Religious Phallusy

The art of making people laugh at what they would otherwise find offensive is, at bottom, a balancing act. On the one side, you have mean-spiritedness; on the other, impishness. Veer too far into the former, and you end up in the off-putting mire of misanthropy; too far into the latter, and you're left with the empty satisfaction of the prankster (or the forced smile of the pranked). As it stands, look not for a mischievous twinkle in the dead eyes of Thomas Bradshaw's Prophet, the bad joke now playing downstairs at PS 122: the pointless toxicity of the religious, gender, and racial stereotypes on display sinks the thing deep into the mephitic muck.

At light's rise, a middle-aged suburbanite named Alex (Peter McCabe) plants himself center stage, announces that his habitual kowtowing to his wife has made him unworthy of his penis, strangles her to death, then takes off to the ghetto in search of an unschooled, easily dominated "negress" as a replacement, but not before he is commanded by a cartoonish God to re-subjugate women, on pain of eternal damnation.

What follows is a hodgepodge of action and consequence: Alex begins his ministry, with his new wife Shaniqua (Detra Payne) as the proving ground; the ministry falls apart as the wives form a frothing mob bent on mass castration; and inevitably, several characters go to their goofy-voiced maker.

I would say the piece is offensive, but that would imply that it elicits some kind of excitement

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