Production is Humorous, Interactive
The Real Inspector Hound is a whodunit play-within-a-play that comically analyzes the theme of relationships while deciphering the identity of a murderer.
One of the types of relationships that the mystery-comedy satires is that of play critics versus a play being critiqued. The hilarious critic duo of Moon and Birdboot (played by Ruben Fonseca and Nelson Delgado) act out their roles from within the actual audience and comment on humorous topics such as theater, adultery and chocolates. Their effective comedy routine is reminiscent of the two beloved muppet hecklers from atop the balcony—Statler and Waldorf.
Most of the awkward humor comes from the characters in the play-within-a-play. The list of bizarre characters includes a maid (Jamie Wheeler); a handsome womanizer (Richard Pizarro); a tennis player (Tammy Salazar); a blonde socialite (Alex Acosta); a crippled, mustachioed old man (Octavio de La Osa); and Inspector Hound himself (Matthew Donovan).
The Real Inspector Hound is surprisingly effective at using simple household routines, with awkward and hilarious scenes that are sure to split the audience’s sides—including two particularly funny scenes involving a card game and teatime.
One of the strongest components of the play is the set design. The audience is thrown inside a spick-and-span English manor that resembles a haunted mansion. The manor’s ambience is both cozy and chilling with dim lighting from the fireplace, hallway candles, a chandelier and crimson wallpaper.
Perhaps the most impressive accomplishment in the play is the role of the dead body, played by Steven Rodriguez, who has no lines, but literally lies flat for two hours on stage—even during the pre-show when the audience members are looking for seats.
Experimenting with time lapses and the fourth wall, The Real Inspector Hound is truly one of MDC’s most valuable productions and a memorable comedy experience.
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