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  • Donald E. Baker:
    25 Aug. 2023
    Extra! Extra! Read all about it! Scott Sickles does it again! In this marvelous little satire, he takes the dirty political tricks we see on the national stage--attacks on the press, the Big Lie, money laundering, petty burglary, name calling--and employs them in service of an intrigue to extend a contestant's reign as the perennial winner of the Klonopinto County Chili Cook Off. For example, a rival is forced to leave town when a rumor is circulated that she puts beans (gasp!) in her chili. Never fear. The Klonopinto County Picayune reveals all. Read it and laugh.
  • Leif Larson:
    6 Jul. 2023
    This play will put you smack dab in Klonopinto County where Chili-gate is in full swing. A hilarious political satire laced with just the right amount of spice (and no beans). I laughed out loud!
  • Jacquelyn Floyd-Priskorn:
    27 Jun. 2023
    I love when I read a play to myself and I laugh out loud. This political thriller within a small town chili cook off and an all female cast is so high stakes that every chili pepper emoji may as well be a gun emoji! Also, solving crimes via Venmo emojis?! Brilliant! This has got to be fun to play and even more fun to watch!
  • Danielle Frimer:
    26 Jun. 2023
    What glorious fun! Sickles had me laughing by the setting description. This play is a masterclass in quick-witted dialogue, clear and hilarious stage pictures, and economic, suspenseful storytelling for the stage. A truly vivid and wacky world springs to life from the jump, and the unfolding mystery is a hilarious thrill ride, while still managing to pack a meaningful punch. I experienced what felt like brain delight bubble pops every other second while reading this play, and I plan to read everything else this talented writer has ever written. Heartily recommend!
  • Michael C. O'Day:
    19 Jun. 2023
    Like Mel Brooks and the Zucker Brothers before him - and he more than earns the comparison here - Scott Sickles takes the narrative bedrock of ALL THE PRESIDENT'S MEN and builds upon it a dazzling contraption, firing off puns and pratfalls and vaudeville gags both high and low. Sickles does have serious topics on his mind - the insidious reach of propaganda, the resurgence of racism and fascism - but, again like Brooks, he knows how valuable humor is at getting the message across. Better even than a small town newspaper.
  • Sam Heyman:
    17 May. 2023
    Good parodies are relatively simple to pull off -- but great parodies require both a commitment to the source material and enough invention to make the new work stand on its own. Well everybody, Scott Sickles has NAILED it with "The Presidential Chili Cook Off."

    Sickles lampoons famed political thrillers, the highs and lows of high school football--I mean American chili cook offs, and the inability of most people to properly set their privacy settings on Venmo.

    Cramming over a dozen characters, scenes, and laugh out loud moments into less than twenty pages, this play is masterful parodic work. Delicious!
  • Morey Norkin:
    1 Mar. 2023
    All the President’s Men (book and movie) had a tremendous impact on me. Now, there’s THE PRESIDENTIAL CHILI COOK OFF! Scott Sickles has created the perfect parody, mixing in just the right amount of original source material, creating similar yet hilarious character names, and applying ample amounts of absurdity. With this recipe, Sickles has a sure winner even without the help of the CIA!
  • Steven G. Martin:
    16 Jan. 2022
    Scott Sickles takes the parody of presidential politics seriously, and this one-act is all the stronger because of it.

    "The Presidential Chili Cook Off" is ripe with twists and turns, reversals and double-reversals, and all kind of ploys. Anything less would be a disservice to the characters and, frankly, the audience.

    This is a script loaded with visuals, the cast is all-female, and Sickles enjoys puffing up the ego of these characters who believe their story will rock the world, before he deflates them mercilessly.

    I greatly enjoyed a virtual reading of this play.
  • Philip Middleton Williams:
    27 Dec. 2021
    This send-up of "All The President's Men" has all the elements that are required for a perfect farce in the vein of Peter Seller's Inspector Clouseau along with plenty of Marx Brothers over-the-top antics and the lyricism of Mel Brooks. The best part is that those of us old enough to remember the real Watergate know that the only reason it didn't succeed was because the real actors in that kinderspiel were as inept as the ones Scott Sickles skewers in this delicious adventure. That makes this a true cautionary tale for the next contest.
  • John Busser:
    25 Dec. 2021
    From the great character names to the screwball-comedy like pace, this Watergate parody is a spicy mix of hilarious jokes, pointed jabs at reporters, cover-ups and chili cook-offs that should win top prize. I laughed throughout and kept thinking this would be a perfect satire for the stage. And any play that has doubling and tripling of roles for actors has to be fun just watching them have to create these zany (yes, I said zany) characters. Terrific!