Welcome to The Second City Archives, in which we post an exclusive clip each week of some of comedy’s biggest superstars performing early in their careers on the legendary Chicago stage. Second City has generously given us a glimpse into their extensive archive of live performances, and over the coming weeks we’ll be sharing some rare and retro comedy never before seen on the web.
To keep up with the theme of the Democratic convention, this week Second City sent us a politically themed scene from the 1997 revue Paradigm Lost, which featured ensemble performers Scott Adsit, Kevin Dorff, Rachel Dratch, Tina Fey, Jenna Jolovitz, and Jim Zulevic. In the scene, Zulevic and Fey play American diplomats visiting an intimidating “former” military dictator (Dorff) who, in his own words, “overthrew” himself “and introduced democracy” in his country. The diplomats have a few concerns, however, about some of his highly questionable laws and customs. “No doubt these measures seem strange to you, but I can tell you that they have obtained for us tremendous social results,” he argues. “You see, in this country, unwanted teenage pregnancy is unheard of, and adultery is punishable by death!” “…Well, there you go!” Check out more great clips from Paradigm Lost here and here.