Here are a few important disclaimers before you read on:
- I love superheroes, and Spider-Man is my favorite of them all
- I think Julie Taymor is a genius.
- I typically don’t love most of the musicals that I see on Broadway.
So the story goes: the musical started at the Foxwoods Theatre and played preview performances for almost an eternity. This made critics mad so they went to see it anyway, already expecting it to fail. It was, at the time, failing pretty hard. I still wanted to see it despite the terrible press and word of mouth. Unfortunately I never got the chance to see the version until after Taymor was fired and significant changes were made to the script. My first encounter with the show was on the day I graduated from NYU when I saw it with my mom and sisters who more or less hated it.
I, however, loved it.
I recently saw the show again this past month with my boyfriend and I loved it even more the second time. Rush tickets are $39 so if you have any interest after reading this, GO GO GO!
Here’s why it’s the best musical on Broadway:
- Superheroes flying over audience’s heads for as long as they do in this show is the most badass thing you will ever see live in a Broadway theatre. It looks cool, it looks dangerous, and it actually made me wish I were Spider-Man. More than that, the audience’s reactions are definitely part of why it’s amazing. Hundreds of people in the same room are feeling the same thing. It is a pure, cathartic joy that is so simple and so real.
- There were technical difficulties at both performances I saw. (And yes this is why you should go)! This past performance the show was held in the middle of Act I for nearly an hour, and you know what? It was hilarious. If any of you are familiar with the term schadenfreude, it’s exactly that. It reminds you that the thing is live and how often do you see a Broadway show with technical difficulties? It’s a unique commodity.
- The vision of this show is not something to joke about. You will not see anywhere else a set as intricate and complicated as this one, you will not see costumes as complex and over-the-top as the costumes in this show, and who can resist an adorable nerd (who is actually pretty hot) singing rock songs (that aren’t half bad) dressed in a sexy latex Spidey suit? I can’t.
So I urge you to go check it out. If you go thinking you’re going to hate it, you will. If you go with an open mind and enjoy the excessive spectacle that is Spider-Man Turn Off the Dark, you might leave surprised by how much fun you just had at the theatre. Be sure to block out 4-5 hours because you just never know what might happen…