By Catherine Wagley
By Channing Sargent
By L.A. Weekly critics
By Amanda Lewis
By Catherine Wagley
By Carol Cheh
By Keegan Hamilton
By Bill Raden
GO THE COMPLICATIONS OF PURCHASING A POODLE PILLOW The brilliance of Mary Lynn Rajskub’s standup act stems from a kind of bewildered, inarticulate persona who goes off on digressions and deliberately neglects to finish stories. The disarray is a con; by show’s end, it all adds up. Because of Chloe – her character on Fox’s 24 -- she says she was invited to a counter-terrorism panel hosted by Rush Limbaugh, who, in a moment of introduction, accidentally kissed her on the lips. After rumors of their affair spread around the country, she e-mailed Limbaugh, asking for a date — the response was blistering. If none of this is actually true, it’s even more impish and delightful. Steve Allen Theater at the CENTER FOR INQUIRY–WEST, 4773 Hollywood Blvd., Hlywd.; Sun., 8 p.m.; (no perfs first Sunday of every month); indef. (800) 595-4TIX. (SLM)
GO DANNY AND THE DEEP BLUE SEA I’m not really a fan of Danny and the Deep Blue Sea, John Patrick Shanley’s 1984 “Apache dance” for two actors. A richly textured examination of generic emotions, it’s been done here so often because it offers a showcase for a man and woman who meet in a Bronx bar to play the walking wounded from the lower depths, slide into a moonlit fantasy of love and marriage in her modest bedroom, and then wake to find themselves in a wrestling match with that same fantasy. But actors Deborah Dir and Daniel De Weldon play out Shanley’s Apache dance with scrupulous honesty and attention to the details of blackened knuckles and bruised pasts, we see the art and craft of being, the sacred authenticity of it in a world of fakery. ELEPHANT PERFORMANCE LAB, 1076 N. Lillian Way, Hlywd.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; thru Sept. 1. (323) 960-7753. (SLM)
DO DO LOVE Laura Richardson’s “comedy with drama” about four eccentric characters. OPEN FIST THEATER, 6209 Santa Monica Blvd., Hlywd.; Mon.-Tues., Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 3 p.m.; thru Sept. 1. (323) 882-6912.
GO A DOLL’S HOUSE See New Reviews.
EAVESDROPPER In Andrew Libby’s slightly funny, messy comedy, the mise en scène is an apartment where a large, clamant group of young people have gathered for some good times. Unbeknownst to the revelers, an uninvited guest (Pedro Shanahan) slips in and hides behind the shower curtain, his sinister presence embellished by a Mohawk hairdo, Goth makeup and drug-addled stare. The scenario is redolent of a wild frat party, with plenty of sex, drugs, booze and hell-raising. The rotating cast of 50-plus can’t do much good with this moribund material. No director is credited, and the reason is obvious. THE COMPLEX, 6470 Santa Monica Blvd., Hlywd. Fri.-Sat., 8 & 10 p.m.; Sun., 8 p.m.; thru Sept. 2. (323) 365-8305. (LE3)
GO GROUNDLINGS YEARBOOK See New Reviews.
GO HAVANA BOURGEOISPolitics is “just a bunch of old rich white men fighting over money” proclaims Manuel (Theodore Borders), the Afro-Cuban errand boy at an advertising agency in 1958 Havana. The statement portends the communist revolution, which slowly but surely transforms the life of each employee in the agency’s art department during the course of Carlos Lacámara’s play. Despite the at times heavy and political nature of the drama, humor undercuts the tension. Director Jon Lawrence Rivera brings to life the well-delineated characters of Lacámara. A Fixed Mark Production at THE HAYWORTH THEATRE, 2509 Wilshire Blvd., L.A.; Fri.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 7 p.m.; thru Sept. 16. (213) 389-9680. (MK)
GO HEADS EM Lewis’ intense drama portrays the nightmare of four Western hostages in Iraq. American engineer Harold Wolfe (James Eckhouse) has been held in isolation for six months when Caroline (Beth Broderick), a British Embassy employee, is tossed into his tiny, dank holding cell, gagged and blindfolded. Meanwhile, in a neighboring cubicle, two journalists (Jeremy Gabriel and J. Richey Nash) clash over whether to attempt an escape. Under Darin Antony’s direction, the question of who we are beneath our posturing lands with such force, it jangles the nerves long after the play has ended. THE BLANK THEATRE, 6500 Santa Monica Blvd., Hlywd.; Thurs.-Sat., 8 p.m.; Sun., 2 p.m.; thru Sept. 23. (323) 661-9827. (DK)
GO THE IDIOT BOX Michael Elyanow’s beguiling parody of sitcoms unfolds in a capacious New York penthouse shared by six friends. This disparate group provides comic fodder for most of the first act, as they become embroiled in familiar sitcom foibles embellished with laugh tracks. Just when you get the impression that this is all nothing more than an trivial sitcom run amok, the mood subtly darkens, the sound effects cease and reality intrudes. Elyanow’s intelligent script is rife with humor and irony, and is superbly augmented by Jeremy B. Cohen’s perceptive direction of the fine cast. NEW OPEN FIST THEATRE, 6209 Santa Monica Blvd., Hlywd.; Fri.-Sat, 8 p.m.; Sun., 7 p.m., thru Sept. 8. (323) 882-6912 (LE3)
GO THE IDIOTSSomewhere between the insanity of Monty Python, the cynicism of Penn and Teller and the stupidity of the Three Stooges exists this bizarre comedy by writer-performers Craig Anton and Ron Lynch. The conceit framing their wild physical and verbal antics is the reunion of two rivals — respectively the sons of Watson and Crick, who discovered DNA. With the appearance of a guest comic, the hour show flies by with humor and even some human insight and pathos beneath the Idiots’ smug stupidity, a sadness that stems from their emotional slavery to their much smarter and famous fathers. STEVE ALLEN THEATER, 4773 Hollywood Blvd., Los Feliz; last Thurs. of the month, 8 p.m.; indef. (800) 595-4TIX. (TP)