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Lizzy Mace: Crush

Note: This review is from 2010

Review by Jason Stone

In Crush, Lizzy Mace delivers a charming presentation into the nature of romantic crushes, as investigated through her own relationship history. She admits this device is a spurious one but it yields some interesting results, even if they aren't necessarily that funny.

Showing an admirable lack of vanity, Mace approached a number of men whom she'd found attractive at various stages in her life and asked them if they were aware of her feelings. Rather than merely tell us about these encounters, she presents video evidence of the surprise she provoked and allows us to see for ourselves any common threads in the reactions of the men. One aspect of this turns out to be the strongest strand of comedy in the show, and is neatly turned around when Mace is surprised by a confession matching her own.

Unlike a lot of comedy shows on the Finge, this one feels purposeful and, although it doesn't enable us to draw any firm conclusions about the nature of a crush, it's a fun look at a topic which is universally interesting and seems likely to prompt the audience to start wondering about their own childhood crushes.

Not that they'd necessarily want to investigate them after watching this, as it turns out to be a pretty relentless assault on Mace's ego. She uses this to generate sympathy from the audience and finds gentle humour in the self-deprecation, adding to the overall charm of a confident performance. She's relaxed enough to type her conclusions into a series of bullet points as she goes and she uses this device to good effect as she occasionally corrects an impression mistakenly formed by imperfect knowledge.

As an analysis of the nature of the 'crush', this may not possess any devastatingly original insights and you can't help noticing the naivety when she is shocked to learn that one of the men would have tried to get a shag out of her if he'd been aware of her feelings. But Mace's winning charm ensures that this is one of the more fruitful hours spent in the smaller rooms of the Free Fringe even if the humour is too gentle for it to earn too many accolades.

Review date: 26 Aug 2010
Reviewed by: Jason Stone

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