Me and My Monkey – Review

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Me and My Monkey is a story Bradley Spann wrote about growing up in the 70s with his family. A handful of sisters, an abusive father, an absent brother and a monkey as a pet.

Spann plays all the characters in Me and My Monkey, illustrating what playing cowboys and indians with his older sister was like, living with a monkey and a raccoon, trying to not get beat on by his parents. The play tells of how Spann’s sisters can get away with getting pet monkeys and raccoons and he can’t buy new comic books. Spann shows the audience the dark anger that he has for his father and how it comes out in a wrestling match. The stories cover from when he is a little kid to High School, which for Spann was “a long, bland, difficult blur.”

Me and My Monkey features some interesting stories and having a monkey as a pet makes for some out of the box narratives, but the stories are never quite compelling enough to get full buy in from the audience. The play lacks purpose. There are some points of insight into Spann’s childhood and a message of love being a powerful thing, but it isn’t told in a new way. Me and My Monkey never really takes it home.

Me and My Monkey is part of the Calgary Fringe Festival. There are 5 more chances to catch it. More information is available online.

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