Drunk Enough to Say I Love You?

Drunk Enough to Say I Love You? is a 2006 political play with seven scenes by Caryl Churchill. It addresses the application of power by the United States mostly since the Vietnam war.

Plot summary

Two men, Sam ("a country") and Jack/Guy ("a man"), are homosexual lovers. Their interaction is an elliptical, often fragmented political dialog. Sam is the aggressive one and Jack/Guy initially his enthusiastic follower, who, however, in the process of the play becomes more and more disenchanted. Sam is clearly identified as the American government that touts American hegemony and foreign intervention, and Jack his at the end disillusioned follower.


The play is brief (45 min) and without an intermission. It was first produced at the Royal Court Theatre in London with the world premiere on November 10, 2006. Sam's counterpart was initially named Jack emphasizing the British nature of the person, while in the 2008 American production he becomes Guy, a possible Mr. Anybody. The American version, therefore, also may may be a "mirror" as it addresses the relationship between the government and its supportive voters. The play has received a generally positive reception on both sides of the Atlantic. The Guardian's Billington suggested that the two characters reflect the Bush-Blair political relationship and noted that the "the sexuality of politics" takes centerstage. Nightingale criticized the one-sightedness of the playwright's perspective, but acknowledges the anxiety and anger that is behind it. Brantley admires Churchill's "canny exploration of the theatrical language." In both productions the two actor sit on a sofa in front of a black background. In the course of the play the sofa becomes more and more levitated as the two men become more estranged and lose their footing in reality.

In the English premiere Stephen Dillane played Jack and Ty Burrell was Sam. The American premiere in March 2008 featured Samuel West (Guy) and Scott Cohen (Sam) at the The Public Theater in Manhattan. Both productions were directed by James Macdonald.


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