Sex Talk: Jimmy Doyle | Theater Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Sex Talk: Jimmy Doyle

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Cranky, cracked, queer, cuddly Catholic comic Jimmy Doyle has the knack. He knows how to confide in an audience, how to entertain even while stripping his soul bare--revealing his deepest fears, his most tender vulnerabilities, his tortured childhood, suicidal mom, insensitive blue-collar dad-and entertain us at the same time. In his current show, part of Prop Theatre's late night "Sex Talk" series, Doyle describes in excruciatingly honest detail his ongoing breakup with a boyfriend: the bouts of loneliness, the sense of abandonment, the fear of being sexually unattractive. Yet everything this former Second City member says earns him laughter, and he grins along with us, happy to amuse with his tales of that poor fuck Jimmy Doyle. See, he seems to say with every bittersweet line, solo performance is easy: all you have to do is stand onstage and open a vein. Unlike all too many self-absorbed autobiographical monologuists, Doyle knows how to spend an hour discussing his most intimate secrets and leave the audience begging for more. Mercury Theater, 3745 N. Southport, 486-7767. Friday, April 19, 11 PM; Saturday, April 20, midnight. $10. --Jack Helbig

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