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Theater review: 'The Second Coming' at Two Roads Theatre

November 23, 2011 |  4:33 pm

Sherry Glaser in "The Second Coming"
Remember that commercial from the 1970s in which Mother Nature wreaks environmental havoc after she’s fooled into mistaking margarine for real butter? Now imagine that as an evening of theater and you know whether you have any interest in “The Second Coming: A One-Woman Comedy of Biblical Proportions,” Sherry Glaser’s meandering monologue about the fate of your chakras and the earth.

Glaser’s off-Broadway hit “Family Secrets” ran for 15 months, and you can see why: The earthy writer-performer has a certain hectoring charm. But in this show, her grounded humor feels strained rather than focused.

She opens “The Second Coming” in the guise of a heavy-set Mexican American named Miguel who seeks enlightenment from a psychic named Reality but ends up channeling Mother Nature herself (wearing an alarming green body suit). Awakened from a 5,000-year nap, our Great Jewish Mother takes umbrage at more than a breakfast spread (I guess Michael Pollan and Mark Bittman have won that battle). She’s hopping mad at her husband, God, his annoying bestseller, his penchant for creating nasty creatures like vultures, and the way he fashioned male genitalia. And don’t even get her started on her greedy children! Such a disappointment!

There are funny moments, like narcissist Miguel going on a date with himself -- and the evening ends with a simple act of generosity that could be the center of a much stronger show. But the material feels indulgent, not sufficiently crafted to deliver much of a theatrical punch.  Only a goddess can make a tree or a vagina, but mortals seem to make better playwrights.

-- Charlotte Stoudt

“The Second Coming: A One-Woman Comedy of Biblical Proportions” Two Roads Theatre, 4348 Tujunga Blvd., Studio City. 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays. Ends Dec. 18. $25-$30. Contact: (818) 762-2282 or Running time: 1 hour, 30 minutes.

Photo: Sherry Glaser. Credit: Lucy Belle Howells.