Invader? I Hardly Know Her!
Invader? Go see her. A Sci-fi musical comedy at Alchemist.
Imagine a typical wedding day: Bride. Groom. Flowers. Friends. Exhilarating happiness. Aliens and spaceships.
Okay, maybe some wedding days are not so typical. At least that’s the case for groom-to-be Jack Warner. On his wedding day it’s revealed that his fiancée, Jennifer Ghebrox, is actually an alien. In a musical number, she explains to Jack that Ghebrox is not her last name but actually her species. Suddenly, they are whisked away from Earth on a spaceship with other Ghebroxians and a quartet of female government agents to investigate a fifth dimensional anomaly that threatens our dimensional existence.
Once the play moves to outer space, things get weird. For everyone.
Adapted from a short film submitted to Milwaukee’s 2008 48-Hour Film Festival, Invader? I Hardly Know Her is the creative brain child of Jason Powell. It is – as simply put as possible –a sci-fi parody musical comedy love-story to the ridiculous degree.
Powell, as director, guides the cast adequately, albeit slow-paced at times. The convoluted storyline is actually a bit hard to follow, but certainly not unexpected given the concept of the piece. The quartet of alien women, each one dressed more provocatively than the other, are a superb addition. The characters search for a dimensional rip in space, which leads to a surprising, satisfying and appropriately frightening denouement. Subplots like the bride’s lesbian past and a bridesmaid’s attraction to Jack distract from the storyline rather than adding to it.
The music is where Powell’s talent and the whole show shines. Songs are fun, funny and offer elicit pleasurable chills. Toe-tapping, catchy songs you might find yourself humming later include “Intergalactic Spy,” “The Other Shoe,” “A Tiny Fabrication” and “I Hardly Know Her.” I could have done without “Victory,” a number sung by the Ghebroxian drones.
At the moment, Invader? is Milwaukee’s own Little Shop of Horrors, bristling with snappy comedic dialogue, clever lyrical twists of the music, self-referencing humor and absurd plot points that all make for a fun puerile theatrical experience. It’s theatre you don’t have to think about but merely enjoy, letting waves of comedy wash over you. If every scene doesn’t evoke at least one laugh, you’re either gagged or dead.
Invader? I Hardly Know Her continues at Alchemist Theatre through September 26. For information and to purchase tickets visit www.alchemisttheatre.com or call 414-426-4169.