The Backliners

comedy · the backliners · Ages 13+ · United States of America

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Review by anonymous

June 24, 2019 certified reviewer
tagged as: comedy · improv · live music · poetic · humor · troupe · sketch · Improvisation

What I liked

I like the addition of having a band performing to open the show. Sharper’s Florist is a really talented duo in their own right and then it was nice to have them using their talents to accentuate the improv when music was needed. I think it was a good idea for the Backliners to add other acts as well, it made it feel like a televised improv or variety show structure.

It is very clear that this group has worked together for a long time and their comraderie adds to their talent. I love their Instaprov game which uses the audiences Instagram as raw material for comedy. Great, energetic group with a lot of potential!

What I didn't like

I have no problem with blue comedy…so long as it is not a crutch. I feel that this group has a tendency to slip into profanity no matter what character they are playing which ultimately makes all the characters seem like the same person, even if they are supposed to be a different age, gender or social class.

I also feel like some of the sketches resulted in dark sexual humor which alienates what could be a larger audience. I wish that they would be able to explore more environments, character types, conflicts that would be comedic and help them expand without the need to be graphic.

I would suggest that this group also avoid creating scenes where characters die on stage. It kills (no pun intended) any suspense or plot development on stage and also creates a problem because once multiple characters are “dead”, there is no one to left to move the story forward, cut to, or change the scene. It creates a no-way-out scenario for the scene.

Just something to think about, but overall these improvers do an incredible job!

My overall impression

It’s really nice to see an improv troupe performing at Fringe! Would recommend!

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