Chicago may be the epicenter of sketch comedy, but Killing My Lobster has the potential to put San Francisco on the map. The group gained notoriety through the San Francisco Fringe Festival and was featured on Comedy Central's Web site in January. Breaks the Bank
is comprised of 10-plus sketches, utilizing a five-piece band, a slide show, and set pieces that work to blur the lines between sketch comedy and theater. What makes KML so good is that its members don't always go for the easy punch lines -- they show their range with one-note jokes as well as more complex sketches that mirror our neuroses and anxieties. Not much about the New Economy or Bay Area life escapes their satire in this show, from the Learning Annex ("How to Be an Evil Super Genius on a Shoestring Budget") to focus groups about soft drinks to "E Potato" (a site that sells potatoes) to a hilarious musical and dance finale -- set to "Hair" -- about hippies protesting the price wars at superstores. Of course, some sketches tank, and some, such as the Campbell's clam chowder slogan campaign, are beyond the pale with raunchiness. Regardless, most sketches are crowd-pleasers.