Tuesday, September 22, 2015


The 1991 film Dogfight was adapted into a musical in 2012. The waitress, Rose, translates easily to the musical realm. She sits right beside Marian Paroo, Fanny Brice, Lizzie Curry and other self-conscious leading ladies dipping their first toes into romance.

Eddie and his Marine buddies are a trickier bunch. Masculinity is hard to portray in musical theater. The stylized angst of West Side Story and the profanity laden camp of Grease put quotation marks around the "macho" male chorus. The angrier rhythms of Full Monty and Billy Elliot reflect men's anger at being "emasculated" by unemployment. Paul and Pasek's songs suggest the bravado of "Greased Lightning" while Duchan's crueler book scenes suggest the psychopaths of Neil Labute's In the Company of Men. 

Eddie may go too far to redeem himself to some audience members but Rose wins our heart with every song.

Up next: Triassic Parq!

No comments:

Post a Comment