Spiderman: Turn Off My Memory
NOTE: I usually post on NYT - but they are not accepting user reviews for this show - so some of the $65 million must have gone to the Times to disable that option. It begins with an announcement from a techie about the dangers of the show, that the safety of the cast and audience is most important and that the show may stop at any time if there is a problem. The opening is odd and out of context it starts with the end or what appears to be the end ? it is hard to tell ,as we see MJ dropped to her death 3 times during the show. The next scene is spectacular ? beautiful, interesting, fascinating with a pretty good song Arachne weaving. Then it starts to unravel. There is little book, the music is dreadful ? some songs seem endless and nearly all fail to further the story. Only Arachne?s songs are well written and meaningful. The audience of 1,900 or so seemed to agree as there was little few applause at the end of any number. The direction is typical of Taymor; inventive to start, very cerebral in parts, juvenile in others and filled with way too many puppets. The constant use digital animation and black light tricks gives the whole thing a theme park ride feel. In fact, it feels like an extended version of the Spiderman ride at Universal. The set is so busy, that at times, it upstages the dialogue and songs the scene of Peter and MJ walking home from school has a mind numbing flip book of houses that never stops moving. The large cutouts are also used too many times. Costumes are interesting, but for $65,000,000, I would hope that in Peter?s dream sequence they could make a rip away tuxedo that actually fits over the costume underneath. The flying sequences are quite exciting until... The show came to a grinding halt about 5 minutes from the end of Act I. The green goblin was stuck over the center orchestra for about 5 minutes, and it was explained to the audience that the computer has an automatic shutdown system if it senses that something is out of place. The finally got the green goblin down, lowered the house lights and started the next scene. Overall Act I was ok as is, but needed some trimming and new music. The second act was terrible ? I can?t explain what is wrong with it ? it is a combination of bad music, bad acting/singing and no coherent book. T.V. Carpio as the new Arachne is wonderful. Jennifer Damiano is very good, although has a few costumes that look like she stole them from Next to Normal. Reeve Carney is uncharismatic and brings little to the role. The geeks are fine for what they are supposed to be, but the lines in rhyme are irritating. The funny thing is ? this show could actually work. Make Act I a little tighter, get some more songs by different composers please. Make Act II only a story about Peter?s relationship with his ?creator? Arachne. Get rid of all the other villains. Have Peter struggle between his good side love of MJ and bad side love for Arachne. Have him defeat Arachne, overcome his dark side and ride off into the sunset with MJ.
Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark on Sunday, Jan 2nd, 2011