Critics split over Mixed Blood’s “Colossal”

Every once in a while, a production will inspire wildly different reviews. Such is the case with Mixed Blood Theatre's "Colossal." The story takes on football, sexuality, and physical ability, and like a football game, is divided into four quarters and comes with a half-time act.

Darius Dotch and Torsten Johnson in Mixed Blood's production of "Colossal" (Photo by Rich Ryan)

While the Pioneer Press finds the show to be "breathtaking," "ambitious" and well, "colossal," How Was The Show finds the game "overblown," "silly" and disappointing. Take a look:

From Dominic P. Papatola at the Pioneer Press:

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There's a distinct possibility that "Colossal" packs more issues and action into its 65 minutes than any other piece of theater you'll see this season. It's breathtaking and audacious in its ambition, percussive and high-flying in its execution, galvanizing in its effect.

"Colossal" is, well, pretty colossal in the things it does right. The script evocatively captures the cockiness of indestructible youth and the rage of seeing that indestructibleness compromised. It understands and articulates the poetry and the violence of both football and art and equates them without giving short shrift to either. It understands that love and romance can be two very different things.

From John Olive at HowWasTheShow:

What a gutsy title: Colossal... Imagine my disappointment, then, when I discovered that the basic story of Colossal is small and quiet, tender and delicate, with none of the giddy power that the title would lead you to expect... it’s saddled with a theatrical style that feels overblown and a touch silly... All in all, Colossal seems torn between the quiet demands of the basic story and the rollicking panache with which it’s presented. Perhaps a balance can be struck between the two impulses. It hasn’t happened yet.

Have you seen "Colossal?" What's your review?