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Flashdance

Sketch group proves they’re no flash in the pan with ‘Suckiest Show Ever,' while Eliza Skinner gets 'Shameless.'


Pictured: Flashes De Quincy (Jerry Michaels, Seth Kirschner, Aubrey Plaza and Todd Blass), and Eliza Skinner.

Sketch comedy group Flashes De Quincy presents a sketch show with attitude, filled with irreverent mocking parody and lampoons -- of both TV programs and personality types, in an occasional ongoing run at the UCB Theatre.

Titled ‘The Suckiest Show Ever,’ the show takes on all things that, well, suck, beginning with a frat boy-type who doesn’t realize he suffers from ‘chronic suck disorder’ -- played by group standout Todd Blass.

Blass proves versatile with accents and characters throughout the group’s show, including bits such as Brooklyn-accented “Deli Guys” opining on their own cable access show, and a Frenchman to boot, in another piece.

Of course, he’s ably supported by castmates Seth Kirschner -- who often has the role of straight man, as the doctor diagnosing the “suck disorder,” among other roles; Aubrey Plaza, who presents equally vivid characters and gets some choice dialogue -- while playing the “suck” sufferer’s girlfriend, she says, “Maybe the doctor’s retarded;” and also Jerry Michaels, who’s vivid and expressive in several parts.

The saga of “clinical suck disorder” is actually played out with Blass’ character recurring in bits throughout the show that up the ante successfully. And together, the whole group makes good use of video in the one segment they present in that format, a parody of an MTV dating show.

Flashes De Quincy are well worth catching, as is Eliza Skinner, whose “Shameless” one-person showcase of characters was paired with them May 26. Skinner evokes something of a nostalgia for the recent past, setting up intermingled interludes featuring three characters with captions that set the time and place based on odd items like a certain day’s Red Sox score, what episode of Law & Order was running on what channel, and notable points in the career of obscure rock musician Tom Cochrane.

But it’s the characters that make Skinner’s show of course, and they are inventive, mining a cringe factor for their humor -- like the new mom lusting after a 14-year-old boy in the neighborhood, a vapid club-going girl, and an addled mom who tries too hard to be her 10-year-old daughter’s friend. Skinner successfully creates enough variation between these personas to make them distinctive.

“The Suckiest Show Ever” returns June 30 with “My Big Fat” (reviewed here). Eliza Skinner’s “Shameless” returns June 23 with “My Big Fat.”

  

   

     

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