The proceedings start simply. Ethereal music plays, familiar music that one might have seen in a blockbuster movie or three over time. Our minds imagine sweeping mountainsides, deep canyons, and ground-covering mists filled with secrets. Two hooded figures take the stage and narrate (with the aid of pictograms) the dark history of the rise and fall of an evil dragon and its wraith servants, trapped within the bowels of dark, chaotic temples, of legendary times when an ancient city was governed by corruption and desolation, and of the hundred year peace since those dark times.
Well, hundred-plus. The Cubs haven’t won a world championship since 1908, after all. That pesky dragon has been kept under wraps beneath U.S. Cellular Field, with the wraiths sealed inside a certain, demonic statue outside of Wrigley Field.
So goes the latest offering by the Chicago-based Nerdologues, The Lord of the Wrigley: Fellowship of the Cubs. Having opened at Public House Theatre on Friday, May 23rd, the long form sketch troupe has crafted a piece that brings together the separate worlds of Chicago baseball and Lord of the Rings-inspired nerdisms. Well, not so separate, theorizes Nerdologues founder/producer/actor Kevin Reader. “Think about it,” says Reader. “you and a bunch of friends get together and pick a band of fighters to fight each other week after week. Whoever has the most points, based on the players stats wins. Sounds a lot like some role playing games if you ask me.”
Director/actor Chris Geiger agrees, echoing many of the similarities between sports fans and nerd fans. He also points out that one of the guiding focuses of the Nerdologues is to “make people laugh and bring them together”, something which Lord of the Wrigley does with abandon.