The Reverend Slappy White and his Comic Cavalcade of Comic All-Stars take over the Maverick Theater on Thurs. Jan. 26 with A Dolt’s Only Post-Inauguration Hangover Political Satire Pageant. That’s right: When Samantha Bee’s Full Frontal and The Daily Show are the only widespread antidotes to hysteria over the coming plunder, OC is lucky to have live, real time, we-are-all-in-the-same-room-within-the-same-boat-rushing-down-the-same-shit-creek solidarity.
Speaking for A Dolt’s Only is director Patrick Gwaltney, who is reining in the mayhem, that, he says, “will serve both as a release valve for those saddled with angst or anxiety over the inauguration, as well as a night where Trump Supporters, Trump Haters, and Trump Don’t Really Care-rers are all equally skewered.” Hurray for equal opportunity skewering! The Comic Cavalcade of Comic All-Stars are promising provocation, along with music and poetry, though the lampooning won’t be limited to the prez.
“Yes, Donald Trump will get his fair share of barbs,” said the director, “but we’re not holding back on poking fun at everyone, from Hillary and Bernie supporters, to that vast swath of America that didn’t even bother to vote. No one, and no thing, is above lampooning.”
Expect satirical homages of John Lennon and Grateful Dead songs; sketches involving internet trolls and bearded Russian prostitutes, inauguration eve at a Planned Parenthood clinic and an episode of the “Make America Great Again Mating Game.”
“We felt that a night where we could get together and just vent about all kinds of things is what we needed to do, as creative artists and Americans,” says Gwaltney, speaking for a cast that includes stalwart OC theater mavens Matt Tully, Melisa Cole, Terri Mowrey, Frank Tryon, Jami McCoy, Kalinda Gray, Jon Gaw and so many more. Our own Joel Beers is head writer and part of the musical festivities, along with Slim Raiford, Ezekiel St. James and Hugh Wilson. Kari Hawkey will read her poem that was published in a PEN Center USA post-election anthology called Only Light Can Do That; Nicholas Boicourt Jr. will read Langston Hughes’ “Let America Be America Again.”
My fervent hope is that there’s a reading of the fake news poem that purported to be the official inauguration poem but turns out is not; but, nevertheless, if read aloud verbatim is instant satire: Trump, “true friend to the migrant,” who “With purpose and strength he came down from his tower/To snatch from a tyrant his ill-gotten power.” Obama, a tyrant? Projection anyone? Then there’s the War on Women section that begins: “Whilst hapless old harridans flapping their traps/Teach women to look and behave like us chaps…” Though my favorite part glorifies the end of academe but then concludes by calling itself “learned.” Satire writing itself.
Difficult as it is to parody anything when every headline out-Onions the Onion, the Rev. Slappy White and his cohorts are more than ready to bite the hair of the dog. They’ve proven it with 20 years of irreverent, even “vile” Xma$ Pageants and the occasional Valentine’s Day massacre.
“We have to demonstrate our solidarity and commitment to dissent through our work,” says Gwaltney. “We’re less interested in lighting a candle, than lighting a fire under people’s asses.”
Clearly, A Dolt’s Only troupe is fired up to cure your hangover. Though the headache may never end, hopefully our asses will stay aflame.
A Dolt’s Only Post-Inauguration Hangover Political Satire Pageant at Maverick Theater, 110 E. Walnut Ave.., Fullerton, (714) 526-7070. Thurs., Jan. 26, 8 p.m. $10.
Lisa Black proofreads the dead-tree edition of the Weekly and writes about the arts and South County beaches. Her OC roots go back to the Cuckoo’s Nest but she left to create original theater on four continents, then returned to bodysurf small waves.