Not that long ago (like Wednesday night) in a galaxy just down the road from the Garden of Unearthly Delights (right inside the Ngunyawayiti Theatre), I was lucky enough to bare witness to a cosmic event of peculiar proportions: The End is High-Concept.
A century on, in the year 2121, a small fleet of interstellar nomads face inner confrontations when their ship’s computer decides to update itself, stranding the crew in deep space. To pass the time, the gang of misfits share a series of tall tales that deconstruct our society in creepy, hilarious and, most importantly, highly obscure ways. This tightly written comedy from the team who crafted last years award winning show, Huge News, delivers on the laughs and ground-breaking effects that spin a new light on the endless possibilities of live performances. Brimming with creativity and the necessary talent to execute said creativity, The End is High-Concept can best be described as a show capable of moving between random band riffs to the appearance of CGI lizardmen. Whatever you think could happen seems not to and then what actually happens is, well, high concept!
The End is High-Concept is mainly unique for its pioneering in live animated performance through the show’s use of motion capture technology. Working closely with Adelaide digital artists and 3D animators, the show projects a series of wild and imaginative concepts to its stage, complimenting the actors and their writing in an extraordinary manner. Enabling the show to remain as both adult and child-like at the same time, this animated feature boosts obscurity levels and elevates random occurrences in the show. The actors work well with their technological counterparts, which not only benefits the performances, but also speaks to the central themes of the show as well, regarding human’s turbulent relationship with technology and its various advances.
Between stories of virtual relationships, mad scientists and android comedy, this Black Mirror inspired skit show deals with human beings negating the very nature of being human, in place for gaging more advanced experiences in life. The End is High-Concept, fittingly, showcases the very high-concept of being human in a day and age where organics are nowhere near as sought after as tech-based advancements. The human experience cheapens in favour of computer updates and calculated thought processes and emotions. And, although the show retains the same depth as Black Mirror, it goes louder and grows more bombastic in its representation of the Netflix show’s deepest ideas. Rather than a serious drama, The End is High-Concept dabbles more fittingly in its writer’s comic roots with all the lively and geeky foundations of the cast breathing life into it all.
Particularly, Josh Mensch turns out an incredibly hilarious supporting performance as the ship’s resident robot, inviting the cast and audience to witness tales of the old world and gags of the highly advanced. Kyron Weetra simultaneously brings an A-game comedy performance as the ship’s zany captain, loosely leading his fleet to a possible doom with a more centric concentration on his music career than his actual job. These two, who also happen to be the central writers of the show, lead their team to ultimate satisfaction in terms of a brilliantly constructed and well-rounded showcasing of talent.
So, what are you doing sitting at home, you mere earthling? Get up and go see The End is High-Concept! There is hardly a dull moment in this eccentric exploration of the star systems… or, more specifically, the inside of a malfunctioning ship, its malfunctioning crew and, of course, fully functioning creative vision.