The Walsh Bros., Jimmy Tingle's Off Broadway, February 9, 2007
Charlestown comedy team the Walsh Bros. are ready for prime time, so they’re moving to Los Angeles after playing two weekends of shows at Jimmy Tingle’s Off Broadway that culminate in three performances this Friday and Saturday.
The Walsh Bros.
But is big-time comedy ready for Chris and David Walsh? That depends on how you feel about tenuously secured Speedos or jokes about babies eating babies. The first show of their goodbye run, last Friday, was a blend of new material and “hits.” The closing skit extolled the fiery thrills of riding Boston’s accident-prone Fung Wah bus line, complete with an original rock song. Earlier, they told their story about discovering a man angrily and loudly masturbating in front of Boston City Hall at 3 am. (“Maybe he’s a lover of architecture, and he reallyhates that building,” David quipped.) They also showed three short films, the best of which found them in silver and gold body stockings “entertaining” mortified guests at a child’s birthday party.
You could think of the Walsh Bros. as the comic equivalent of a really good, really indie rock band. They’re sly, knowing, and goofy all at once, and as the punk legend Mike Watt likes to put it, they work “econo,” using Building 19 jumpsuits, plastic fish, fake moustaches, and other cheap props to springboard silly humor that’s never smug.
Which may be where the indie-rock comparison runs aground, because for all their storytelling flair and their invention of characters like the hapless Houdini-wanna-be Escapo and their mock-police-raid assaults on the audience, there’s nothing pretentious about the Walsh Bros. They don’t care whether a crowd’s laughing with them or at them. They fall somewhere between Demetri Martin and the State on the modern-comedy scale: warm, likable, weird, and outrageous. And as they head West in March to prospect for a lucky break, that’s a good place to be.
Walsh Bros. | Jimmy Tingle’s Off Broadway, 255 Elm St, Somerville | February 16-17 | 617.591.1616
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