Live Review: DBaG at iO
Some of the notes a critic scribbles in a darkened theater or comedy club can look pretty garbled in the light of day. In the case of DBaG, a a new sketch show currently playing at iO's Del Close Theater, I'm left to interpret words and phrases from my notebook like well done Barry Hite, mom sex act and threesome rap. Here's what I think they mean:
DBaG is an enjoyable showcase of the combined talents of sketch and improvising veterans Dina Facklis, Barry Hite and George McAuliffe. Although the show opens with a recurring sketch about anti-motivational speakers at a high school assembly that's alternately funny and tedious, the best scenes are the ones ripped straight from the pages of everyday life. It's the magic of iO training at work and it pays off, in places, in spades. My scribbled note about Barry Hite refers to an early scene in which he plays a down-on-his-luck guy trying to throw a bachelor party for his best friend. The scene is sad, funny and tender all at once.
There are more like this. My note, mom sex act, refers to one of the best sketch scenes I've seen so far this year in which a mom and son share an embarrasing, but ultimately triumphant, moment that happens in a car (sort of). The child in effect becomes the parent in a scene that I'd rather not spoil by saying too much more about, but sufficed to say Facklis and McAuliffe are both marvelous. McAuliffe plays the son with both the innocence and newfound wisdom that comes with maturity, while Facklis is great as the fumbling mother.
But I enjoyed some of the sillier scenes as well and these included a father teaching his kids tough love when it comes to the family dog, a rap about three best friends having a three-way (hence my other note) and a hillbilly funeral. DBaG is full of good scenes and even better characters (pay attention to the way these three nail the mannerisms of everyday people).
Kudos to Facklis, Hite and McAuliffe for finding truth their comedy. Del would be proud.