Who will speak for sketch? When it’s all over, when the theaters are empty, when the stand-ups scatter, the celebrities fly away and the improvisers jam out, who will speak for the hardest discipline to sustain in San Francisco?
The first sketch of local comedy group Femikaze’s Summer’s Eve showcase, “Go Fuck Yourself,” sets the mood for the evening. A girl asks her mom what do if a boy doesn’t like the way she maintains things down there, and the mom (Carinne Salnave), stirring a bowl of cake batter balanced on her hip, advises her daughter in über wholesome, after-school-special style to give that fellow a health dose of — you guessed it! — Go Fuck Yourself. Aaaaaand, we’re off and running.
In its current show, playing this weekend at Subterranean Art House, Femikaze delivers all the favorites—fart jokes, social media cracks, reality TV spoofs, F-bombs, infomercials, drunkenness—but with a fresh, feminist perspective that isn’t didactic, clichéd, or overwrought. The supershort sketches, performed by diverse cast of women, are just twisted enough to keep us hungrily clinging to each line. Pushing the “radical notion that women are funny,” Femikaze, founded by comedians Kelly Anneken and Isa Hopkins, not only intends to but actually does “create opportunities in comedy for self-identified women of all shapes, sizes, kinds, and colors.”
When I saw a sketch called “Peer Pinterest” in the program, I’ll admit, I was at first dubious, doubtful there were any new takes left on social media criticism. But the writers shifted the paradigm and kept it timely and local. A woman (Kristen Macaulay) who has just sprained her ankle after slipping in human feces (per last week’s story in the Chronicle on the ‘sheer volume of human waste’ found in the escalators) enters the BART station to find her friend and everyone else on the platform more interested in retweeting a Twitter star’s quips than hearing her malodorous story.