Gang of Seven is a new comedy by Jim Neu that rips the lid off the dynamics, delusions, and dangers of the focus group movement sweeping across America. The play cunningly anticipates what will happen when ordinary gatherings for market research get infected with the human potential movement.
Alone, this play's "Gang of Seven" are harmless normal citizens. Together, their volatile mix of personal chemistries creates an explosive brew of attitude, greed and collective identity. They are so empowered with team spirit that they begin to feel omnipotent. We see them pushing their mental envelopes, re-imagining their group as the grand information assembler, chosen to reorder reality for the country, or maybe the world.
The play is a fascinating satire of business doublespeak. The euphemistic language of marketing executives is adopted as ideology by the members of this media-saturated group, who swoon for such "future" ideas as "Facadism" and the "Mythosphere." Power is found in the reordering of information. Nostalgia, for them, is remembering their parents filling in product surveys with a ballpoint pen. They unify behind a business idea--The Reality Bowl--with a leader who boasts, "everything I've ever done has been right on the cutting edge of legitimate." Their ride into the euphoria of this value proposition is the journey of the play.