Tuesday, July 24, 2007

The Magic of Mrs. Crowling

Over-the-top and waxing fantastical, Brian Silliman's parody of Pottermania is rough, riotous, and constantly funny. Abe Goldfarb's quick cuts between scenes keep the energy up, and the very different personalities of the deadpan Ramsey (Silliman); his son, the exuberantly dying Kicken (Paul Wyatt); and the doped-up writer, A. R. Crowling (Shelly Smith), are what make this show more than a series of (funny) one-liners from the peanut gallery of wizards (and critics): Dazzelin, Valiaare, and Charcana Charcane (Patrick Shearer, Dennis Hurley, and Ronica V. Reddick). Like the Harry Potter franchise, it's overlong and gets stuck in exposition a few too many times for its own good, but the good intentions and underlying charm make this show a successful send-up and a heartfelt homage to the imagination.

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