From Toronto playwright Colleen Osborn, Botched is, according to the press release, about compassion. Dealing with the subject of abortion, is it “anti-vitriol, anti-hate, and neither pro-life nor pro-choice.”
Should you see it?
Botched is the story of Miz, an abortion survivor. After Miz’s mom, Julie, had an abortion, the doctors discovered that she was having twins and only one had been aborted. Despite being told that Miz could be born sick or damaged, Julie can’t go through with a second abortion. Instead, Miz is given up for adoption and raised by a radically pro-life family who puts her on display as a symbol — the girl who lived — and turning her into a pseudo-celebrity for their cause.
Miz (played by Alex Vincent, who also plays her mother Julie in the side narrative) is a scarred, lonely girl, with only her dolls as friends. She really has nobody in her life aside from her unborn brother Eggbert (represented by an actual egg). It’s staged in Miz’s bedroom where Olivia Lloyd and Caroline Millen play two of the dolls, in full doll dress, and these living dolls puppet several other dolls in the show, including the abortion clinic doctor.
Botched is a bit dark but despite its controversial subject matter, Botched doesn’t try to preach the pros or cons of abortion, and it deftly avoids becoming a cliché. What Botched is is a very sweet and sincere, well put together story about a young woman growing up, dealing with the hand she was dealt, and looking for the answers we all want in some ways, to know why.
Botched is one of the more low-profile shows at Ottawa Fringe, and one of the ones I’m championing these last few days because it deserves bigger audiences. Take a chance on it over at Studio Leonard-Beaulne for one of its last two shows (Wed & Sat).
But that’s just my opinion and I’d love to know what you think? Did Botched just not do it for you at all? Did you just want to give Miz a hug when it was done and tell her it would be all right? Tell me in the comments below.