Sisters Grimm presents Lilith: The Jungle Girl at the Traverse this Fringe. From the description of the show one could be forgiven for expecting a slightly more serious look at the ways one thought a wild human could be rehabilitated in the 1800’s but instead the audience is treated to a satirical comedy that claims to ‘take you deep into a thorny political jungle.’
I felt Lilith was confused about itself – the humour was sometimes slapstick, sometimes crude and, always, gratifying. The audience was not trusted to be clever enough to find something funny – there was always a sly wink to the audience to cue laughter or some exaggerated sliding around in slime to further garner laughs. I found this a little frustrating as sometimes I want to decide for myself what is funny instead of being force fed jokes continuously in an attempt to cover up what is a very bizarre storyline.
Loosely based on the story of Pygmalion, two doctors attempt to reintroduce Lilith (labeled a girl despite very clearly being a naked man covered in slimy paint – an example of one of the first ‘jokes’) to Dutch society and teach her the ways of the wise. The story then starts the slippery slope downhill following Lilith and the two doctors (one male and one female) culminating in a fight for the male doctor’s attention. There were numerous sexist jokes and the token ignoring of the female doctor’s expertise which just felt forced and thrown in especially considering both actors playing the doctors were female. The jokes felt unnecessary, some may say they were attempts at social critique which they may well have been, but they fell flat and failed.
Lilith: The Jungle Girl is very clearly a specific type of humour and the majority of the audience enjoyed it and were in hysterics but unfortunately I found the plot, the jokes and the acting lacking.