David Lindsay-Abaire is up to his old tricks again in “Ripcord,” a zany comedy about feuding seniors.
Bet you can’t keep ahead of the twists in the sitcom play “Ripcord,” David Lindsay-Abaire’s “Odd Couple” romp for two women thrust together in a senior living complex. They are roommates who don’t get along: One’s sweet, the other’s sour. But they are zesty enough to make a bet to settle which of them will rule the roost, and their competitive schemes zing the play in unexpected directions.
Claire Schoonover (as Marilyn, the sweet one) and Deb Gottesman (sour Abby) are ideally matched in Megan Thrift’s clever staging at Keegan Theatre, where a shoestring budget doesn’t hamper adventure scenes during Halloween and, in one of the best capers, on an airplane. Abby is the early focus, and Gottesman measures out Abby’s toxic complaints and insults with precision as the cranky loner plots to have the small nursing home room to herself. … Schoonover is unbreakably peppy as Marilyn; the bet is that Abby can’t make Marilyn angry, and Schoonover’s beaming smile and resilient happiness are like nails on a chalkboard for Gottesman’s surly Abby.
Thrift’s show is consistently good … at the big and little moments that catch you unaware. Matthew J. Keenan’s drab senior living set transforms into a haunted house at one point, with nightmare action that’s evocatively staged. Jared Shamberger gives a lovely performance as the tenderhearted Scotty goaded into a nifty gear shift; Shamberger gets one of the biggest laughs in a show full of gags that go “Gotcha!”