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Frameline review: ALEC MAPA: BABY DADDY


DIRECTOR: Andrea James

Expected to attend: Director Andrea James, Subject/Performer Alec Mapa

America’s “Gaysian Sweetheart,” comedian Alec Mapa (Ugly Betty, Desperate Housewives), sparkles onstage with incisive and flirtatiously filthy stand-up. In this bigger-than-life performance film featuring his sold-out, high-paced, award-winning show, Mapa takes on every topic in his amazingly queer life: hosting gay porn award shows, his sex life, meeting other gay celebrities, working gay cruises, his lack of knowledge (and deep love) of most musical theater, reality television, body-image issues in Los Angeles, and a diverse array of bodily functions.

But the film goes well beyond his rowdy stand-up act. Touching scenes with husband, Jamison Hebert, and their child, Zion (whom they adopted at age five through the LA foster care system), give a glimpse into their family dynamics. The film charts the creation of this unconventional trio and shows how love and humor (and valiant attempts at waffle-making) define a family.

Baby Daddy was performed live in LA and New York City, won the prestigious Bistro award, and was nominated for GLAAD and United Solo awards for best off-Broadway solo show. Independently produced by Mapa, Hebert, and director Andrea James, the film does an end-run around network and studio approvals. Its unbridled energy and unrestrained tone make for nonstop, gut-busting laughs, and an occasional tear, for the whole audience. And you don’t even have to like children to join the party.

— Kevin Schaub


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