The Good Boy and the Kid is one of those shows where you want to be onstage instead of in the audience, because everyone up there just seems to be having so damn much fun. Every performance, however silly, is also completely assured. From the ferocious Wrolson on down, everyone’s committed to the bit — even when the bit, as in Hamburger’s case, turns out to be a ball gag.
The Good Boy And The Kid is loud and sweet and silly and sad and deeply, deeply strange, but it’s a hell of a good time. You should go treat yourself. And keep an eye on Sheep Theater. You should be catching every weird thing they do. It’s some of the best theater going on out there right now.
Add Sheep Theater (the cheeky brainchild of Joey Hamburger, Iris Rose Page, and Michael Hugh Torsch) to the list of young theater companies I want to follow very closely over the coming years. If the energy and creativity behind Tamburlaine is any indication, Sheep Theater is liable to take off like a rocket.
“I like to paint,” said Joey Hamburger, sitting at the Spyhouse on Nicollet on Tuesday night. “Every time I paint it starts with a sheep, so I have a lot of paintings of sheep.”
It’s comedy the way I like it, smart as well as funny. You can just coast along on the jokes and ridiculous situations, or you can ponder a bit, depending on your mood. But you won’t feel dumb or disrespected when it’s over. (Plus, as an added bonus, there’s a surf rock version of Hava Nagila.) Deus Ex Machina is a win all the way around in that regard. (There’s a joke about believing in the power of theater again to deal honestly with religion, but I think I’ll let that pass as well. You don’t need puns from me, you need to go see Hamburger’s comedy instead.)
Well, of course. We've all seen the story before. What creators Joey Hamburger and Michael Hugh Torsch have done is ramp up the absurdity to the breaking point. Hamburber's Rainsford is more than just a vain hunter, he's a very stupid one as well. Tosch's Zaroff takes his barking madness to the extreme. It's up to Iris Page as Eve to provide some sanity.
I just loved it. This is exactly the sort of thing I hope to find in a small, low-budget production: a smart script, the right casting and a clear idea of what the show is all about.