Adventure, Backwards Anorak, Chronicles of Narnia, Doctor Who, Game of Thrones, George R R Martin, Harry Potter, J R R Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, Melbourne, Melbourne International Comedy Festival, MICF, The Hobbit, Trades Hall, Winter is Coming
Show three of my MICF for 2014 was ‘Winter is Coming‘ performed by Backwards Anorak. As you may be able to tell, the show was a Game of Thrones parody. The first thing I should probably mention is that I’m not a Game of Thrones fan – I’ve never attempted to read the books, and I’ve chosen not to watch the HBO show because the one or two episodes I’ve seen were far to cruel and bleak for me; everyone seemed to hate everyone else and humanity I just didn’t feel nice inside afterwards. I’m sure that it’s a well crafted stroy and all of that, but I’m just not particularly knowledgeable. There I said it!
I am however a bit of a massive nerd about various other fantasy texts, and the references to J.R.R. Tolkien’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ series and ‘The Hobbit’ found me well, I also enjoyed the ‘Doctor Who’ bits, and the ‘Chronicles of Narnia’ stuff too. Oh, I nearly forgot that Hogwarts is also in Westeros, apparently! I was actually able to get most of the GoT references because of my *cough* slight problem with Tumblr, and the fact that I don’t live under a rock.
Content aside then, how did I rate the performance? My biggest complaint was that the venue did not suit the show. We were in the Music Room at the Trades Hall, which would be fine for a stand-up comic where what they were doing was not so important because it was very difficult to see the performers over the heads of the crowd, and I was only in the middle! It was a smallish room, it probably held 100 people, and most of the seats were taken, so that’s good. It did mean that it was incredibly hot in there though so that wasn’t my favourite thing either.
There were five performers, Michelle Brasier, Vince Milesi, James Baker, Laura Frew & Leo Miles, all of whom appeared to have spent a goodly amount of time in acting classes with improv bases, which at times was great, but at other times made the show feel like they didn’t know what they were doing. I’m sure that the whole thing was meticulously scripted, but as my friend commented as we left, it was a bit like we just saw an acting workshop, not a show – therein lies the danger of acting like you’re not acting so well.
Anyway, if you enjoy loving parodies by nerds, improv theatre, dragons, incent, ambiguous sexuality, beards or singing (which was very good, or Eurovision, which gets a mention too) then I would say this show was a solid choice.
Here’s the trailer: