Spotlight: Rise of the Celebretards: A-Crotch-Alypse Now!

Sending up celebrity culture might well be the equivalent of shooting tuna fish in a can. (As I type this, Gene Simmons is smirking on my TV screen, unctuous and smug in his trashiness—a meta-commentary on celebrity sprung to full, noxious life). And this summer production at the Brave New Workshop duly lines up and slaps the usual suspects. We have the tawdry spectacle of the televised entertainment crap-fest (Extratainment To-Now; just about lame enough to ring true), which degenerates throughout the night until Mike Fotis breaks down in a mix of tears and homicidal rage. Lauren Anderson pretends to be drunk out of her mind, which is only sort of funny until she's confronted by a stern Caleb McEwen. Anderson tells the boss his face is melting, then sensibly slams herself unconscious trying to escape the building. Joe Bozic plies a running gag about stalking a woman in the audience, with a pleased gleam in his eye that suggests it's funny because it might be true. There are times when BNW shows take unexpected curves and try out innovations in structure—the product of a cast that has worked together repeatedly. This isn't one of them, but it's a solid effort. Ultimately, the best line of the night comes after a dazed Anderson ostensibly returns from rehab as a Scientologist. On the run from Tom Cruise, she cries out, "He's like their Jesus, but he just won't die." Is it just a matter of time until Katie Holmes stars as Mary in Mel Gibson's next passion play?

 
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