Everyone knows how superhero stories work. Save day, rescue damsel, witty one liner, post credits scene. In a Modern Guide to Heroism and Sidekickery, Michelle Zahner brings to life a hero who doesn’t want to do that. She wants to ask real questions: Why are there never pockets in lycra costumes? How do you fight a cyclone, or a rabid llama or the patriarchy? What if there’s no villain? And, why don’t we have a word for male damsel?
This mission combines storytelling, poetry, comedy, shadow puppetry and physical theatre with a hint of audience participation. We meet an accidental superhero, a lost journalist and a girl who doesn’t need saving. This hero is really asking one thing: what do we expect from superheroes, and what would happen if we got it?
She’s aware that’s actually two things… She doesn’t care.
“Zahner’s words have a matter-of-fact poeticism to them: they captivate the mind, lift you up, play with imagery and metaphor in a most delightful manner. Her descriptions of being ordinary are so powerful you can tell they come from an honest place. And yet Zahner transforms the ordinary into something extraordinary, all via language.” – Scott-Patrick Mitchell from Out in Perth