Friday, January 27, 2017

Review of The New Colony's Psychonaut Librarians

Once upon a time I went to a show and it was called Psychonaut Librarians. It was by Sean Kelly and it was directed by Krissy Vanderwarker. It was about a group of librarians: Hester (David Cerda), Rosemary (Morgan McNaught), Emmerick (Michael Peters), and their security guard PJ (Carlos Olmedo). One of them, Hester, had a daughter Jane (Christine Mayland Perkins). And they all went on a drug-fueled adventure through the anyverse where there were moon bears, anthropomorphic balls of fire, and anything was possible. Jane falls in love with her childhood imaginary friend Dewey (Matt Farabee) in the anyverse. There is a guy named Sandman (Jack McCabe) who sucks the life and the belief and probably the drugs out of anyone who crosses his path. I thought this was a really fun show. It was funny and very trippy, or at least what a kid thinks is trippy!

The entire play looked very modern. There were not a lot of details to the set (by Yeaji Kim). It was basically white and smooth. It suggested a library because it had bookshelves everywhere and a single reading lamp. I liked it. The psychonaut costumes were hilarious because they looked like they were made of things that had been lying around the library, like stools from the children's section on top of their heads, which I thought was pretty funny. I really loved the moon bear costume; it was just hilarious. I though that the puppets (by Breanne Ward and Evan Troost) were really awesome, sometimes funny and sometimes scary but all-around cool. They had this scene where the psychonaut librarians had to get through a very small space and they only had to believe to get to the other side. They would turn very small like in Antman, and they used very tiny finger puppets of themselves and made their voices very small to go through. There were also these scary fireball guys that would float around and were basically like the sandman's minions.

I thought this was a very funny show. Rosemary had a strange obsession with bears. Not just any bears, but moon bears. She wanted to be a moon bear and she would always to attack like one. And at the end when the moon bear tried to rescue them, everyone was so happy to see moon bear. It was so hilarious because they had talked about moon bears so much throughout the course of the show. A sign of great writing is when you take something you addressed earlier and address it again for dramatic or comedic purposes, and moon bear was an example of that. PJ was hilarious because he was such a lovable and adorable character. He always wanted to help and then, even though he wasn't the best at his job, he was so confident about it. That was so hilarious and I loved it. He kept saying something along the lines of, "There's something fishy going on around here," like he was trying to make a catch phrase for himself, which was so funny. Emmerick was the pessimist of the group. He always seemed to have to have some kind of problem with somebody else in the group, but at the same time he was also kind of a mentor. He's funny because of the level of nerd that he is at. He is past everyone on the level of nerd.

I feel like this was altogether a very fun and interesting show. However, there were a few things I wish were more developed, like the relationships. I thought the mother and daughter relationship could have been very heartbreaking, but it didn't end up being that way because there wasn't a lot of actual emotion in the relationship. The love relationship was shown between Jane and Dewey through a lot of modern dance and repeating language. I thought that it was kind of lovey-dovey and not as interesting as it could have been. That way of portraying a love sequence did not work very well for me. I wish there had been actual real conversations between them because I really like both those actors. I also really wish we had gotten to know the villain better, so that he wasn't just a guy who took souls. I wanted to understand what his motives were.

People who would like this show are people who like anthropomorphic fireballs, hilarious psychedelic librarians, and moon bears. I thought this was a really fun and funny show. I really liked it and I don't think I'll ever see another show like it! But if you are writing a show about a moon bear, e-mail me!

Photos: Evan Hanover

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