The Life and Slimes Of Marc Summers – Review

Marc Summers and members of the audience in The Life and Slimes of Marc Summmers. Photo by Russ Rowland
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By Bob Nesoff

As a journalist I should have known better. First, I am writing in the first person, something that is rarely done. Second, never anticipate what you are covering. That adage goes along with “Never judge a book by its cover.”

That brings us to an oddly named show playing at the New World Stages in New York. What on earth could “life and slimes” do to encourage anyone to see a show. 

Marc Summers in The Life and Slimes of Marc Summmers. Photo by Russ Rowland

Truth be told, from the opening seconds of the show, the entire audience was doubled over with laughter as former television host Marc Summers took the stage. And it rarely let up for a second. That was ninety minutes of hilarity, no intermission, that brought members of the audience on stage to participate.

Slapstick was brought to a new level by Summers who was responsible in large measure for bringing Nickelodeon to television audiences. He was host of ”Double Dare,” “What Would You Do?” (currently hosted by John Quiñones on ABC-TV.) Marc also hosted shows on Lifetime Television and The History Channel.

All of that put together must have truly clouded his mind. He moves from quite to frenetic and somehow manages to convince audience members to participate in his madness.

Oddly, famed Food Network star Guy Fieri is one of the producers of “Slime.” Marc, it turns out, was host of original “Next Food Network Star,” won by Fieri. The two have remained friends.

Summers career hops scotched all over the entertainment world. He was a regular on ABCs “Home Show,” and executive director of “Dinner Impossible” and “Restaurant Impossible.” All of this put together created the baseline for his show at New World Theaters.

Marc Summers in The Life and Slimes of Marc Summmers. Photo by Russ Rowland

Audience members (with one exception…a ringer who came on stage and added to Summers’ insanity) are given coveralls and other protective clothing because they are going to be covered on whipped cream chucked at them by a modern trebuchet (otherwise known as a catapult). 

Audience members are subjected to a host of indignities and all come off the stage laughing. 

Summers honed his maniacal skills on Nickleodeon and Double Dare. Green Slime was a mainstay and kids on the show were often recipients of a gosh-awful covering of green slime that came from somewhere above and covered them. No damage and they all seemed to have fun.

Audience participants were given prizes…sort of. What they were handed could probably not get them fed in a restaurant or on the subway (assuming anyone wanted to ride the subway; a more dangerous act that appearing on stage with Marc Summers).

Along the way Summers detailed his oft up and down career in show business. He was at the top and the next morning at the bottom of the heap. But, miraculously, he kept on plugging ahead. 

The madness continued until the final moments of the show. The audience sat back, realizing the end was nigh, but not knowing what to expect from Marc Summers. What was to come, was the reason for the name of the show.

Summers stood mid-stage talking when a cast member slowly approached carrying a bucket. Summers had a look on his face, knowing what was going to happen. Of  course, he knew. He had done the show numerous times. But the audience was not sure. The Bucket-Bearer looked at the audience with a gleam in his eye, winked a knowing wink and slowly lifted the bucket. Summers feigned a look of horror on his face, closed his eyes and was covered from head-to-toe in a thick, glop of green slime.

Marc Summers in The Life and Slimes of Marc Summmers. Photo by Russ Rowland

At least the audience was spared that indignity. The show closed with the audience hoping that more was to come. They had been reduced to tears laughing as Summers detailed his life and career, the ups and downs, but always managing to come back.

The show runs until June 2 with ticket starting at $39. Where in New York can you get an evening of total hilarity for that price.

New World Stages is located at 340 West 50th Street. Try it. You’ll love it.

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Photos courtesy of The Life and Slimes of Marc Summers


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