What: Thrones! The Musical Parody
When: Until 18 Mar 2018
Where: Umbrella Revolution, The Garden of Unearthly Delights
Who: Baby Wants Candy
How much: $30-35 (see website)
Even if you live under a rock, you’re sure to be at least vaguely familiar with pop culture phenomenon that is Game of Thrones. Some often wonder how a series packed with graphic violence, sex, incest, torture, and other taboos has become such a cultural juggernaut. For many, however, the show inspires a quasi-religious devotion. Important life events are missed for the premiere of a new episode, theories about the next season are hotly debated, and God help you if you post spoilers. Thrones! The Musical Parody hilariously lampoons just about everything related to Game of Thrones, including the fans, the author, the TV show’s role in our lives, and those obnoxious people who actually read the books…
Thrones! The Musical Parody tells the story of five friends who come together to cheer up their recently-divorced friend, Linda, on the night of the new season premiere of Game of Thrones. There’s only one problem: Linda has never seen Game of Thrones. The rest of the group decide they must quickly catch Linda up on the show’s events in time for the premiere. Cue an hour of side-splittingly hilarious musical comedy as seven seasons are abridged into a whirlwind re-enactment.
Be warned: the musical pulls no punches when it comes to the series’ infamous violence, sex, and other graphic content. In fact, Thrones! positively revels in the extreme content. Shocking moments, from incest to mass murder, are exaggerated to ridiculous degrees and turned into hysterical farces. It’s dark and morbid humour that pokes fun at the outrageousness of the show’s plotlines and at the audience who enjoys them. Much like Linda, we can’t help but be surprised that such a shocking show inspires such fanatical adoration, but end up absolutely loving it all the same.
The framing story of the re-enactment introduces genius makeshift costumes and props improvised from household materials. Every time a new character appeared on stage the audience burst into laughter, delighted to recognise their favourites (or least favourites) through the intentionally-terrible wigs and ad-hoc props. The talented cast threw themselves into each character with gusto, perfectly capturing and exaggerating each recognisable quirk and trait.
One of the most infamously violent and upsetting scenes of Game of Thrones, the ‘Red Wedding’, was appropriately a high point of the musical parody. The repulsive Walder Frey and his henchman performed the scene as a profanity-laden trap song, complete with hip-hop choreography and aggressive rap verses. Such a scene could easily have been cringey, but the vocal skill of the actors and their energetic commitment to the song made it hilarious. It’s undoubtedly cathartic for fans of the show to see a traumatic scene re-imagined as something so silly yet fitting.
It’s worth mentioning that the musical is full of spoilers, and many of the jokes will go over your head if you’ve never seen Game of Thrones. However, it’s an absolute must-see for any fan of the series. The best parodies are the ones that say something interesting about the source material, and Thrones! The Musical Parody absolutely delivers thanks to the clever framing story. While making fun of the outrageous aspects of Game of Thrones, it also allows the audience to laugh at itself, and says something thought-provoking about the role of fiction in our lives.
— Tamika Glouftsis