Thursday, August 22, 2013

"Humans Inc" - Edinburgh Fringe 2013

'Futuristic-good-cop-rescues-bad-corporation's-secret-test-subject-while-falling-in-love-and-defeating-OTT-Bond-villain' plot aside, Humans Inc is actually a rather good show.  Stylish, imaginative and with a bit of a swagger. I didn't even mind the elements that sailed perilously close to the dreaded 'Dance & Physical Theatre' section of the Fringe programme...

The seven strong cast deliver a very polished set of performances but there's a bit of a difference in tone that hampers the show as a whole.  Jonathan Stephenson has a genuine stage presence and plays Isaac, our cop-having-a-bad-day with a level of sci-fi gravitas last seen circa Blade Runner, while the rest of the cast camp things up Galaxy Quest style.  Individually, the performances are excellent but the contrasting styles didn't sit well for me.  The exception being Lily Levin's gloriously dead pan take on Isaac's wife which comes closest to matching Stephenson's approach.   I get that 'serious' sci-fi is a hard sell to an audience, but the creativity of the company displayed here suggests that The Alchemist are capable of pulling it off.

A fun bit of fluff to fill a gap in a schedule - and the venue in C-1 is as comfy as you're likely to get at the Fringe this side of 2440.

Humans Inc runs at C Chambers Street at 18:10 until 26 August