Theater Review: “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” Comedians Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood

Melissa Garrett

Excited buzz emerges from an audience filled with families, elderly couples, college students and kids as they can hardly contain their anticipation for the show to begin. From the moment Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood enter the stage, dressed alike in black, long sleeved dress shirts, black dress pants and black and white sneakers, the audience roared with excitement upon recognizing the beloved “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” comedians.

In the first five minutes of the show, a young college couple is summoned from the first row of the house and invited to come on stage to be human props for Mochrie and Sherwood. Becoming backpacks, kayaks and a tent for the comedians, Mochrie and Sherwood cross personal boundaries without a blink as they utilize the two students as their props, turning a piggy back ride into a backpack or crawling through the students’ legs to get into their tent.

The largest act involved 11 audience members, lined up in a row, who helped insert random words into Colin and Brad’s skit involving lava kittens, a fear of bananas and medieval accents in the realm of King Testi Cleez. Although this game depended on the selected audience members to provide quick fill-in-the-blank words for the skit, Mochrie and Sherwood easily weaved audience suggestions into the scene and astounded the audience with their quick wit.

One of the most impressive aspects about Mochrie and Sherwood’s performance was their ability to play to one another’s strengths and weaknesses. Mochrie showcased Brad’s ability to decipher a complex crime that the audience created, which included Brad assaulting a beaver with glaucoma and harboring a giraffe with tourettes at a sexy stamp licking company in the town of “Shinadada” with the key evidence being a coloring book. Never in a million years would the average person guess that, but Colin and Brad’s teamwork shows just how suited they are for complimenting each other’s strengths and playing to each other’s weaknesses, all for the sake of comedy.

What makes Mochrie and Sherwood’s act memorable is their ability to think quickly on their feet and the ease in which they remember and incorporate audience feedback for games and scenarios performed live on the show. There is no doubt that Colin and Brad could not have prepared for rapping for several minutes about lobster invasions and sea life or dealing with an abundance of lava kittens in the realm of King Testi Cleez since the show is entirely improvised and tailored to each new audience.

Mochrie and Sherwood played “the most dangerous game” and set up a perilous pit of 100 live mouse traps, which they walked through barefoot and blindfolded. The best part was when they alternately peeked and placed mousetraps underneath each other’s feet or playfully threw mousetraps at each other.  The audience imagined the comedian’s pain, guiltily enjoying every time Mochrie or Sherwood came in contact with the snap of a mousetrap, which was quite frequent.  

To close the show, they sang along to Frank Sinatra’s classic hit, “My Way,” with comedic lyric alterations from the night’s show, like changing “I did it my way” to “Here in the town of Ames.” The audience adored the customized song and immediately rose for a standing ovation during Mochrie and Sherwood’s final chord.

In one of the most fulfilling and amusing shows I have ever seen, Mochrie and Sherwood’s comedy duo was a highly amusing show that left the audience clutching their gut in pain from frequent laughter.