Friday, December 7, 2007

Live Review: Worst Laid Plans in NYC

Los Angeles' popular "Worst Laid Plans: True Stories of Terrible Sex" storytelling showcase made a nice two night run at the Upright Citizen's Brigade Theater in New York City, bringing with it a multitude of orgasms, groans, and more than its share of sexual hilarity.

Playing off the group monologist template that has achieved varied success (see "Vagina Monologues"; "Marijuanalogues" not so much)"Worst Laid Plans" feels like a female comedian's retort to the Eve Ensler standard, and within the vein of live comedy, it works, albeit to mixed results.

Adorned in black shirts with various numbers on each cast member denoting their respective number of sexual partners, the beautiful, gay and hilarious Tymberlee Chanel opens with an account of her first "girl-on-girl" sexual experience. It was a great jumping off point, as Chanel provided just the right amount of energy, animation, and emphasis ("Get ya tittie off my thigh") to great comedic effect.

Sadly, her fellow performers lagged in energy at times, whether it be because of the weakness of the material ("the Daniel Day-Lewis Farting Rapist" or "the Clump") or a longwinded seemingly going-through-the-motions effort, as in Matt McConkey's potentially hilarious song about being the token gay man in a female sexual empowerment show, that felt forced, if not strained.

The strength of the show lies in its reality, by establishing a semblance of genuine sentiment for the material, the stronger monologists stood out (Casey Wilson, Erin Pineda) while others whimpered. Maybe it was due to the fact that the show had been running in LA for sometime,or maybe it was first night jitters performing in NYC; whatever it was, the energy and rhythm of the show rolled like a tidal wave that lost steam almost immediately.

Guest monologists Jackie Clarke and Amy Poehler added a nice energy to the proceedings, and looking at past guests (Mary Lynn Rajkub, Janeane Garofalo) it's easy to see that the show's success in many ways has been maintained by a rotating door of guest female comedians.

Hearing about sexual horror stories is an old cultural past time, whether it be the bullshit sessions of adolescent locker rooms or Sundays at the hair salon. They're all gruesome, and they're all funny; some more so than others.

1 painful displays of affection:

hachamagacha December 26, 2007 at 2:02 PM  

Interesting....Amy Poehler was actually doubled-over with belly laughs during McConkey's "forced, if not strained" tune, but hey, if a reputable blogger like you says so...

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