Best Grown Men Who Still Play With Dolls - 2009
Nick Jones and Raja Azar
"When I was a child," intones First Corinthians, "I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things." Well, thank God Nick Jones and Raja Azar haven't read the Bible. Though they're all grown up, playwright Jones and composer Azar have yet to put away childish things—such as plastic toys and punk rock and really appalling sex jokes. The two scored a hit in 2008 with the salty puppet show Jollyship: The Whiz-Bang, a pirate pop-opera. The humor was juvenile and the songs deeply silly (sample lyric: "We're off to party island/We're off to party island/We're off to party island/Yo, ho, ho"), but the show was genius. In the intervening months, they've prepared two sequels, Sleepless Fishes and Crabquistador: Scavenger of God. They've also set to work on The Colonists, a children's wordless show about apiology. It features "electrified puppets, small-scale pyrotechnics, and the music of Shooby Taylor the Human Horn." It should soon set critics buzzing.