Review: POTUS, legislating laughs at breakneck speed with rowdy gals on crisis control, at The Geffen

POTUS: Or, Behind Every Great Dumbass are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive at The Geffen Playhouse Gil Cates Theater till Feb. 25, 2024

L-R: Celeste Den, Ito Aghayere, Shannon Cochran, Jane Levy and Deirdre Lovejoy in POTUS: Or, Behind Every Great Dumbass are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive at Geffen Playhouse. Directed by Jennifer Chambers. Photo by Jeff Lorch

 POTUS is an uproarious romp through the White House guided by high-energy women who are incredibly hilarious when faced with controlling a myriad of madness. On one especially bad day in the West Wing, the gals band together to make sure the (never seen) asinine POTUS can get through his day without causing multiple domestic and international crises. With no indication of political party affiliations (there are elements familiar to both), the comedy is farcical. …But is it really?

 Legislating laughs at breakneck speed are the incredible members of the cast who are masters of comic timing with their rowdy lines and physical antics.

 Shannon Cochran, as the President’s Chief of Staff, Harriet, shines as the beating heart of the story. She is more knowledgeable and more capable than the doofus she works for, yet she’s just there to clean up his mess. It’s stated that “Harriet’s the number one reason this country continues to function.” So why isn’t she president? The gals ponder, “That’s the eternal question, isn’t it?”  

 Celeste Den as Press Secretary, Jean, is also outstanding as another tasked to POTUS’ clean up duty. She displays an unflappable strength, and yet radiates with a passionate spirit when an old fame arrives. 

L-R: Ito Aghayere and Alexandra Billings in POTUS, Photo by Jeff Lorch

 Alexandra Billings is the First Lady, Margaret, who wears Crocs with her power suit to prove she’s an “earthy” gal. Billings is great as she channels her inner Bea Arthur to play the acerbic glass-ceiling-breaking, confident yet bitter, gun-toting FLOTUS with gusto.

 Ito Aghayere as journalist/nursing mom Chris, has to be every woman’s inspiration for the ultimate multitasker, despite teetering on the edge of a breakdown. She adds to everyone’s bad day by throwing a marble bust with shocking results.

 Lauren Blumenfeld as the mousey White House secretary, Stephanie, displays a knack for over-the-top slapstick as she unwittingly gets drugged out of her mind. That sends her running wild through the halls of the West Wing for big laughs.

 Deirde Lovejoy is the President’s felonious sister, Bernadette, who shows up looking for a pardon in the middle of the crisis du jour. Displaying a searing take on the political satire material, she is brazen with her bad girl attitude. 

L-R: Lauren Blumenfeld and Jane Levy in POTUS, Photo by Jeff Lorch

 Dynamo Jane Levy is the President’s young mistress, Dusty, sort of a mid-west wide-eyed innocent, yet fierce sexy firecracker. Arriving to announce she’s pregnant, Levy plays her crowd-pleasing character as a sparkling truth-teller caught up in the wake of all the White House chaos.

  For an adult audience, the thoroughly entertaining madcap play, oddly celebrating the strength of women, is by Selina Fillinger. The three-time Tony Award-nominated show premiered on Broadway in 2022. POTUS is now playing in the Gil Cates Theater at The Geffen Playhouse. It is skillfully directed by Jennifer Chambers, with an impressive set of the hallowed halls of the West Wing by Brett J. Banakis. The run has been extended, January 17 through February 25, 2024.

 The Geffen Playhouse is located at 10886 Le Conte Avenue in Westwood, California. For tickets call 310-208-2028 or online at

L-R: Geffen Playhouse, Executive Director/CEO Gil Cates, Jr., Ito Aghayere, Lauren Blumenfeld, Alexandra Billings, director Jennifer Chambers, playwright Selina Fillinger, Shannon Cochran, Deirdre Lovejoy, Jane Levy, Celeste Den and artistic director Tarell Alvin McCraney at the January 25, 2024 Opening Night of POTUS: Or, Behind Every Great Dumbass are Seven Women Trying to Keep Him Alive. Photo by Jordan Strauss

Margie Barron has written for a wide variety of outlets including Gannett newspapers, Nickelodeon, Tiger Beat and 16 Magazine, Fresh!, Senior Life, Production Update, airline magazines, etc. Margie is also proud to have been half of the husband & wife writing team Frank & Margie Barron, who had written together for various entertainment and travel publications for more than 38 years.