The Curious Incident of the Frog in My Sightline is a surreal yet witty exploration of, well, what might happen if everything were suddenly to become frog. Due to its absurdist nature, it is sometimes difficult to truly conjure in the mind’s eye what exactly is meant by “all there is is frog”, but maybe I’m thinking too literally.
It is because of this “massive, omnipresent frog” that unlikely duo Otkas, the confused victim of this strange phenomenon, and frog enthusiast and downright social outcast, Posil, is formed. Together they try to find their way out of their froggy hell, or rather, Otkas does; herpetophile Posil is in his element. Hilarity ensues.
Although the work is largely lighthearted, there are also moments of profundity that touch the heart. Underscoring the silliness there is a dark, underlying feeling of claustrophobia, the fear of being trapped inside a horrible dream world with no hope of release, enhanced by the sickly, froggish green light and incessant “ribbit” that is present throughout. Layering hallucination upon simulation within hallucination to the point of stupidity, The Curious Incident of the Frog in My Sightline (no connection to The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, except by name) is an absurdist whirlwind of furrowed brows and hearty chuckles.
With his plum-voiced verbosity, piercing stare and bulging-eyed frustration, Rob Taylor-Hastings as Otkas is oddly reminiscent of John Cleese as Basil Fawlty. James Le Lacheur, who also wrote and directed the work, is endearing as the eccentric Posil and very amusing as Professor Doktermikel.
Cleverly written, The Curious Incident of the Frog in My Sightline is perhaps a wry comment on the absurdity of science and the fragility of reality. It is just the right balance between silly and meaningful, and overall a heart-warming surrealist comedy.
The Curious Incident of the Frog in My Sightline plays at Zoo Southside until 25 August 2014 as part of the Edinburgh Fringe. For more information and tickets, visit the EdFringe website.