Jack Thorne's Red Car, Blue Car is a short play about guilt, grief and responsibility. It was written for and first performed at the Bush Theatre, London, as part of their Where’s My Seat? season, in June 2011.
The play is structured as two overlapping monologues by characters, Phil and Marie, who are linked in a way that isn't immediately apparent. What appears to be the story of a couple who met on the internet and lived happily ever after is anything but. What they are in fact recounting is their separate experience of the night Marie's boyfriend is run over by Phil's car.
In an introduction published in Jack Thorne Plays: One (Nick Hern Books, 2014), Thorne writes: 'Red Car, Blue Car came out of my time at the Bush [Theatre], the only place that’s ever felt like a theatrical home to me. If such a thing is possible. When the time came to move from the old building to the new, the great Josie Rourke [Artistic Director of the Bush Theatre] wanted to work out what the theatre could do, so she commissioned three writers to write three plays which could be staged in three different ways. To make things more complicated, she also gave us a set of props we had to include, and had luminaries of the theatre nominate stage directions which we had to include in the text. I cheated slightly by absorbing these into spoken word'.
The Bush Theatre premiere was directed by Tamara Harvey and designed by Amy Cook and Lucy Osborne, with Hugo Speer as Phil and Nina Sosanya as Marie.