It’s 1999, soon to be 2000, and two sisters are wandering the woods of the Bournemouth area after fleeing a party. They come across two Y2K-ers waiting for the computer apocalypse to erupt. What follows is an energetic but dysfunctional hour of adventuring into uncertainty.

Much like a bit of peak Robbie W. at half eleven in the morning mid-fringe, the show’s narrative descent is joyous and entertaining.

00 is elevated by an energetic and committed cast who are, unfortunately, unsupported by the theatre-making behind the production. The story of the unlikely group of survivors progresses slowly and makes for a mostly banal series of dramatic events before taking an other-worldly turn; at this point it’s best not to try and spend too much time trying to understand why something is happening, but rather just accept the given circumstances and enjoy the onstage action.

Breaking free of the previous act is what sets the piece in an interesting direction, and perhaps with increased thought could be its making. A lack of invention plagues the endeavour. Simple setups and slap and dash situations could have been bright and gleaming opportunities for imaginative theatrical play, but unfortunately fall far short of their potential. Similarly, the characters at first appear hollow, and remain so for much of the play. But suddenly, as each of them receives a turn with a microphone alone onstage, new heights are reached. Cutting away from the backdrop of the coming millennium and plot, and rather focusing on seemingly isolated explorations of character, invigorate the hour. The concept of Y2K is so fantastically big and full of gushing possibility, but ultimately the question of what the situation is saying about these characters is never satisfactorily answered.

Millennium themed musical/general content is always welcome – who doesn’t love a bit of bit of peak Robbie W. at half eleven in the morning mid-fringe! And, much like a bit of peak Robbie W. at half eleven in the morning mid-fringe, the show’s narrative descent is joyous and entertaining, featuring a great S Club 7 segment. I’d be lying if I said Bring It All Back wasn’t front and centre in my mind for the rest of the day (not that I’m complaining). Ultimately, it’s the fantastically devoted cast that make 00 watchable, with the occasional glints of something bright lurking deep in the characters’ experience. There is fun to be had here, but not nearly as much are there could have been.

Reviews by Jet Green

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The Blurb

The final hour of 1999. Two bickering sisters flee a party. Two outcasts prepare for the apocalypse. When their paths cross, they are forced to make choices that will alter their futures far beyond midnight. A new show about optimism, fear and counting down to uncertainty from award-winning young company Argonaut (Action at a Distance, 2017). New Diorama Theatre Graduate Emerging Company 2018/19. Shortlisted for the Charlie Hartill Special Reserve Fund. Praise for previous shows: 'Smart young writing' (Guardian). 'Urgent, engaging and deeply entertaining' ***** (BroadwayBaby.com). 'Extremely promising' **** (Stage).

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