This collection of comic sketches is formally titled Why We Can't Have Nice Things (or: The Peril of Choice), and this theme recurs throughout the show, from complaints about the excessive variety of Oreo cookies available to the number of names for the devil. Mostly, the humor revolves around modern life in today's United States, not shying away from the deep divides we are experiencing.
Writer Will, who also directed, presents a snappy series of highly literate sketches. As a grammar nerd, I was particularly entertained by jokes about language and etiquette. Will reminded me a bit of Saturday Night Live's Seth Meyers, not a bad reference for a comedy show.
|Jim Robinson and Dennis Curley|
Jim Robinson is convincing both as a disgruntled biology teacher forced to teach alternatives to evolution, and a guy no one wants to be in the steam room with. In another comedy reference, he bears an interesting resemblance to Fred Willard.
Jeffrey Cloninger commanded the stage whether complaining about cookies or accidentally losing his soul by not reading the fine print.
Throughout, we are reminded, not-so-subtly, that we all have a choice to make in November and the show's viewpoint is fairly obvious. But it's not didactic or preachy. Running a tight and sharp 90 minutes, ... Nice Things has a lot of laughs about things that are on all of our minds. And it's good to laugh when we can!