Arianna Reiche - Festmag.co.uk'5 Stars - What makes FanFiction uniquely brilliant is the balance that's struck between ridicule and celebration of obsessive fandom, and the payoff a discerning audience member gets for being at least a little nerdy...'open/close
The only prerequisite for attending FanFiction Comedy is that you have an understanding of what 'fan-fiction' is. Or, that you simply be a fan of something. Scratch that – even failing those conditions, it would be impossible not to be blown away by this staggeringly impressive line-up of New Zealand's brightest young comedy writers as they take on cross-genre nerdity.
Hosted by Nick Gibb, FanFiction showcases the original compositions of core writers Heidi O’Loughlin, Joseph Moore, Edith Poor, and Tom Furniss, with brief discussions by Gibb and Steven Boyce between readings. The show's most impressive factor is not that the five-minute vignettes are gutwrenchingly hilarious, nor that it is impossible to say who is the strongest of the performers, nor even that the stories are written newly each night. What makes FanFiction uniquely brilliant is the balance that's struck between ridicule and celebration of obsessive fandom, and the payoff a discerning audience member gets for being at least a little nerdy.
When Moore wraps up his mash-up of Home and Away and Home Alone (you guessed it: Home Alone and Away), the entire room breaks into a chorus of the soap's theme song. Audience and panel members alike get into a heated discussion of the plausibility of commanding a Pokemon-esque army of small mammals. There's a unique genius to FanFiction's ability to bring out the pathos of whoever might find themselves writing a Dora The Explorer/Jango Fett mash-up, and there is something genuinely moving about the sheer generative talent of O’Loughlin, Moore, Poor, and Furniss.
It's only a shame that the stories change night after night. We'll just have to keep going back for more.