I never imagined myself having to critique God but here I am reviewing the Almighty in this ninety minute one act stand-up comedy routine starring the droll and personable Jim Parsons who delivers most of God’s schtick sitting down on his white sofa accompanied by two angels with enormous wings: Gabriel (Tim Kazurinsky) reading and quoting from his Gutenberg Bible and Michael (Christopher Fitzgerald) roaming the audience and asking obviously prepared questions by the playwright David Javerbaum who has won multiple Emmys adapting this “act” on his book – The Last Testament: A Memoir by God and his Twitter account @TheTweetOfGod which has 1.94 million followers that should keep Studio 54 full for its entire run.
That is if you like this sort of stuff, remember your Bible stories from Sunday School and adore the man in charge – Jim Parsons aka Sheldon Cooper of THE BIG BANG THEORY.
Holding forth on a heavenly set designed by Scott Pask (with a grand MGM type stairway to Heaven) and divinely lit by Hugh Vanstone, Jim Parsons greets his flock of faithful Sheldon followers with some corny jokes and some up-to-the-minute celebrity barbs with his “off-beat” charm that mostly holds our attention but is certainly not worthy of the cost.
It’s an update on The Ten Commandments, the nature of existence, the Creation, Evolution, masturbation (with a small “m”) as seen through rainbow colored eyes with a very gay agenda.
Late comers will be admonished with a great line and a cell phone (planted) gives God the opportunity to take a “selfie” with his two angels. There is even a bid at selling some AN ACT OF GOD merchandise to help fill out the production’s allotted time slot.
An overlong rendition of the Abraham and Job sagas makes one hungry for the very funny barbs and observations of this particular Almighty. Jim Parsons handles himself well, is in full control and is as funny as his material will allow. But when death is dealt with – what’s funny becomes uncomfortably questionable.
Joe Mantello directs as he did in Bette Midler’s riff on Sue Mengers – I’LL EAT YOU LAST. It appears that he has a penchant for his stars sitting on sofas while dishing.
Only here there is a lot of Thee and Thine and Thou’s thrown in. And a song for good measure.
All in all AN ACT OF GOD is pure Parsons. If you love the man you’ll adore his self- deprecating, imperfect Almighty who will leave you with that oft quoted adage “to have faith in yourself.”
At that old den of iniquity Studio 54. Through August 2nd ONLY
Photo: Jeremy Daniel
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