Fringe 2011 Review: My Monster
If you have a deep love of of the cinematic art-form, you may feel compelled to write your own screenplay, stocked with your deepest personal insights. On the other hand, you may actually loathe the cinematic art form, and simply want to make a buck in the movie business (you’d be in the majority in L.A.). In that case, Philip Nolen – world-semi-famous writer of “Alphonse and Tim Take a Laxative” among other hits – feels envious of you. Yes, you! Because you get to learn his secrets in his brilliant lecture on building a sure-fire leading leading character for your next Michael Bay blockbuster.
Just combine an admirable occupation (screenwriter, duh) with a dark secret (homicidal assassin), stir in a bad back and code of honor, and crown with a kick-ass name. Poof: you’ve created what American audiences crave – a hero (in the form of Will Hagaman) who punches things to death, but then feels conflicted about it afterward. But what happens when your perfect puppet rebels and refuses to follow the script, turning the tables on his creator?
ClockWork Hobo’s production My Monster is the fully-staged debut of a crackling comedy developed over several years by Bill Corbett (of MST3K and RiffTrax fame) and Joseph Scrimshaw. Director Meghan Moroney makes full use of the minimalist facilities, maintaining visual variety and velocity with little more than a curtain and lectern. I wish I could quote more of Corbett and Scrimshaw’s hilariously hyperbolic dialogue, all of which the Nolen and Hagaman deliver with pitch-perfect precision. But suffice to say that this show had me in stitches, and is certain to “punch you in the testicles of your mind” and your funnybone.