The play is called “The Nether” it’s a crime drama that takes place in a setting that can only be described as the far future of Virtual Reality.
The characters experience “total sensory immersion” which you can’t get with today’s virtual reality gear. To me that sounds like Nerve Gear, featured in SAO (Sword Art Online).
In “The Nether” the whole internet has become a virtual reality world. The set up is a really sickening idea, where anonymous psychopaths fulfill all their sick whims, including murdering and dismembering other people. That is the starting point of the eighty minute crime drama that follows exploring some of the consequences from that idea.
The play is a psychological crime drama that explores some twisted human relationships that serve to illustrate moral conflicts.
The play was written by Jennifer Haley, whose work dives into the ethics of virtual reality. The Nether previously won the 2012 Susan Smith Blackburn prize. Anonymous internet use for people wanting to fulfill their sick selfish whims has existed for a long time. So how dare the playwright use the darkest, most twisted, most nightmarish part of the old internet to smudge and malign the bright future of virtual reality with?
Real virtual reality and augmented reality is so much better than being just about fulfilling selfish whims and desires while escaping all accountability for your actions. It appears that the author of this story is not even considering the possibility that there will still be real social networks in virtual reality that billions of people will want to use their real identities on.
What is worse is that this is a play about VR and not a VR product in of itself. Shamefully you can’t just put on your Gear VR and watch in it the Milk VR theater, or on your Google Cardboard Theater app. Instead you have to go to an actual real world theater to watch it.
It’s directed by Bill English. It is available to go see at the San Francisco Playhouse between now and March 5th 2016.
Here is the trailer:
“Tues, Wed, Thurs 7pm / Fri, Sat 8pm / Sat 3pm, Sun 2pm”
“WHERE: 450 Post Street, San Francisco, 2nd Floor of the Kensington Park Hotel. TICKETS: For tickets ($20-$120) or more information, the public may contact The San Francisco Playhouse box office at 415-677-9596, or http://www.sfplayhouse.org/sfph/2015-2016-season/the-nether “
About the author: Micah writes about Virtual Reality, you can find more examples of his work at this website http://vrma.work
Micah admins for several Virtual Reality groups on Facebook, you can reach out to him there.
San Francisco Virtual Reality
Oculus Rift Creative Community