Peter and the Starcatcher is the very first show that has ever gotten a 1 out of 5 stars from me. It is the first for a lot of things. The first show I have ever walked out of, the first show I have been offended by and the first show with an insanely talented cast, amazing staging and incredible lighting and still failed to keep people wanting to stay for the second act. If you’ve ever wondered what must be going through the mind of someone on massive amounts of hallucinogenic drugs and overdosing on something painful, this is probably what comes from that. The worst part is that no matter how talented the cast is, Peter and the Starcatcher is the worst thing I have ever seen on stage.
I struggled my way through Dead Man Walking the Opera, I even suffered my way through watching Constantine destroy Jekyll and Hyde, but I could not make it through Peter and the Starcatcher. Like I said above, the cast was amazing. The stage was gorgeous and the lighting and the use of props blew me away. That is what kept me watching the entire first act. I was soo impressed with the talent and the production of Peter and the Starcatcher that I could ignore the crappy attempt at humor.
The issue with Peter and the Starcatcher is that the writing and script is awful. It’s like Benny Hill and Mr. Bean but with words and unfortunately unlike those two, not funny. You laugh at all three, but Benny Hill and Mr. Bean keep you laughing, not wanting to slit your wrists to let the pain from the crap being fed into your ears from continuing.
I’ll probably have some people come on here and complain that I am ignorant, I cannot appreciate theatre or anything avant-garde. Guess what, I also think that blowing up silver balloons and putting them in a room with fans and pretending it is art or sliver clouds is a joke too. Sure it’s cool to look at and play with, but it doesn’t take talent and is a load of crap. Have fun at MOMA, I’ll take the museum of natural history or the Louvre any day. It takes a bunch of pretentious idiots who think they are better than everyone to praise a joke. That is what Peter and the Starcatcher is and the people who call the writing art and theatre. The acting, lighting, staging, sound, that is amazing theatre. The writing and script is absolute crap.
Captain Hook (i.e. black stache) is definitely a flamboyant character in almost any rendition of Peter Pan. The brilliant writers that created this abomination of a show took it and made him an offensive version of a gay man. I’m all about stereotypical jokes and poking fun at myself as a gay person…The Birdcage (La Cage Aux Follies), Priscilla, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, etc… all did it and it was tasteful. This was offensive, rude and any gay man that sees it and isn’t offended should be ashamed.
Yes I laughed as he made a mockery of gays, but when I thought about it, it wasn’t cute. It was the same feeling I had when I was being called faggot when I was in high school. When I walked out of Peter and the Starcatcher during intermission I felt really bad about being gay and as a person. I did laugh and I did think it was funny when I was watching, but then I realized it was actually offensive. Offending me is nearly impossible and this unfortunately did it.
The only reason Peter and the Starcatcher’s script can be bearable is because the cast was insanely talented and turned shit into something almost tolerable. The Dodo Bird language was pulled off amazingly well. The use of props, slapstick comedy and vocal inflections were unbeatable. I was scared at how good the cast is. The cast deserves all of the Tonys and Oscars in the world for being able to stop people from leaving during the first act.
The lighting in Peter and the Starcatcher was flawless and the use of props was perfect. It’s the script that destroyed the show. The writers tried way to hard to be creative or clever or in your face avant-garde. I’m sorry if you disagree with me, but if you’re thinking about going to see Peter and the Starcatcher, save your money for another show. The Kennedy Center has some awesome shows coming through like The Lion King and SideShow and those will be worth your money. If you want to risk seeing something that caused me to walk out of my first show ever, then feel free to buy tickets for Peter and the Starcatcher. I personally could not stand Peter and the Starcatcher and it was hard to walk out when it costs a lot of money for a ticket. Unfortunately even after spending money to sit in the orchestra, on a cab there and back, I could not get myself back into my seat and waste any more of my life watching Peter and the Starcatcher.
Again, it is not the cast. It is not the stage and it is not the lighting. All of that was perfect. It was the script and writers that tried way to hard to be creative or clever. Yes it is a show about storytelling, but it was also like that person that tries so hard to impress everyone that it is painfully obvious how fake, boring and obnoxious they really are. I encourage you to go to the theatre and to go to see the other shows at The Kennedy Center, The National Theatre, etc… but I cannot recommend you waste your money on Peter and the Starcatcher. It isn’t worth the risk. I definitely want to hear other opinions since mine is very one sided right now. If you enjoyed the writing, not the acting, the staging, etc… of Peter and the Starcatcher, please feel free to leave a comment.