Who you gonna call when you want to see a hilarious spoof of the 1984 film “Ghostbusters”?
The Gaslight Theatre, of course.
In its latest production, “Ghostblasters,” the Gaslight Theatre manifests another comedic work of art under writer/director Peter Van Slyke, starring Mike Yarema and Jake Chapman as ghost-hunting protagonists tasked with saving the city from a flurry of trouble-making spirits.
As is the usual with Gaslight shows, this one starts out high-energy and doesn’t let up for the duration, in the process seamlessly revisiting some of the most memorable scenes from the “Ghostbusters” series, the third and latest film of which is rumored to be going into production next year.
But “Ghostblasters” doesn’t share in that speculation. With a running date of June 12 through Aug. 31, this one is already made, and made well.
Initially set in New York City’s Metro University Science Lab, we are introduced to scientist/ghostblaster Zack Freeman (Yarema), and parapsychologist/ghostblaster Wally Beaker (Chapman), who are in the process of creating a hi-tech device that will allow them to visualize ghostly spirits.
Their invention is near complete, but there are those like Dean Nadar (Dean of University, played by Charlie Hall), Mayor Witherspoon (David Orley), and mayor’s assistant Randall J. Patterson (Todd Thompson), who stand in their way, afraid the ghostblasting duo might prove an embarrassment to their fair college and city.
But while the chuckling non-believers sneer at Freeman and Beaker, it soon becomes apparent there is a serious problem in their hometown – one that begins to literally haunt them.
So, when the mayor falls under the possession of the ruthless spirit known as “Igor the Destroyer” (Orley), the challenges only mount for the ghostblasters. Igor’s power corrupts the mind of his followers and they, and other ghosts alike, join up for a supernatural battle against the ghost hunters.
Outnumbered and possessing only earthly powers, things look grim for the ghostblasters, who must accomplish an against-all-odds victory if they are to save the city, their reputation, and their own lives.
This one is a winner from beginning to end. The high-tempo pace keeps you watching. The characters are just as over-the-top as ever. The laughs keep coming. The plot leaves no loose ends.
Plus, there is also an added bonus in the show, as guests will get a bit more up close and personal time with the actors who leave the staging area and make their rounds through the auditorium a bit more frequently than normal. Add to that some cheap but effective special effects and props, and you find yourself in a 360-degree entertainment venue. The play is accompanied by some fitting song and dance (“Thriller,” “Ghosts Just Wanna Have Fun”), and successfully weaves together characters from other ghostly films like “Beetlejuice” to add that extra layer of humor.
While each Gaslight play concludes with some additional song and dance and purposefully corny jokes, this one – a “You’ve Got Talent” olio – is far and above the most superior and interactive post-show performance to date. Like the well-known show “America’s Got Talent,” the olio puts the audience in charge of the performers’ fates. You “boo”, they go away. You cheer, they stay. But regardless of the performers’ fates during the olio, there is more than enough to cheer about in the Gaslight’s latest production.
For more information including ticket prices and show times, visit www.thegaslighttheatre.com or call 886-9428.