THE TRUE LIFE ADVENTURES OF BARBIE AND G.I. JOE

comedy · bill ratner · Ages 8+ · family friendly · world premiere · United States

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ANNA MARIE PIERSIMONI certified reviewer · June 24, 2014
I haven't had this much fun with Barbie since the days(Junior High, I believe)that I hot-glued steel wool to her armpits and pelvis-central, then switched her head with Ken's. But these guys are not just playin'around. In an engaging performance as sibling rivals in a family toy merchandising enterprise, Ratner and Wilcox embody the plasticity of these iconic figures in all their male v female glory. In 1993, the Barbie Liberation Organization(BLO)staged a gender-bending voice-box switcheroo upon these innocent toys in department stores, making "Barbie talk tough while GI Joe went shopping." (Firestone, David, NY Times,Dec 12 1993). Just as the BLO punctuates this performance like a Wagnerian chorus, so does this true life theatrical advent... full review

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BARRI SEGAL · June 26, 2014
RUN, don't walk to see this show. Funny, smart, well-directed, and brilliantly acted! Clay Wilcox steals the show with his myriad hilarious characters!! This is 45 minutes of pure joy.... full review

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MARIANA WILLIAMS certified reviewer · June 26, 2014
This show is not what I expected, in that--it's all grown up. I thought it would be light and silly, but the dolls give you something to think about beyond playtime on the floor. The Bill Ratner and Clay Wilcox are all-in commiting to their characters in this true story. Don't miss the drama, comedy and fun the two "brothers" bring to the stage. Congrats to Bill Ratner's skill as a writer, researcher and actor. ... full review

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SEA GLASSMAN certified reviewer · June 27, 2014
Ratner always brings such committment and joy to whatever he's doing. This time it's a personal peek at the weird world of Barbie and G.I. Joe and a couple of brothers whose lives were marked by the tall, beautiful dolls. An exploration of the human psyche as played out in projections on to its doll counterparts. A fictitious brother scenario is the back drop for some really cool facts about the history of the dolls, the advertising market and how these two formed the blooming sexualities of generations.... full review

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BRIGHT EYES PRODUCTIONS · June 28, 2014
Pretty dull, esoteric stuff. Dolls....if you have a thing about them, give this one a try. Else....totally lacking in wit and characterization. ... full review

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BRAD SCHREIBER · June 28, 2014
My brilliant pal Bill Ratner has a wonderfully outrageous play in the Fringe and I just saw it tonight and it rocks! Everything you ever wanted to know about G.I. Joe, Barbie and their relationship to psychoanalysis. Go melt your mind and laugh it up. ONE MORE NIGHT.... full review

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SHEILA MCCOY certified reviewer · June 28, 2014
Marvelously creative. Anchored in the story of two brothers (and family) we see what dolls mean to us when we are young and we age. But not any dolls, examples of what we would like to be: beautiful, carefree, sexy girls and brave,honorable men. But there is another layer: how did marketing set the stage. The way Bill Ratner tells the story, it vibrates the day after and probably for quite awhile, It is unreal but still real. ... full review

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MARC CASHMAN certified reviewer · June 29, 2014
This was a fun, thought-provoking show that was nuanced, silly and poignant. Thoroughly enjoyable, with a passionate cast.... full review

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LESLIE ACOCA · June 21, 2014
tagged as: Barbie &Joe
I loved this show! As a former Yale drama person-that says a lot. I was shocked to learn about the history of Barbie-German, um-toy, and GI Joe and thought it was a hip way to talk about the recent history of America and the primal and somewhat twisted- imagery of girls and boys as expressed through toys. I'de love for the incarcerated girls 11-17 I work with to learn more about the genesis of unrealistic body images for girls! Was glad the show wasn't too PC I also loved the voices and the fact that the theatre was accessible and small. All around a fabulous experience. I want more from Bill Rattner Maximum regards, Leslie Acoca... full review

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PANCHALI CORWIN · July 09, 2014
Bill Ratner (G.I. Joe) and his co-star (Barbie) were amazing and comical to the fullest degree. Bill captures your attention with his projectoral voice and the props, background, and storyline was perfect. I would have never thought a story anbout Barbie and G.I Joe would be so captivating. I didn't want it to end and it left me wanting to hear more about these men, their lives, and more experiences. I really enjoyed the differences and similarities between the two (gets you thinking). I hope to attend another show like this in the future at the Fringe.... full review

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