Kids in the Hall '88

Posted by Tom Brogan on Sunday, February 22, 2015
The Kids in the Hall are probably my favourite sketch troupe, and their five seasons my favourite sketch show. Rolling Stone have a reprint of the feature they ran on them in 1988 when they first came to attention.

The article came as a PDF extra on the season one DVD. Another extra from that DVD is the oral history video below.

Like Monty Python's, the Kids' sketches begin with an absurd premise, but they're not outrageous for outrageousness' sake; they craft provocative, lyrical performance pieces that showcase their strikingly varied physical types and acting approaches. Many Kids sketches penetrate the psychological intricacies of relationships, like the one in which two lawyers negotiate a couple's courtship and sexual relations and the one in which a man with a cabbage for a head brazenly uses self-pity to bully his date into sleeping with him. The Kids excel at taking familiar situations and rendering them bizarre: In a sketch called "Can I Keep Him?" a boy brings home a stray businessman he finds on the street. Nothing is sacred: In "The Dr. Seuss Bible," the Kids wear cartoon-colored garb and act out the story of Jesus, complete with crucifixion, to mirthful gibberish rhyme. As titles like "Running Faggot" suggest, the group is one of the first to scout the demilitarized comedy zone of homosexuality. The Kids all play women flawlessly, and their shows exude a perverse androgyny. (One of them is gay; two are dyslexic.)

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