Perhaps you’ve seen those sneaky ads for Virgin Mobile on the subway lately? You know, the ones that masquerade as public service ads about STDs and implore you to visit www.curethecatch.ca? Well, Catch 23 has absolutely nothing to do with those irritating advertisements! No siree, Catch 23 is a weekly improv competition that takes place at Clinton’s Tavern (corner of Clinton and Bloor) every Monday night.
This week is an extra-special one for the funnymen and funnywomen of Catch 23. Their annual Tournament of Wonders, featuring talented improv teams from across the country, kicked off last night with a Launch Party show that pitted Edmonton’s Atomic Improv (below) against six members of Toronto’s Bad Dog Theatre Co. against Second City Touring company members Lauren Ash and Leslie Seiler.
The first match of the week-long improv fiesta started off slowly, but as the teams found their footing and the audience found the bar, the laughs began to flow like Ralph Benmergui ‘s silken locks.
At first it seemed like Team Second City was going to be left in the dust, but trailing far behind in the final quarter the Funny Girls pulled out the big guns – boob jokes. It was a brilliant strategy that catapulted them into second place.
Ultimately, however, it wasn’t enough to beat Atomic Improv, which had a killer comedy app that not even breast gags can overcome : a funny pudgy guy. (Oh, and a wicked cell phone gimmick.)
Catch 23’s Tournament of Wonders moves to the Poor Alex Theatre tomorrow, where it continues all week and into the weekend. The finals take place on Saturday at 10 p.m., after the Cabaret of Wonders featuring Makesi Arthur, Mike Balazo, and Calcu-Lator & the Oral Presentation. Catch it before it’s over, hyuck, hyuck!