It’s days before commencement and Danni, a fourth-year medical student, and her friends decide to test a Medical Scientist Training Program thesis – the aftermath of which they’ll never forget.
The crew’s experiment goes horribly wrong when an MD/PhD student who doesn’t want the group to graduate and leave her alone at school adds “forget me nows” to the trial medication. The mystery concoction causes the friends to lose their memory. When they wake up, Danni is missing. With no recollection of the evening’s events and only hours to spare, the friends “concept map” their steps to find Danni and get her to graduation in time to give her speech.
These scenes set up the action in “The Side Effect,” the theme for Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine’s 32nd annual sketch comedy show In Vivo, which spoofed the characters and plot from the 2009 blockbuster movie “The Hangover” and asked one key question: Who let the docs out? The story follows four friends, Danni (Katelin Mirkin, M2), Phil (Taylor Reif, M2), HPME student Allen (Paul Bottone, M2), and dentist Stew (David Weinberg, M2), on a comedy-filled tour of Northwestern’s Chicago campus.
The group discovers a receipt for $800 from the Signature Room at the John Hancock Building and a collection of hospital ID bracelets issued by institutions across the city. They also realize that they stole a dog, Maynard, owned by Randy Perkins, PhD, assistant professor emeritus in the Department of Physical Therapy and Human Movement Sciences, and a car belonging to John X. Thomas, PhD, senior associate dean for medical education – a crime they pay for by serving as standardized patients for M1 students.
The show also featured performances from the Jugulars, a student juggling group, and the Dance Interest Group, which choreographed a routine to a well-known Madonna song, changing the chorus to “Like a surgeon.”
In Vivo 2011 even parodied commercials for men’s body-care products like Old Spice, showcasing former professional football player and current M2 student, Timi Wusu, touting a product called B.O. Blocker.
The writers, directors, and producers of In Vivo 2011 included second-year students Tony Joseph, David Pavkovich, Laura Sestokas, and Aaron Thomas. They were supported by first-year students Ali Habib, Caroline Minkus, Blake Randolph, and David Wang, who served as assistant producers.
“In Vivo provides us with a chance to break out of our professional mode and exercise our creativity,” said Laura Sestokas. “Feinberg students love to be silly; In Vivo gives us a reason to laugh.”
Proceeds from this year’s In Vivo show went to Midwest Brain Injury Clubhouse, a non-profit organization that supports individuals affected by brain injury and stroke.