Review: Ladies of The Second City Return with a Vengeance in SHE THE PEOPLE: THE RESISTANCE CONTINUES

By: May. 07, 2019

Review: Ladies of The Second City Return with a Vengeance in SHE THE PEOPLE: THE RESISTANCE CONTINUES

The women of The Second City return to the mainstage to present SHE THE PEOPLE: THE RESISTANCE CONTINUES, a follow-up to 2018's SHE THE PEOPLE. While the cast and creative team remains mostly the same as the original show, this reimagining explores a wider scope of true-to-life comedic scenarios. Under direction of head writer Carly Heffernan, the broad capabilities of the actors and creative team were utilized to fully translate the female experience in 2019.

Returning to the stage are ensemble members Tricia Black, Ashley Comeau, Paloma Nuñez, Karen Parker, Ann Pornel and Kirsten Rasmussen. As per Second City standards, each actor led several sketches to great success while balancing absurdist, wacky comedy with societal and political issues. Exaggerations on the female experience remain realistic, with one highlight being a look at the group getting ready for a night out. Nuñez takes charge as their commanding officer and grills the lineup on what they will and will not do with the common goal of not getting murdered, making a real concern among women into something funny without taking away from the seriousness of the issue.

In another sketch, Rasmussen and Pornel are male mechanics creating issues and additional costs for their female clientele. The caricature is exaggerated yet believable, and the contrast between their gibberish jargon and Parker's blunt character, followed by a great deception on Black's part, might just influence women in the audience during their next visit to the mechanic.

Apart from some of the more critical pieces in the show, there are numerous sketches that lean on The Second City's long running history with music, with music direction by Nicole Byblow. A highlight for any musical theatre fan is the Lamaze birth coaching class sketch, during which the expectant parents and their instructor are interrupted by a group of musical theatre performers, led by Black, in an accurate rendition of a well-known Les Miserables number. Black also takes charge during a song criticizing people for assuming and projecting heterosexuality onto babies and children to great payoff - and the inclusion of a doll, used to interact with the audience, brought another level to the already great vocals and relatability of the subject matter.

The return of a few concepts from the original SHE THE PEOPLE like the Rasmussen-led "You Oughta Know" game show and Parker's inflatable t-rex suit were good call backs to the initial work. Parker shone in her follow-up, going from a businesswoman to a party attendee who chooses to dress as a dinosaur. The addition of a pearl necklace to the costume is a nice touch and she is still able to balance anger and humour exceptionally well.

While this new show is chock-full of original concepts and funny moments, it felt as though there was a bit of a disconnect with the audience following intermission. It didn't take the cast long to regain attention and laughs, and the act two closer where Comeau calls Ontario's Deputy Premier Christine Elliot to make a case for a topic of the audience's choosing (our performance selected education). It was a great way to involve the audience in the final moments of the show, and the reminder to keep fighting against societal norms and setbacks connected all the night's themes in a way that felt natural and genuine.

SHE THE PEOPLE: THE RESISTANCE CONTINUES is a solid sequel to the original with a wide range of stories that likely any audience member will be able to relate to - whether they allow you to laugh at yourself, situations you've been in or heard of from the women in your life, or just reflect on what it means to be a woman in 2019.

SHE THE PEOPLE: THE RESISTANCE CONTINUES runs through September 14 at The Second City's Toronto Mainstage Theatre, 51 Mercer Street, Toronto, ON.

For more information or to buy tickets, visit

Photo credit: L-R Karen Parker, Tricia Black, Kirsten Rasmussen, Ann Pornel, Paloma Nuñez, Ashley Comeau. Photo by Samantha Hurley.


Review: SIX THE MUSICAL at Royal Alexandra Theatre Photo
Review: SIX THE MUSICAL at Royal Alexandra Theatre

Divorced, beheaded, died. Divorced, beheaded, survived. If you happened to fall into the (mis)fortune of being married to one of England’s most notorious kings, your fate was sealed. Six The Musical, written by Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss, takes the tragic fates of Henry VIII’s six wives and weaves them into a lively and flirty musical romp.

SIX THE MUSICAL Extends in Toronto Until February 11, 2024 Photo
SIX THE MUSICAL Extends in Toronto Until February 11, 2024

The Canadian production of SIX The Musical will extend its run until February 11, 2024. Get more event and ticket information here!

COC and NAC Commission EMPIRE OF WILD From Ian Cusson and Cherie Dimaline Photo
COC and NAC Commission EMPIRE OF WILD From Ian Cusson and Cherie Dimaline

The Canadian Opera Company (COC) and National Arts Centre (NAC) have officially co-commissioned Empire of Wild, an imaginative and enthralling new mainstage opera from composer Ian Cusson and librettist Cherie Dimaline that centres the Georgian Bay Métis community at the heart of its story. Learn more about the opera here!

DanceWorks Performs SaMel Tanzs CHAMPIONESS in November Photo
DanceWorks Performs SaMel Tanz's CHAMPIONESS in November

DanceWorks has announced the world premiere of SaMel Tanz’s CHAMPIONESS, a captivating performance that combines boxing, contemporary, street, and Latin dance to explore notions of identity and mental health.


#repshow# in[i]# Pinkalicious the Musical
Wychwood Theatre (9/16-10/22)Tracker PHOTOS VIDEOS
#repshow# in[i]# The Shadow Whose Prey the Hunter Becomes
Canadian Stage (1/18-1/28)
#repshow# in[i]# Xanadu
Scarborough Village Theatre (11/02-11/18)
#repshow# in[i]# Evita
Hamilton Family Theatre Cambridge (10/18-11/05)
#repshow# in[i]# Letters From Max, a ritual
The Theatre Centre (11/10-12/03)
#repshow# in[i]# Fall for Dance North 2023
Fall for Dance North 2023 (9/26-10/07)
#repshow# in[i]# Love you to Death: An Original Canadian Murder Mystery Musical
Small But Mighty Productions (10/26-10/29)
#repshow# in[i]# Calendar Girls
Oshawa Little Theatre (9/28-10/14)
#repshow# in[i]# Topdog/Underdog
Canadian Stage (9/22-10/08)
#repshow# in[i]# Peter Pan: The Panto
King's Wharf Theatre (11/08-11/25)

Recommended For You