I had been to Dolores Park the week before and the crowd for the Mime Troupe was similar to the prior crowd despite the event. My group of friends and I arrived to the show about ten minutes before the show started and were able to watch the influx of people as we got closer and a few minutes into the show. We spoke to the people around us and made conversation to see what brought them to the Mime Troupe. The couple to the right of us sees the Mime Troupe regularly and commented that this was the largest crowd that they had seen in both Dolores and for the Mime Troupe. I wish that I had taken a crowd picture from the steps leading into Dolores so that I was able to get a full view of the turnout for a Sunday afternoon.
When the show started and they introduced themselves I wasn’t expecting the cast to only be four people. I enjoyed their performance style and the rotating stage with the constant changing set. This performance style was new to me and I had never been to a slapstick comedy event, but I enjoyed the content because I’m a fan of political related comedy thanks to the current election. The most prominent element used for this style of comedy that I noticed during the show was their use of sound effects and the band. They used song to emphasize certain points and would use certain elements of the band to mock a character. For example when Babbit would make a more outrageous point although none of his arguments were tame) they would play something leading up, during and after his argument was made. This technique helped make his stance more comedic and laughable despite it being a harsh reality because it was an obvious mimic.
In general, San Francisco is a liberal city with centralized political views and this widely assumed shared feeling of disapproval for Babbit and needing some beacon of help was felt throughout the show, especially at the end of the show. There was this mutual feeling of hope for change and it was comforting to feel this support throughout the audience that we all understood the purpose of this performance and appreciated the message. However, I did not like the aspect of the show that compared Babbit to Hitler through the use of brown shirts and arm bands alluding that they had similar tendencies.I feel like it’s overdone and a slight stretch in accuracy. They rose to ‘power’ out of very different settings and Hitler brought in anti-Semitism after he had established a single-party state and secured power whereas Trump’s campaign is heavily reliant on a xenophobic and racist platform that has aided his popularity. Regardless, I enjoyed the show and appreciated the message.