Once again my 12 year old son Tommy is blogging his Top 10 list. Tommy “only” saw 15 shows this year because we had family commitments. This is his 10th year of fringing (although he doesn’t remember much from the year 2000).
Hello! This is Tommy writing, and I’m about to give you my 2010 Fringe Top Ten! Here it is!
10. Princess Jessica and the Kingdom of Boogers
This play, about an ordinary boy named Squats who goes on an adventure to save Princess Jessica of Tissuetopia from the evil Emperor Snotso, ruler of the Kingdom of Boogers, was a very good, funny show. It has a unique sense of humor, but there weren’t as many jokes as I thought there would be.
9. Paul Bunyan: An Unlikely Beginning to a Tall Tale
What if Paul Bunyan was a computer programmer in 1986? This show answers that question with well made puppets, workplace jokes, and a morning routine done over and over again throughout the course of the show. I have no criticism for this show, it’s just that there are so many good shows this year at the Fringe that I couldn’t give this a higher spot.
Who knew that there was such a thing as smart poop jokes? This show, about a dinosaur who switches to eating veggies after eating just about everyone in the world (with VERY stinky results), is best seen with an audience filled with children and has Muppet-style puppets to tell the story with.
Benny the Illusion is a fine magician with well-done magic tricks, a good sense of humor, and a warm friendliness. This guy is very comfortable with performing his tricks in front of an audience. If you’re looking for some magic, and only magic, then this is the show to go to.
6. Untold Lies
Now let me get this out of the way: this is more dramatic and adult than some of the other shows on this list, so if you do bring your kid to this show, he might be bored. But I like to watch this type of stuff from time to time, and let me tell you this: this is worth your time. With excellent singers and a good story, this is a show that you’ll like from beginning to end.
Remember that Silent Poetry show and it’s sequel that I talked about in previous Fringe Top Tens? Well, you may as well call this Silent Poetry 3 because for one thing, it’s done by the same people and it’s done in the same style as those other two shows. The best skits are TGIF and the titular skit. My only criticism for this show is that the ToonCon skit lasted longer than it should have.
4. Story Time Time Bomb
This is a show about two people named Chris and Tim, who write books for children. Tim decides to use a theater so that the audience can create a book. He hires actors to act out the story being created. The audience creates the story, and most of the time the kids tell their the ideas for the story, which are then used. All of the people in the cast are excellent improvisers. Children will like this show because they’ll use their imagination often. So, go see this show and make sure that you bring the kids.
3. Open and Affirming Fairy Tales
This show tells four stories which all have the same message: just be you. The stories are all well told and have a lot of funny moments spread through them. My favorite is The Frog Princess. The show has lots of funny gags that will keep you laughing. Some of the adults in the show played the kid characters, and they acted like kids without making fun of them. Overall, you should see this show.
2. Kill Will
All right then, let me get this out of the way: THIS SHOW IS NOT FOR KIDS. IT IS MORE SUITED FOR TEENAGERS. Now, onto the actual thoughts on the show: This was downright excellent. I picked this show because I like Shakespeare. The couple that did this show were excellent. Basically, they do all of the death scenes from as many Shakespeare shows as they could possibly fit in the running time. Some of the scenes contain audience participation, and they are masters of it. I was able to participate in one of the bits, and it was fun to do. On top of that, you get a free T-shirt if you do participate. Overall, this is a downright must-see.
1.Can Michael Come Out and Play?
This show is awesome, and has joined the ranks of excellent Fringe shows from previous years. It is a tale of self-realization, with enough humor and charm to keep you interested. I love a good story myself, and the guy who does it is an excellent storyteller. If you can only see one show in the Fringe this year, it should be this one.
Honorable Mentions and Worst Shows
The First Five Minutes Are Slow: A very fun, imaginative show. It gets better the more I think about it.
If the Shoe Fits: A fun-to-watch modern version of Cinderella told through dance.
Mismatched: A nice, fine show. Has some very good audience participation moments.
Dracula’s Castle: I wasn’t able to see this show to the very end(I wasn’t feeling well but I recovered quickly), so I’ll just give this an Honorable Mention. What I saw was very good, though.
Status Update: The plot is kind of weird: numerous boarding school students get sucked into Facebook and have to get out before time runs out. The main problem is that a romp through Facebook should be fun, but the show ends up becoming an anti-Facebook statement. Something tells me that whoever directed this hates Facebook.
Garage Band: There are numerous problems with the show. The story never went in the direction I wanted it to go. The music is meh. I wanted to like this show, but I just could not like it at all.