MONTREAL – While the art of improv can be a polarizing comedy sub-genre for comedians and comedy fans alike, you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone hating on those who are part of the Whose Line is it Anyway? family. Specifically, master improvisers Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood have always been dependably capable at spinning almost any thought, concept or motion into pure comedic gold – turning the barest of joke foundations into delicious hilarity in less micro-seconds than it takes to send a dirty text message.
Leading an hour-long show fueled by audience participation, Sherwood and Mochrie wove outstanding improvised bits out of suggestions like “sex farm” and “chocolate penis.” (Sherwood advised the two shouters of these ideas to hook up after the show.) Some of the improv games the pair played included a story-telling number where several fans were asked to fill in one word to move the narrative forward – a live action Mad Libs, if you will – and the above-mentioned “chocolate penis” suggestion, which had Sherwood and Mochrie acting out a Sherlock Holmes murder mystery that involved a man being murdered by… yeah, you get the idea. Oh, and there was rapping. Lots of on-the-spot rapping. For two middle-aged white dudes, Mochrie and Sherwood could probably give the most gangsta of rhyme-spitters a run for their gold teeth.
By far the most thrilling moment of the show came at its grand finale, which found the two stars walking blindfolded and barefoot through a stage filled with live mouse traps. After a couple of close calls with their toes, Mochrie mischievously removed his blindfold and tossed a couple of the traps right into Sherwood’s crotch. Simultaneously, the audience roared with laughter as Sherwood roared with horror. It was a thrilling moment of raw, unabridged comedy to behold – something that probably no amount of network television cameras could have hoped to capture in its purest, most unadulterated form. And if that isn’t the essence of improv, then truly, I give up on comedy fandom.