The Whim Reapers is one of the online performances for ŻiguŻajg 2020 with production manager Elaine Falzon. The premise entails otherworldly characters and their relationship between each other, in a story where a leader is dying and must hold on to her minions in order to survive.
The cast involves Lee N Abela as Wanita the powerful leader as well as Jacob Picinnino and Arthur Dumas as Winston and Wilber – the colorful and comical minions. Whilst the interactions between the performers seem nonsensical at first and full of both comical and serious moments, the performance and characters are very much up to interpretation by the viewer. Almost without expectation it is extremely difficult to resist trying to understand it. This is especially with how fleshed out the relationship between the performers is on stage.
The Whim Reapers plays out in a lively and playful manner that is undeniably entertaining to a child’s perspective as well as any adult viewer. The imagery is mesmerizing with the use of bold and colorful costumes by Elaine Saliba and the use of a comical puppet was quite charming.
An impressive feature of this performance is that where speech is seemingly lacking the sounds created by the performers and equipment on stage, conveys very human and yet otherworldly themes. The stage is also set to have a vague layout that resembles a glittering playground. Credit to scenographer Adrian Mamo in creating a colorful atmosphere that seems like a little world that belongs to the alien characters, and is brought to the viewer.
The power play between the characters leaves room for reflecting on the dynamics between the two binary genders especially when considering that the two male characters are portrayed in a lighthearted manner and support each other, whilst the female character is villainized for all her stronger characteristics. Considering the childlike perspective one can note that the way these characters interact is childish itself, remembering the way the genders would perceive each other on the playground in their youth.
Beyond all interpretation it is difficult to challenge how sensational this performance is. Also, the fact that the piece is not heavily dependent on speech or language makes it very accessible to various viewers, making it an enjoyable experience with so much still happening in the show.