“It’s Just Sex” both hilarious and thought-provoking theater at Two Roads

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pauline110BY PAULINE ADAMEK

Now playing on weekends at the Two Roads Theatre on Tujunga, in Studio City, is Jeff Gould’s “It’s Just Sex!” – a side-splitting and hilarious play about marriage, fidelity, lust and trust.

Three married couples get together for an evening of drinking and socializing while their kids are away at camp.  But once the liquor starts flowing and truth games are initiated, secrets become revealed, boundaries are broken and reality gets swapped for fantasy.

The play begins with a bang when one of the couple’s wives comes home and inadvertently catches her husband in flagrante delicto (caught in the act) with a busty prostitute (Erica Arana). While her red-faced husband Phil (Scott Klace) buckles up and hustles the hooker out the door, Joan (Rebecca Staab) focuses on sanitizing the scene of the crime and preparing for their guests to arrive.

Silhouette left to right - Seth Peterson (Greg), Lisa Vidal (Lisa), Tommy HInkley (Carl), Jackie Debatin (Kelly), Rebecca Staab (Joan), Scott Klace (Phil). Photography by Raquel Krelle - raquelphoto.com

Left to right - Seth Peterson (Greg), Lisa Vidal (Lisa), Tommy HInkley (Carl), Jackie Debatin (Kelly), Rebecca Staab (Joan), Scott Klace (Phil). Photography by Raquel Krelle - raquelphoto.com

Once the middle-aged couples arrive, they quickly split into two gender groups. As we get to know them, we see that the men are, for the most part, horny and oversexed (not so young, dumb and full of – never mind) and the women are all ferociously intelligent, super-sexy hot mamas with legs that go for miles.

The host, Phil, is a silver-haired fox and a bit of a cad who prides himself on being an expert on everyone’s drinking preferences. His chilly wife Joan extols the virtues of yoga, crediting the exercise discipline for her toned figure.

We learn that one guy, Greg (Seth Peterson), is a bit neurotic about his erectile dysfunction – something he blames on his ball-busting lawyer wife Lisa (Lisa Vidal). Judging by the constant sniping at each other, their relationship is clearly strained. Eventually their tense one-upmanship turns rancid and vicious. Meanwhile, liberal-minded writer Carl and his wife Kelly (played respectively by Tommy Hinkley and Jackie Debatin) have their own issues.

The truth or drinking game initiated by Joan only serves to accelerate their collective drunken lurch towards debauchery. When a proposal to do a bit of wife-swapping is floated, the pop of a tequila bottle’s cork punctures the awkward silence to hilarious effect.

Producer/Director Rick Shaw does a fantastic job staging this thought-provoking comedy. The intimate set is simple and versatile, also serving extremely well for a clever shadow-play sequence paired with some funky lighting effects. Even with six people present almost all the time, the tiny stage never feels crowded thanks to some expert blocking. Shaw elicits fearless performances from his fantastic and talented cast.

There are plenty of big belly laughs in the first two-thirds of Gould’s play, before it threatens to turn into a serious, full-blown therapy session. Nevertheless, “It’s Just Sex!” is a rollicking night of entertaining theatre that touches on some important issues.

As “It’s Just Sex!” contains suggestive sexual behavior, adult language and themes, no one under 18 will be admitted.

It’s Just Sex plays every Friday and Saturday at 8PM, Sundays at 7:30 thru November 22. Two Roads Theater 4348 Tujunga Ave Studio City, CA 91604 For tix and info – 818-762-2282 or visit Two Roads Theater at NoHo Arts District.com  Proud Member of NoHo Arts District, Valley Theatre League. Or join “its just sex” on Facebook and Myspace. Mention My Daily Find with your reservation and get $5 off.

Pauline Adamek is a Hollywood-based film, theater, and food critic who writes for FilmInk Australia, the Los Angeles Daily News and the Sun Community Newspapers, as well as various websites under the “nom du net” Max Million. Contact her atwww.paulineadamek.com

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About Karen Young

Karen Young is the founder of My Daily Find.

  • Sharon

    I went to this play opening night and had a great time. The actors were top notch, many of whom I recognized from various television shows. I felt the pace of the show and the staging was excellent and made the most of a very small space. I recommend this play to anyone who has ever had a relationship with anyone. You will recognize a bit of yourself in the characters or find that you have said something just like that. Some of the scenes had me rolling on the floor and as described above – the shadow-play sequence was really well done and very funny.

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