A farce by Douglas E. Hughes and Marcia Kash, Too Many Cooks is set in 1932 at "Chateau Bubbalowe", a restaurant opening in Niagara Falls, Canada. Irving Bubbalowe and his daughter, Honey, have put all of their savings into this restaurant, including hiring the famous singing chef, François LaPloufe for their opening night. Except François never shows up. And it turns out that a local supplier, Mickey, had double-crossed Alfonse Feghetti, a Chicago mobster, and is using Chateau Bubbalowe to store his stolen shipment of whiskey. Add in a replacement chef with too many accents, an overzealous Mountie, and an immigrations investigator, and it's becomes clear that this is a recipe for trouble.
Has nothing to do with the short film Too Many Cooks.
This show exhibits the following tropes:
- Ash Face: The oven blows up partway through the show. Irving uses this to claim that Honey is actually, "Fatima", a Sufi Muslim from... Saskatchewan.
- Chekhov's Skill: Mickey is introduced singing along with a record of an opera aria. François LaPloufe is the famous "singing chef". When LaPloufe is a no-show, they instead bill Mickey as the "singing chef" that they've been advertising.
- Clothing Damage: While drunk, Effing rips Snook's dress off.
- Damn, It Feels Good to Be a Gangster!: Played with. Alfonse is definitely on the top of his world, but he's also lonely, having put all of his efforts into work.
- Easy Amnesia: Largely averted. Mickey suffers from amnesia throughout the second act. Not only can't he remember who he is, but he's repeatedly told his name and to go to Niagara Falls to hide and each time, he's surprised and responds, "Huh... I always wanted to go there."
- Even Evil Has Standards: When it's revealed that François LaPloufe is sought by immigration because he's a filthy Bolshevik who's tried to start unions in the past, the two gangsters spit in disgust.
- The Great Depression: One of the reasons Irving feels his restaurant has a chance is that so many places have closed up over the Crash.
- Of Corpse He's Alive: Done by the two gangsters with Mickey's seeming corpse when Olivia Snook finds them coming out of the closet.
- The Living Dead: At the end of the first act, the dead Mickey gets up and walks off stage before the lights go down. It's because he's not actually dead.
- Pocket Protector: Mickey is saved by the cigarette case in his breast pocket.Multiple characters in regards to the case, including Mickey: "Those things will kill you..."
- Stop, or I Shoot Myself!: Ultimately used by Irving to get the gangsters to give up on shooting him, Frank, and Honey.
- Tutti Frutti Hat: One of the disguises Honey dons involves putting a fruit basket on her head and pretending to be an entertainer à la Carmen Miranda.