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EDINBURGH 2011: BWW Reviews: YOU WILL BE RARE, Zoo, Aug 13 2011


Fuelled by the economic principle that things which are rare are consequently more valuable, and that it is ordinary people who determine this value, Jamie Moakes is on a mission. An engaging, passionate, wonderfully geeky mission, to collect as many Ram Man toys from the 80's cartoon He-Man and the Masters of the Universe.

While economists may dispute the principles which underlie Moakes' mission, it is impossible not to be caught up in the passion which so clearly is the driving force behind it. While Moakes is a bona fide geek (and I use the term as a compliment) and demonstrates the obsessive passion for He-Man that you would expect of him, what brings people all the way along with him is his passion to try and make even a small impact on an economy which at times seems baffling and out of the control of normal people.

Armed with only a Powerpoint presentation and one of the now-famed Ram Man toys, Moakes leads us through his mission from inception to current day, including recent news articles about his mission, YouTube viewing and search statistics to show us the growing interest, and interactions he's had with those who are now on board and rooting for him to succeed. Overall, it comes together to form an entertaining, joyful, and inspiring challenge for the fellow geeks among us to root for his success, if not join him ourselves.

The thing which wins people over ultimately, is that it really isn't about the money for him. It's not about making something rare so that ultimately he will hoard them all and become rich when he sells them. Evidence of this is that at the end of each show he auctions off one of the Ram Man toys he has collected, firstly to inspire people to join him, and secondly to acknowledge that things are only valuable if people desire them.

Whether you agree with the economics or not, the mission itself is engaging and the show highly entertaining, and Moakes' happily invites anyone to discuss the economics of it after the show in the pub.

A creative and unique show, the likes of which you're unlikely to see undertaken with such enthusiasm again.

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