The City Paper sent out its theater queens to take a look at The Little Dog Laughed, a special production from The Village Playhouse running through Aug. 29. The pair is happy to gossip about closeted gay actors, but the gerbil rumors make them a little nauseous.

Greg: The Little Dog Laughed is about …

Shane: Two smoking hot guys who get naked for my enjoyment.

G: Well, you and the little old ladies in the audience. The Little Dog Laughed is about a rising Hollywood actor, Mitch, and his ambitious agent, Diane, who is trying to preserve his assumed heterosexuality. Then there’s the gay hustler Mitch falls for, Alex, and Alex’s girlfriend.

S: I loved it. I adored it. I’ve even come up with soundbites like you see in movie trailers. Sassy. Intimate. Sweet. Moving.

G: But enough about the latest Pepto commercial.

S: (pause for death stare/dramatic effect) Seriously funny. Heartwarming. Charming.

G: I’d add that the writing was some of the smartest you’re going to see this year.

S: And these actors — this did not feel like an opening night for me. It felt like they were living these characters’ lives. It felt like it was eavesdropping, not theater.

G: They all excelled. Liz Duren was hilarious as Diane.

S: She did Heather Locklear proud.

G: The scene where she reads off a Hollywood contract required expert timing. She pulled it off and got some of the biggest laughs of the night.

S: And her red shoes in the final scene. Fierce.

G: Um, sure. Then there was Emily Wilhoit as Alex’s girlfriend, Ellen. I was already a big fan.

S: And she delivered. She had me with the cigarette puffs in her first monologue. So many laughs.

G: Now, lets get to the main event. Randy Risher as Mitch and Will Haden as Alex.

S: The romance was incredible. The chemistry between these two actors was absolutely … hot. There’s no other way to describe it. And the argument between the two in Act II was terrific acting. I teared up.

G: What did you think was the theme of the play? There’s a lot of talk about happiness, but you realize pretty soon that isn’t what we’re watching here.

S: It’s about the fabricated happiness that you find in Hollywood and the harsh reality you face in New York.

G: When Diane screams at Mitch to shut up, I think that really encapsulated what they’re saying here. A person wants to be happy and gay, but they’re told to keep in the closet and they believe that’s what they have to do to preserve this fabricated happiness.

S: Let’s talk a little about the nudity.

G: You know, the guy in front of me was in the way, so I had to crane my neck like some perv.

S: Did you get an eyeful?

G: Mission accomplished.

S: The nudity was completely natural. It’s not for shock value. I feel like it was symbolizing the stripping away of illusions they wore outside of the bedroom.

G: I’ve seen nudity on stage before, but never this intimate. That may have been since it was two guys in bed together.

S: Finally, props to director Steve Lepre and the Village Playhouse for putting this kind of production on. Very edgy and relevant and sexy and funny and smart. Give me more.