“An Act of God” at the Alley Theatre
Ripley’s Believe It Or Not claims that all the names of God in every language are four letters: in English, Lord; Latin, Deus; French, Dieu; Swedish, Goth; Viking, Thor; Hindu, Rama; Arabic, Amir; Mohammedan, Alla. There are several others. You get the picture.
For the purpose of the Godhead incarnate as an actor the stage play, An Act of God concentrates on the Christian God spelled with three letters. All other Gods are not invited.
An Act of God slays the audience with inventive religious satire. God has rewritten the Ten Commandments and they will be heard. As envisioned by playwright David Javerbaum, God dislike all his creations equally and likes to smite over and over.
Javerbaum won multiple Emmys for his involvement with the John Stewart hosted The Daily Show. An Act of God has constant moments that skewer modern day perception of religion as a guiding force in life. And yet at the same time the intimate play, after all it’s just God and a couple of angels, has beats that suggest an adherence to some kind of cosmic reality. Those seeking good solid laughs will become true believers of humor.
Todd Waite gets to the core of playing God. One moment we’re watching a kind of impudent sarcasm that would not be out of place with a character like Paul Lynde as Uncle Arthur in Bewitched. Yet other moments show what could only be best described as “wrath.”
Emily Trask and John Feltch supply comic relief as a couple of angles, always dressed in modern or ancient white.
“An Act of God” unfolds in the intimate Neuhaus Theatre at the Alley, running until April 16.