Exquisite Corpse | Comedy review
Funny and peculiar are two different things. Exquisite Corpse, a monthly show starring, written and produced by high-minded sketch group Claymore Productions, is occasionally funny and definitely peculiar. They perform the second Saturday of each month at 10:30pm at Stage 773.
The group films each performance and uploads it to their website. I was hoping that Saturday's show would be available now at their site at claymoreproductions.com so that I could rewatch it and attempt to stitch together a review of what I saw. Alas, it wasn't there as of this writing. But from what I can tell, the loose narrative that tied the sketches together had something to do with a rebel movement trying to overthrow the oppressive Brotherhood and its house-music driven ideology. Dixieland music is forbidden and women compete for the title Miss Jessica of the Brotherhood. Hey Claymore guys reading this, am I close?
There was a scene set at a book burning, a curious little sketch that did take a few funny swipes at the the self-help tome He's Just Not That Into You and the Garfield comic strip. In another, a guy panhandling on the El calls out his fellow passengers for their silence and in the show's funniest sketch, a guy mourning the death of his grandmother (who was blown up) has a hard time coming to terms with the fact she may have been murdered.
Mostly, the sketches were head scratchers (perhaps it's my frame of reference). The Lady Liberty of Dixie (a dude in drag) struts around in a kimono and feather boa shouting, "Hey boy, ain't I a woman?" to her cabal of shirtless servants. A sepia-toned film clip has the cast imitating the Little Rascals (I think). I was intrigued by the show and I was impressed by their level of commitment and attention to detail, but a hilarious show this wasn't.
Stand-up comic Jesse Baltes opened. He's great with crowd work and at one point talked about how after men are done urinating they sometimes have an extra squirt or two still lingering. One time, says Baltes, he was caught with his fly undone wiping a little extra pee off his penis. After the show at Stage 773 let out, I found myself washing up in the bathroom and who should be standing next to me at the sink, hesitating ever so slightly, but Baltes himself. Now that made me laugh.