Upon seeing Lidless, there was something about it that really irked me. Several things, but it wasn't clarified until I saw Portrait. It seemed to me that the characterization and dialogue in Portrait really lent itself to the actors, providing some really excellent acting and roles that I personally was drawn to as an actress. I tend to particularly focus on the female characters (go figure) and none of the characters were cliches or one dimensional, not necessarily easy to peg.
In Lidless there wasn't any character that I would want to play, male or female. It didn't really didn't seem like a play written for actors as much as it was written for the playwright. I thought the young girl character in Lidless was insufferable. I got what she represented at different times, presenting an ideal next to her mother's gritty reality, but I hated her delivery that contained no real curiosity in her questions. I felt such animosity towards the character that her death was somewhat of a relief to me. Also, in the first scene with the young girl and the once prisoner, I figured that they were father and daughter and the fact that it seemed so obvious took me out of the mystery pretty quick.
I really like Frances' ideas, especially in 410 (Gone), and she can write some really beautiful, thought-provoking lines. I wouldn't have felt so frustrated watching it if there weren't some really good things about it. I just think it's her characters that fail to draw me in and get invested in the story.
I also thought about questions of gender in Lidless. How would the play have been different if the interrogator/torturer was a man and the prisoner was a woman, whose child would later save her life in a strange twist of events? How would that dynamic change the play?