Broadway’s Tony-nominated puppet show (well, the one that didn’t win) will go out with a bang: Bob Saget will step into the role of Pastor Greg in Hand To God as it enters the last months of its run at the Shubert-owned Booth Theatre. Producer Kevin McCollum says the television personality and stand-up (whose version of “The Aristocrats” is considered by comedy connoisseurs to be the nastiest version of the word’s nastiest joke) will take over for Marc Kudisch beginning November 3 and stay through the show’s closing on January 3, 2016.
“I’ve been wanting so much to come back to Broadway, especially if the material was just too good to resist,” Saget says in a statement released by the show. “After seeing Hand To God with my daughters, I knew immediately that I’d pounce at the opportunity to be a part of it if I could. Didn’t see it coming but beyond delighted. So looking forward to getting onstage with this miraculous cast in this incredibly funny and poignant play.”
Hand To God is set in a Texas church, where a hapless Mom is running a class that’s supposed to created a puppet show with God in its heart and Jesus on its mind. Among the malcontents in the class are her son, a lost boy, who has an unusual relationship with his sock puppet, the lethally uninhibited Tyrone. Mom is also the object of Pastor Greg’s desire, though Mom’s desires are requited elsewhere in the play, which uses take-no-prisoners humor to make salient points about sex, religion and the animation of inanimate objects.
Saget made his Broadway debut in 2007 in the musical The Drowsy Chaperone. He will join current Hand To God cast members Steven Boyer, Geneva Carr, Sarah Stiles and Michael Oberholtzer. After the closing, the show will transfer to London’s Vaudeville Theatre, with performances beginning February 5.