Funny and smart sketch show lampoons all sorts of amusing characters on the sexual spectrum
MR. TRUTH by Lauren Gillis and Alaine Hutton (Lester Trips Theatre/RISER Project). At Theatre Centre (1115 Queen West). Runs to April 24. $5-$60. theatrecentre.org. See listing. Rating: NNNN
If you’re wondering if this hilarious and disturbing absurdist-leaning sex-themed sketch show from Lauren Gillis and Alaine Hutton goes there, it does – and then some.
The duo’s deadpan yes-they-just-said-that characters lampoon all sorts of people along the sexual spectrum from dumb-ass “woke” dudes, to kinky goths, to women’s self-defense entrepreneurs with a taste for blood, as they fearlessly and fruitfully explore an array of intersections between lust and life.
In one scene, two men present a how-to for “mindful fingering,” a practice that amounts to listening and being responsive to their partner’s sexual needs – a bare minimum positioned by these clueless wide-eyed converts as some kind of life-altering insight worthy of their proselytizing. Another incisive skit imagines a woman’s conversation with her own anthropomorphized cervix (played by Gillis in an amazing costume packed with surprises) that quickly turns into an X-rated review of her eyebrow-raising sex choices.
In between live scenes and funny, well-produced videos projected onto the incubator space’s back wall are horror-inspired vignettes featuring a genuinely freaky demonic spectre, likely the titular Mr. Truth. The diverse collection of material generates the palpable excitement of not knowing which boundary they will challenge next – everything and anything seems fair game.
A perfect comedic think-piece as the #MeToo movement becomes more than a moment, this bold exploration of sex and sexuality revels in many of the Gordian Knot complexities flagged in recent months to which there are no easy answers.