Think you’ve had quite enough of women in activewear shouting at you for one lifetime? Think again:
Help proves, with merciless mockery and comical chutzpah, that laughter certainly is the best medicine.
Nina Millns and Sophie Morgan-Price sweat, sass and soul-search their way to the ultimate conclusion: that you are not, and never will be, good enough. Both are excellent character actors, which is showcased to the max as they parade around the stage a plethora of self-righteous, self-help saints for our amusement and/or horror. Mockery of the instagram generation seems like a somewhat limiting form - once you’ve made one downward dog joke you’ve made them all, right? But Millns and Morgan-Price manage to make every persona unique, and each one is an astute character assassination of those whose job it is to make us mere mortals feel anything but good about ourselves. There are not many straightforward, punchline style gags in the show, which might have been appreciated in the moments where laughter dipped below howling level, but ultimately it is not that kind of show — and what Bae do, they do very well.
The show itself is face-paced and assured, moving with variety and pace between each sketch, though some characters are decidedly more captivating than others. By the time we got to Morgan-Price’s self-satisfied ‘Bride Guide’ seminar, I found myself longing for her previous guises of exasperated moderator or innocent audience member; peak dislikability had been hit. Nevertheless, the costumes for each incarnation are wonderfully accurate, though the quick changes themselves are arguably even more impressive. A cackle-inducing, scathingly sharp impression of a monotone, faux-happy fitness instructor drifts across the stage as the actors change, explaining to us the cornerstones of self-improvement. This external voice created a nice balance to the very audience-involved antics of Millns and Morgan-Price. Audience interaction is all too often a painful experience, but this enthusiastic duo pitch it just right. Not only do these moments provide a lot of laughs, but shouting “FUCK IT!” with a room full of people with whom you have just a perfectly pleasing hour of comedy fun is genuinely therapeutic. Help proves, with merciless mockery and comical chutzpah, that laughter certainly is the best medicine.