Citizen Cain

Cafe Royal - Venue 47

Having seen Steve K Amos many times in his guise as the resident compere at Big Fish Comedy in Richmond, I was interested to see how he did in this piece - a character comedy examining the story of Cain and Abel through Cain's eyes.

Cain is conducting his defence - bitter at never having been given the chance in the Bible. Amos' acting is wonderful - his experience as a compere stands him in good stead as he uses the audience's reactions to Cain's arguments in such a way that you could almost think he was Cain. He quotes from the Bible in a James Brown style, using these passages to underline points made to the audience in a friendly, almost pleading manner.

Cain is understandably upset - the case against him certainly wouldn't stand up in court - no witnesses, sketchy evidence, no motive. Cain wants to have his say, and give his side of the story. The show goes a great deal into how the Bible glosses over things - where did Cain's wife come from for example, and how come we are not told how successful Cain's children were when we were at Sunday School? Cain presents himself as a man who promoted industry and the progression of civilisation, which God didn't like as it was a threat to his established order.... but that's his side of the story, after all...

If you are a sceptic about religion you'll like this show - Cain uses Biblical references to prove his point.... after all, do you know why Cain was driven to allegedly murder his brother? Most of us only know that he did, not the reason. The show is about the fact that religion thrives on human gullibility, and manages to get this message across in an approachable and often humourous way, due partly to the concept and writing, and also very much to Steve Amos' excellent characterisation.

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