Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Men in Tights. And Heels. And Wigs.

My husband and I went to the Hasty Pudding show the other night (hey, I don't live near Broadway; this is the closest I can come to competing with Kristina's show reviews). For those who don't know, the Hasty Pudding is Harvard's answer to RuPaul: college boys in drag. Here are a couple of them kissing up to Ben Stiller, in a very skanky bra and headband. The show they put on is what you might expect from college boys: some slapstick, some bad jokes, some self-deprecating jokes, a lot of awful puns, and a woman with three breasts. If this doesn't sound funny to you, well, that's why I recommend a two martini minimum. Everything is a lot funnier after two martinis, but especially a group of guys trying to dance in high heels (bonus: one guy lost his wig during it!). Also, it really mellows you out while trying to find the lone unoccupied parking space in Cambridge, and then squeezing your car into it.

Anyway, where was I going with this? Oh, yeah, copy Kristina's reviews. The show this year is called The Tent Commandments. A freak show and a circus are existing, testily, side-by-side, until they actually read the Tent Commandments (the tablets look just like the ones Charlton Heston had), and find out that they can't exist side-by-side. There's a subplot about a Frenchie who wants to assassinate an elephant, a witchdoctor who can't quite get her spells straight, and a lovelorn three-breasted woman who wonders why she can't find a man who loves her ("Because nobody's got three hands!" the other characters tell her). Even the names are jokes: the trapeze artist is named Will U. Bellomy. Say it quickly. Emphasize the O.

So we're watching this show, groaning at times, laughing at others (remember the martinis), and what should appear in this show, written by college guys, starring college guys, performed by college guys in dresses, but romance. Not one, not two, but three romantic relationships! Four, if you include the elephant's unrequited passion for the French guy. And it made me think (much later--those were good martinis) that romance pops up way, way, way more than people think. Star Wars. Terminator. Every sitcom and medical drama on TV. For all those condescending stories about 'bodice rippers' and 'chick porn,' there's an awful lot of romance woven into every genre of entertainment.

So where's the most unexpected place--TV show, book, movie, YouTube clip--you've seen a romance play out? And did the romance help or hurt the rest of the work?

5 comments:

Ann Christopher said...

Hi, Caroline--

It's not "unexpected," but I love the simmering romance between Pam and Jim on THE OFFICE, although my husband swears it ruins the show. I think it's the best thing about the show. Ah, well.

Ann

Lois said...

I'm going to take this slightly differently because it was unexpected that I ever had a chance on going, but last October maybe, I saw Pride and Prejudice on stage as part of the NJ Shakespeare festival. :) So, well, I guess the romance part is obvious. LOL

The strange part is the guy who played Wickham, he was on the soaps Another World and Guiding Light (he's why I started watching GL!) and when he came on stage, it was so strange. I mean, here's me and here's him in the same room and the room doesn't have a television. LOL :)

Lois

Caroline Linden said...

You and him and no TV, huh, Lois. Sounds kinky. :-)

I just think it's funny how romance gets injected into places and things that seem to have nothing to do with romance. My husband watched Armageddon (I think it was called) about the giant asteroid coming to destroy the earth. And it's all macho pilots and nuclear bombs and stuff, and then there's Liv Tyler, and a romance plot.

Kristina Cook said...

I'm with Ann regarding Jim and Pam on The Office--I mean, it's a crazy-funny comedy. Who would expect such an intriguing romance to play out?

I started watching the show simply because it is SO funny--but it was the Jim/Pam storyline that hooked me, that made it so that I now plan my social calendar *around* Thursday nights.

Lois said...

Ooh, I guess I kind of worded that a tiny bit wrong, huh? LOL :)

Lois