The mAsHeR

loud karma productions · Ages 16+ · United States of America

world premiere
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Review by ERIK BLAIR

June 09, 2019 certified reviewer

What I liked

I think the general premise of the show is interesting. How does one deal with a job where the reality is far different, and much darker, than one expected it to be? There is definitely a good story to be told here and the production makes an attempt to reach for it that does succeed in some places.

The actors were all performing quite well within their roles. Cindy Lopez was quite believable as the older widowed woman whose trying to come to modern terms in an unconsciously bigoted way. Morgan Aiken generated perfect responses to the weirdness happening within the world and Allana Matheis gave us a realized, nuanced version of the abused woman.

What I didn't like

Honestly, for me there were just too many ideas going on at once for the narrative to fully gel into coherence:

There were indications of this being a slightly dystopian version of the world—but there wasn’t enough to make it clear how, exactly, it was different.

There were aspects that made this seem like a treatise on toxic masculinity—but it never fully followed through it and made the male characters fairly one-note, which undercut the argument.

There seemed to be a tone of satire in the actual job itself—but then that got swallowed up by the story and the nature of the characters.

And finally, the sheer coincidence that all three women were connected to abused women felt forced and only-for-plot-reasons. So if the intention was to point out how many women are in such a situation, that came across as forced instead.

As I said, there is a good show in here somewhere. But I think this particular version isn’t quite there yet. It currently feels like it’s trying to do too much at one time, so perhaps it needs to be re-focused into being the tale it truly wants to tell.

My overall impression

This show does feel to me to be a masher, but of ideas and intentions more than what I believe was the production’s goal.

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