Theatre / Jerry Springer: The Opera

Jerry Springer: The Opera is a British musical written by Richard Thomas and Stewart Lee, based on the television show The Jerry Springer Show. The musical is notable for its profanity, its irreverent treatment of Judeo-Christian themes, and surreal images, such as a troupe of tap-dancing Ku Klux Klan members.

The main characters of the show are:

  • Jerry — The talk show host.
  • Jonathan Weiruss/ Satan — Weiruss, the warm-up man whom Jerry fires for incompetence.
  • Steve Wilkos — Head of Security at the Jerry Springer Show.
  • Dwight/ God — Dwight, a guest on the show who is cheating on his fiancee with two other people. God appears in Act III.
  • Peaches/Baby Jane — Peaches, a guest on the show, who is Dwight's fiancee. Baby Jane is an adult baby in Act III.
  • Tremont/Angel Gabriel — Tremont, a guest on the show, who is a male-to-female pre-op transsexual, having an affair with Dwight. Angel Gabriel appears in Act III.
  • Zandra/Irene/Mary — Zandra, a guest on the show, is the best friend of Peaches, and is having an affair with Dwight. Irene is Shawntel’s ashamed mother. Mary appears in Act III.
  • Montel/Jesus — Montel, a guest on the show, enjoys dressing as a baby and fouling his own underwear. Jesus appears in Act III.
  • Andrea/Archangel Michael — Andrea, a guest on the show, is Montel’s lover. Archangel Michael appears in Act III.
  • Chucky/Adam — Chucky, a guest on the show, is Shawntel's redneck husband, who does not approve of her career desires. Adam appears in Act III.
  • Shawntel/Eve — Shawntel, a guest on the show, dreams of becoming an exotic dancer, but her husband, Chucky, disapproves. Eve appears in Act III.

This show provides examples of:

  • Ass Shove: Jerry's primary motivation in Hell is to not be "fucked up the ass with barbed wire!"
  • Back from the Dead: Jerry comes back just long enough for his Final Thought.
  • The Conscience: Jerry is haunted by his "Inner Valkyrie".
  • Cluster F-Bomb: It's Jerry Springer. What did you expect?
  • Cruel and Unusual Death:
    Jerry: "Accidentally shot by a man in a diaper, trying to kill a member of the Ku Klux Klan. Not exactly the epitaph I was hoping for. Still, it might look good in Latin..."
  • Died in Your Arms Tonight: Poor Steve Wilkos
  • Dragged Off to Hell: By Satan himself
  • Dying Declaration of Hate: Even though he's technically dead at this point, Jerry gets a variation of this before he's to be condemned to hell.
    Jerry: " in conclusion... fuck you. Fuck you all!."
  • Fire and Brimstone Hell: Where Jerry is sent. Complete with a terrifyingly charred version of The Jerry Springer Show's set. The audience are even chained up behind cracks in the walls.
  • Greek Chorus: The trailer-trash studio audience fill this role.
  • Precision F-Strike: Somewhat surprisingly, the show is famously rich in profanity which should dilute its impact, but the song "I Just Wanna Dance" manages to pull off a Precision F Strike with full emotional effect.
    Shawntel: I wanna do some living, 'cause I've done enough dying. I just wanna dance. I just wanna fucking dance.
  • Take That!:
    Ensemble: "Who'll speak for us when you are gone?"
    Jerry: "You've got Oprah Winfrey!"
    Ensemble: "She's too tame"
    Jerry: "Sally Jessy Raphael?"
    Ensemble: "She's too old"
    Jerry: "Dr Phil?"
    Ensemble: "He's too shit!"
  • Transsexual: Tremont, whose "I Am" Song is naturally called "Chick With A Dick".