Friday, March 22

Stageside: 'Play Dates' uses humor to show trials and truth about love

“Play Dates”
Theatre Asylum, 6320 Santa Monica Blvd.
Running through April 17


Sitting in the middle of the small stage is a big paper heart on wheels. It may be a simple stage prop, but the heart represents the much more complicated concept of love.

“Play Dates” hilariously explores the trials of love starting with the innocent love story between two kindergarteners, Stacey (played by Elizabeth Bond) and Sam (played by Rob Nagle). The story soon transitions to the grown-up Sam who becomes Dr. Love, who dispenses love advice to those in need despite having some personal problems himself. Finally, the play switches gears and focuses on a married couple trying to spice things up.

Bond and Nagle are the highlight of the show. The comedic duo brings in the laughs as they play off each other with ease. Each actor is spot on with their comedic timing. Whether they are arguing about how many boys Stacey napped with or running around on stage in superhero costumes, the actors aren’t afraid to make fun of themselves.

Meanwhile actors Brian Monahan and Krystal Marshall bring in the sweet side of love with their portrayal of the married couple Mike and Katie. From getting rid of blackheads and arguing about farts to scouting out a potential partner for a threesome, the actors make awkwardness charming and cute.

That isn’t to say they are without laughs. One of the funniest scenes involves the two with the grown-up Stacey trying to have a threesome, but the result is less sexy and more disastrous.

In the end, everything ties together with Sam and Stacey’s story to Mike and Katie’s. What they have to say about love behind all the crazy antics is as simple as the heart prop: If you’re willing to help your loved one get rid of a blackhead on their back, then you’re in it for the long haul.

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