When today’s media unleashes a relentless barrage of increasingly sensationalistic “information,” and fear starts to dictate our actions, the line between being aware and being able to leave the house is often blurred. The Fear Project — a collection of seven brilliantly performed and entertaining short plays — valiantly attempts to find the balance between the two poles. Each pairing one terror junkie and one straight man, the five duets paint dilemmas in plain terms, while the intense monologues provide sharp contrast to each other. The show leaves little to be desired when it comes to naming particular poisons, as there’s something for everyone. Terrified of your own crazy self? Try Vichie on for size. Xenophobic and/or afraid of conservatives? Afraid. Yes. Of. is for you. If that’s still not enough, The Fear Project also tackles terrorism, adolescence, and the dark; even providing a powerful monologue from a reckless rogue who ostensibly has no fears. Perhaps the most striking — and predictable — thing about the duets is that the phobias represented are usually false, granting the characters heaving moments of relief. On the other hand, this tactic causes one to wonder just how much time we waste letting issues manipulate us. Ultimately, the short plays provide a mirror rather than answers, confronting us with our hysterical, voyeuristic or violent reactions to fright. However, they somehow fail to provoke much debate even in the final moments of the last play where a loving boyfriend hoists an axe in a dark, desolate cabin and it appears that, at last, a fear is founded. Then again, when it comes to fear, it’s always better to be a spectator than an actual participant.