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Who could be the imposter? Is it your housemate, your gaming buddy or perhaps even your best friend? Theatre company Chronic Insanity are posing this question in their digital production There’s Something Among Us. It is one of 12 productions promised to be staged by the company within the next 12 months.
There’s Something Among Us is a carefully crafted interactive performance. We are introduced to the storyline by a narrator who explains that he has cut the following footage himself from what has been left untouched by the fire. And so, the stage is set for seven young YouTubers to appear on our screen for a live-streamed Among Us gaming session: Fifi (Lily Bailes), BGFIT (Ben Gilbert), VeeChosen1 (Victor Itang), sunny (Omar Khan), Lulu (Kate Spencer), Platypus (Joe Strickland) and BeccaBakes (Amber Wadey).
As audience members, we get to watch their interactions and be invested in their relationships with each other as we figure out what has happened between them and what lead to the unfortunate event mentioned in the beginning. Before each session of Among Us, we get to choose whose gameplay we would like to watch and whose side of the story we want to hear. And the story that unravels is quite something.
As a cleverly designed interactive experience, There’s Something Among Us makes brilliant use of stereo- and archetypes. The seven up-and-coming YouTubers are portrayed in such a way that any millennial or Gen-Z would find themselves cringing over some of the accurate depictions. However, this does not stop us from wanting to know more about every single character and hear their side of the story.
Director of There’s Something Among Us, Joe Strickland, has considered this and allows us to skip forwards and backwards in the story. It allows the audience to go back and experience the events from another YouTuber’s point of view and get immersed in what has happened. What starts as a fun gaming session opens up to be so much more as secrets and truths surface and the interactive performance comes to a cathartic end.
Once immersed, however, you do wish that you had more options that allow you to make the story your own. Instead of only choosing the “players” for each game of Among Us, it would be nice to be able to swap back and forth and see what specific characters do in a certain situation, as each character has its own intriguing storyline.
There’s Something Among Us is a fun and surprising online immersive performance that draws you in from the beginning and won’t let you go until you have explored the characters’ chilling story from everybody’s point of view.
There’s Something Among Us is playing online until 31 December 2021. For more information and tickets visit Chronic Insanity online.