by Ed Malin · August 15, 2014
Looking for high-energy live sketch comedy with subtly recurring themes? It’s called 20/400 - Sketchy As F*ck. I guess that’s because when see it, you might not believe your eyes.
Performers Lauren Olson, Christian Paluck, and Jana Schmieding excel at changing personalities very quickly. Their large collection of wigs and 1983-chic works so well in the universe they create.
My favorite sketch features a modern-day Adonis (see also: "player", "dawg") who hollers at his lady friend to request a booty call. The only problem is, she's in bed with broken legs and a neck brace. Somehow, he convinces her to "crutch on over" to his place, which trek continues in episodes spaced throughout the show. It looks like they both have bizarre needs. Speaking of, there is a scene featuring a hungry hobo from bygone years. She knocks on the door of a nursing mother, and oh-so-eloquently requests special nourishment only available there. Wow. Who saw that coming? And how does the mannish-looking woman who works at the children's zoo feel when people keep getting her gender wrong? The show asks such poignant questions, then moves on with lightning speed yet craftily finds a way to reconnect all the plot lines in the end.
There are also some hilarious videos by Brian Berlin and Matt Antonucci: a well-preserved, somewhat yappy Carol Channing sells the f*ck out of some dog food; a wise rustic peddles elk steaks and pheromones, which we get to see put to good use.
Throw in some pop music and dance parodies, and you have a production that shows a rainbow spectrum of humanity, all of whom behave outlandishly but understandably. I would like to see more of the group's work.