CincyFringe Review: You Only Live Forever Once

If you've seen the movie True Lies, Bill Paxton plays a used car salesman who pretends to be a spy.  Now, this has absolutely nothing to do with the Four Humor's newest show, You Only Live Forever Once, but if you imagine the pretend spy world that Bill Paxton's character would be living in, it might be something like this show, including the puppets.

Secret Agent Dave Johnson, played by Ryan Lear, is a James Bond-esque (as might be imagined by Jim Carey) spy in a battle of wits and puns with Wealthy Industrialist Kitty Cougarton, played by Matt Spring. Sock puppet henchmen and stick figure puppets interchange with their live action counter parts in a non-stop 50 minutes of laughs.

The acting is wonderful, the opening/closing sequences were brilliant touches, and the script was crisp and focused.  The dangers of puns can, for obvious reasons, be extensive, but the writers (which include: Jason Ballweber, Ryan Lear, Dan Peltzman, Rachel Petrie, Mark Rehani and Matt Spring) never strayed from comic gold.  This is the fourth production from the Four Humors to venture down from Minnesota to the Cincinnati Fringe Festival and the first to include the team from last year's Fringe hit, The Finkles' Theater Show (by Ryan Lear and Rachel Petrie).  The influences of their brand of comedy add much of the energy to the production and blend well with the tone of the Four Humor style show that Cincinnati audiences know and love.  In other words the combination of talent works to purrrrfection....Yes, puns only work with the right set-up, and mine crashed and burned like a paper jet puppet. If you see the show, that last bit might be slightly funny.

If you are at Fringe this is one of the don't miss productions.  Get a ticket to their Friday or Saturday show now before they sell out!