There’s so much talent in San Francisco. As a HUGE fan of “S**t & Champagne” and one who often thinks sequels suck, it’s tough to be objective about the “S**t” sequel entitled “Champagne White and the Temple of Poon,” playing though Sept. 12 at SF Oasis.
As the title implies, it pokes fun at sequels, reminding one of the second part of “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” which was quite inferior to the original.
Director/writer/star D’Arcy Drollinger has surrounded herself with most of the same actors that was in the original – even though two of the characters died in the first show. She has instantaneously taken camp to cult level in which a legion of fans already know the dialog and often talk back to the actors on stage. On one occasion, the audience even breaks into song – including me!
Drollinger continues her dragpliotation parody in which the down-on-her-luck dancer Champagne is yet the prime suspect in another murder plot, spending most of the length of the show trying to clear her name. Not a spoiler alert as it happens early on, but the always amazing and extremely talented Matthew Martin comes back – even though his character died the first time around. Turns out, he survived the fiery “S**t” storm explosion from the first show and changed his name for this sequel. Martin now has a vendetta against Champagne and will stop at nothing to take her down.
This parody takes on the good and bad elements of movies and TV and manages to poke fun of famous bits like one from “I Love Lucy.” Drollinger as creator has opened the show up more with the inclusion of several scenes filmed and shown on screen, making this truly a multi-media production. To great joy and surprise, the scene in which Drollinger intercuts her own face in a body double scene taken literally right from Brian DePalma’s movie “Dressed to Kill.” (Even though several laughing audience members murmured it was from “Carrie” but they are wrong.)
These filmed sequences also highlight Martin doing commercials for a fragrance named Poose! which are so funny that these scenes alone are worth the price of admission. Check out the YouTube video.
Drollinger also gets great performances out of the supporting cast – all playing multiple characters.
The sexy and great comic actor with the best facial expressions and timing Adam Roy returns as Detective Jack Hammer, who also plays one of Martin’s henchmen and a female prison guard. There’s a few scenes in which he has the fastest costume changes and he does so with perfect timing.
James Arthur also returns as Champagne’s overly gay stereotypical friend Sergio, who is such a riot and he manages to balance this part with a macho stupid henchman and bar patron.
Nancy French returns in the very droll, I-don’t-care-about-my-stripper-job character and is so sublime and absurd that she’s a joy t watch. She warms up the audience a bit with tacky lap dances and transitions scenes with comic book style cue cards. She is just a jewel – a cheap, tacky, pawn shop jewel – but a jewel indeed.
After seeing “S**t” twice, it’s quite surprising to like the sequel even more. Hopefully, the show comes back again as closing Sept. 12 is just too soon. To get tickets and more information, go to www.sfoasis.com.