Good therapy mocking male culture

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Copy of Kurt Schoonraad, Nigel Pierce, Stuart Taylor in Men's Issue, pic by Heinrich Reisenhofer_CITY_E1-a

MEN’S ISSUE

DIRECTOR: Heinreich Reisenhofer

CAST: Kurt Schoonraad, Stuart Taylor, Nigel Pierce

VENUE: Baxter Theatre

UNTIL: February 23

RATING: ****

THE THINGS men sweat about, literally and metaphorically, come up as a topic of discussion in a funny spoof of tv magazine shows at the Baxter.

Seasoned stand-up comedians Kurt Schoonraad and Stuart Taylor take the mickey out of presenters and inserts alike, as well as co-presenter and would-be comedian Nigel Pierce.

The three are used to interacting because of the Goodhope FM dj regularly inviting comedians on to his show – and Men’s Issue starts off like a regular radio broadcast with a listener calling in and setting the ball rolling as he decries the ways of the metrosexual man feminising heterosexual behaviour.

But, before you think this is some sort of serious analysis of societal constructs and values, it’s not.

The three then proceed to banter their way through a rip-off of the segments we have all become used to in print magazines such as the interminable Top 10 lists, or cooking shows, all riffing off male behaviour and masculine thinking.

Taylor and Schoonraad each gets a chance to ad lib in their own stand-up style and though they are curtailed by the subject matter, they still manage a free-flowing barrage of jokes.

Pierce’s individual contribution is much more highly scripted and he needs to work on his timing – on opening night he interrupted the guys a few times. But, this is a quibble he will fix for himself as the show progresses. His fashion segment went on for too long as he doesn’t quite have the off-the-cuff skills of the other two.

He does, however, prove to be the perfect foil to the other two’s madcap ways.

Taylor - looking very svelte after losing half a Backstreet Boy in weight – is the voice of reason between Pierce’s metrosexual ways and Schoonraad’s more manly man attitude to things.

They hassle each other about issues like to wax or not to wax and discuss all manner of personal grooming issues that have never been aired on the Baxter stages before, earning the show an age restriction of 13.

The cooking segment makes excellent use of Schoonraad and Taylor’s physical comedy skills, while the exercise routines keep the former breathing heavily and the latter bemused. This part of the show could move along a bit faster, but the pacing is probably dictated by the fact that poor Schoonraad cannot keep up with all that exercise.

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