Faulty Optic Theatre of Animation, Tunnel Vision

Review in Issue 10-4 | Winter 1998

Faulty Optic create a world that’s so grim, they even surpass Beckett on the pessimism scale. Despite being witty and even charming at times, Tunnel Vision is a journey into a world inhabited by puppet characters who are prisoners of solitude, with dreams of escape as their only comfort. In one poignant moment, a puppet character offers friendship to his fellow cell-mate, only to be rejected for the company of rotting flesh and bones.

Escape does finally come through a secret door in the floor. But whether it’s an escape to a better world or merely another hell, it’s hard to say. This new world is dominated by a harrowing helter-skelter ride. Through the ingenious use of live projected footage from a miniature video camera, Faulty Optic take the audience on a nightmarish trip through a post-apocalyptic landscape.

The puppeteers are all in black and yet the audience are, for the most part, aware of their presence. This creates a strange but interesting effect. It is as if they are agents of the puppets’ misery as well as a benign presence. As puppeteers they are the link between the audience and the alienating world on the stage. The audience feel the existential despair and yet are comforted by the fact that, at the end of the day, it is only imaginary.

This is an achingly beautiful work, the final image of which lingers for days afterwards in the mind. Tunnel Vision is haunting and yet strangely uplifting, and with it Faulty Optic create a work that resonates with original vision.

Presenting Artists
Presenting Venue
Date Seen
  1. Oct 1998

This article in the magazine

Issue 10-4
p. 20