Alanna Ubach's appealing solo show features a variety of uncannily spot-on portraits.
A powerful presence, Ubach is a marginally stronger actor than playwright, but she's impressive in both roles. The play's structure could best be compared to a Tracy Ullman pastiche in which all the disparate personae turn out to be related or acquainted. What at first seems like a chaotic assemblage of uncannily spot-on portraits -- for example, a pumped-up fitness guru or a combative African-American American Idol contestant -- gradually coalesces into a cohesive narrative.
Yet such is our hunger for a storyline that the early passages, despite Ubach's extraordinary physical expressivity and ear for diverse speech patterns (including plain old privileged white girl), appear engaging but gratuitous. It's only when she begins to knit the strings together that the whole begins to click.
Another sit-up-and-take-notice cue is when Ubach morphs into the vituperative and laceratingly funny TV pundit "Jackie Queen" -- a superbitch if ever there was one. She's outdone only by her spoiled "anti-Christ" of a daughter, Angela, whose Muslim best friend, uneasily headed to the altar, has a sister courting fame as a rapper supposedly from "the Baghdad 'hood." They're all Beverly Hills to the core, but you've got to hand props to someone who'd think to rhyme Ted Koppel and falafel.