@ Elizabeth Price Kenan Theatre, UNC Campus
Through May 22
A.D.D. Theater’s Spring Loaded opens and closes with a song parodying the theme to Gilligan’s Island, which gives you an idea of the topicality of this sketch show. Drawing inspiration from some solid sources, including a cover of a Flight of the Conchords number, the sketches in this program have little to connect them beyond recycled jokes about cougars, artificial insemination and arguing over directions in a car.
Certain numbers have some energy; guest improv performer Anoo Brod proves particularly adept with various accents and one-liners in her sketches. And some of the bits are amusing: “Exit Right,” about a monk’s last words, has a few jokes that land. Other punch lines feel telegraphed, such as in “Acquaintance,” about a man’s awkward run-in with a mistress, and “Family Function,” a lame collection of semi-stereotyped jokes about a chatty Jewish guy foisting business cards in a men’s room.
One sketch involves a director who has reduced Shakespeare’s dialogue to numbers totaling the numerical value of the letters in each word. The F-word is expressed as “42,” which briefly gave me hope for solving an existentialist puzzle located in the writings of Douglas Adams (however, doing the math revealed the letters of that profanity only totaled 41). Crushed dreams aside, crunching these numbers proved more absorbing than many of the sketches for the show, some of which I’d forgotten by the time I got home. Though spring is in bloom, the sketches in Spring Loaded feel a mite dusty.