Ben Brantley of the New York Times summed up the critical reaction to Diana Son's play Stop Kiss when he stated that it generated the warmest advance word of mouth of any downtown production this season and heralded it as a Barefoot in the Park for a new generation. Son's story is deceptively simple: two young women in New York meet, talk about their boyfriends, feel a growing, unspoken attraction for each other, and finally kiss. And that one innocent kiss sets off a savage gay-bashing. But even as Stop Kiss confronts the reality of physical violence, Son's imaginative, moving, and surprising comedy brings audiences -- and her principal characters -- to unexpected places.
Callie is holding down a job as a radio traffic reporter when she meets Sara, a midwesterner who, against her parents' wishes, has moved to the city to teach third-grade students in the Bronx. Both have boyfriends, but as they get to know each other, their shared experiences and sense of humor create a strong bond. The tragic consequences of their kiss -- the center of this powerful drama -- serve as both an indictment of hatred and a moving study of the perils inherent in living life fully.