Huddled around a fire, the apocalypse still fresh in their memories, a small band of survivors amuse themselves by acting out an episode of The Simpsons. Seven years later, the band are a travelling troupe, performing the episode for each outpost they pass through. A generation later, the episode has achieved almost mythical status, the story — a spoof of Cape Fear — a beacon, an example and a comfort to the people who have fashioned humanity's rubble into a primitive society.
Back in the day, it was said that Dostoyevsky's The Brothers Karamazov contained the sum of all human experience. Come the 21st century, Matt Groening's pop culture behemoth is the proud usurper of that throne. Anne Washburn's play advances this argument one step further — elevating the show above the role of mass entertainer to that of a vital common language for humanity's devastated survivors.
So, there's all that. But, to be honest, it also just sounds really freaking enjoyable.
Premiering in Sydney back in early 2017, the play is now heading to fortyfivedownstairs to be performed by independent Melbourne theatre company Lightning Jar.
Preview shows (for $30 a ticket) will be help from February 15–17 with the opening night ($40) on Wednesday, February 20.