The Believers are but Brothers
- Lorna Irvine
- 5 August 2017
Tech savvy show puts extremism under the microscope
Javaad Alipoor's show is a compelling look at the way modern technology disseminates information, and the way that alt-right organisations, and even terrorist groups like ISIS, can provide a sense of community for disaffected young men.
Using powerful onscreen imagery by Jack Offord and Adam Radolinski, Alipoor immediately draws the audience in with cheeky banter and a selection of cat memes (via Whatsapp), before taking them into much darker territory. After all, as he states, 'we are only ever a couple of clicks away from the darker side of the internet'.
By focusing on a young man's stream of consciousness as he languishes in a prison cell, or the fall-out from Gamergate, Alipoor suggests that anonymous online identities walk a thin line between freedom of speech and the freedom to attack others for certain ideologies.
He is a superb performer, even when the technology breaks down a couple of times. Yet, for someone who doesn't want to engage in echo chamber discussions, there is a sense that he has surrounded himself with similar world views. His monologues, while evocative, are all of a similar pace. Nonetheless, The Believers Are But Brothers is an intelligent piece which will provoke wider discussions on censorship, war and masculinity.
Northern Stage at Summerhall, until 26 Aug (not 9, 16, 23), 12.45pm, £12 (£10).