A Day in the Life of Chris' Kitchen | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

A Day in the Life of Chris' Kitchen 

A Day in the Life of Chris' Kitchen, TinFish Theatre. A sketch comedy revue with aspirations no higher than those of an office party talent show, this belly flop into moderately funny waters still produces a few chuckles.

The funniest bit in this hour-long production listens in on a gay phone sex line circa 1920, referencing Busby Berkeley and Esther Williams and using lines like "You're a fella who can handle his racket" to bring the caller to an aw-shucks climax you can't help but cheer. Like most of the tricks in this mixed comedic bag, it's amusingly naughty without being raunchy. The whole thing has a provincial feel, as though high school nerds had written a show the principal would tsk-tsk before stifling a giggle behind his program.

Not that such clean-cut humor doesn't work, especially when there's some smarts behind it. The entire cast shares authorship but no doubt it was a comparative-religion major (with a television-writing minor) who wrote the thoughtful and amusing sketch about a funeral at an indecisive agnostic church, a skit that keeps a one-joke idea consistently funny. A scene in a gun shop between a by-the-book owner and a persistently angry customer is both comical and topical. But what to make of the piece in which two actors sing a romantic duet about the battle between faith and reason to the tune of "The Rainbow Connection"? Neither humorous nor keen, it's out of place.

The so-co cast of seven friendly looking actors has very little stage presence, with the exception of the delightfully droll Shad Kunkle and a biting Amanda Davis.

--Erik Piepenburg

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