As I watch Eleanor Colville, for the second time in the same day I cannot help but think of Dave Gorman and his Powerpoint presentations, an influence surely on Colville’s Google Me show. But whilst Gorman nowadays has the big budget to present his shows on big screens, Colville is working with much lesser equipment (and a fraction of the budget), an issue that she will need to overcome to take this show further.
Google Me is, according to the show’s blurb, the first show written entirely by algorithms. It’s a catchy promise and one that at times she delivers on as she explains how Google can dominate her, and our, life, how it predicts what we are thinking and can lead us in that direction. With the aid of her home-built robot (just remember the budget she is working on here, it isn’t R2D2 standards) she proceeds to tell us about growing up in an era when Google and social media know all about you. But it also means you can know about everyone else as well. Including ex-boyfriends. And it also means you can find out about anything that is on your mind. Currently Colville’s obsessions are how to make slime and how did the lady from Bake Off lose her hand.
It’s these little obsessions and how Google fits into them that make this show. When Colville focuses on these, the show flows wonderfully. It’s when she goes off track that things dip a little; her little comedy skits are not in keeping with the body of the show. Whilst they are a demonstration of her writing and acting skills, they just feel an unnecessary distraction for a show about the internet.
Colville is a more than capable comic performer, her energy and full-frontal approach to the audience is certainly required to bring some life to a crowd that have just been caught in a downpour of biblical proportions, meaning we are not the most excitable for her to bounce off. And with Google Me, she has created a show that has enough to make it interesting right now, but which has the possibilities of growing into something a whole lot more fun yet.
Written and performed by: Eleanor Colville
Directed by: Joseph Winters
Booking link: https://tickets.edfringe.com/whats-on/google-me
Playing until: 25 August 2019