Friday, February 18, 2005

"Yo, What's yo name?"

"I'm MC Dick!"

Last night I took The Wife out to a show called "An Evening with Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood" and man, was it good! The best improv comedy I've seen. We both nearly pissed ourselves with laughter, and got good ab workouts in the process. I was worried that with only two of the usual suspects from "Whose Line Is It Anyway?' it might be a bit boring, but it was way better than the TV show. They used people from the audience a lot, including a university professor "rapping" the line at the top of this post.

It just wouldn't capture the humor to tell you about the games they did and things they came up with. The words "Richard's Vasectomy Barn" were uttered, though. The closing game had the entire theater roaring and doubling over. They've never done anything like it on the TV show, and made the perfect finale to the show.

I've been an improv fan for a while. There was an improv group called Theater Sports at my college that I saw a bunch of times. They had some really good people. They also had an element I've never seen in any other improv production: The Purple Fruit Thing. It was a stuffed toy that looked kind of like an eggplant, but not. The purpose of the Purple Fruit Thing was to end a scene that was bombing. Kind of like the gong in The Gong Show. When people were doing a lame scene, one member of the audience who had been entrusted with the PFT responsibility would launch the feared toy onstage, terminating the scene and humiliating the performers. It was great. The audiences were really enthusiastic and creative, too.

I went to an improv performance in Denver that was really good. For my "bee sting" suggestion they showed Andy Griffith fishing while someone whistled the Andy Griffith theme. Then one of the actors, in a wig and pretending to be a drunk Aunt Bea, walked by and said "Opie's gay." I don't know how they came up with that so fast. The audience in Denver, though was pretty lame. Either they didn't know they were supposed to participate, or they had no imagination. I was shouting stuff out all night, trying to give the actors things they would have trouble working with. I think my then wife was kind of embarrassed, but one woman came up to me during an intermission to ask me what something I yelled out meant, and to praise my suggestions. Take THAT ex-wife! (BTW, I suggested "consternation" for an emotion. It stumped the actors.)

But the audience last night in Utah was very active (some too active). The people who wrote random lines of speech for the guys to pick and read during a scene provided some very good material.

So if you get a chance to see Colin and Brad on tour, I whole-heartedly recommend it.

iPod: "Judas My Heart" by Belly, "Grace Car Part One" by Braid, and "Dio" by Tenacious D.