An Inspector Calls

Did anyone read An Inspector Calls when they were in school? I remember that play being one of my favourites in English, and we would have to read a page at a time in class but I skipped ahead because it was so intriguing.

An Inspector Calls is a play by J. B. Priestley which focuses on the upper-class Birling family. They are visited one evening by an Inspector Goole who is investigating the suicide of a young working-class woman, Eva Smith. I remember the twists and turns in the play that kept me gripped throughout and the ending had me shouting, “WHAT THE EFF?” 

Mutay and I went to see An Inspector Calls at Playhouse Theatre last March and it was AMAZING. 

I found out that this adaptation of An Inspector Calls is by Stephen Daldry who recently directed Netflix’s The Crown, which is fantastic, and that the production marks 25 years since it first opened at the National Theatre. 

We don’t live alone. We are members of one body. We are responsible for each other.

I really enjoyed the actors’ performances especially Liam Brennan as Inspector Goole; he was unapologetically abrasive, projected barely suppressed rage, and was baffled by the Birling’s complacency. He had complete control of the play’s narrative, something which I noticed about the character when reading the play, and it was great to see that develop in front of my eyes. 

Every actor, however, seemed to fit their role perfectly. From Mr Birling’s pompous attitude because he may be getting a knighthood, Sheila’s childishness because Eva Smith happened to look better in a dress that she wanted, Eric’s drunkenness that is seemingly ignored until it all comes to a head and right down to Mrs Birling’s putting on airs and graces because she is the head of a women’s charity. Yet when a woman is in dire need of help, she rejects her.

I feel like this play is very relevant, especially now in today’s climate, and it can’t be a coincidence that this play opened soon after Donald Trump was elected as president. Despite being set in 1912, actually written in 1944, this play is timeless and can be interpreted as an attempt to align its morals and lessons to the politically turbulent ground we’ve currently been having.

Priestley’s play is a direct plea for all of us to remember that we should work together, not against each other.


  • Kya

    That is really great that you were able to see the play and enjoyed it so much. It certainly sounds like a very interesting story!

  • Claudine

    I’ve never seen nor read this play before, but it sounds really interesting and I’m going to read it this long weekend! πŸ™‚ It’s great when you see something you’ve read being performed right before your eyes, and I’m glad you liked the actors who portrayed the characters! πŸ˜€

  • Nancy

    I haven’t read An Inspector Calls but I can imagine how excited you were being able to watch a play on one of your fave scripts. (I was going to say play but that sounded a bit redundant but you know what I mean? :p). Glad that the play was well executed! When the right director is brought on board, a lot of neat magic happens. Maybe the play opened to remind us to be good people.

    I agree that all of us should work together. That’s the only way we will have a better future :).

    • Chynna

      I was so excited, Nance! Haha. I was literally on the edge of my seat (partly because we had limited views, haha) and it kept me enraptured.

  • Gillan

    Ahh, it seems amazing! I wish I could see it, but for now I’ll read it as I didn’t encounter it in high school (which is a bummer because I love plays.) I’m glad you enjoyed watching it and that the adaptation did the script justice!
    Now, I’m really interested when you mentioned that it opened not long after Trump was elected. Our country’s current president is a lot like him and I don’t like him very much so I’ll definitely read this!

    • Chynna

      Let me know what you think if you decide to read it!
      Hmmohmygod, I have been reading A LOT about Duterte and am I still shocked with the amount of shit he is doing/saying!

  • Amy

    We never read An Inspector Calls at school. I think we did Of Mice and Men instead which I hated, which is annoying as And Insoector Calls sounds really good.

    I love plays. I always feel like there’s something much more special about going to the theatre to watch something, instead of watching it on a screen. It’s so much more immersive and emotional and I love a good performance. I always wanted to be a stage actor when I was younger too!

    Glad you enjoyed the play!

    • Chynna

      I think you’d love An inspector Calls! I haven’t read a lot of plays, but this one definitely grabbed my attention. I haven’t read Of Mice and Men, but it’s been on my list for the longest time. We did Lord of the Flies instead, which omg. I didn’t like that book at first, but it’s grown on me because of the commentary on what a society could be like.

  • Sydney

    I don’t ever remember having to read this play in school! Though to be honest, we pretty much only ever read plays by Shakespeare until I hit college, and even then we read a LOT of Shakespeare, ha. I’m glad you got to see the play, and it sounds like such an interesting experience!

    • Chynna

      Ahaha, same! We read Shakespeare as well. It got really tedious after a while – thank god for Sparknotes, otherwise I would never know what he’s on about. πŸ˜›

  • Cat

    I’ve actually never read An Inspector Calls, but it sounds really interesting. I love pieces that have timeless messages that can still be relevant now. Sounds like it was a great play!

  • Pauline

    I never read Inspector Calls at school, my class opted in for Lord of The Flies. I remember Hamdah talking about it to me during the time though, I think she did it at school for English. My sister read it too and watched a film(?) on it. Glad to hear you had a great time at the play, I haven’t been to see a live performance in such a long time omg. You’re making me search up live performances in Sheffield now! πŸ˜›

    • Chynna

      I read Lord of the Flies, as well! I remember watching the film, and it was in black and white and ugh. Not great. The play was much better! I wish I had got to see it in the theatres when I was studying it. You should go to one! My next one is in May πŸ˜€

  • Georgie

    I haven’t read or even heard of An Inspector Calls! We were made to read so many books during school, though.

    Reading a page at a time sounds boring as hell. πŸ˜„ I was one of those kids in class who would usually just read ahead. I enjoyed reading, and I tended to enjoy most books. Most people hate studying texts in school and end up hating the book, but I didn’t mind it at all. An Inspector Calls just reminds me of the murder podcast I’ve been listening to because it just sounded a bit dark πŸ˜‚

    I am glad you got to see the play and were impressed – nothing quite like bringing a book you’ve read to life.

    • Chynna

      Yeah, same! We had SO many books to read, I lost track at one point. Haha.

      I was one of those kids who hated studying texts and it didn’t help that my English teacher was sh*t. He actually made me despise English Lit and that was my favourite subject. It’s cool – I found my love for it again eventually.

  • Tara

    I don’t know this play at all, but when I saw “Inspector Goole”, I saw that as “Inspector Google” XD;; It’s good you and Mutay went and saw this play in person. Even better that the actors all fit with their character. Also, you bring up a good point about how certain themes/topics in creative works are timeless. This play is old, but it clearly fits with that’s happening in our world today. Some things transcend time, and it’s clear that this play is one of them.

    I am not a big play person, but I do love The History Boys! Have you read/seen that? I highly recommend the film it was based on πŸ˜€

    • Chynna

      AHAHAAAHA “Inspector Google” I love it. I don’t go to the theatre much but I’m finding myself wanting to go to more and more plays! I’m actually going to see one in May πŸ˜€

      You’ve mentioned to me, but I haven’t gotten round to reading it/watching it yet! I’ll let you know when I do, though πŸ˜€

  • Sophia

    That is creepy that it began showing at Trump time. A lesson to be learned! I was always a kid in class that read the whole book while the teacher was focusing on one point, then I’d be sat bored the rest of the year. I just couldn’t handle the suspense!

    Sophia xx

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: