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Comedy Thu Oct 04 2012

The Annoyance's "Zombie Genius" has Brains and Heart

zombiegenius.jpg Halloween-month -- or as some people call it, October -- is one of my favorite months, because everything is monster-themed, and I have an Addams Family sense of humor. To start Halloween-month off right, I went to the Annoyance Theatre to see the preview of Zombie Genius, directed by Ryan McDermott and written by McDermott and the rest of the cast.

In Zombie Genius, the zombie apocalypse has apocalypsed and now zombies -- excuse me, I mean "Deceased Americans" as they prefer to be called -- want equal rights, too. Go figure.

The show centers around Albert the "zombie genius" -- the one Deceased American who has a special mutation that lets him human-speak and not just say "bwains" all the time (although one human in particular can interpret these grunts). Because Albert is the only one who can human-speak, he must be the rotting-mouthpiece for a whole group of "second class" citizens.

He's on a mission of tolerance and acceptance, but oh wait, that decaying, open flesh wound we humans call love kind-of gets in the way.

While Albert is passing out flyers for an upcoming rally, he runs into the girl of his undead dreams. Humans and zombies usually don't interact -- zombies can't communicate through much more than grunts -- but Albert is a zombie genius, so he can talk and easily wins over the human-woman.

At its rotting core, Zombie Genius is a romantic comedy mixed with some horror (think: Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne). The thought of romantic comedies usually makes me feel worse than my annual Halloween candy binge, but come on man, zombies! People in love are boring, but zombies and love are a little livelier.

Along with the love component, Zombie Genius has a lot of brains when it comes to its dialogue and establishing relationships. Albert's roommate Tim is really funny in that cheesy sort of way that makes certain people endearing, if not lovable obnoxious, in real life. Albert's zombie-brother Bwains -- played by Connor Tillman -- is a really great comedic monster. Even with all the grunting and a melting face, Bwains is a standout. For me, Bwains (especially his musical talent) was the funniest part of the show.

During the course of his relationship, Albert sings to his girlfriend a lot, and we see how peoples' priorities can change while in a relationship. There might have been some social commentary thrown in there, but I was busy trying to figure out how a zombie and a human could have sex. No, really, I mean how would they do it?

Zombie Genius is a great time and perfect for a fall date night or group thing. The show mixes a little undead horror with the comedy of being in a relationship, and I mean, come on man, zombies (edited: Deceased Americans)!

I give it three out of four skulls.

Zombie Genius runs every Wed. at 10pm through Oct. 31 at the Annoyance Theater, 4830 N. Broadway. You can buy tickets for $10 or $8 with student ID (presented at the box office). Buy Here.

 

Help! Zombies! / October 7, 2012 2:42 PM

I didn't know zombies were popular enough to be on stage! Good luck to the cast, wish I could go see it. :)

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Culture Tue Nov 04 2014

7,550 Miles from Home, Chicago's Ethiopians Build a Cultural Museum

By Danielle Elliott

Some 7,550 miles separate Chicago from Ethiopia's capital, Addis Ababa. For the 10,000 Ethiopians living in Chicago, that distance seems a lot smaller due to the Ethiopian Community Association of Chicago.
Read this feature »

Steve at the Movies Fri Dec 19 2014

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies & The Babadook

By Steve Prokopy

Read this column »

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