Modern Loves 1 : Alone is Alone, Not Alive




Cousin Franz Cousin Franz: The most adult of all Broadway musicals is about 47 years old now, and it is called “Company.” With the easy tweaking of some lines and the addition of an internet dating interlude, this collection of acid-dipped vignettes will stay fresh and relevant well into the 2020s. Stephen Sondheim and George Furth wrote the libretto on modern love, and they pinned it all on Bobby, the single 35-year-old male who hasn’t quite found the right companion. His circle of married friends is alternately bothered, baffled, and bemused by Bobby’s promiscuous, unsettled lifestyle.The women  in Bobby’s life are always too old, too young, too tall, too engaged to someone else, slightly dumber than they should be, slightly leaving for Barcelona. But Franz- I mean, “Bobby” – is not afraid of commitment anymore. He is ready for someone to marry him a little. Someone to keep him company. Someone to hurt him too deep/ and ruin his sleep/ and sit in his chair/ and make him aware/ OF BEING ALIVE. Hear his song!

Father Hank Hank: You hear that, ladies of Cousin Franz is available and more than ready to move into YOUR domicile! Who wouldn’t want this lovable troll leeching off their bandwidth? Don’t even worry about feeding him or sexing him! He’ll just spend all night down in your basement, getting into intense Reddit fights over which is the best Anderson, P. T. or Wes.

Beatricia Beatricia: “Company” is a brilliant compendium of cosmopolitan romantic couples, and it gives no solutions to Bobby’s central problem. It simply announces acceptance of the future. In 2011, Neil Patrick Harris played Bobby. The New York Philharmonic provided the music, and the talented cast included Stephen Colbert, Christina Hendricks,  and Jon Cryer. Patti Lupone gets to dedicate a toast to those ladies who lunch. “Company” is no dinosaur. The ladies are still going to lunch. Now they’re Yelping about it.

Tracey Tracey: Jonathan Larson modernized this in the posthumous “Tick…Tick…Boom.” That’s also a musical about the birthday party of a single (white) (heterosexual) (middle-to-upper-class) male as he chooses between youthful independence and mature commitment. I kind of like “Company,” Cousin Franz! BUT I prefer the 2006 version with Raul Esparza, who is a much better singer and actor than Neil Patrick Harris. That was a better production too- the cast was also in charge of the instruments! It made me cry during the butterfly story. WE ARE ALL LIVING THINGS, SHITHEADS!

Trent Trent: This is a hilarious Broadway adaptation of the classic sitcom “Three’s Company”! So there’s this swinging dude, Jack Tripper, who, according to Wikipedia, was played by John Ritter, and if you think about it, that’s a little bit of an intellectual Easter egg, because Jack Tripper = John Ritter. Just like Tony Danza = Tony Panza in “Taxi,” Ted Danson= Ed Handsome in “Cheers,” or Bill Cosby= Will Cosbytable in “Who’s in Charge of my Drink?” Yes, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s “Company” is truly a theatrical classic, and I totally watched it.

Grandpa Felicius Grandpa Felicius: Ah, that warm April evening when “Company” premiered, and I waited by the stage exit to congratulate Elaine Stritch on her Tony-Award-Winning tour-de-force performance as Joanne. There I am, bouquets of gardenias in each hand, hovering perhaps too close to the door, as she opens it. Elaine sees me in the unflattering light, screams: “AAAAHHHH!!! A Phantom!!!” and throws her irritable Siamese cat at my face. How that thing clawed at me! I withdrew toward an adjacent catacomb, in shame, covering my bleeding visage. A young Andrew Lloyd Webber stood by, laughing and pointing: “Cats and Phantoms! This gives me so many ideas!”

Blurbarella Blurbarella: “Adult– Tweaking– Acid– Fights– Dinosaur– Butterfly– Phantoms.”

5 of 6 Cherries


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