Theater archives

Fight Girl Battle World: A Video Game Creation Myth


As far as creation stories go, Adam and Eve has more emotional tension, but Fight Girl Battle World—a video-game-age creation myth—has much sweeter fight scenes. E-V (Melissa Paladino) is the last human female left in the galaxy, after her species—considered dim-witted and violent—is nearly wiped out in the Human Wars. “Human” has become a dirty word, and E-V attempts to hide her identity until righteous General Dan’h (Temar Underwood) summons the reluctant virgin to repopulate the world by making it with the last surviving human male, an interstellar terrorist named Adon-Ra (Noshir Dalal).

The mythmakers—writer Qui Nguyen, director Robert Ross Parker, and the Vampire Cowboys Theater Company—are unapologetic in offering their geek-chic audience exactly what it craves: a noble quest, adorably flawed heroes, villains with funny accents, and superbly choreographed stage fights. Paladino plays a big-hearted, uninhibited E-V (isn’t that how Eve should be played?), and gorgeous Maureen Sebastian is every nerd’s fantasy as the battle-savvy space pilot J’an Jah. The lighting, costume, and puppet designers—Nick Francone, Jessica Wegener, and David Valentine, respectively—evoke Star Wars–like settings, and Patrick Shearer (sound design) panders to the doting audience by blasting Evanescence’s “Bring Me to Life” during the climactic battle scene, performed as a triptych to simulate the split screens of a video game.

You may roll your eyes when the proverbial apple appears in the last scene, but you’ll never feel guilty for indulging your sci-fi fantasies. By transcribing the video-game aesthetic onto the stage, the play becomes a joyful parody of itself.