Looking back at the 2014 society

The Adelaide Fringe Festival is still going strong. We’re about halfway through so I’m trying to find the shows worth seeing in the last two weeks. Yesterday I decided to opt for something a little different: a comedy walking tour through the city center.

We were welcomed by a penguin with a megaphone and outfitted with high viz vests. From the moment we started, we seemed to be an attraction at the Fringe ourselves. Somehow a group dressed in fluorescent yellow, pink and orange, following a penguin is something you have to look at. The theme of the tour was looking back at 2014. Of course we were all real people from the year 2114 and all the other people on the streets were put there for our benefit; they were all actors.

The tour gave some information about Adelaide and looked back onto our society. I think this is a great concept and there were some hilarious moments. Since the ‘actors’ play a big part, you never know what’s going to happen. At an ATM, our guide was telling about how people used to keep money save in banks. He invented a game: find out which code belongs to the pass people are using. This was then followed by a little wrestling match. We were not to worry though, all the people were actors and just pretending to be angry. While he was explaining all this, a girl was taking money out and totally agreeing with what was said.

The interaction with Adelaide’s ‘actors’ didn’t stop there. There were hugs to be delivered and questions to be asked. When we passed someone, we’d ask what they were acting as. If they failed to answer we would yell ‘You’re fired!’, with a good answer we’d give a loud applause. We also stopped in front of a bar and started clapping for the people having beer. The thought of everyone else being actors was a great addition to the tour and created a good atmosphere and lots of laughter.

Overall I didn’t share the comedian’s humor, which was a bit of a shame. To me the rehearsed parts were much less funny than the parts that couldn’t have been rehearsed. I loved the whole idea of us being in 2114 and there were some good comments about our current society, some superficial like talking about phone provider Optus, some somewhat deeper like talking about politician Tony Abbott. For example, in 2114 kids would be scared that they had an Abbott underneath their bed. This bit came at the end of the tour, where our penguin explained what we went through from 2014 to 2114. This gave a good, humorous closure to the tour. This tour showed that comedy can be integrated into many concepts and it was very refreshing to see this.

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