The Win at Life Mega Expo
by Two Pack Occasion
60 min / G / Comedy
Tired of having your heart walked on, want that promotion, a better bod and heftier paycheque? The Win at Life Mega Expo is a motivational seminar cum comedy piece from Two Pack Occasion out of Toronto. For the price of admission to this personal improvement Expo you too can start succeeding at life and emerge from being “loser” to become a full-fledged winner.
Buckle up, as these life coaches need all the help they can get as they preach much nonsensical catch-lines such as “love is finite” and “be the change you want to believe.” The hour-long performance is split into three segments with a smattering of back-stage banter between this trinity of stand-up comics: Amish Patel, Morgan O’Shea and Faisal Butt.
Each of the slightly shambolic characters takes a turn pitching $5,000 packages on how to improve one’s prospects in life with their sketchy pyramid scheme as they attempt to pull themselves up to the “upwardly mobile” end of the triangle. Patel teaches us how to turn a household accident in to a get rich quick scheme, Butt, despite recurring gout, purports to have health advice and the key to eliminating negativity while the recently dumped O’Shea is doling out the relationship advice. Their material is humorous, inappropriate, and often cringy—especially relationship guidance that includes using artisanal plumage to stand out and the powerful therapeutic value of swiping left.
The crowd in attendance was quiet and for these stand-ups the room provided little energy to feed off. Add in a restless child in the front centre row who despite providing lovely interactions (and a very gracious response from on stage) seemed to throw the cast, notably Patel, off his rhythm. Butt was on point on and O’Shea served up a waggish lovelorn mess, but the Expo lags from a lack of overall consistency in particular during the backstage moments which saw a lot of stumbling over lines on the night we attended.
These three are comics are undoubtedly talented, with a strong dynamic between them and very funny on their own but not all the bits land as they should and, though clearly an awkward aesthetic is on offer, a tighter, more polished direction weaving the deliveries together would really benefit this show. With an amateurish feel the low-key performances deliver solid laughs and the foolishness of the premise alongside the inane goofiness of the characters make an enjoyable night at Fringe.
The Win at Life Mega Expo by Faisal Butt, Amish Patel and Morgan O’Shea is playing at LabO (10 Daly Ave) until Sunday June 23, 2019. Tickets cost $12 online (plus a $2 processing fee) and at the door. Visit ottawafringe.com for the schedule and box office info. Read more reviews at apt613.ca/fringe.