It was a standard movie script in the '30s. A band of kids (usually led by Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland) put on a talent show to save the old folks' home. With nothing but grit and pluck they manage to produce an extravaganza worthy of Broadway.

In real life it doesn't always work that way (hardy amateurs don't have access to the MGM back lot). The Video Buddies, a comedy ensemble from Takoma Park, who appeared last night at d.c. space, lacked all of the show-biz necessities -- like costumes and sets. Despite (or possibly because of) these shortcomings they presented a show that was charming in its own fashion.

The Video Buddies rely heavily on a TV-type presentation. Images were offered at a lightning pace, some of which connected and some did not. Johnny Carson, Jesus Christ, game shows, Masterpiece Theatre, religious bigotry and superheroes all came under their comedic ax.

The members of the five-piece group displayed varying degrees of comic proficiency -- timing and even the ability to remember lines were wildly uneven. Bruce Tobin, however, was a delight throughout, particularly in his outrageously stuffy characterization of Alistair Crock.

The Video Buddies have far to go. But they are going.