Enough said!!

The word is out. POTUS appears to be the best representation of what could happen, or has happened, in the White House. Or what playwright Selina Fillinger believes what goes on inside the president’s inner circle. POTUS is her third play and nominated three times for the prestigious Tony award in 2019. Rumor has it she wrote her play as a response to her grand disappointment when Donald Trump heavily and loudly, campaigned and won the presidency. She created a show that is not only laugh so hard that your sides will hurt for weeks, but she also manifests what could possibly be a vivid account of what’s going on now. The clever one-liners come super quick, so pay attention, if you can.

The action takes place inside the West Wing of the White House. The oversize portraits of former presidents, such as Lincoln, Washinton, Kennedy and others, there’s even one of Benjamin Franklin, don’t get it but okay, are strategically positioned to look down on the women who are trying to save the country’s fearless and horny, leader. Press secretary Jean (Celeste Den) meets with Harriet (Shannon Cochran) the President’s Chief of Staff, about the latest crisis created by POTUS (President of the United States). Words like “ass play” and phrases like “she’s having a cunty morning,” explains how deep the problems go.

The women come together to find a way out of what it appears to be another catastrophic moment POTUS has made. Then, the First Lady Margaret (Alexandra Billings is hysterically funny) dressed in a sleek professional wine-colored suit with eye catching fluorescent pink crocs, comes in demanding answers and remedies on how to fix the latest POTUS blunder. As all three discuss options, Stephanie (Lauren Blumenfeld excels at physical comedy) is the nervous White House secretary. Like Lady Macbeth, Stephanie slowly descends into a hysterical madness by taking what she believes is a medication for her nerves, is actually an illegal drug, courtesy of POTUS’ wayward sister Bernadette (Deirdre Lovey). Stephanie remains overly stimulated and keeps up the manic episode throughout the night. Eventually, she is fixated in running around wearing a light green inner tube, used for the pool to keep from drowning, while being vocal about being taken seriously. Harriet encourages her to outstretch her arms and yell out “woman” to feel more empowered. She does so but at awkward moments which annoys the others.

Flying in from her latest adventure is Bernadette. Being the rebellious sister and Jean’s former romantic partner, she demands a pardon from her brother for being an “alleged” drug mule. Stephanie is proof that the allegations against Bernadette are true. She entices Jean with sexy banter and velvety strokes over her face and body. Harriet is not having any of that foolishness.
And just when things can’t become more convoluted, Dusty (Jane Levy) shows up.

The sweet natured girl sets her bag down, drinks her cup of “blue raz” slushie and demands to see POTUS. Hmmm? A young girl leaves home to be with an older man, who promised her anything and everything. As she recalls their magical time together, she constantly rubs her belly. That doesn’t sound good. She needs to see POTUS immediately. You can almost hear Harriet’s eyes roll in the back of her head as if this little country girl is gonna order her around. Then, there’s journalist Chris (Ito Aghayere is wonderful as the mutli-tasking and frazzled mother). She should be home nursing her twin newborns. Instead, she runs around with a dual set of nursing bottles strapped to her chest. She’s there to interview the First Lady, but her reporter’s instinct smells like a better story. Perhaps a Pulitzer Prize winning story.

Set and video designer Brett J. Banakis does an incredible job in making the stage shape and move like a record player by spinning the rooms around. Director Jennifer Chambers does an amazing job conveying Fillenger’s opus. Everything is superbly done. In comedy, it’s all about the timing. And this wonderful cast delivers it perfectly.

POTUS is a hysterical romp from beginning to the end. The actors’ infectious good time behavior is certainly felt by all. It takes more than a village to find a solution to an erroneous, mad-cap faux pas. It takes seven women to make the fix look easy. Hell! They made it look as if it never happened. That’s the power of seven women who can protect the dumbass who rules this country.

WHERE: Geffen Playhouse; 10886 Le Conte Ave, Westwood
WHEN:   Wed-Fri at 8; Sat at 3 & 8; Sun at 2 & 7; Now until Sunday Feb. 25
WHY:      Who doesn’t like to laugh at a president?
RUN TIME: 1 hour and 50 minutes with one intermission
HOW MUCH: $39 – $129
INFO: www.boxofficeticketsales.com/gilcatestheater/losangeles OR www.geffenplayhouse.org