MUST’s 2014 O Show, Games of Thrones: Reign of the Mad King hits every mark as it helps transitions students into their first year at Monash, all the while keeping them exceedingly entertained.
Treading far enough from Game of Thrones to hold its own as a creative work this play, directed and written by James O’Donoghue (Noel Carrington’s Last Broadcast) and James McGuire (In the Fires, We Weep), is both subtle and blaring in reference to its source material and its incorporation of the informative elements regarding Monash University’s on-campus life.
The dual protagonists, Daria Stark and Ron Snow, traverse the Kingdom of Monash attempting to overthrow the new ruler, the Mad King Joffrey (Alternatively, Jaffy, who for all his evil does have some pretty sweet dance moves). Their journey leads them from enrolment, to the O Week Carnival where they witness Joffrey’s rise to power, on a side-adventure to the Library to return a book, and even to the My Dot Monash Port(al), where the mystic gypsy Arrrsk Monash answers all of their questions (after one business days). Freddard Stark even comes back from the dead after having his head re-attached at the Monash Health Services Clinic.
Balance is struck between entertaining the audience and enlightening them on Monash’s services and amenities, personified by the O Show’s musical numbers. “There’s More to Monash” and “My Dot Monash Port” gave a berth of information, whilst the wittily constructed lament by an unfortunately named character, “My Name is Micropenis, But I’m Not A Microman” is pure entertainment.
The cast of Reign of the Mad King is spectacular, playing their characters showily, but in a way that humorous and diverse, as well as often deep and developed. The costumes are beautifully designed to suit the period, and the set is impressive for such a small-scale production. It’s obvious a lot of work has been poured into this O Show by everyone involved on the team, and hopefully O Shows of this calibre can continue for years to come.
Image Credit: MUST