Los Angeles Theater Review: ME LOVE ME (Hollywood Fringe Festival at Open Fist Theatre)

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by Jason Rohrer on June 10, 2013

in Theater-Los Angeles

ME NO LIKE

Jason Rohrer's Stage and Cinema review of "Me Love Me" Hollywood FringeBrandon Baruch’s new play answers the question, What if a tedious dipshit got cloned?  Failed actor and drunken doofus Tuck (Benjamin Durham) sponges off his girlfriend Gemma (Lizzie Adelman) until the result of a forgotten sperm donation, also named Tuck (Sto Strauss), knocks at their door.  Afterward, the doofus mooches off both his girlfriend and his clone, then goes to rehab, then learns a lesson.  Or something.  A play that spends over a half hour describing familiar territory with unfunny dialogue (“You just sit around with your Playstation!” “It’s an X-Box!”) is not to be forgiven for taking the next hour to wander from unenlightening episode (unreliable guy remains unreliable) to unenlightening episode (long-suffering girlfriend continues to suffer).

Jason Rohrer's Stage and Cinema review of "Me Love Me" Hollywood FringeThe introduction of the third character adds little to the story, and contradicts the obvious thematic purpose of a clone, since the second Tuck is not much like the first.  There’s a brief interlude of a promising idea, when the doofus seduces his own clone; but no capital is invested, and no return drawn.  Mr. Baruch has written the clone as a naïf, easily taken advantage of and not very smart; Mr. Strauss plays him big, with intelligence and comic timing, which is more than Mr. Durham is able to drag from a big part with small reward.  Upstaged by her bangs, and similarly timing-challenged, Ms. Adelman plays Gemma as a cutesy nasal cartoon version of humanity, which works on a plane with Mr. Strauss’s characterization but not with Mr. Durham’s naturalism.  Marc Warzecha’s direction abets this actors-in-different-plays, play-that-goes-nowhere pointlessness.

Jason Rohrer's Stage and Cinema review of "Me Love Me" Hollywood Fringe

 

Me Love Me
part of the Hollywood Fringe Festival
Open Fist Theatre
scheduled to end on June 29, 2013
for tickets, visit Hollywood Fringe

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