Planet Ant’s ‘Cop Block’ unarresting

BTL Staff
By | 2018-01-16T05:20:05-04:00 July 14th, 2011|News|

By John Quinn

Perhaps that canny Scot, Robert Burns, put it best:
{ITAL The best laid schemes o’ Mice an’ Men,
Gang aft agley,
An’ lea’e us nought but grief an’ pain,
For promis’d joy!}
While the Planet Ant current offering, “Cop Block,” offers no grief an’ pain, it’s gang a wee bit agley.
“Cop Block” is an original, one act script written by and starring Clint Lohman, Andrew Seiler and Andy Wotta, winners of Planet Ant’s 2011 Winter Comedy Fest. It’s the story of three hapless police officers, Rick, Nick and Johnny. They’re out to avenge the death of their Chief (who suspiciously shares a surname with show director Matthias Schnieder), killed in a botched raid on notorious drug dealer Two Percent. It sounds pretty grim, doesn’t it? It’s a comedy, folks. We are quick to learn the trio are pretty inept whether in or out of uniform. “Hill Street Blues” it ain’t.
While the premise is sound and the talent is here, the production has failed to gel. The madcap three don wigs and balloon falsies to flesh out the multiple characters involved in the plot, but the delineation of character is not as crisp as I have come to expect in Planet Ant productions. Whole lines are thrown away and are unintelligible from even the second row. The frequent set changes came off well, even though done in the dark. I would have expected chaos there if the play had actually been under rehearsed. Maybe the guys are too familiar with the material to get the proper hook to really sell it.
There’s no “cease and desist” order needed. “Cop Block” contains some quick quips and nifty riffs that kept the opening night audience howling. There are worse ways to spend “summer in the city.”

‘Cop Block’
Planet Ant Theatre, 2357 Caniff Ave., Hamtramck. 9 p.m. Friday-Saturday through July 23. $10. 313-365-4948.

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BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 25th anniversary.