Friday, June 24, 2005

The Stache gets cashed.

So, people: final weekend of Behold! It's going to sad to shut the show down. Performing in such a sprawling comedy is hella funtimes, nice work if you can get it. But, as sad as it is to stop a show and have your castmates become former castmates, there are hidden advantages to every ending. In my case, the singular advantage I have will be one I enjoy minutes after the final bow--shaving this godforsaken mustache off.

I'm not complaining. The mustache was a solid sartorial choice for the character. Yvette, our costume designer--who I think of as a super-cool indie rock version of Barbara Bel Geddes in Vertigo--was right to have me wear it. Still, it is a thing to be despised everywhere outside of the show itself. The Wife of DCeiver calls it "the Burgundy". I call it the must-not-stache. Put yourself in my shoes. It's Saturday night, you're at Tonic--drink in hand, good conversation all around, an abundance of the merriment. You're feeling content, cool, a little tired--but that sort of serene tiredness that feels good to wear, the badge of hard work and effort. You take a moment to repair to the loo, slake the receptacle's thirst for your brine, swivel and tap the soap dispenser and hit the hot water. The warmth tenderly stings your hands, and you are feeling completely in this moment, your moment, cool and contented. And then you look up, into the mirror--and there's that thing sitting there and all at once, those whispering illusions of satisfaction are stanched out. Heard no more. And all you feel is a deep and abiding awkwardness. Look at that thing! You are so not cool.

So, the coming shaving, it's a good thing. But I would be remiss if I didn't point out the one thing outside of Behold! that the 'stache was good for. Credit Michelle Formerly of Full Minute of Mercury for encouraging me to make this discovery: the mustache is wonderfully essential if you want to do the John Bolton impersonation.

For those of you who do not know, John Bolton is the maniac sadist that Commander Cuckoo Bananas has nominated to be our UN emissary. Thus far, his Senate confirmation has not come about, mainly because he's well known for being a huge, huge, huge, huge, huge, huge, huge, huge asshole. It seems likely that he will be confirmed through a recess appointment, which is fittingly ironic because as a child, a "John Bolton recess appointment" meant that Bolton was scheduled to beat somebody's ass at recess and leave them for dead on the softball infield. Actually, that's probably what it still means.

Seeing as how Bolton is likely to become a fixture in the public arena for some time, it seems like there will remain a need for able-bodied John Bolton impersonators. Plus, as far as the zeitgeist of 2005 is concerned, it's the scariest Halloween costume going, rivaled only perhaps by the post-Scientology Katie Holmes or Gwen Stefani's zombie army of Harajuku Girls. The DCeiver is here to help all would-be Bolton mimics, with a handy How-To guide, Sunday Source steez!

1. That stache
The Bolton stache is a lumpen, ugly thing that sits hatefully on the upper lip. If you make a yawning oval with your mouth, the Bolton should be at least as long as the curve of the upper lip, and the tips should extend just past the point of the oval where the upper and lower lips meet. There's no need to care for, direct, comb or shape the stache. Let is burrow and bustle downward as it sees fit--misshapen lumps are a plus. The hairs should be long enough to blanket the upper lip, curving slightly back toward the face at the ends of the whiskers.

2. So ungodly white
The Bolton stache is bone-white, as devoid of color as the man is of human feeling. Affecting this color can be tricky. It can be done with an abundance of powder, perhaps, or with that vaudeville mainstay, white shoe polish. But if you want to get the color out easily and not snort so much powder that you look like Bright Lights, Big City was written about you, I suggest you coat the stache with clown-white foundation makeup. It's easier to remove, and it's ironically fitting, seeing how Bolton is a) a clown and b) like a clown, completely terrifying.

3. Completing the face
A pair of unstylish wire-rimmed glasses are essential. As far as the hair goes, you will need to shape your hair into what I like to call the "Republican Scalp Pelt." Parting your hair above the corner of your left eye, bring the hair on the sides of your head straight down. The hair on top, should be fashioned into something unnatural looking, bubbling upwards at the peak of your scalp and brushed forward. You should pretend that there have been no advancements of any kind in hair-styling in the history of humanity. The end result should not so much resemble hair as it does a thing that died on your head. Died of shame.

4. Getting Bolton in your body.
From a movement standpoint, Bolton moves and walks like Godzilla or a Ray Harryhausen stop-motion cinematic creation of yore--a plodding, inelegant menace. For reference, consult Clash of the Titans or an old Sinbad movie (not the asexual comedian of the Kid N Play era). Bolton, as you know, has no knee joints, so forward momentum must be achieved by ungainly hip swivels. And, as you know, Bolton's arms are essentially thalidomide flippers with evil claws attached to them, so you'll have to forego using your elbows, and flap and cantilever your arms about at the shoulder joint. That means that when it comes time to throw that stapler or that old-fashioned glass or that recently resected and still beating human heart at the secretary who's come in to remind you of your afternoon appointment, it's not so much an overhand or underhand throw as it is a swiveling and deadly accurate forward flail.

5. Dialogue and subtext
When speaking, Bolton basically sounds as if he was Frankenstein or the stupid mummy from Aqua Teen Hunger Force. That's easy enough to master, but good acting requires not just good dialogue and proper vocal style, but also an instinctual awareness of subtext--the underlying meaning and intention behind the words you are saying. It's especially important when imitating Bolton, because internalizing all his inner rage in the right way is what's going to make your imitation believeable. Let's take a line of Boltonesque conversation that you'll want to incorporate into your imitation and examine the subtext of it, so you completely understand where this fucking psychopath is coming from.

Bolton says: "RAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHWWWWWWRRRR. What the fucking fuck are you! God damn it! I will fucking sink my teeth into your neck and suck your fucking blood until I have chewed up and eaten your fucking soul! RAAAAAAAAAWRRR! Then I am going to digest your soul with all of my stomach acid. Then I am going to shit your soul out onto the floor! Then I'm going to take another shit, on your soul, that is shit. And your soul-shit shall mix with my shit. Then I'm going to take your soul and my shit and fly to Botswana, and I'm going to find me a dirt-poor Botswanan and I am going to throw this shit and your soul-that-it-shit at him! I'm going to knead it into his hair and against his skin. And I am going to yell at him, saying, 'RRRRROOOOWWWWRRR! I ate a guy's soul and then shit it out and covered it in shit and now I'm rubbing it on you because I'm John Bolton! Tremble, bitch! Tremble at the stache!"

Bolton means: "RAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHWWWWWWRRRR. What the fucking fuck are you! God damn it! I will fucking sink my teeth into your neck and suck your fucking blood until I have chewed up and eaten your fucking soul! RAAAAAAAAAWRRR! Then I am going to digest your soul with all of my stomach acid. Then I am going to shit your soul out onto the floor! Then I'm going to take another shit, on your soul, that is shit. And your soul-shit shall mix with my shit. Then I'm going to take your soul and my shit and fly to Botswana, and I'm going to find me a dirt-poor Botswanan and I am going to throw this shit and your soul-that-it-shit at him! I'm going to knead it into his hair and against his skin. And I am going to yell at him, saying, 'RRRRROOOOWWWWRRR! I ate a guy's soul and then shit it out and covered it in shit and now I'm rubbing it on you because I'm John Bolton! Tremble, bitch! Tremble at the stache!"

Not as simple as it sounds, is it?

Well, hopefully this primer will get you started down your own path of John Bolton impersonation. Of course, further research will only enhance it, and, as always, have fun with it! Fully committing to the impersonation will make it fun for you, and painful for nearly everyone else. And, because I promised you Sunday Source style, I'll leave you with one of their trademarked factual errors: Enjoy the 4th of July this coming Monday!

8 comments:

A Unique Alias said...

Dear sweet Jesus, please give me free license to use the term "Commander Cuckoo Bananas."

DCepticon said...

I think Yvette is more like a new wave Edith Head.

Mb said...

ummm....holy shit. god damn. that is all.

Washington Cube said...

At least you didn't have to grow a "Snidley Whiplash." Curses, Little Nell! Mwahahaha!

mjalex said...

I checked out Behold! last night for the final performance, and it was even better than I had hoped. I've seen most of the shows put on this year (that Iraq one, Accidental Death..., Scarlet Letter, and now this one) and I liked this one the best. Accidental Death comes in a close second, but I really liked the "stage" design and even though it was uncomfortably hot, I didn't really care because I was enjoying myself too much. Good job; really. How's that bare upper lip doing now?

The Deceiver said...

Ha! I came out for curtain call with my mustache removal equipment secreted on my person. Had that thing off in a manner of minutes last night, and I went to brunch this morning a happy, happy man. Thanks for braving the heat Saturday! Holy fucking shit it was hot.

yvette said...

hey, friend! i did a google image search* of barbra bel geddes in that role, and she's a little cutie. so, um, thanks!


*you are safe for now. until i see the actual movie.

Melissa said...

I just wet myself