Saturday, September 22, 2007

The Campaign to Confer the Public Service Star on JBJ

This theatre show was tedious, boring, convoluted, and I'm trying to be nice. Its like a 15 minute joke told by a stoned Uncle that went on for 2 hours too long.

"The Campaign to Confer the Public Service Star on JBJ" is a political satire about Singapore society. Its about how people here, including civil servants, are frightfully terrified of offending the Govt, esp. Mr Yew Know Hu.

A young Uni student's campaign to award an environmental activist who has the same initials as a discredited opposition leader results in his apparent untimely death. A dedicated public prosecutor who has political connections is called to investigate and butcher the audiences' brains with a cliched plot.

The first part - a comedy of manners - had a few hilarious scenes. The second part - the writer decided to turn it into a satirical political thriller of the mind-numingly excruciatingly boring sort. The spastic dialogue between the female prosecutor and her lover could only have been written by a person who has never had a normal relationship with members of the opposite sex.

Not that it mattered to the director, Ivan Heng, he was laughing his head off throughout the show. In fact, he seemed to be the only one laughing. Most likely he got his giggles from seeing people paying good money to watch this piece of crap. I had the misfortune to sit in the row in front of him.

If this passes for political satire in Singapore, the Govt need not worry a single damn bit. Its no surprise that the censors passed this - either they strangled themselves half way thru the show to avoid watching the 2nd half - or they probably realized that letting Singaporeans see this sort of crap would cause them to vote for the ruling party for life.

Thanks God none of my friends had the misfortune to be there.

That was three hours of my life I want back.

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