The show is quick, fun, and experimental. Some sketches worked great and had the audience laughing with ease. One situation includes a sensibly-minded woman sleeping with a guido-esque guy because she believes it’s the end of the world, only to find out that they survived the apocalypse and she has to repopulate with a douche. Erika Grob and Colby Lewis shine as the mismatched couple in the bizarre situation that features fantastic quips.
Another great sketch is “ManiPedi”, featuring spoiled princesses who treat the apocalyptic disaster as a day spa. The ensemble is at its best with these kooky caricatures, and it’s easy to tell that the quirky cast is enjoying themselves.
However, other sketches come across as a little bit too silly to be believable, so it’s a mixed bag. A “Hunger Games” parody and the aforementioned cockroach takeover, with cheesy one-liners that don’t quite land, didn’t tickle the audience’s funny bone.
Apocalypse Picnic is a true Fringe show, taking risks and trying out original material. As a result, it’s not a totally solid show, but the moments that stand out are gems.
Some of the best parts are the fun extras included with the performance. A whimsical projection show and fun safety briefing preceded the play, and the program included suggestions to survive the apocalypse. These flourishes were an amusing touch that polished off the performance.
If you’re looking for a quick take and a few laughs, Apocalypse Picnic is definitely for you. These sketches aren’t earth-shattering, but they do keep one’s fears about end times at bay with laughter.
Apocalypse Picnic has 5 performances, ending July 28, 2012, at Goethe Institut, 812 7th St NW, Washington, DC.
Discounts and tickets
This show would be rated a 3 out of 5.