The name of writer-producer Jackie Lewis' latest effort is an umbrella title for a trio of one-acts revolving around three characters and their various inclinations toward mental instability. The characters and their tendencies are clearly meant to be humorous. And, to be fair, there are a few smileworthy moments in the show. But, overall, Lewis' uninspired writing, Georgia Harrell's unimaginative direction, and acting that never rises above merely competent make for a rather long and dreary two hours.
On the Edge of the Chair introduces Dr. Horner (Eddie Pratt), an anxiety-ridden, pill-popping psychiatrist at a depressing county mental health facility. Dr. Horner has a roving eye, which fuels the angst of his live-in girlfriend, a former patient with whom he had an affair and who now calls constantly for reassurance. Attractive twentysomething Samantha (Stacy Renae), who speaks and acts like an out-of-control 8-year-old and who is having trouble with "her inner lime Jell-O sizzling and getting pissed," comes to him for help. As is easily imagined, each feeds the other's neurosis, and predictable not-so-funny business ensues.
Harrell stars in Working for Mr. Big, which concerns Ginny, a meek 40-year-old screenwriter in her second week as an assistant to a hotshot Hollywood director. But Ginny has a split personality, and her alter ego—the wilder, bitchier, self-righteous Bee--gets in the way of her job. But here, at least, we get the alternate meaning for the umbrella title, when Ginny recalls her potty training without a proper potty seat, a situation that constantly left her--yes, indeed—teetering on the edge of the toilet.
In the too-long epilogue, Flirting With Insanity, the girls meet up in the county facility's waiting room and discover they are linked through their connection to Dr. Horner. On a larger scale, though, what links these one-acts is a remarkable level of complacency. And more than anything else, it's that overwhelming sense of acceptable mediocrity that makes Teetering feel as if it were doing just that.