Bait and switch, a shrewd programming choice, or a bad plan spinning sorely out of control?
One is left wondering which is the case by this Saskatchewan-based duo’s last-minute show switch, dumping the originally scheduled A History of Hair in favour of this loose-scripted and slack-jawed run at humour.
Whatever the story behind the change, the simple fact of the matter is this: if you’re going to include the word "comedy" in your title, you’d be well advised to get a few laughs from the folks in the seats. These get-rich-quick dreamers — a pair of mountain misfits named B.J. and Vee — don’t.
The underlying premise has to do with their getting turfed from their trailer-park home, the result of B.J. running afoul of town council by assuming that operating a seven-days-a-week garage sale doesn’t amount to starting a business in a residential area. Out of cash and out of time, the pair brainstorms (well, something-storms) to come up with a new plan, eventually settling on a scheme to sell fresh meats and seafood out of their about-to-become-mobile home.
While it clearly isn’t improvised, there doesn’t seem to be much in the way of a developed narrative here, either, and the result is that after the novelty of the yokel accents wears off, there isn’t much left.
And when B.J., during a last-moments exchange in which the venue’s sound tech advises that the show has run about 47 minutes, asks, "Is that enough for a 60-minute show?" the inclination might be to respond that in this case, yes, it surely is.
— Brad Oswald
From the official Fringe program:
(formerly "A History of Hair") written by Alicia Novak & Darren Boquist
Meet Billy Jim and Elvira. They have created their money making machine! A 1976 Chevy Oldsmobile stocked with fresh meats and seafood for sale. They plan to follow the footsteps of McDonalds and Starbucks to franchise North America. But first they must convince investors to front them the money. Good luck! Thet’re gonna need it!
RECOMMENDED: Mature Audience
Venue#7 The Conservatory 211 Bannatyne Ave (Crocus Bldg.)
Under 12 not admitted.