KISS OF LIFE
Pleasance Dome, Edinburgh
August, 2002

**** Wonderfully warming solo love-and-death show, minus death

Chris Goode's monologue weaves between lots of different topics, but mostly is about the joy of living, a joy he communicates.

Goode has been involved with the young Unlimited company, but his solo offering this year knocks their Safety into a cocked hat. I suppose there are few bigger issues than life and death, but Goode manages to make it feel as if the grand themes are incidental to a simple human story.

He pitches it as a kind of autobiography, about a man who makes an uncertain suicide attempt off a bridge, is saved from the river below, then falls in love with a guy who has the same name as Chris's missing cat. The mysterious, death-wish-obsessed Nico nevertheless manages to live life to its fullest extent.

All kinds of analogies analogue versus digital, call-centre market research evaluations ("...on a scale of nought to six, where nought is..." and so on) and even Sesame Street pop in and out of Goode's narrative, which he delivers with a complete absence of grand theatrics. The show has a heart, a brain and no pretensions at all to majesty, and leaves even the most curmudgeonly of Fringe-goers uplifted.

Written for divento.com

Copyright © Ian Shuttleworth; all rights reserved.

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