Writer: Kenny Boyle
Reviewer: Fraser MacDonald
It’s the not so familiar story of the kid who always wants to be a superhero, but lacks the one thing… super powers. Kenny Boyle’s Hero Worship, more a monologue than a play per se, is a heartfelt piece that leaves its audience genuinely uplifted by the experience; packing as much a tickle as it does a punch.
Anachronism seems ordinary; a supermarket worker who lives for his comics. An incident changes his perspective, and Hero Worship takes us on a journey, at times somewhat disjointed, through Anachronism’s mind. Filled with pop culture references, everyone is bound to find something they can relate to. Despite being part of Glasgow Comic Con 2015, the piece is as easily digestible by those who can’t separate Superman from Batman. The humour is genuine and through Boyle’s character, is well directed at the audience. The piece works in its intimate environment to engage the audience, which all adds to the fun of the event. However, there are sharp turns of genuinely emotive memories which stun the audience into silence. These can be, at times, overplayed by Boyle and there are times when he second guesses the intelligence of his audience to tug at their heart strings, which make some parts of the piece rather clunky. Saying this, in the majority the pace is on point, allowing for joyful and painful memories to merge.
The script is near effortlessly delivered by Boyle; the beginning of the piece seeming ad libbed, but the later scenes show this natural flow is all part of the character.
Technically, the piece lacks ambition; without any set or lighting changes, it relies wholly on Boyle’s deliver. Although this is steady throughout, it cannot be helped to think that some more technical production could raise the standard of the piece, but it cannot be said the piece suffers without it.
Overall, Hero Worship is a well written, well performed piece of theatre that fits well into the Comic Con playbill. The piece could definitely be destined for some success at the Edinburgh Fringe – this is certainly a one man show worth keeping an eye out for.
Reviewed on 1 July