Review: An Act of God

You can only flaunt that tuft of hair when your friends have your back.

You can only flaunt that tuft of hair when your friends have your back.

Photo courtesy of B Street Theatre

7 p.m. Thursday and Friday, 8 p.m. Saturday, 1 p.m. Sunday, 7 p.m. Tuesday and Wednesday; $27-$39, B Street Theatre, 2711 B Street; (916) 443-5300; Through July 29.
Rated 4.0

There are two Gods currently appearing on B Street Theatre stages. The first is Hand to God, a controversial raw-humored play that opened last month to mixed reactions on B Street’s Main Stage. And now there’s the Lord appearing in An Act of God at the theater’s B3 stage.

While Hand to God relies more on shock-filled, sometimes juvenile humor, An Act of God is more thoughtfully funny, though still tackling issues and material with pointed humor that more pious folk may frown upon.

An Act of God, by The Daily Show writer David Javerbaum, is basically a monologue by the Almighty, who comes out to address the audience about various subjects, including proposed new commandments, an explanation on what really happened during his seven-day creation mania, clarifying the Adam, Noah and Abraham stories, and commenting on contemporary issues.

B Street wisely brings back the very entertaining Nick Cearley for the role of God, two years after Cearley’s successful one-man show Buyer & Cellar. Cearley makes a dramatic entrance dressed in a white flowing robe and gold athletic shoes, carrying a mic and addressing the audience with his comedic patter—reminiscent of an old ’70s television variety show, complete with a marble-esque stairway and a white lounge chair, and backed up by two archangels acting as wingmen (B Street regulars Greg Alexander and Amy Kelly).

The hour-and-15-minute show is campy, irreverent and satirical, touching on perplexing and contradictory Bible stories and holy declarations, as well as current topics. At the end, God declares that sometimes he really is an asshole, but one with a great sense of humor.