Since far too often we only publicly say nice things about people when they are dead I’ve decided to randomly pick a Facebook friend every day and say something nice about them.
July 11, 2019
Today’s person: Colin Thomson!
“Colin Thomson is in the audience tonight.”
“Where’s he sitting?”
“First row. Can’t miss him.”
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had this conversation.
I walk out onto the stage, look in the crowd, there’s Colin. Even before I’d really gotten to know him at all it was like I was being haunted by the Head of Colin Thomson, his face just out of the ring of stage light. I didn’t know where my wife was in the audience, but I always knew where Colin was. I felt watched by him, because before I’d met him I’d heard how good, how hilarious he was.
And when I asked him to be in a reading of a script of mine it just made things worse, because the owner of the Head in the First Row was everything I’d heard. Smart, very talented, very funny, and he transformed the role, making it funnier and more human than it had ever been. He completely grokked the character in a way I hadn’t until I heard him read it. And he was a really nice guy. So now I had personal experience with the owner of the Face on the Head on the edge of the light.
And then I was in a show with him.
So he was right there, on stage with me, looking at me with those Eyeballs in his Face on his Head. Yes, he was supposed to be suspicious of the creepy guy I was playing, but I always felt observed by him - which was the point of the scene, but still. I felt so watched...
What Colin brings to every character is that he is the Hilarious Observer. His is a straightforward view of a mad world, the Everyman suspicious that something is going on here… it’s through his eyes that we see the absurdity of the world - even when he’s the absurd one. He’s not the straight man - no one that funny is the straight man - he’s something else, something unique. It’s a tough balance, but that’s what Colin excels at. He’s the Human.
And whether he’s in the first damn row or sharing the stage Colin Thomson is looking at you. With those eyes. In his face. On his head.
He sees you...