana Brooke as W. The latter’s angst is palpable as she worries about the problems of bringing a child into the world, with its political unrest, climate change and myriad other problems that a child will only add to. But then, perhaps, that child will be the one to solve things. And then there are the in-laws to consider.

The yin and yang of this 100-plus minute argument between the two is fascinating and exhausting, and is kept moving at a fast clip by director Lyndsay Burch as we follow M and W through life. It’s an unusual love story that becomes deeply personal. The couple’s relationship may be more recognizable to millennials than to older audience members, but the intensity of their feelings is undeniable.

Though most of the action occurs indoors and the script dictates that there be no set, designer Samantha Reno’s pastoral scene, with rocks, tree branch and other signs of nature, is intended to evoke the circle of life.