The desert does strange things to people.
Did you hear about the one where three grown-ass women and a flippant teen girl hang out at a seminar in Joshua Tree, California to better themselves and succeed? Two friends Paula (Teresa Ganzel, Meet & Greet), and Margo (Melissa Peterman from the comedy Reba) share a two-night stay at a second-rate motel for the annual spiritual awakening conference to relax and rejuvenate their mind, soul and potential. The potential gets serious in the over 100-degree heat. They share cramped quarters with spiritual mother Andromeda (Tony-award winner Marissa Jaret Winokur) and her bored daughter Sage (former Disney star of the comedy I Didn’t Do It, Sarah Gilman). Margo is ready to return home but earlier she spotted a military base nearby and rethinks about leaving.
Paula: This is a cute room.
Margo: For a suicide.
Andromeda is hyped up to meet her idol, the maven of workshops Brynn Masters. Her excitement chuckles Paula and Margo and annoys the hell out of Sage. Each woman has their individual reason for attending. Andromeda teaches the Heartbreak Help course on how to get over your partner, Margo is looking for help in the romance department, Paula is allergic to pretty much anything and everything, she even brings her hypo-allergenic pillow from home, she suffers from tender immune system, and Sage wishes to be anywhere else. In their first night, the women reluctantly bond, share cookies in bed, much to Paula’s horror. Andromeda is all about Brynn Masters. She anticipates meeting her idol and hoping to learn to become a better instructor. After she meets the real Brynn Masters, the one who embarrasses the spiritual mother during a session, Andromeda takes a deep reflection on the woman she deemed a god. Sage is happy to see her mom come back to Earth but not pleased how hurt she is. She has her mom’s back and motivates her to be better than Brynn. She is better than Brynn! Margo is surprised at the recent transformation and joins Team Andromeda. Playwright Justin Tanner did a phenomenal job keeping the laughter going every second. GOD bless this man for understanding the female psyche. It’s deep, complicated but when reached, you will find a lot to laugh about. Tanner has his finger on the pulse on what is funny. Pretty much, anything can be made funny if done right. The four actresses are a beautiful sight. They each have their exceptional charm that shines in their characters. This is another winner for talented director Stan Zimmerman. Zimmerman keeps it one hundred by executing the funny to the hilt. His previous works, Meet & Greet and Suicide Notes: In Their Own Words, exemplifies his gift for humor that is natural born.
Ganzel is wonderful from start to finish. She just cracks people up with her bold in your face presence. Peterman is superb with her on the spot one-liners. Their timing is impeccable and on point. Every word comes out more funnier than the last thing they said. Winokur does an exceptional job as the free flowing mother whose only goal is to make the world a better place. Gilman is on her way in becoming a remarkable actress as she matures. As much as Margo likes to tease Paula, she is a good friend. Sage’s mom might be from a different planet, but she knows her mom will be nearby. The comradery is there, a little veiled but it’s there. Their humor is undeniable rich and will make your sides ache for a week. It doesn’t’ matter because they make is worth the temporary pain. You won’t even notice the 70 minutes fly on by with no intermission. These talented women bring out the funny in comedy. They are truly inspiring.
Andromeda: Three powerful women on our way to greatness!
Heartbreak Help plays Thursday – Saturday at 8 pm and Saturday and Sunday at 3 pm, until Sunday, October 1st, playing at the Complex inside the Dorie Theatre, located at 6476 Santa Monica Blvd. in Los Angeles. For ticket reservation, log on to www.heartbreakhelp.bpt.me.