It takes a certain sense of humor to appreciate the wit that propels the dialogue in this unique comedy. If you’ve ever chuckled over a good redneck joke, it will fit you like a comfy pair of overalls. Personally, I thought it was hilarious! It takes place in the mountains of West Virginia, an area where, I don’t think, anyone ever qualified for MacArthur Grant consideration. We are in a tacky motel room (set by Norman Scott), which would make Motel 6 seem like the Four Seasons. This isn’t even a Motel 2. Mitchell (Neil McGowan), separated from his wife, shares the room with JD, (author Keith Stevenson) a lovable, bearded bear of a man. Mitch is sort of sweet on his neighbor, Marlene, (Kendra McKay) whose rent is overdue. She’s a pretty, but obscenities-spewing gal, who makes trailer trash sound aristocratic. The irritable landlord, Flip (Michael Pritchard), with a dour demeanor and bags under his eyes for which the airlines could charge him extra, lives in fear of an inspection by the fire marshal. The property is so rundown, a dead possum in the dryer vent doesn’t even raise an eyebrow. When Mitchell’s wife, Bridget (Jennifer Pollono) attempts reconciliation, the budding romance between him and Marlene is severely tested. The comedy reaches new heights, with the appearance of the Swedish Doctor Jûrgen (Brad Greenquist), announced with great fanfare by his two groupies, the energetic Abigail (Carole Weyers) and Blue (Joan Chodorow), obviously not the sharpest tool in the shed. The Doctor is primed to make a diabolical deal with the gullible JD, promising him a bundle of cash.

The cast is pure gold. McGowan, as the poor shmuck torn between two women, is comical even in his “straight man” role. Stevenson, as the na•ve, gentle giant JD, delivers so many good lines (which he wrote), one must pay close attention so as not to miss a single word. The cute McKay, whose ratchet mouth is never still, also masters her physical comedy to perfection. Equally remarkable is the acting ability of Pollono, who finds herself in a pickle (that’s all I’m going to tell you) and cries real tears. The mercurial Greenquist, his Swedish accent intact, would dominate the stage, if it weren’t for the accomplished ensemble, each one of them a star. His two disciples, the flirty, dedicated Weyers and the dim-witted Chodorow, make their two minor roles seem major and the crotchety Pritchard is the ultimate, old grouch. Guillermo Cienfuegos’ priceless directorial touches are evident throughout, for which the cliché “never a dull moment” was coined. This is the third installment in a trilogy of hillbilly humor at its best, all written by West Virginia native, Stevenson. It started with “Out There On Fried Meat Ridge”, at which I laughed myself silly. That one is given encore performances on Sunday afternoons.

Pacific Resident Theatre, 707 Venice Blvd., Venice 90291. Thursday – Saturday 8 pm. $20 Every Sunday it is performed on a double bill with The Unfryable Meatness of Being, both for $30. (310) 822-8392 or The Pacific Resident Theatre ends 9/7 at 4:30 pm


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