Charleston City Paper Review


Charleston City Paper

Singular Sensation

Woo Pig Sooie! with Matt Besser

What is it? Upright Citizens Brigade founding member Matt Besser returns to Charleston and Theatre 999 for a one-man show that takes a bitingly funny look at American politics, religion, and their pompous intersection in his life.
Why see it? Besser, the creator of Crossballs, one of the funniest television comedies in recent history, delivers a singular comic voice in much the same vein as David Cross, with a similarly sarcastic and accurate take on how ridiculous mainstream Americna society can be. He puts the “A” in Arkansas, atheist and “hole.”
Who should go? Fans of The Daily ShowThe Colbert Report, and the first half of the Bible.
Buzz: Probably the best one-man show The Have Hots! have brought to town since the late Spalding Gray.

-Bill Davis May 24, 2006


Charleston City Paper

Woo Pig Sooie! – Absolutely Kosher

Want to know how to get an audience interested before you’ve even walked on stage? As the world-wise (and -weary) Matt Besser must’ve figured, having a gigantic, red plastic hat shaped like a wild hog sitting near the microphone is a fiarly good bet.

Besser’s one-man show, Woo Pig Sooie!, was a hilarious and somewhat stream-of-conscioiusness combination of sharp social criticism disguised as religion jokes, stand-up, and storytelling. The Arkansas native emerged dressed in full U of Ark. Razorbacks regalia in keeping with a theme he used to great effect throughout the show. He began by discussing his religous zealot of a grandmother, who, in her waning years, began sending actual letters to God (complete with return address) that simply contained short messages like “Julie and family” (Julie being Besser’s mother). This segued into a bit where he read some completely ridonkulous prayers he found on the internet about cast members from Punky Brewsterand the show just kept rolling from there.

Besser’s laid-back delivery belied a razor(back)-sharp insight into the many inane problems swarming America these days, including (but not limited to): the evolution/”intelligent design” debate, publicly posting the Ten Commandments, gay marriage amendments, the cult of Catholicism (“All a religon is is an old cult”), and, in fairness to his half-Jewish heritage, the absurdity of not driving on the Sabbath.

As a co-founder of the Upright Citizens Brigade comedy troupe, Besser’s command of improvisation shined through in his off-the-cuff interactions with the audience. After a gentlmen got up (presumably to go to the bathroom), Besser remarked hat it “must’ve been the joke about the Virgin Mary’s clit” that scared him away.

The show hit a bit of a premature climax when Besser presented his “new Ten Commandments,” a list that include scuh soon-to-be-timeless admonishments as: “#1: Don’t touch me. #4: Don’t Bogart that joint!” and the clincher, “#10: Dont’ be so uptight about asshole sex.” He then instructed the audience to “go ahead, just give it a try when you get home tonight. And write me an email and tell me all aboutit. With pictures.”

Woo Pig Sooie! was a fantastic one-man monologue/rant/routine that somehow managed to be vulgar, rip-snortingly hilarious, and touching. Yes, touching. And we guarantee you’ll never say “God bless you” the same way again.

-Sara Miller June 7, 2006

 

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