It’s fitting that Lucy Kirkwood’s acerbic look at celebrity and lifestyle magazines returns to the stage in the same year as Asif Kapadia’s fascinating documentary about Amy Winehouse. Winehouse was a literal victim of precisely the kind of celebrity exploitation carried out by NSFW’s fictional publications.

Like those mags, NSFW is provocative and in-yer-face. There is nothing subtle here. Everything looks and sounds sexy, from a middle-aged woman dancing in lingerie to sexual chemistry in the workplace. Stylistically Waking Exploits do an excellent job of sending up the superficialities of this amoral world, but they’re let down by an underdeveloped script. Or, more precisely, what feels like several underdeveloped scripts. The episodic format is interesting, but none of those episodes are explored long enough to fully resonate.

The characters suffer a similar fate. It’s no fault of the actors, who all do a great job, but they’re hamstrung by two-dimensional roles. Richard Corgan stands out as the embarrassed father of a 14-year old lads mag cover girl, the most nuanced character and yet the one with least time on stage. It’s difficult to get behind any of the characters because of that lack of time, resulting in an emotional disconnect.

What is lost in substance is made up in style, and a lot of credit needs to go to Anna Poole and the creative team. The presentation is superb – well-staged and beautifully designed – and, visually, the play certainly gets its message across. Whatever Waking Exploits could do to Photoshop the piece (to borrow a phrase), they did. It’s just unfortunate that the script required that in the first place.