“Potus or Behind Every Great Dumbass Are Seven Women Trying To Keep Him Alive” – Stray Cat Theatre

Theater Review – December 3, 2023


Potus: or Behind Every Great Dumbass Are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive”
Stray Cat Theatre, Studio Theatre, Tempe Center for the Arts
Tempe, AZ

By Chris Curcio
Theater Critic

We all know how true the cliché “Behind all great men are several women” is and that’s exactly what “Potus: or Behind Every Great Dumbass Are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive,” gleefully and wackily proves in the spot-on Stray Cat Theatre production.  Katie McFadzen’s briskly paced and hysterically funny production proves the show’s title artfully.

Beyond McFadzen’s hilariously madcap but insightful staging of Selina Fillinger’s blithely entertaining script are seven comically gifted performers who bring the play to biting but inane hilarity.

The ensemble portrays influential women who surround the unseen President in key support positions.  From the beleaguered First Lady who tolerates the President’s scandalous affair with his now pregnant mistress to advisors who keep abreast of world and national affairs so they can astutely advise the President who they claim knows nothing about issues plaguing the country.  They wile and manipulate the unknowing POTUS so he does right, in their minds, for the country.

When the President is killed, they create a scenario to keep his passing secret as they begin to run the nation.  Who knows how truthful this scenario is but recent past history doesn’t make it seem that foreign a concept. The slow first act sets up the wild events that pepper the second act with spirited shenanigans that appear to run this White House.

Lydia Corbin is the realistic First Lady who feels she can do nothing about her philandering hubbie. Shari Watts is the senior advisor who wisely organizes and structures the group.  Alison Campbell is the morally bereft mistress who worries more about her loins than any semblance of upstanding morality. The rest of the cast playfully enact other advisors and confidantes with the perfect mix of reality and frisky malarkey.

Without Stray Cat Theatre’s wonderful forays into scripts not usually presented by other Valley theater companies, they can always be relied upon to bring interesting stage fare here.  And in the case of “Potus…” they introduce welcome political hilarity to the area when many other local theaters stick to traditional holiday fare.

“Potus: or Behind Every Great Dumbass Are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive” continues through December 16.  To order tickets, call the Stray Cat Theatre box office at 480-350-2822 or order tickets online at www.straycattheatre.org.

Grade: A