by Kyle Romero, Director of Sex a.k.a. Wieners and Boobs at ColdTowne Theater
Directing this play (Sex a.k.a. Wieners and Boobs by Joe Lo Truglio, Michael Showalter, and David Wain) is literally a dream come true.
I came up in the academic world of [extremely Homer Simpson voice] legitimate theatre. I’ve done Shakespeare. I’ve done Greek tragedy. I wrote papers on commedia dell’arte and Edward Albee’s The Zoo Story. But every season at my small town university, I would walk into my professor’s office and I would pitch this play, and she would always say no. Why? Sure, it’s not really a “good” play with any “academic value.” I get that. BUT! It is so goddamn funny.
When I was a growing virgin just starting to explore the world of comedy, one of the first things I was introduced
to was Wet Hot American Summer. I could not believe the stupid shit that was in this movie. It was sold like it was a parody of 80s sex comedies like Porky’s or Meatballs, and okay, sure, kind of. But it’s not really interested in taking the piss out of a genre of movie that is already fairly piss-free, so to speak. Like, nobody watches Hot Dog: The Movie and thinks “these people are so full of themselves, they need to be taken down a peg”. Wet Hot (that’s what we call it, it’s cool to shorten stuff) is just pure silliness, and for a kid who was fed a steady diet of Looney Tunes and Three Stooges as a young’un, it was vibrating at my exact frequency.
So then like all nerds do when they find something they like, I dove in. I needed to know everything. Who were these maniacs that made this thing? Why would they be allowed to do this? That’s when I found The State. A bunch of punk kids from NYU were given a sketch comedy show on MTV before they had even graduated. This was inspirational to me (but unfortunately would later become frustrating, and frankly insulting, as I passed them in years and was not gifted a sketch comedy television show). Then came Stella. I saw their Comedy Central show first (extremely underrated in my opinion, and cancelled too soon), and then I found their online shorts. It was all so wonderful. I wanted to make stuff like this.
So then imagine my elation when I found out these guys wrote a play! A real actual play, that you can buy the rights to and perform! Making your own sketches and uploading them to YouTube wasn’t really a thing yet, and also I don’t come from money so I didn’t have a way to record video because cell phones didn’t take videos yet. This was the only way I could see to express this love I had for this insanely silly style of comedy that I was so obsessed with. Sadly, the tyrannical gatekeepers of Lamar University kept me from realizing my vision.
Cut to now, many years later. I’m an absurdly successful improviser and comedian living in Austin, TX, and ColdTowne Theater ownership comes to me, hat in hand — “please Kyle, please, we need content. Please make something for us, anything.” So I pull my copy of SAKAWAB (again, cool to shorten stuff) off the shelf, we cough up the dough for the performance rights, and here we are. This play has all of the stuff that made me fall in love with Wet Hot American Summer, Stella, The State, and every other project from the people who made that stuff. It’s silly. It will give you whiplash as it delivers both a fart joke and a line of dialogue that is an unbelievably specific and accurate read on human behavior. People say words the wrong way for no reason. It’s just fun. Don’t think too hard about it. I hope this play makes you laugh like it makes me laugh, and if it can’t do that, then hopefully it makes you horny.