Tattered Capes is action packed drama, within the super hero genre that delivers fast paced action and engaging storytelling in an unexpected way.
Written by Gregory Crafts
Directed by Corey Lynn Howe
Produced by Theatre Unleashed
studio/stage 520 N. Western Ave. Los Angeles, CA 90004
Tickets and information at https://www.hollywoodfringe.org/projects/6076 or at www.theatreunleashed.org
Our story begins in the sprawling metropolis of Metro City, our protagonist Keven Connoly (Travis Joe Dixon) better known by his heroic moniker M-Pulse who received his abilities after being struck by a rogue bolt of lightning and gifted mastery over electromagnetism. He now devotes his life to combating crime and ensuring the safety of the citizens of Metro City.
Kevin has it all, he couldn't ask for a better life. But things suddenly take an unexpected turn when he is attacked while out celebrating his fifth wedding anniversary with his wife Stephanie (Joanna Mercedes). After this unforeseen event the heroes are forced to unveil their secret identities triggering a series of events that change the relationship of Kevin and Stephanie forever.
Like any good comic book story, M-Pulse isn't the only defender of Metro City. Tattered Capes possesses a strong cast of colorful characters, by the end of the show everyone will the have the opportunity to have found their favorite hero. It even has its own equivalent to the Avengers or the Justice League, a group of Earth's mightiest heroes if you will. The team consists of its leader the mighty and wise Maximus (Tanner Risner) who is faster than a speeding bullet, stronger than a locomotive, you get the idea. The Owl (Courtney King) a super genius who excels in martial arts, has a didactic memory and a tool in their belt for every occasion. Jonathan Strong (Chris Clabaugh) is the speediest man on the planet, he is faster than you, and he knows it. Finally Lady Vodoo, (Ann Hurd) master of all things arcane, she possesses magical prowess over reality itself.
From a writing standpoint, this is one of Crafts strongest works to date, there is a tremendous to unpack in its detail filled script with plenty of foreshadowing for its climatic ending, but at no point do you ever feel lost or confused about the story. I applaud the precise direction of Cory Lynn Howe who smartly leads the many intricate moving parts of this shows dynamic production.
One of the most satisfying aspects of this show is the remarkably fluid choreography directed by Soda Persi. I have never seen a show that used its extras, or "shadows" in this case, in such a way that complimented every movement of the show.
Design wise I enjoyed the shadow puppetry effects and would be remiss to not compliment the stellar costumes design by Denise Barrett who helps heroes leap off the comic book pages and onto the stage before us.
Overall Theatre Unleashed has produced another winner. This show succeeds on every level; it absolutely merits your time and attention. It is much more than the flashy effects and cool costumes, more than the fantastic fight scenes and entertaining characters. Crafts has written characters that despite possessing super abilities are relatable. At its heart, this show is a drama about relationships; it is a story that explores hard truths about marriage, relationships, and trust.
They have sold out their entire run, but I have a feeling this is the not last you will see of M-Pulse the Eminence of Electromagnetism.
Hollywood Fringe 2019
Mike is checking out the following shows.