DateMe: An OkCupid Experiment Takes Comic Aim at Online Dating Sites Community

DateMe: An OkCupid Experiment Takes Comic Aim at Online Dating Sites Community

Robyn Lynne Norris’s free-form satire makes its premiere that is off-Broadway at Westside Theatre.

Go from the veteran: on the web dating suuuuucks. Sure, apps like OkCupid, Tinder, and Hinge reduce regarding the awkwardness that hinge dating app android accompany approaching prospective love passions in person and achieving to discern another person’s singlehood into the place that is first. But putting apart the truth that perhaps the many complex algorithm can’t constantly anticipate in-person chemistry, forcing prospective daters to boil by themselves down seriously to a self-summary leads people to not just placed across an idealized form of by themselves for general general public usage, but additionally encourages individuals to latch on the most surface-level aspects to quickly see whether someone’s worth pursuing romantically. For females especially, online dating sites could even be dangerous, leaving them available to harassment or even even worse from toxic men whom feel emboldened by the privacy regarding the online.

Yet, internet dating remains popular, therefore which makes it a target ripe for satire. Enter #DateMe: An OkCupid Test. Conceived by Robyn Lynne Norris, whom cowrote the show with Bob Ladewig and Frank Caeti, and situated in part on her behalf very very own experiences, the task is actually a sketch-comedy that is extended, featuring musical figures, improvisatory portions with market involvement, and interactive elements (the show features its own OkCupid-like application that everybody else is encouraged to download and create pages on prior to the show). In place of a plot, there’s a character arc of types: Robyn (played in this premiere that is off-Broadway Kaitlyn Ebony), finding by by herself obligated to test OkCupid the very first time, chooses to see just what is best suited from the application by creating 38 fake pages. If that appears overzealous, several of her rules — including never ever fulfilling some of the individuals she converses with online — declare that this experiment that is so-called been built to fail through the outset. The cynicism and despair underlying Robyn’s overelaborate ruse is sporadically recognized through the show, with items of pathos associated with tips of the troubled past that is romantic recommendations that she’s got difficulty making deep connections with individuals generally speaking peeking through the laughs.

For the part that is most, however, #DateMe is content to steadfastly keep up a frothy tone while doling down its insights.

Robyn’s observations of seeing lots of the exact same expressions and character characteristics on pages result in faux-educational sections where the other countries in the eight-member cast, donning white lab coats (Vanessa Leuck designed the colorfully varied costumes), break people on to groups. Perhaps the creepiest of communications Robyn receives on OkCupid are turned into cathartically songs that are amusingcompiled by Sam Davis, with words by Norris, Caeti, Ladewig, and Amanda Blake Davis). And in case any such thing, the two improvisatory segments — one in that your performers speculate how a date that is first two single market users would go centered on their pages and reactions for their concerns, one other a dramatization of a gathering user’s worst very very very first date — turn into the comic features of this show (or at the least, these were during the performance I went to).

It really assists that the cast — which, as well as Ebony, includes Chris Alvarado, Jonathan Gregg, Eric Lockley, Megan Sikora, Liz Wisan, Jillian Gottlieb, and Jonathan Wagner — are highly spirited and game. Lorin Latarro emphasizes a feeling of playfulness inside her way and choreography, specially with a group, created by David L. Arsenault, that mixes the aesthetic of living spaces and game programs; and projections by Sam Hains that infuse the show because of the appropriate feeling of multimedia overload.

#DateMe is really so entertaining within the minute that just do you realize afterward just just how superficial its view of online dating sites really is. Today for this viewer at least, it was disappointing to notice the show’s blind spot when it comes to race and how discrimination still plays out on dating apps. As well as on a wider degree, the show does not link the increase of dating apps into the predominance of social media marketing in particular, motivating a change more toward instant satisfaction than in-depth connection. Similar to of this very very first times dating apps are going to deliver you on, #DateMe: An OkCupid test provides a completely enjoyable periods without making you with much to remember after it is over.