When Irate Eyes Are Smiling

The Year in Bad Theater

SEPTEMBER Nearly half of the approximately 45 people who show up to see an all-male version of Oscar Wilde's The Importance of Being Earnest in Fullerton flee the show during intermission, upset by the sight of men dressed up as women. Somewhere, Mel Gibson smiles.

OCTOBER Something really bad happened this month. But the details are all fuzzy. All hail the glory of wet brain!

NOVEMBER The Guys, a two-person play about the personal fallout of Sept. 11, opens at the Vanguard. The play is sincere, if very boring, leading one rascally wag's date for the Sunday matinee to despise it so much that, upon conclusion, he turns and wraps his hands around said rascally wag's throat and hisses, "If you ever take me to a fucking play again, I'll kill you." The artistic director of the theater is two feet behind him.

DECEMBER Theater Editor Rich Kane passes on at least one rascally wag's half-hearted request to review the Glory of Christmas, something the Weekly hasn't touched in many years, not since said rascally wag wrote that the show was most offensive because it's staged inside a church that is a sterling reminder of how so many institutions have grown "fat and bloated on the blood of Christ." The Thursday performance is the show that would have been reviewed—the same night the Crystal Cathedral's musical director held himself hostage before killing himself. Just as knee-slapping funny, that weekend in Fullerton, the Reverend Slappy White's A Dolt's Only Xma$pageant goes off at Stages, with two of the most offensive highlights being Scott Peterson gratefully announcing that his ordeal has all been worth it, as it's led him closer to God and his spiritual side, and a white guy portraying Kobe Bryant in black face. Somewhere, Mel Gibson smiles.

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