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The Comic Strippers returns shirtless spoof to North Vancouver stage

The improv comedy sketch show returns to North Vancouver's The Centennial Theatre on Friday, Nov. 4.
David Milchard (second to left) is one of six Comic Strippers to come to North Vancouver.

There are a few things that come to mind when the three words 'male strip show' are uttered, but dad bods, improv and "husband friendly" rarely rank high on that list. Then again, The Comic Strippers are not your average stripping troupe. 

The show, which has sold out everywhere from Las Vegas to Australia, sees six improvisational comedians mirthfully gyrating on stage. More of a parody than a serious performance, it's like a real-life version of British classic The Full Monty – in fact David Milchard, one of the six, said it served as a large part of the show's inspiration. 

"We were all big fans of that film," he said, "but with our show the humour isn't scripted. It's based on the suggestions from the audience."

In between scenes, the six unlikely strippers banter with the crowd, harnessing content from the spit-balling audience to provide perfectly catered standup. 

To the more reserved of theatregoers he promises that the group won't be throwing anyone under the bus for comedic purposes and, bar the rogue shirts, the stripper's clothes remain firmly on. So watching it with your mother or significant other won't have you running for the hills.

"There's a little misconception with improv that people think we're going to make fun of the audience, but it's actually quite the opposite. We take the audience ideas and suggestions and build on them," he said. 

"We are not purposely being naughty or rude on stage. It's exciting and silly and playful every time, a generational comedy show that just ends up being a really fun night."

Describing his group as like the "avengers of comedy," Milchard said much of the show's success has been down to the talent involved. He is joined by the likes of standup comedian and actor Roman Danylo, of CTV's Comedy Inc. fame, and Chris Casillan, an improv comedy vet with Vancouver Theatre Sports. 

Milchard himself is an award-winning actor, who has become somewhat of an internet sensation following viral Youtube series 'Convos With My 2 Year Old.' 

"We're all seasoned improvisers and we're some of the best in the world at what we do," he said.

"Those who come down to the show will get to watch some real comedy magic on stage."

Their show on Friday at the Centennial Theatre is part of a wider tour that sees them shimmy from Peterborough to Prince Albert. Following their North Shore stop the (un)sexy sextet will visit Abbotsford and Surrey, ensuring there is plenty of opportunity to catch them locally.

Tickets can be purchased through The Comic Strippers website

Mina Kerr-Lazenby is the North Shore News' Indigenous and civic affairs reporter. This reporting beat is made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.

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