Arts & Culture News

I Can't Stop Watching This Commercial for Christmas n' Da Hood

Why does it makes me so happy? It's a toss-up between the discount tickets available at Williams Chicken and the curious punctuation of Christmas n' Da Hood.

When people omit a letter -- "I" in this case -- they generally sub in an apostrophe to neck with the next letter. It's a cuddly little place-holding language thing. This show's all like, "Eff that. We'll stick apostrophes on the backs of words if we want to. We're grammatical gangsters."

Or it could be the random capitalization. The preposition "In" -- told here as "n'" -- is lower case, while the article "The" -- here as, "Da" -- is pumped up in caps. That's boldly random. It's also alerting me that some serious wildcard shit is going down at the Black Academy of Arts and Letters this weekend. That's great news because my Seasonal Affective Disorder lamp just blew its bulb. I need a loose-cannon holiday stage production to take the edge off.

Let's check out the flyer.

Those shadow children are walking into traffic. I'd be more concerned about their safety were this flyer off fewer chains. Chromed-out 26s. Reckless use of Photoshop. Half-bodies errywhere. It's like a Blingee pic, without the bling.

Now, the synopsis.

Reading that tiny text is difficult, especially since you're distracted by the change of intersecting street signs. In the last flyer, our heroes were at the Dallas-centric corner of Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X boulevards. (Sadly, the King's Town Liquor, Beer, Wine and Check Cashing store didn't make it into final edits.)

In flyer two we're transported to Hollyhood and Martin Luther King Jr. boulevards, a charmingly fictitious neighborhood that establishes the idea that this play could happen anywhere. It will not be geographically pinned down by your predisposed notions of familiarity and/or realistic setting. "Hollyhood" is a clever street name, too. I think it implies that the "buppity" family may have a Hollywood address, but they've still got a little hood in them no matter how they try to hide it. Furthering that theme is the assertion that "What happens in the hood...Stays in da Hood."

Plus, the actors' heads are ornaments and that's hilarious. Or, to use the flyer's description of the play, "hilariously funny."

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Jamie Laughlin
Contact: Jamie Laughlin