His recently screened five part semi-improvised TV drama series True Love proved a thin disappointment despite the strong casts, and, short though it is, there’s not enough flesh on his first stage play either.

There’s far too much reliance on Ed Clarke’s sound design to create an atmosphere of brooding menace and, although it begins promisingly enough it never goes far beyond stating the obvious.

Gerald and Kieran both love the luxury that money can buy, but their worlds are at opposite ends of the rich/poor continuum.

Whilst sleek financier Gerald (Rupert Evans) is about to close a deal that will make him and his pregnant wife £12m better off, young thug Kieran is staking out the streets with his admiring sidekick, identifying likely targets by the status symbol brands they wear.

It’s pretty obvious that their paths are going to cross and there’s a real air of danger in the confrontation between these representatives of society’s haves and havenots.

Aymen Hamdouchi is powerfully intimidating as the angry Kieran, and takis’ underlit set smoothly evokes the homes of both men as well as the street.

But, like chunks of the dialogue, Gerald’s reappearance as a Banquo style ghost and his wife’s foolhardy decision to open the door to a rough stranger strike an unconvincing note.

Savage fails to explore the issues he raises and, even at 80 minutes, the evening feels far too long.  

£10-24, Until 14 July
Bush Theatre, Uxbridge Road, W12 8LJ
Tube | Shepherds Bush

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