Arizona Daily Star
November 28, 2008


On Stage

All of the other reindeer are hilarious

Santa skewered in dark, adult 'Monologues'
By Kathleen Allen
Arizona Daily Star
Tucson, Arizona | Published: 11.28.2008

Keep your children away from Santa Claus.

The man should be locked away and the key buried deep in the South Pole.

Or so would one would think after seeing Jeff Goode's "The Eight Reindeer Monologues." RES Productions/Unlikely Theatre opened a riotous production of the black comedy last week.

In essence, Mr. Claus is accused of raping Vixen. And molesting Rudolph.

Each of his eight reindeer comes up to testify, and most haven't got much good to say about the jolly old man.

"Take it from me," said the openly gay Cupid (a flamboyant Steve McKee). "Santa was a sex crime waiting to happen."

The militant Blitzen (a sublimely strident Chris Farishon) calls Santa "the jolly fat pervert."

Dasher (a blustery Jeffrey Carlos Robinson) has a deep well of resentments, most of them against Santa for letting the wimpy Rudolph lead the sleigh that one year.

This play is tasteless, dark, dirty and downright hilarious. And director Howard Allen (no relation to this writer), who has his reindeer in floppy ears (that would be the females) and fuzzy antlers, has set just the right over-the-top, irreverent tone for the production.

There wasn't a disappointment in the ensemble piece. But Alida Holguin Gunn as the street-wise, tough-gal Comet, a Santa supporter (he did, afterall, save her from a life on the streets), stood out. She infused her Comet with such well-rooted attitude and personality that you almost believed that this was a talking reindeer who got in knife fights and violently fended for herself before Santa came along. You did not want to mess with her.

This is not a production to take your kids to. Nor is it a play for the easily offended.

But for those out there who think Santa is ripe for a few putdowns, have a twisted sense of humor and like theater that's as outrageous as it is fun, "The Eight" is the play to see.

"The Eight Reindeer Monologues"
  • Presented by: RES Productions/Unlikely Theatre.
  • By: Jeff Goode.
  • Director: Howard Allen.
  • When and where: 10:30 p.m. next Friday, Live Theatre Workshop, 5317 E. Speedway Blvd.; 7:30 p.m. Dec. 6, and 3 p.m. Dec. 7, Club Congress, 311 East Congress St.; 10:30 p.m. Dec. 12 and 13, Live Theatre Workshop; 7:30 p.m. Dec. 19 and 20, Beowulf Alley Theatre, 11 S. Sixth Ave.
  • Tickets: $10-$15.
  • Information/reservations: 982-0169.
  • Et cetera: This is grown-up stuff; leave the kids at home.
  • Contact reporter Kathleen Allen at or 573-4128.