Midwest Living Review
Part of the ambience of the original Second City comedy club is its sparsely decorated stage and worn-down decor. That venue is still there. But now, Second City offers the same caliber of improv comedy—along with stand-up shows and family programming—in its new, better equipped, more spacious and comfortable theater next door. For those visiting Chicago, Up Comedy Club is a one-stop shop for both the legendary comedy show (which has launched dozens of celebrity careers) and to sample of the city's famous foods, including Lou Malnati's pizza, a Vienna Beef hot dog and an Italian beef sandwich. While waiting for the show to start, we perused the menu of Chicago-themed dishes, some with comedic descriptions. A cocktail called The Chicago River was described as "Long Island on steroids. Looks like a river, tastes like sunshine." The North Avenue Beach Martini was made of vanilla vodka, raspberry liqueur and pineapple juice; its description reads, "One sip and you'll want to take off your shirt and soak in the sun. But please don't. This is a theater." The show, "The Second City's History of Chicago," lasted 1 hour and 40 minutes with an intermission. It was funny, creative and contained great improv scenes that are comparable in quality to everything we've seen on the original Second City stage. This particular show included sexual innuendo and swear words and contained a lot of insider references (such as how Chicagoans mark their parking spaces with lawn chairs, or the story of the great Chicago fire) that might be lost on tourists. Still, we highly recommend the venue.