Whirled News Tonight Presents Newspeak, Argos Agency, at ImprovOlympic. The current incarnation of director Jason R. Chin's Argos Agency is smart. On the night I attended this show, based on audience contributions of news stories, a sketch involving Bipedal Locomotion Enterprises would have taken a prize for vocabulary alone. The ten-member ensemble also makes casual references to Ernest Hemingway, Norman Mailer, and William Golding. And how many twentysomethings can do an accurate Alfred Hitchcock impression extempore?
Instead of going for the broad and vulgar, these folks more often opt for the microcosmic. A patriarchal defense of polygamy is transformed into a wife lamenting the responsibilities of having multiple husbands. A report about terrorists plotting via Internet cafes sparks visions of subversive activities impeded by spam, pop-ups, and IMing.
The players exhibit a genuine rapport: articulate dialogue unfolds logically, swiftly, and concisely. And despite the news whirling just outside ImprovOlympic on Saturday night, the Cubbies were not allowed to intrude on the action until the appropriate moment.