Atomic Saloon Show
At a Glance
Is it worth the cost?
As long as you know what you’re walking into, then a resounding yes!
Why should I see this show?
Because you can’t wait to see what the weirdos behind Absinthe are doing now.
What else do I need to know?
Like the sister shows, this is definitely an experience for adults.
What’s the bottom line?
Another gem that should be on your must-see list.
Absinthe is, simply put, the best show in Las Vegas. It’s funny, dirty, outrageous, shocking, and awe-inspiring, leaving audiences gasping with laughter and then gasping even more when they see the feats of athletic prowess the cast members pull off on a tiny stage just feet away from the audience.
The Atomic Saloon Show is done by the same company, Spiegelworld, and it somehow manages to be funnier, dirtier, more outrageous, more shocking, and just as awe-inspiring. That Las Vegas has two shows this good is an embarrassment of riches and the only troubling thing about it is if you don’t have the time or budget to see them both. Throw in Opium, their fun space-themed show at the Cosmo, and your quandary gets even worse.
Atomic is in the former Act nightclub space in the Grand Canal Shoppes at The Venetian, which was a fantastic room to start with. You enter through a winding corridor, pass a couple of bars, and step out into a gorgeous, two-story space that has been dressed up like every brothel from every western movie you’ve ever seen. Seating options are plentiful. The main floor has booths along the sides and chairs surrounding the circular thrust stage that is connected to the main stage where you’ll find church pews. The second floor has more seating overlooking the action and while there are no bad views, I recommend getting as close as possible for maximum impact.
The concept is basically the same as Absinthe only with a wild west theme led by the wickedly profane Madam Boozy and her sidekicks, a singing cowboy and a preacher, who act as ringleaders for the rest of the cast of characters that includes more cowboys, the town mayor, a few “working girls,” and a couple of nuns. There’s no story line, per se, but there’s a through line about Boozy trying to keep one of her girls from running off with a cute farmhand. Mostly, it’s just dirty jokes and songs in between the variety acts that get increasingly more lascivious as the night progresses.
The performance I saw had a hula hoop artist, a gymnast who does incredible stunts on a pole that juts out over the first couple of rows of seats, another who does a balancing act, Irish jig tap dancers who also do a number where they slap and pound on a table with dizzying speed, and aerialists spinning above and around the theater. And then there’s the nun who does things with ping pong balls. That’s all I’m saying about that, partly because I don’t want to ruin the surprise and partly because it’s just way too blasphemous to describe. The whole thing ends in a full on western saloon brawl that involves punches, kicks, chairs being broken over people’s heads, and dinner rolls being thrown at the audience just because, apparently.
Just like Absinthe and Opium, the acts and the performers will rotate in and out so you may see something completely different, but they are always spectacular and/or fascinatingly weird. Besides, it gives you a chance to go back and see it again.
In case I needed to be more clear, this show, like its siblings, is strictly for adults with a very open mind. You’re going to see and hear things that you’re going to have a hard time scrubbing from your memory no matter how much you may want to (did I mention the nun?).
If you loved Absinthe, you need to put this wild hootenanny of a show on your must-see list the next time you come to Vegas.