Brett Neveu’s latest creation, “Megacosm,” is every bit as hilarious and disturbing as you’d expect. Back from LA for a brief interlude, Neveu lovingly dishes up a black comedy soaked in existential terror. The message is abundantly clear: the relentless corporate greed now ruling the roost is overthrowing every last vestige of freedom we have. Should we be concerned about the evil plots cooked up by corporate America’s despots behind closed doors? Hell to the yes, Neveu warns us.
Of course the entire plot is symbolic, and that’s the fun part. The battle of wills between Chris (Larry Grimm) and Britt (Danny McCarthy) is entertaining, and the “product” they are fighting over is even more bizarre. Chris has created a small group of miniscule human beings that he stores in a tiny box, and Britt salivates over the idea of stealing Chris’s formula to overthrow the world into chaos. Performances from these Red Orchid ensemble Equity actors are delivered with explosive, ironic precision, and Sam (David Steiger) contributes robust acting support portraying a malformed employee. The audience devours every second of this witty, yet unemotional humor.
The show climaxes with the entrance of 9-year-old precocious performer Eden Strong, who creates the memorable character of Carol, one of the protestors who as a result of a corporate experiment gone bad, has been reversed from adulthood to childlike form. Strong’s moxie holds its own against theses heavyweight actors, and her willful charm acts as a well-tuned comic balancing point.
Evil greed vs. the underdog is a familiar theme, but Neveu creates an updated version of the story that is just so very 2012. References to riots and the world teetering on the nefarious decisions of a tiny but powerful minority resound with an audience now accustomed to the continuing battle between the 1 percent and 99 percent.