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Lifeline’s “Soon I Will Be Invincible” Review – Standout Stagecraft for Superhero Comic Enthusiasts

By Amy Munice

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Christina Hall as cyborg lead Fatale

 

If you love stagecraft—sets, costumes, lighting – you’ll find much to love about “Soon I Will Be Invincible”. 

 

 

It’s always fun to see how Lifeline Theater transforms their icebox theater space, replete with warming blankets on each seat, into a set appropriate to the story being told on their stage.   This comic book superhero script called for great whimsy and creativity to develop the set for a superhero universe.  Lifeline delivered.  I couldn’t seem to take my eyes off the Fatale character’s (played by Christina Hall) eye framing head gear made of vegetable steamer parts, one of many attention-getting pops in her cyborg costume.  Could we be glimpsing an inadvertent definition of style circa 2300? (Set design – Alan Donahue; Lighting Design – Becca Jeffords; Costume Designer – Aly Renee Amidei).

 

 

 This is an adaptation by Christopher M. Walsh of Austin Grossman’s 2007 novel by the same name, “Soon I Will Be Invincible”.  With music and lyrics by Christopher Kriz, a world of superheros and supervillains a la Marvel Comics comes to life on the stage.    If you love those sorts of comics make a beeline for this show.

 

 

Much of the staging of this production seems to reach for posing the figures as if they are 2D comics.  This appears very purposeful and will likely be very much appreciated by all who love the comic book genre.  To those of us who aren’t especially tickled by superhero comics, that can make it seem at times as if the cast is being straightjacketed.  The lack of range in the songs, albeit many with nice catchy tunes, may also add to that effect.

 

That said, expect to latch on to Christina Hall as Fatale, just as if she were still the lovable Patsy Cline, a role she brought to life last year on Chicago’s stages. 

 

 

Expect too to feel your first deep bond with a villain to the core, Dr. Impossible, played ably by Phil Timberlake, who makes the most of the best lines in the script that he is given.

 

Non-comic enthusiasts should be forewarned that this is more of a cult classic for those enthused with that genre.   If you are drawn to comics as a way certainly make plans to see this true-to-the-genre show.

 

Now through July 19.

 

Lifeline Theatre

6912 N. Glenwood Avenue

Chicago, IL

 

For tickets call 773 761 4477 or visit the Lifeline Theatre website.

 

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Photos:  Suzanne Plunkett

Published on Jun 12, 2015

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