Immaculate Deception | Performing Arts Review | Chicago Reader

Immaculate Deception 

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Fairly funny rather than unfairly cute, Second City E.T.C.'s 28th revue begins and ends with wry ballads about the cruelty of cool ("apathy is sexy") and the usefulness of scapegoats. (But in a flagrant example of hip reductionism, one hapless audience member gets blamed for everything awful in America.) Hit-and-run sketches take aim at the stupidity of intelligent design, fundamentalists, personalized ring tones, self-fulfilling fears, fantasy football, and Chicago's VA office. When high school students bare their souls in letters to Rahm Emanuel, his form-letter responses dutifully and hilariously insert their problems. Jim Carlson's brand-new Second Citizens are occasionally irritating, indulging in too much screaming and mugging. But more often Immaculate Deception proves the value of the shock of recognition. Open run: Thu 8 PM, Fri-Sat 8 and 11 PM, Sun 7 PM. No show Thu 11/24. $18-$24. + Free improv sessions follow regular shows Thu 10 PM, late Sat 1 AM, and Sun 9 PM. Second City E.T.C., Piper's Alley, 1608 N. Wells, 312-337-3992.

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