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Saturday, September 7, 2013

The Pokemusical Review Ash Will Scare You

Reporter Natalie D with Kelsey Schulte as Pikachu
In the same theater where one reporter passed the "Surviving A Zombie Apocalypse" quiz was a night of poketastic, poke-thrilling, polka music poke-music! Those are all real words, my Pokedex told me. The original Pokemon story comes back reuniting you with old friends and dark humor in song. The cast does an amazing job breathing life into all the characters from the original Blue and Red series and with not that big a stage budget. From Pokemon on Pokemon violence, cross-dressing and some very dark roads we had a poke-filled night of a deeper look into Pokemon and Ash's troubled mind.

 The Pok√©musical 
 Performances: Sept. 6 - Sept. 28
Fridays @ 8 p.m.: Sept. 6, 13, 20, 27
Saturdays @ 12 a.m. (midnight): Sept. 7, 14, 21, 28




WHERE:
Theatre Asylum–The Elephant Space
6322 Santa Monica Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90038.

HOW:
323-802-4990 or www.colorandlighttheatre.org


Some friends and I attended the new opening night. The Pokemusical's just had run as part of the Fringe Festival which ended in June and has since extended it's stay.

 The cast was outside when I arrived having a playful time taking photos  and playing around. Soon a line formed outside for what appeared to be a sold-out show. The audience was handed Poke-ball pamphlets going over the cast and crew. We eventually we're seated and by bizarre coincidence I was sitting next to Robert Axelrod better known as the voice of Lord Zedd on Power Rangers.


Soon the lights grew dark and we awoke with Ash to "POKEMON DAY". A song and day filled with more references to Pokemon than the first paragraph in this review. This kinetic high energy song woke up anyone who was sleepy, even though it wasn't that late, probably only 8:17pm on a Friday. The song set the night of high impact songs upon our ears. Dear reader, not all of them were as thunderous as Pikachu's most powerful attack, some were sweet and endearing and also very very sick if you looked into their contents.

As laughter swept through the audience we relived most of Ash's original adventure from the cartoon series, meeting Misty and Broke, getting on the S.S. Anne and eventually getting to the ELITE FOUR. The whole original story could not fit into a 90 minute musical. 

What did fit were some of the best songs about Pokemon out there. I downloaded the old soundtracks in anticipation and though this musical lacks the forced rap songs of the 90's it delights with songs like "Young" , where Misty and Brock really start thinking about how wise it is to follow a ten-year-old into battle . There was "Jigglypuff's Cannon", which had the whole cast dressed as Jigglypuff's on stage singing that sweet medley. It's beautiful as it is creepy and makes audince members have short bursts of laughter. Of course, Jesse and James with the melodious Meowth have their own number to remind you of the villainous Team Rocket

Praise for the lead Josey Montana as Ash, who scares me. His face and the way it adjusts to being angry during his songs will delightfully scare you. You should never say anything about his mother as we find out it in his song "You Make Me Strong". Be it the way he acted childish in battle to the sheer amount of hate he had for Gary, you would never want to see him break down in real life. Gary played by Tyler Ledon plays the nice guy with a twist. The musical does change up the story with Gary being a very almost Ned Flanders character compared to how he was portayed in the games and cartoon. Ash is the true jerk or possibly a very damaged boy as we learn as the songs go on.

Praise for the entire cast who all pulled of great songs and took on multiple roles throughout the night. All of them really took on their characters the way they were written for them. I don't think I've ever met quite that happy a Brock before.
Gary played by Tyler Ledon and Ash played by Josey Montana

So grab your Pokeballs, put them away and prepare for a night of closer looks into the unstable mentality of young boy named Ash on a journey to become a Pokemon master with his friends Misty, Brock and Pikachu. Will he defeat the ELITE FOUR and defeat his rival d*&kface Gary Oak. Find out next time on The Pokemusical.

>TO BE CONTINUED

For those new to the theater scene, there are no grand background sets, it's more about the cast and music. The theater isn't huge, but accommodating.

As it was the first night of a new run Pokeball cupcakes, free food and wine was given out to the audience to our delight. Many swallowed up those Pokeball cupcakes fast.