“The Judy Show: My Life as a Sitcom” is the name of statuesque comedian/actor Judy Gold’s new one-woman theater piece. It would also be the name of her TV show… if she had one, that is. And Judy wants her own sitcom badly– because, as she points out, “sitcom= second bathroom“! Throughout the show, Our Ms. Gold bemoans the fact that despite her out-of-the-ordinary life (She’s an out and proud lesbian mother of two, making a living as a comic and actress in New York City…), her attempts to get a show of her own have been as futile as Natalie on “The Facts of Life” trying to get laid. The intimate space of New York City’s DR2 Theater works well for “The Judy Show”. The audience is warmed up with those oh-so-familiar sitcom themes, as well as the stage décor: glossy promo photos from all the TV shows we knew and loved. Those shows include “The Brady Bunch” (Judy‘s favorite, we learn later…), “The Golden Girls“, “Bewitched”, “Who’s the Boss?”, “Growing Pains”, “Good Times”, and more. Throughout “The Judy Show”, Gold parallels the perfect life we all saw on that TV screen in the ‘70’s and ‘80’s with her own tumultuous life and career path. As it turns out, Judy emerged triumphant as a comic largely because she found the humor throughout the journey of her life, even when that journey included such preteen horrors as… sleepaway camp!
To state the obvious, “The Judy Show” is VERY autobiographical. Like her fellow funny peer and “All American Girl” co-star Margaret Cho, Ms. Gold brings her mother into the show quite often. She also tells us about her hometown (“Even the ghetto in ‘Good Times‘ was better than Clark, New Jersey!”), her neurotic Jewish family dynamics, high school (“…like ’The Diary of Anne Frank‘, but no place to hide!”), and more. The humorous anecdotes continued even as Ms. Gold started to become a familiar face on TV: when filming a cameo as a Barnes and Nobles bookstore worker on an episode of “Sex and the City”, Sarah Jessica Parker actually asked Judy, “So, how long have you been working at Barnes and Noble?” Arrggh! Audiences of “The Judy Show” are destined to learn a few new things too. Anyone who’s seen Judy live or on TV knows that she’s funny, but did you know that she can play the piano… and that she can sing?! And did you know that “ Room 222” (1969-1972), one of Judy’s favorite TV shows growing up, was one of the first TV dramas that featured an African-American teacher and white students? Neither did I.
“The Judy Show” is hilarious, loud, bold, outrageous, and occasionally bordering on over-the-top (I for one love hearing Judy scream!)… with some truly– dare I say?– heartfelt moments. One of them is when she reveals her “Eureka!” moment: After a performance for her fellow college students, she realized that her life‘s ambition was to be a performer. She never changed her pathway. Judy may be the coolest single mom in showbiz today, but this multi-tasking matriarch isn’t above telling an R-rated joke at the expense of Chaz Bono or her, shall we say, “va jay jay”! Incidentally, Natalie did eventually DID get a man to have sex with her (The episode “My First Time”, in February 1988), so I’m still holding out hope for a Judy Gold sitcom. In the meantime, don’t miss “The Judy Show: My Life as a Sitcom”. As the news tells us: Even in this crappy economy, Gold is always a great investment.
“The Judy Show” is playing at The DR2 Theater. The show has been extended until October 22nd due to popular demand. Visit http://www.JudyGold.com for more info or for tickets