Review: 'A Christmas Carol Unscripted'

December 5, 2013
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If other holiday show are too tame for you, consider visiting ComedySportz’s “A Christmas Carol Unscripted” (Fridays through Dec. 23). You can even make it a double feature if you sneak out during the curtain call of "A Very Phoenix Xmas 8: Angels We Have Heard While High"—as I did—and hustle down the block to Mass Ave. (Watch for a review of the Phoenix show in the Dec. 9 IBJ.)

What doubling up this way up won’t allow for is time to settle into the ComedySportz Theatre, order a snack, and scribble down movie quotes, song lyrics and random sentences. These scraps, dropped into onstage buckets, are used throughout the show as the improvisation team modifies the familiar story, incorporating whatever anonymous lines they happen to draw.

If the crowd when you go is anything like the crowd on my visit, the slips of paper will be rich with “Anchorman” quotes, scatological insults and descriptions of sexual gymnastics. (In case it isn’t clear already, be aware that, unlike the usual fun fare at ComedySportz, this Dickens spoof is for adults only.)

The Nov. 29 opening-night performance featured a cast of local improv vets, rolling with whatever craziness was thrown at them and instigating much of it themselves. Opening with a made-up-on-the-spot madrigal, working a street song into the mix, and creating hilarious and very specific variations on Scrooge (thanks to audience suggestion, a crack dealer) and his visiting ghosts, the show provided exactly what should be expected: laughs by the sleigh-load.

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  1. Those of you yelling to deport them all should at least understand that the law allows minors (if not from a bordering country) to argue for asylum. If you don't like the law, you can petition Congress to change it. But you can't blindly scream that they all need to be deported now, unless you want your government to just decide which laws to follow and which to ignore.

  2. 52,000 children in a country with a population of nearly 300 million is decimal dust or a nano-amount of people that can be easily absorbed. In addition, the flow of children from central American countries is decreasing. BL - the country can easily absorb these children while at the same time trying to discourage more children from coming. There is tension between economic concerns and the values of Judeo-Christian believers. But, I cannot see how the economic argument can stand up against the values of the believers, which most people in this country espouse (but perhaps don't practice). The Governor, who is an alleged religious man and a family man, seems to favor the economic argument; I do not see how his position is tenable under the circumstances. Yes, this is a complicated situation made worse by politics but....these are helpless children without parents and many want to simply "ship" them back to who knows where. Where are our Hoosier hearts? I thought the term Hoosier was synonymous with hospitable.

  3. Illegal aliens. Not undocumented workers (too young anyway). I note that this article never uses the word illegal and calls them immigrants. Being married to a naturalized citizen, these people are criminals and need to be deported as soon as humanly possible. The border needs to be closed NOW.

  4. Send them back NOW.

  5. deport now

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