Dominique White reports on the new bilingual sitcom System Fóbicos which began airing in January and has become a word of mouth success.
With the second sitcom series of System Fóbicos currently being filmed, we thought we’d catch up with Madrid comedian, Tricia Audette who plays Cindy, a character whose broken television freed up enough time for her to become curious about the world around her.
Together with her partner Santi, she finds more and more flaws in the system. Their attempts to live off-grid, offline and disconnected lead to hilarious adventures and humorous brushes with reality.
Tricia spoke to us from set where she’d just finished recording one of the latest 30-second publicity shorts that they are using to promote the sitcom on social media. “Our biggest hurdle has been
promoting the show online” admits Tricia “but not because it is hard to find an audience there. No!
Our problem is that we’re trying to break away from the system and yet we need to use it in order to draw attention to our show!”
The irony is not lost on Tricia, but she is quick to point out that Cindy and Santi are trying to make sense of the digital world. “Social media is a tricky playground because it has brought lots of colours to the world, but it has also brought lots of darkness”.
Cindy and Santi are interacting with the world with a measure of amusement. “Finding the humour in the situation makes it easier to confront” she says “and when we laugh we feel more positive about making a change”.
Fernando García-Torres is a regular on the comedy scene in Madrid and Tricia Audette is a popular open mic performer. They have been joined by director Vicente Cañón in this project, whose input has been greatly appreciated for keeping the 15-minute sitcom episodes so slick, rounded and on topic. As well as playing the lead characters in the show, Tricia and Fernando have written,
produced, edited, and subtitled into English the first six episodes.
Tricia admits that the learning curve has been steep, but the results are more rewarding than either of them could have imagined.
With a host of professional and amateur actors, crew and postproduction experts, they have pulled off a very skilful production – reliant, indeed, on modern technology to get it right. Shrugging her shoulders, Tricia points out: “So what if throughout the journey Cindy and Santi have discovered that they also require good mobile phones and a strong Wifi signal to truly live the dream ?”
Throughout the series viewers are encouraged to question everyday conundrums such as organic food being wrapped in plastic. It also shines a spotlight on ubiquitous WhatsApp groups, flexible
eating, living life app by app and the limitations of recycling. Tricia says the aim is to draw attention to these inconsistencies and then bring on a ripple effect that will inspire us to change, rather than just to shrug off the contradictions as contretemps.
Despite the apparent paradox of using You Tube to promote the premise, there is little in the way of hypocrisy in this sitcom. Rather what viewers are treated to is a generous helping of humour and we strongly recommend you seek out System Fóbicos online.