Squeeze my Cans
Script: Stagecraft: Performance:
For a long time I have been interested in Scientology. I’ve seen the South Park episodes, Phillip Seymour Hoffman in the Master and the documentaries, visited their Museum of Death and Visitors Center in LA and even wrote a song about them. I have yet to be audited, but I’ve always been a bit paranoid about going that far. Maybe they’re smarter than they appear…? Anyway, one thing I have learned is that it’s a very brave thing going up against them and certainly revealing their secrets. Although I think that after the South Park episode half the world knows their big revelation you used to have to pay a hundred odd grand to reveal. All praise Xenu! Anyway, for that fact alone Cathy Schenkelberg, the protagonist of the show, deserves a lot of credit. And while she doesn’t have any major new insights, she does give us a fairly indepth account of how the cult took a great deal out of her, both personally and financially.
The problems with the show however were the often hammy acting and the fact that it assumed a lot of the audience. In particular of the dense brain washing language used by the Scientologists. As it manically flipped between life and auditing I was often lost in the dense vocabulary of the cult. I respect shows that don’t dumb down for an audience but the vocabulary of Scientology is niche knowledge at best. Even for someone as fascinated by it as I am. Never the less the gist was got and the ever increasing sums of money projected behind her were an effective graphic illustration of how Scientology may in reality be nothing but a marketing scam. Another interesting point made was that the aim of Scientology is to make the Able more Able, which may explain why they do so little for actual charities. Truly a cult of the elite. Anyway, if you have an interest in cults and haven’t seen the Master, the South Park episodes and the documentaries there is much to learn here. Although if you haven’t I’ve only got one question – where have you been the past twenty years?
Review by Steven Vickers