"Wherever wrongs need righting;
Wherever darkness needs lighting;
Wherever evil needs fighting!"
I may not have quoted him verbatim, but this is the kind of campy dialogue that comes out of the mouth of The Titan - a hero who battles evildoers such as mad scientist Doctor Fiendish and lethal kickboxer the High Heel in a universe populated by superheroes and super villains.
With his nefarious invention, Dr. Fiendish transports The Titan to a new dimension (ours), where doctors interpret Titan's insistence that he once possessed super strength and the ability to fly as delusions and work to cure him of his neurosis.
This is the setup for the delightful "When You Awake, You Will Remember Everything." I caught the first preview performance Friday evening at the intimate Edge Theatre in Chicago's Lakeview neighborhood.
"Awake" is the brainchild of playwright Gregory Peters and director Jack Dugan Carpenter. The local theatre troupe The Plagiarists produced the show.
Bryan Breau devoted himself exclusively to the role of The Titan, but all others in the cast portrayed multiple characters - sometimes different incarnations of themselves in the two universes. Each expertly delivered their cheesy and fun dialogue to the audience's delight.
I loved the characters' superpowers: Split Second can always see both sides of any issue, which tends to paralyze him into inaction; the High Heel's arsenal consists of lethal kicks so creative that she names each one/ and The Spiritual Advisor gives sage advice but can never act on it.
Despite this being the first preview performance of the play, the acting and production were tight. The show filled the space perfectly - an impressive accomplishment, given the low-budget set design.
The cheap sets and the campy dialogue added to the experience, making it feel like a B-Movie matinee. And the complex story added a layer that made the evening even more memorable.