Spirit Blues: Coming of Age Onstage in The Aliens
"At intermission, I wasn't sure about The Aliens. I couldn't tell where it was going—what it was about. Only later did it occur to me that this not knowing meant I was in the presence of a confident, superbly constructed script, one that lays its groundwork patiently, and reveals its intentions without handholding or pandering." - Portland Mercury
They’re only human.
"Take, for example, a moment in Third Rail’s deeply humane and quietly unnerving production of The Aliens. KJ (Isaac Lamb), a bearlike 30-year-old who lives at home and drinks shroom tea, tells a story. At age 5, he was obsessed with the word “ladder” and repeated it incessantly, until his mother let him shout the word as often and as deafeningly as he needed. Lamb delivers a monologue—if it can be called that—composed of that single word. I began counting the number of repetitions and then lost track, finding myself hypnotized and horrified and heartbroken. It’s sublime and sorrowful, wonderful and terrible." - Willamette Week
Finding friendship and facing hardship with 'The Aliens'
"What might be played as an existentialist stoner comedy instead gets the kind of careful emotional examination characteristic of a Third Rail Rep production. Chris Murray broods and simmers as Jasper, a man trying to be dismissive of the anguish eating away at him, and Bryce Earhart nails the halting manner and ingrained unease of teenage misfit Evan. But it is KJ -- good-hearted yet addled by mushrooms and mental illness -- who serves as the story’s fulcrum, and the versatile actor Isaac Lamb shows us his innocence, grief and confusion in ways both sweetly funny and heartbreaking." - The Oregonian
Aliens found lurking in the human brain, heart
"But that’s why I have fallen so hard for “The Aliens.” It doesn’t feel compressed and simplified. It doesn’t offer typical psychological arcs or narrative lines. It begins to pick at our intermittence, our disjointedness, our impulses and our ennui, our memories and convenient fictions. And it makes a compelling play out of them, such is the power of theater." - OR ArtsWatch
Third Rail Rep revisits its roots with a show in the intimate CoHo Theatre
"Even though the production puts Third Rail back in touch with its roots, it really is a sign of the company's continued growth -- including the development of company actors such as Tim True into directors." - The Oregonian
"...a gentle and extraordinarily beautiful new play by Annie Baker..." - The New York Times