jasonrene | Chicago Reader

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Re: “Superboobs: A Superhero Burlesque Adventure

I've been to a few Gorilla Tango Burlesque shows by now, and by far my most favorite thing to do is to bring people with me who have never before seen shows like what GTB puts on. I enjoy this mostly because, about 5 months ago, I was just like those newbie friends: feeling enthused about the pretty funny concept that I was about to see, but also feeling a little on-edge about what this whole 'burlesque' thing was. Burlesque was not really on my radar in terms of weekend theatrical entertainment. All I knew of it was what I had seen in movies, and nothing I had ever seen seemed like it would fit in with the comedy / parody themes that GTB incorporates into their shows.

So each time another newbie joins to see one of these shows, I have almost as much fun seeing their reactions as I do seeing the beautifully bouncing boobs of the performers on stage.

"I thought they were going to be porn stars!" one female friend said after the premiere of Superboobs. "But they were just real women, funny and sexy and confident with their own bodies! That was so awesome!!"

(I decided not to debate her subtle assertion that porn stars aren't real women. She was making a good point that didn't need any derailing.)

The takeaway from this is what I find to be the most important thing to spell out for the uninitiated in order to convince them that it's okay to come to the theater: you are not going to a strip club. You are going to see a hilarious parody centered around a geek theme that is near and dear to your heart. Yes, there are boobs. And they are great. And you should bring tip money to throw in the pot because that's what you're supposed to do. But it is a show, and it's a show you're going to love.

Superboobs treats us to several burlesque versions of characters from the Marvel and DC universes, including Superman, Batman, Iron Man, Wolverine, The Joker, Harley Quinn, and ubiquitous henchmen. The story includes some fun audience participation, and we can choose which side to be on. (It would be awesome if the ending alters based on our choice. Go see the show multiple times, and let me know if the ending changes.)

In terms of performance stamina, I was most impressed with The Joker and Harley Quinn actresses, who are on stage nearly the entire time. I felt as though maybe The Joker wouldn't be so mean and killy if someone would just offer her a glass of water every now and then to keep her from getting parched.

That is not to detract from the performances of the other actresses, of course. From the moment Clark Kent transforms so seductively into Superman (there's a phrase I never imagined I would say in my life), all the way through to Wolverine's usage of adamantium blades to remove those pesky clothes, each hoot and holler from the audience is well-deserved.

Long story long, Superboobs is a great way to spend your Saturday night. If you've never been to a burlesque show before, start here. You'll have a blast. [Says The Joker: LITERALLY. HAHAHA!]

6 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by jasonrene on 04/17/2012 at 8:53 PM

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