by Jesse Geguzis · August 18, 2014
I Feed You, by Nicole DiMattei features the typical Hollywood love triangle centered around the writer’s character, Olive, who also narrates and comments on the action of the show via direct address.
Her seemingly self- involved best friend Lolli, as she demands to be called, played by Ashley Blasland, proves to have a heart of gold by show's end. A very grounded Andy Gershenzon plays the sweet but sidelined boy-next door, who is hopelessly in love with our protagonist. And Frank J. Monteleone rounds out the cast playing a superficial but caring ab model for romance novel covers.
Olive seems to be torn between the two men, who symbolize what she’s always dreamed of and what’s always been in her reach. There is also a random puppet that appears and disappears in Scene 1, never to appear again. I’m aching to sit down with Anthony Caporale, director of the piece, to chat about that odd choice. Otherwise his directing uses the space well and, and brings the comedic elements to life, often reaching into the audience for volunteers to play additional characters on stage.
I can only assume the playwright's story is close to real life for her, as she chose to play the main character. That choice, although not always admired in my opinion, proved to serve the story well. Her ability to laugh at herself was essential and breathed life into this 105 minute play.
A notable and my favorite part of the show was learning the meaning behind the title of the play. Gershenzon’s character of Ryan is complaining about his dog’s (named Dog) apparent lack of affection for him when he says something along the lines of “You're supposed to love me Dog, I feed you!” Thereafter the pair form a business partnership and open a restaurant, which they name I Feed You.
I found the plot to be quite predictable but the cast ought to be commended for their energy in tackling a script of this magnitude. The comedic timing required to do so brings to mind the writing on Saturday Night Live and Louis C.K.