IT'S NOT EASY BEING A FUNNY DYKE in Seattle. The fertile soil of Seattle's comic underground has produced such gash-gnawing comedic greats as Kathy, Mo, Koch, and Platt, and those acts are a bitch (as it were) to follow. Toddling in the footsteps of these well-established pioneers of lesbian camp is the comedic trio Pulp Vixens, who continue this tradition of very funny grrlz with their latest brainchild, Derailed Desires. Set on the speeding Labia (pronounced la-BYE-a) Express, this 50-minute film noir camp fest is the sequel to their original offspring Innocent Heat, and features forbidden longings, unquenchable lust, deception, betrayal, and murder on this "train bound for trouble."

We meet the star-crossed trio as they board: Esther MacAfee (the lovable, lisping Jennifer Jasper), a trash novel hack whose genre specialty is "Dames in love -- with other dames"; a sultry siren named Cat (as in Cat o' Nine Tails, played by the honey-voiced Shawn Yates); and the naive Louise Muldavane (a cross between Didi Conn and Lucille Ball, played by hysterical Mia Levine). A flood of lesbian sex-as-food analogies follows these introductions -- tamales are tickled, lemons are juiced -- as the attempt is made, rather unsuccessfully, to eke a plot from an abundance of relentless one-liners and a '50s trash literature motif. But an actual plot is superfluous to this show -- neither the audience nor the players seem to require one. Director Kevin Kent (a Seattle favorite who is, it is rumored, a lesbian himself on occasion) keeps the action punching along, and the furiously flying repartee needs nothing so base as a story line to support it.

I won't even begin to speculate upon the Freudian implications behind staging a lesbian love triangle on a speeding train. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, and the laughs come so fast in this hyper-witted production that any deeper implications are ultimately overshadowed by its sheer cleverness. You won't walk away from this show a changed or enlightened person, but you will walk away with a smile on your face, a warm, satisfied feeling from having laughed surprisingly hard, and a whole new repertoire of euphemisms for "vagina." What more could a theatergoer ask for?

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