Oh, and I know frigid. This comes from someone who was stuck on an N train platform for a couple of hours Sunday night and frozen to the point where I started looking around to see whose skin would be warmest to wear. (Turns out it was mine. Predicament!)
Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark continues to be an easy target for laughs, but the popularity of Spidey-bashing has prompted two publications to publish controversial early reviews. Newsday and Bloomberg News are the culprits and their reviews were just a little bit less than positive. Jeremy Gerard from Bloomberg writes that it appears that “the second act has yet to be completed” and that it’s “an unfocused hodge-podge of story-telling, myth-making and spectacle that comes up short in every department.” Linda Winer from Newsday calls it “meandering” though thinks that the stunts, if performed safely, could bring in audiences. It’s interesting to note that she pretty much confirms that what she’s doing isn’t ethical, since the show’s still in previews.
But Spidey ain’t taking this lying down! (He’s got a concussion, the doctor wouldn’t allow him.)
“For a major critic to review a Broadway musical, or play for that matter, after only the twentieth preview, is disappointing and uncalled for,” press agent Rick Miramontez said in a statement. “Whatever reason the critic or their editor may have, it does not mask the fact that for decades, musicals have developed in front of paying audiences before critics are INVITED. While we are certainly not naive about the media scrutiny attached to this production, as we have been accommodating throughout, this unprecedented new development is troubling, to say the least.”
It does seem enormously unprofessional for these critics to offer up their thoughts on an unfinished production, but the musical has become such a huge joke at this point that it was likely just too tempting a target. Each successive news report sounds worse and worse, mentioning the spectacle of actors flying over the audience as a high point but not much else. Plus, there’s the increasing number of reports of actors getting seriously injured during performances, most recently Natalie Mendoza (playing new villain Arachne) who quit after suffering a concussion received during the very first performance.
So, we’ll keep our jaws agape with just a hint of a shocked smile and wonder how much worse it can get, and see if the creators have better luck dragging it out of the muck than NYC Sanitation workers do.