Agatha Christie would roll over in her grave laughing if she were aware of the play "The Real Inspector Hound."
The play was presented by Fullerton College's Drama Department under the direction of instructor Jim Henderson. The play opened Thursday Jan. 4, and will close this weekend, Jan. 13.
The story is a satire farce on the "who-dunnit" Agatha Christie detective novels. The play was originally presented by Tom Stoppard and presented professionally recently at the Solari Theater.
The action begins with two theater critics with ambitions. One portrayed by Joe Guzman (Birdboot) is on the make for any aspiring actress with physically attractive looks. The play he is critiquing has an actress hi is intimately involved with. The relationship eventually gets him involved into the play he is supposedly viewing.
The other critic, portrayed by Michael Kane (Moon), is likewise involved in the play. Moon is an understudy critic. Moon's ambition is to get rid of the senior critic and take his job. Moon gets involved in the play he is watching, because the dead body in the play is actually Moon's murdered understudy.
Throughout the performance, the audience seems to ponder, "Is this really happening?" The entire content is hilarious farce. Gestures are exaggerated to add humor. Raised eyebrows are on cue and even the organ music is overplayed to add to the cornball humor.
The setting and props are very imaginative and inventive. The cutout pictures of students on the side walls give the illusion that mirrors were used for effective background mood.
Performances by the key players were superb. Kane was very convincing as a snobbish critic. Kane displayed perfect facial mannerisms and his innocent nature at the end of the play added hilarity to the zany plot.
Guzman, the other critic, was a bust-up. Guzman was so believable-he was unbelievable.
Guzman's wardrobe was well selected because he was, in a way, an uncouth slob. At the proper time Guzman ranted or raved with a loud outburst. This job was well acted and very convincing.
Hattie Totten, as Felicity, played the role flawlessly. The role fits the golden-haired Totten like a coat of quick-dry enamel. Its shiny surface reflected perfectly from her radiantly evil, but beautiful face. Totten attacks her part with a full appreciation of all the moods.
Mike Ohern, who played Simon, lacked humor going through the motions grimly. Had he shown more enthusiasm it would have been a bright spot in the play.
Special credit goes to the lighting crew, who did a fine job in shifting the proper lighting moods and time of day.