20
Jun
14

Reading Digest: Play Reviews Edition

Treehouse of Horror III10

“I’m dreading the reviews, I can tell you that.” – C.M. Burns 

Last week I mentioned that the post-apocalypse Mr. Burns play was opening in London.  Well, London being something of a theater loving town, we have a deluge of reviews this week.  Most are quite positive, some are decidedly not, but I suppose that’s life in showbiz.  In addition to that, the merchandising march continues, a couple of Simpsons alums do some charity work, there’s quite a bit of excellent usage, and people keep finding creative ways to use the Lego figures.

Enjoy.

Family Guy vs. Simpsons – Smooth Charlie’s Link of the Week is a novel comparison.  It’s not about the shows, it’s about the freemium games and compares pretty much every aspect of them.

Simpsonesque : Douglas Coupland – “Worst. Person. Ever.” – There’s an actual novel called “Worst. Person. Ever”, which inspired this:

I suppose we’ve culturally transcended the point where Shakespeare or the Bible were good places to look for titles. It’s “The Simpsons”‘ turn to shine. I took a lot at some popular literary categories I use in this blog, and here are “Simpsons”-inspired titles for them.

There are some pretty good ones.  I’m fond of the “Romance” category getting “Teacher, Mother, Secret Lover” and “Theater” being “Is This the End of Zombie Shakespeare?”.

Drop Dean Clothing: Itchy & Scratchy Capsule Collection – Skinny pretty people wearing high falutin’ Simpsons clothes.  Again.

The internet sarcasm detector – Oh, that’s a real useful invention!

Save the Children Names New Giving Fund for ‘Simpsons’ Co-Creator Sam Simon – Simon continues to put all that Simpsons money to good use.

News :: Ay caramba! Charity poker event helps children – Meanwhile, Cartwright is hosting charity poker tournaments.

TV and film-themed sandcastles – Just what it says, with everything from the show to Monsters, Inc.

Life Lessons from The Simpsons – Excellent idea:

And our children have watched the Simpsons since they could see. In fact, when they were little and hadn’t figured out “time” yet, we’d explain longer car trips in terms of the equivalent number of Simpsons episodes.

Ay Caramba! 7 Lessons Event Organizers Can Learn From The Simpsons – Just what it says and not a trace of Zombie Simpsons.  Well done.

How Real Men Spend Father’s Day – Heh.

Geeky Lego Flower Pots – Star Wars, Lord of the Ring, and Simpsons all get the treatment.

Deadpool and Bobo verse the World – Well, the Lego world.

Why The Simpsons Is the Greatest Show of All Time – Those first ten years, yeah.

213. Duff – Another very “meh” review from an Aussie beer site.

D’Oh Nuts – You can now buy officially licensed “D’oh Nuts” in Britain, apparently.

Simpsons, Sedaris, and Story Structure – David Sedaris, fan of at least some Simpsons.

Groundskeeper Willie: My Not-So-Secret Crush – I’m not even gonna tell you what that guy’s into.

Licensing Business for Entertainment Biz Grew to $51 Billion in 2013 – Moar:

Products tied to not just Disney and Lucasfilm’s new “Star Wars” trilogy and spinoffs, but also Marvel’s “The Avengers: Age of Ultron,” Universal’s “Jurassic World,” and Warner Bros.’ “Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice” and following “Justice League” movies are expected to boost interest in film-based products over the next two years.
But so are anniversaries like “Ghostbusters’” 30th, “Gone with the Wind’s” 75th, and “The Simpsons’” 25th. Disneyland also turns 60, while Hello Kitty is celebrating 40.

Obligatory:

Playwright Anne Washburn enjoying ‘marmite’ appeal of the Almedia’s Mr Burns – And now we begin our extensive collection of play links with a Washburn publicity piece.

Mr Burns @ The Almeida Theatre Review – A very positive review calls it “one of this year’s theatrical highlights”.

A two and three quarter hour play based on a 20 minute cartoon – that sounds like a great id…D’oh. – A decidedly less positive review:

It is the kind of play that signifies its intent early, and the signs that title each act may as well have written on them that this is a ‘big play’ tackling ‘big themes’.

Review – Mr Burns at the Almeida Theatre – But as when it was on this side of the Atlantic, most of them are very taken:

For some of the first night reviews plastering broadsheets and blogs with flimsy star ratings failure was the first conclusion they jumped to and the one they stuck with, and I feel genuinely sorry that they missed out on one of the richest, most thought-provoking, imaginative, intricate, intelligent scripts, one of the most startling, dazzling designs, and one of the most accomplished creative teams I’ve witnessed at the theatre.

Mr Burns review – rebuilding the US on fragments of pop culture – This one is mostly happy, but I must take fierce exception to this:

Clearly Washburn is on to something in suggesting that, in the event of some future catastrophe, people would cling to their recollections of TV shows rather than Shakespeare or the Bible. But her play also suffers from its reliance on one particular episode of a cartoon comedy. Aficionados chuckle knowingly at every quotation from the original. If, however, you stumbled into the theatre knowing nothing of The Simpsons, you’d be totally lost.

First of all, if you’re going to a play that has “Mr. Burns” in the title, you don’t have a leg to stand on for complaints about not knowing the show.  More importantly, at this point not knowing The Simpsons is far worse in many circles than not knowing Shakespeare or the Bible.  Don’t we deserve plays too?

Mr Burns: ‘It’s not a play about The Simpsons’ – See?  The BBC knows it’s a ‘classic’:

The play begins with several survivors sitting around a campfire trying to recall their favourite episode of The Simpsons.
That episode turns out to be 1993 classic Cape Feare, in which Sideshow Bob – voiced by Kelsey Grammer – is released on parole and sets out to kill Bart, forcing the Simpsons into a witness protection programme. The entire plot was a riff on Martin Scorsese’s 1991 remake of Cape Fear.

Mr Burns, Almeida Theatre, review: ‘three hours of utter hell’ – In the above link, the playwright says that people tend to love it or hate it.  File this one under the latter:

I have to say that in this one respect the director Robert Icke does not disappoint. This is a play that appears to have been calculated not just to annoy, but to actually distress, discomfort and dehydrate audiences.

Hi-dilly-ho, neighborinos: Flanders is coming to Cork! – Enough of London, how about Ireland?  Harry Shearer just bought a house there, plus there’s some YouTube.

See ‘Simpsons’ Version Of Kim Kardashian Butt Selfie – For once, the celebrity butt kissing wasn’t done officially.

Homer Simpson thief part of gang raid on store – Pretty sure “Don’t Be Conspicuous” is one of the basics of robbery, so the Homer Simpson onesie might not have been a good idea.

Ochoa Wins Sideshow Bob Battle With David Luíz – Big puffy hair always brings out the Sideshow Bob in everybody.

7 WWE Superstars Who Were Probably Alcoholics – Excellent usage:

If you’re a fan of The Simpsons then you probably remember the episode where Homer jumped on a car and said this famous line: “To alcohol! The cause of and solution to all of life’s problems.” It’s a funny line that’s also true in a lot of ways. It also applies to the wrestling business very well.

Weird cases: ‘Eye-watering’ Onionhead religion – More excellent usage:

Not everyone takes Homer Simpson’s attitude to employment. Addressing his boss, Mr Burns, Homer once said: “Listen to me, Mr Bigshot, if you’re looking for the kind of employee who takes abuse and never sticks up for himself… I’m your man.”

Feisty, yet spineless.

First Look: Glazed & Confuzed opens on Leetsdale – One more:

Doughnuts have long been associated with a cop’s favorite breakfast, but even Homer Simpson appreciates glaze and sprinkles: “Doughnuts. Is there anything they can’t do?” asked the famous patriarch of the Simpson family of cartoon characters.

Excellent usage.

City reveals a glimpse of planned downtown ‘Simpsons’ mural – It’s just a drawing of Maggie and Lisa on a bike, but it’ll probably look nicer on a wall with some personal style.

Real Springfield seeks artist for ‘Simpsons’ mural – And the call for submissions and proposals is out.

5 things that I just don’t like – And finally, I get to end with someone who explicitly agrees with us:

3.shows running for too long

Does anyone remember when the Simpsons or Spongebob has had a really great episode recently? yeah neither do i, and i understand why they want them to continue because hey they practically print money, but come on enough is enough just give us something new.

Amen.


1 Response to “Reading Digest: Play Reviews Edition”


  1. 21 June 2014 at 2:42 am

    D’oh Nuts? Why not Nuts and Gum? It even already has a slogan!


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