The Good Guy

Rated 4.0 Local radio personalities Paul Robins and Phil Cowan are clever, funny guys on air. But how are they as actors and writers? As it turns out, the Y-92 two are clever, funny guys onstage, as well.Robins and Cowan work in partnership in the original theater work The Good Guy, which debuted last week in a limited (two-week) run at the B Street Theatre. Robins wrote this amusing comedy about the midlife crises of two caped crusaders. And acting alongside longtime pal Cowan, Robins gives a winning performance as Fresno’s B-level superhero The Spring.

Cowan is equally entertaining as the middle-aged, mediocre superhero Mod Man, who tracks The Spring to a small-town bar that doubles as The Spring’s crime-fighting lair. The trouble is that there’s no trouble in Fresno. Well, at least not the kind of trouble a superhero is called upon to fix, so The Spring hasn’t sprung into action for years.

Robins has created an alternate world where being a superhero is a profession, with all the up-up-and-aways and downturns of the characters’ chosen career paths. The All Superhero News station plays in the background as The Spring and Mod Man discuss fellow midlevel crusaders, mock the bad guys and bitterly dis career biggies Superman and Batman. And they debate whether it’s better merely to ban evildoers from city limits or just kill them outright.

The clever setup threatens to wear thin, but thankfully, because of the sharp dialogue and philosophical banter between the two, it never does. And it’s worth the price of admission to see Robins and Cowan in the ill-fitting tights and paunchy leotards of their past glory days.

The short engagement is a fund-raiser for the theater’s children’s productions.