Bakehouse Theatre’s Studio, Tue Mar 10
Social media researchers have long contended that the majority of young people stretch the truth about themselves when they create online social media profiles. I Liked You Better Online shows how this can become awkward if people choose to meet in real life as a result of an online hook-up.
‘Steve’ and ‘Chloe’ (aka Gary and Rachel) fall into this trap as a result of being matched on the online dating site, Tinder. They decide to meet at a restaurant and Chloe is underwhelmed by Steve’s face to face persona.
Movies and TV shows often depict young men concocting the best ways to pick up women. ‘Chloe’ laments this fact, and says that all women want is for guys to be themselves. But she too has played the game of online deceit and constructs her profile to appear to be the kind of person she thinks guys want, rather than who she really is.
The scene where the two characters are constructing their fake personas simultaneously is amusing and cleverly done. I suggest you do a crash course in abbreviated text messaging (LOL, ROFLMAO, etc) and emoticons if you’re not familiar with these conventions or much of what they say/type to each other will be a mystery.
This show works because of strong and confident performances from the two actors, and its lively, energetic portrayal of the pressure and confusion that stems from having to juggle different personas in the parallel worlds of face to face and online. There’s a touch of romantic comedy about the conclusion that sees fate bring the characters together again without the confusing subterfuge of online dating!
I Liked You Better Online continues at Bakehouse Theatre’s Studio until Sat Mar 14
Book at FringeTIX on 1300 621 255 or adelaidefringe.com.au/fringetix. Click HERE to purchase your tickets.