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Raves for ‘Insurance: The Musical’

By Jay MacDonald · Bankrate.com
Friday, April 4, 2014
Posted: 6 am ET

Can "Insurance: The Musical" do for property and casualty indemnity what "The Book of Mormon" did for evangelism, "Kinky Boots" did for footwear and "Legally Blonde" did for lawyers?

To wit: Can Broadway make insurance cool?

A show about insurance? Really?

If early reviews are any indication, we can expect to see our buttoned-up home and auto insurance agents walking with a hint of swagger following this week's Broadway debut. It's show time! Now let's look at your coverage!

OK, spoiler alert: The whole Broadway "Insurance: The Musical" idea was another fabulous April Fools' fantasy from the industry website Insurance Journal. But you know what? The concept is so absolutely timely, so inevitable, that some aspiring Mel Brooks or Monty Python crew should commence pre-production immediately.

Because in truth, television for years has been paving the way for just such a red carpet moment for insurers, thanks to those endlessly entertaining riffs from Geico, Progressive and Farmers that broke with the solemnity-and-safety mode to embrace what is arguably a more appropriate milieu: theater of the absurd.

Starring 'Mayhem'! And Flo!

While Geico's cubical-roaming camel spouting, "Hey Mike, what day is it?" does little to educate consumers about the need for auto insurance, it does imbue the brand with a savoir faire that makes you want to hang out -- and perhaps insure -- with folks who roll that way.

So it would come as little surprise if the inevitable producers of a real "Insurance: The Musical" do exactly what the IJ pranksters insist they've already done and not only tap into the same droll silliness of recent insurance spots, but (ahem) ensure success by importing the show's leads directly from the small screen.

In IJ's perfect world, "Don Summers" (in real life, Dean Winters), who plays "Mayhem" in those hyperkinetic Allstate commercials, and "Sophie Courtesy" (real life: Stephanie Courtney), who plays Progressive's ubiquitous Flo, would team up as insurance agent and claims adjuster, respectively.

You bet there are discounts

The plot is torn from the headlines: Two star-crossed insurance do-gooders battle a crooked cartel of doctors and lawyers who stage auto accidents and then funnel bills through the medical clinics and auto shops they own.

And the music! Our plucky pair meet cute at the scene of a staged accident, joining in the duet, "Third Responders." Later, Sophie gets all Ethel Merman with an ode to her penchant for profanity, "I Put the Cuss in Customer Service." Other tunes include "Red Flags," "Fraud Ring on Her Finger," "Actuary, Act Your Age," "Body Shop Boogie" and "Adjust This!"

While finally revealing that "Insurance: The Musical" runs "only one day, today, April Fools' Day," the IJ Lerner and Loewe add this perfect rimshot: "Tickets are $75 but after 15 minutes, you can save 15 percent. Everybody knows that."

Judging by reader response to the phony post alone, an actual insurance musical would be Broadway gold.

In an entertainment mood? Here's how reality TV insurance works.

Follow me on Twitter: @omnisaurus.

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