Monday, August 10, 2009

One Final Word

Sara Comeny, in the comments to Isaac's post, gets it, I think, wholly right here. I'll quote her at length:
I do feel like I'm seeing a lot of new plays of late (as in, the last 5 years) that get out of the gate at the beginning of Act I with an exciting idea and compelling characters. Then, either shortly before or shortly after intermission, the excitement of the play drains away with a handful of awkward new-character introductions and confused incorporation of new facts in the world of the play, sometimes too much repetition and sometimes not enough explication. The play loses muscular tone -- it seems that the playwright is failing to overcome her own boredom with the scenario she's introduced. At this point, our playwright often throws in an absurdist, Chris Durang-ish or Mac Wellman-ish scene -- a wryly ironic tapdance with the main character's dead mother, say, or a mock-courtroom-meets-Newlywed-Game scene moderated by the previously minor shopkeeper character. Or a mysterious apocalyptic disease that may or may not be a commentary on modern life, or a medieval-European ghost fascinated by the water dispenser on the refrigerator. Are these incursions what we're deeming "experimental"? If so...

Go read the rest.

Now, back to the optimism...

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