You know what takes dedication? Wearing a silver latex jumpsuit outdoors on a sticky Adelaide evening. The ladies of BAD w[OMEN] had no trouble running, jumping, dancing and beating one another up with plastic baseball bats in their silver outfits, even with the humidity bearing down on us like a musty cave bear.
BAD w[OMEN] has all the trademarks of a standard sketch show – from handmade props and costumes to slapstick and easily recognisable archetypes of characters for each scene. But this show also went beyond the standard – tying all the seemingly unrelated sketches together into an insanely interconnected storyline.
What’s more, sketch by sketch the audience was exposed to a strong underlying theme of feminism and women’s struggles against workplace sexism – dished out left, right and centre by the recurring voice-over of sketch-show boss and first-class sleaze-bag ‘Dave’. The show tackled the really meaty issues of women’s day-to-day struggles through punchy and provoking humour that never felt preachy yet stuck with us well after the show was finished. This was definitely more than a run-of-the-mill sketch show. This was something more ambitious, and more satisfying to watch. It was comedy with substance – and that’s always something worth sticking around for.
This is a show that gets the audience engaged with the characters of the story – something which is unusual for a sketch show but which played out triumphantly for BAD w[OMEN]. With each passing scene the audience found themselves wondering what would happen to our Spanish lesson heroine Maria, or the book club of bubbly-guzzling newly-minted feminists. And when we weren’t seeing the strings of these stories come together we were treated to some sensual Fringe box-office service, an intense Harry Potter rendition and the antics of the Producers’ own resident ghost.
Over-the-top, sharp, timely and non-stop funny, this show is a must-see for lovers of comedy and people looking for something rather different yet oddly familiar to sink their teeth into. It’s comedy with heart and balls (the lady kind). In BAD w[OMEN]’s own words, ‘join us as we tackle the big stuff. And the small stuff. Because when you take the piss, you take the power.’
Words by Lisandra Linde
BAD [w]OMEN is playing at The Producers until March 2 (except Mondays). Tickets are available here.