Minnesota Fringe Festival 2011

My Fringe

Deadline: A Choose Your Own Adventure Story

Interplanetary Appeal

Created by James Rone & Jake Scott

Producer's website

Improv, Comedy, Sci-fi/Mystery/Horror, Literary adaptation

Contains Adult language

For ages 16+

The Pioneer Press calls Deadline a Must-See!

"It's oodles of fun." Wendy Gennaula, Twin Cities Daily Planet

"Clever idea, smartly done, and it's never the same show twice." Matthew Everett

R.A. Montgomery and Edward Packard, the world-famous authors of the Choose Your Own Adventure book series, are being pressured by their publisher to complete their next story. Time is running out and they need your help!

Shows are based on audience suggestions so no two performances are ever the same.

Interplanetary Appeal is the Minneapolis-based improv duo made up of James Rone and Jake Scott. The Choose Your Own Adventure show, which has been workshopped at HUGE Theater and at the local improv showcase, Improv A-Go-Go, arose from a desire to incorporate audience participation into a show beyond the one-word suggestion that traditionally inspires an improvised scene or game. As the show developed, Scott and Rone discovered that the authors of the Choose Your Own Adventure series were characters every bit as compelling as the astronauts, pirates, and treasure hunters in their books. Deadline is an attempt to make R.A. Montgomery and Edward Packard adventurers in their own interactive fiction world.

James Rone
Role: Edward Packard

Jake Scott
Role: Raymond A. Montgomery

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You have a choice to make!
by Heather Baldwin Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
Based on those "Choose Your Own Adventure" books that many of us read as kids, this fun, lighthearted show is part sketch comedy, part long-form improv. It starts with a suggestion from the audience for a profession (for the performance I attended, it was "doctor"), and the stories took off from there. Periodically, the protagonist(s) would be faced with a decision, and the scene proceeded based on audience applause for one of two choices. Sometimes it worked out well, sometimes it didn't. Much like the books. I thought this was a clever concept, and James and Jake are a charming and talented performing duo.

Well worth the time
by Will Weisert Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
Improv is always interesting whether it ultimately succeeds or fails. The performance we saw mostly succeeded (name other improv artists who would properly move backwards when playing a jellyfish or octopus). These two give everything to their performance, regardless of which direction their audience chooses to shove them.

turn to page 67
by Kevin McIntyre Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
By turns hilarious and thought provoking the actors weld comedy and moralizing in a way sure to entertain. Would gladly see this again!

Intro to Improv
by Bill McTeer Follow this reviewer
Rating 3 kitties
This review can't describe the show you will see. That's because each performance becomes different as the performers work with the plot elements and choices provided by the audience along the way. These performers are quick, energetic, and up to the challenge. Depending on how your show goes, you may (or may not) be totally blown away. You won't be disappointed.

Swine Puns Do Not a Play Make
by Kale Ganann Follow this reviewer
Rating 3 kitties
Maybe it would have been better if something else had been the topic, but our night of a 'Swine Nutritionist' Choose-Your-Own-Adventure left us cold. There were some funny moments, but overall we would have been happier making a different choice.

Fun Show With Options
by Richard Shields Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
This is a fast paced, fun show that allows you to try and twist it to go in directions you want. The two players worked hard and were good at providing laughs and holding their audience. You never will get the same show twice with this format.

I choose this adventure!
by re gurgitate Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
The show consists of some scripted and some improv, but it was performed so well you couldn't really tell the diference. A fun time, and definitely worth a spot on your schedule.

Improv Adventure
by Peter Erickson Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
Choose Your Own Adventure stories, with the audience picking the protagonist's profession, and making story decisions--usually when the performers have used up the current improv line they are working. Fun and clever. This night the selected profession was "swine nutritionist."

by Kassie Church Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
I'm not an improv lover, but after hearing lots of good things, I had to check it out. And I'm glad I did. Its a great idea that was executed well. I agree that it was a little hard to hear in the back for parts. Lots of laughs and clever moments. Nice job.

Super Likable
by Sarah Anderson Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
Caveat: Improv has never really been my thing. That said, this was improv done very well, and the framework was clever and fun. The performers have likability to spare. I only wish they were louder, as some of their lines, particularly at the beginning, didn’t reach my ears. Speak up, guys! You have funny and smart things to say, so let us hear you.

Completely Delightful
by Meghan Wolff Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
Loved the show, from the premise to the characters to the possibilities, but my very favorite moments were the ones that had James and Jake nearly laughing at their own choices on stage.

Stop the Presses!
by Mickey Foley Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
These guys are strong improvisers who have written a solid setup for the show. They chose a pretty lame suggestion at the performance I attended, but it didn't deter them from creating some funny moments. All in all, I hope to see more from these brash, young upstarts!

Hit and Miss Production Doesn't Add Up
by David Peterjohn Follow this reviewer
Rating 2 kitties
The main problem with this production is the Improv is weak and lacks energy. It also doesn't involve the audience much and doesn't utilize its main gimmick enough. The other problem is that the dramatic context for all this, a scripted prologue, was more interesting and yet underutilized as well.

These two men had an intriguing idea. Choose your own adventure allowed them to dream up crazy ways for their improv stories to move forward and the audience to decide. The issue : these choices are not choices. For every choice given to us, one of them was always the clear best and was always chosen by the audience. They were giving us the illusion of choice, and it made me disengage.

Slow improv too. The opening should have been the story.

I'm a believer
by Ryan Howell Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
This show had me laughing non-stop. Clever acting, and beautiful improv. Well done.

Write on!
by Sid Korpi Follow this reviewer
Rating 3 kitties
(Actually, I wanted to give this 3.5 kitties, but they don't give that option.) There were moments of strong comedy and good timing, but a few too many of stalled action during the improv for me to have given this a higher rating. I realize from doing improv myself that it's always a crap shoot regarding what will work and what won't. The actors, I'm sure, are quite capable and on another night they may have hit it out of the park. Just not on this night. I applaud the clever format on which the show is based, though.

Funny, smart and so cool!
by Tom Reed Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
Such a cool and seamless blend of scripted material and improv. I found myself equal parts laughing out loud and marveling at the creativity of these guys. They'll take you on a hilarious journey that keeps you on the edge of your seat and laughing the whole way. Be assured, this is improv done right - as a tool to include the audience intimately in the show, and even give the audience the power to decide where the story goes. Equal parts funny and just plain impressive. Must see!

Turn to page...
by Jason Dalrymple Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
A great concept delivered nicely, however seemed a little bland, but that could be attributed to the initial choice from audience suggestions. Nonetheless, numerous laughing points with some great improv and audience engagement. If I had a chance to, I'd consider giving the show a second chance.

by debi kilde Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
James and Jake have excellent chemistry on stage. It is obvious to those in the audience that these two guys are having an absolute blast on stage and that is always fun to watch. They create strong, often eccentric characters that are always hilarious. And they both have some great accents. Tons of fun.

Very Clever!
by Melanie Thome Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
I liked the premise behind this a lot. Growing up with those types of books made it even better and easy to relate to. Going off the cuff like they do was pretty impressive.

Solid Improv Performance
by Michael Merriam Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
Good solid fun. I laughed hard during the first skit, though the second one was a little painful in places. The improv performers work together smoothly. Go see it if you can.

My favorite Fringe improv show yet
by Anna Weggel Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
So I've seen a lot of improv and a lot of Fringe in my day and I have to say that this is my favorite show I've seen yet that combines the two. It's such a clever format and I was so curious to see how James and Jake would weave back and forth between the scripted portions and the improv portions, but they did so easily and professionally and it was a joy watching them transition. Improv-wise, I just can't get enough of these guys and anytime I see Interplanetary Appeal on the bill, I know it's going to be a good one. Well done boys!

by Abigail Nones Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
Performers James Rone and Jake Scott are an absolute hoot! The idea behind the show is so creative and I was thoroughly entertained. Defintely see "Deadline"!

High Fives All Around
by Jillian Michaelree Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
I saw this on the glam rock night and loved it. If you're in your late 20's/ early 30's these fellas are talking straight to your childhood and you'll plus one yourself for getting all of the jokes. I actually slapped my knees several times and high-fived my husband during it (what what R.L. Stine reference!). If it were a once a month event, I'd come dressed as the characters and throw toast. Good fun.

Clever, Joyful, Smart
by Hannah Kuhlmann Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
I saw this show on opening night, and was totally delighted. James and Jake have excellent improv chemistry, and the joy they find in playing together comes through in every aspect of the performance. The moments of audience participation are a fascinating social experiment -- it was hilarious to see the whole crowd gleefully send the protagonist to his certain doom. This show is a must see for fans of intelligent, fast-paced comedy.

by Robyn Hendrix Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
probably the best partially improvised show I've ever seen at fringe. great concept, very well executed, it's like they can read each other's minds! so so so funny.

Fast and Funny
by Damian Johnson Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
1/2 this show is improvised, but you are not taking a risk. Rone and Scott play off each other seamlessly and it feels scripted. Plus you learn a little history about CYOA!

by Katie Knutson Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
Jake and James are excellent improvisers and actors. They have brotherly rapport, and play off of each other like pros. This was a perfect show for a late night: it kept me awake and laughing. If you have ever read a Choose your own Adventure book, you will love their take on the idea. I highly recommend this show to anyone who wants to see some quality improvisors do a combination of scripted and unscripted scenes. Thanks Jake and James for a great show!

Choose this show!
by Aleutian Calabay Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
James Rone and Jake Scott are two funny sons of guns. I had such a great time watching this show and their improv skills were very quick and witty. I loved the premise for the show and it was very well executed. There were some slip ups, but this is to be expected in an improv show. I loved it, and I plan on seeing it again since every night is different depending on the audience suggestion! Go see this show!!

Excellent show!
by Pat Harrigan Follow this reviewer
Rating 5 kitties
I've seen a lot of improv in the Twin Cities, but I'm ashamed to say I hadn't seen James Rone and Jake Scott before. My mistake -- these guys are terrific!

Rone and Scott riff off each other smoothly; the CYOA show structure is cleverly nostalgic, and flexible enough to allow both actors to shine in their own personal story. The (good-sized) audience at tonight's show also all seemed to feel the way I did, judging from the laughter, applause, and general vibe of joy and affection.

Turn to the BLB to choose this show!

Good for improv fans
by Liz Oppenheimer Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
I was grateful for the production notes, given that I was born too soon to know about the Choose Your Own Adventure books in school. I also was helped by having some familiarity with the sort of improv that Deadline relies on, and I thought James and Jake had very good chemistry and presence, both to each other and to the audience.

In the moment of the play, as it was unfolding, I found myself engaged and smiling, despite the formulaic approach to telling the overall story while weaving in improv. But a few minutes after the lights came up, what stayed with me was the formula, not the characters themselves or the fullness of fun that I had during the show itself. Still, I might choose to return, just to see a different scenario or three play out.

Just Don't Pick
by Jeanne Burns Follow this reviewer
Rating 3 kitties
I always think I would like improv, but after a while I find it tiring and repetitive. These guys managed to keep it mostly fresh. It's guaranteed to be a different show every night. Just follow this advice: when they ask for a profession from the audience at the beginning of the show, don't pick Glam Rocker.

Definitely a Fun Show
by Bruce Strahlman Follow this reviewer
Rating 4 kitties
The show was quick-paced and always fun. The actors were comfortable with their material, with the audience, and with improv. The twists were frequent and usually developed in a novel way. I'm almost tempted to see it again to see what they do next time.

My only beef--and it's minor--is that James should speak a little louder. Sometimes his words were lost.

All in all, I give this show a solid endorsement.

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Friday, 8/510:00 p.m. 
Sunday, 8/75:30 p.m. 
Tuesday, 8/97:00 p.m.This performance is audio described
Thursday, 8/117:00 p.m. 
Saturday, 8/1310:00 p.m. 

Bryant-Lake Bowl venue information
810 W Lake St

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