Where Every Bunny Knows your Name!
For their last mid-week show of their 30th Season, Annex Theatre, presented Deers by Marcus Gorman, an entertaining spoof of the long running TV sitcom Cheers. In four episodes spread over 11 years, they “aired” the pilot from Season 1, jumped to Season 5 in the next scene, and showed scenes from Seasons 8 and 11 after the intermission. However, instead of humans inhabiting a bar, there was a tight-knit group of friends, all of whom were animals from different species, having various kinds of healthy and unhealthy social bar-like interaction.
Set in the Cascades here in Washington State, the set, designed by Nick Kruger, can only be described as Superb Vintage Red-Neck, with electric signs advertising brands of beer, and that lack of pretension one finds in small towns east of the mountains. Designed by Darrin Schultz, the music and sound effects were highly effective, and the pre-show music was especially impressive. It was mostly music from the 60’s, with lots of Beatles songs, which gave the bar an air of not quite keeping up with the latest fashions. Music composed by Paul Morgan for the theme song hit the right note.
Jordan Moeller, as an Emu, who wanders into the bar from Australia, put in an outstanding performance, with an authentic accent, which was still understandable and made his lines come alive. He also added a lot of Emu-like physicality to his character which was highly amusing.
However, I would say as a general note, the acting and directing, by Tootsie Spangles and Quiqui Dominguez lacked precise comic timing and had to rely on slapstick, but I did laugh an awful lot and the rest of the audience laughed even more. Also, like many of Annex’s shows, the audience was raucous, engaged and highly expressive, which added to the general enjoyable hilarity. Deers was really a mixture of Cheers combined with a layer of some very contemporary humor in a bizarre way, complete with an intriguing and unexpected twist at the end.
If you want an evening of fun and laughter, don’t miss this show. It would be best to book tickets now as it was sold out on opening night. Mid-week is a good time to enjoy an evening out in the Pike/Pine corridor without the crowds.
Deers. Annex Theatre. 1100 E. Pike ( 11th and E. Pike, Capitol Hill, Pike/Pine Corridor) Tues-Wed, 7:30. Nov 8 (Industry Night-Nov 6) Tickets: https://web.ovationtix.com/trs/pr/970154 Info: ( Sound Transit stop Capitol Hill, Bus # 10,11 or 12)