Wednesday, October 27, 2010

G's Broadway Adventure

*SPOILER ALERT!* - This post may contain spoilers for Pee-wee on Broadway!  If you want to be surprised by the show then I suggest you avoid reading this post (though I do try to keep them spoilers to a min). xG

I love Pee-Wee Herman.  LOVE.
If you love me so much then why don't you marry me?
I WILL MARRY YOU.  I will call off my engagement to Matt and marry not only Pee-wee, but the entire show!  Then I'll let the show carry me over the threshold to our new house (the Playhouse of course) and make sweet love to me!  I will have little show babies with the show and, when we die, we'll be set aflame in a boat at sea.  THAT'S how much I love it!

...was the exact sentiment of the man seated at the end of our row at The Pee-Wee Herman Show on Broadway last night who also felt the need to speak-a-long with the entire production.

Where's the most annoying audience member, Globey?  Right... there!
Now lissen, I really do love me some Pee-wee.  See: farewell email to law firm where I was employeed for 8 (loooooong) years:

-----Original Message-----
From: Mcmurray, Glennis F.
Sent: Thursday, April 17, 2008 3:27 PM
Subject: But What Am I?
Today is my last day in the firm.
Just like Pee-Wee Herman in his Big Adventure...
I'm off to find my bike.

But, you guys, I wouldn't marry him.  I mean, he's kind of a man-child and I know from experience that's just a recipe for disaster.  (But speaking of recipes... we do have similar diets which is the most important foundation for any happy marriage!  Fried butter, anyone?)  So, yes, I love Pee-wee (LURV, in fact), but doesn't everyone?  And can't pretty much everyone quote him?  So it's not that impressive that you know Jambi's going to utter, "Meka leka high meka hiney ho" a few times or that Conky will give us the word of the day up top.  (The word was "fun"!  AAHHHH!)  And when you tout your impressive (yawn) knowledge of the show throughout said show (that I paid a lot of money to see) you're kind of asking me hate you for having a good time and that makes me feel like a beast so just shut up already!


Let me back this train up.

Paul Reubens is my hero.  I know I deem a lot of people my hero which means I've got a lot of heroes.  Nothing wrong with that, Chach.  I admire Paul's career and especially his chameleon-like transformations.  Need I remind you of his stint as Prince Gerhart on 30 Rock?

Best death scene ever?

Excuse me... what?  Paul Reubens on The Gong Show?

OK so that last one was just for fun, but he really is the greatest.  And ecu me?  This?  Yes please!

So what I'm trying to say is I saw this show soley based on my love of Pee-wee not really knowing what the show would be.  It ended up being everything I'd hoped for and more.  It was just like watching an episode of Playhouse (of the CBS variety) from the 80's only live and flashier and LIVE!  Seeing Paul as Pee-wee in person, in front of my face, on stage was to say the least thrilling.  The audience rose to their feet when he walked on stage and I had a moment of "this is actually happening" which I didn't expect.  I wasn't brought to tears (ahem man at the end of my row), but I was definitely moved.  I just... I just love him so much, you guys.  Paul Reubens, that is.  Where as some performers shy away from a role or character that made them (*cough*JonHeder*cough*), Paul Reubens basked in it, went with it and has taken it to the ends of the earth and back.  There's not a bit of me that doesn't admire and aspire to that.  Not only should you be proud of creating something people respond to and want to see more of, you should respect the fact that not many people will ever do something like that.  I understand wanting to diversify yourself, but why stop the train from rollin??  Are you too good for your character?!  (But seriously, no Napoleon Dynamite 2? What the fudge?)

OK, stepping off my judgebox now.

Lynne Marie Stewart, who now plays Charlie's mom on "Sunny", reprised her role as Miss Yvonne and was just delightful.  I honestly wish the show had just been Paul and Lynne on stage, maybe improvising, maybe just staring back at me.  Lurv.  Lynne had two snafoos (her petticoat slipped off and Chairry's wig got stuck on... Chairry) which she handled with all the poise and grace you'd expect a Groundlings alum would possess.  Also reprising his role as Jambi (Mecka Lecka... YES WE GET IT DUDE.  YOU KNOW THE SHOW.) was John Paragon.  Yay John!  He was always my favorite.  OK I may have had a crush.  My therapist would have a field day with that - "a disembodied head who grants wishes and asks nothing in return?  Iiiiinteresting..."  I choose to focus on the fact that he's trapped in a box allowing me to know his wherabouts at all times.  You're telling me you'd turn that down, ladies?

Aaaaanybroadwaybaby... I mean, really the entire cast was great, Chairry (voiced by the adorable Lexi Fridell), Phil LaMarr made the perfect Cowboy Curtis (and his bio alerted me to the fact that there was a Patty Hearst musical called "Patty Patty Bang Bang: The Patty Hearst Musical" - hello!) and for only having one line as himself, Drew Powell was great as the dancing bear (he also voiced Mr. Window and the Flowers).  The swoonie Josh Meyers killed me as the sessy Firefighter and I'm pretty sure I'm going to turn my laptop into Screeny after seeing "her" live, but where, I ask you, was Reba the Mail Lady!?  Maybe she needed a break after appearing in more episodes of a show than anyone, ever.  Boom!

Three things: according to Wikipedia Cyndi Lauper recorded the theme song for Pee-wee's show under the name "Ellen Shaw".

Second, they showed a Penny cartoon last night and by they I mean The King of Cartoons (played by Lance Roberts - fun fact: he played the Genie in 7,000 performances of Aladin at the Hypereon Theatre - I don't think I've ever done 7,000 of anything.  What am I doing with my life!?!  Ahem.) which made me realize I'd totally forgotten about Penny!

I can't find a lot about Anna Seidman, the voice of Penny, but apparently she is on Facebook and we have no mutual friends.

Third, Natasha Lyonne was a member of the Playhouse Gang in season one.  I couldn't find a clip of that, but I found a clip.. of her... watching herself on the show?  Weird.

I love the girl so, though it's weird, I highly approve.

Last I'll just say that my number one, big top moment of the show was Pee-wee's balloon work.  You have to see it to understand.  HOWLING.

Now, back to the BIGGESTPEEWEEFANSEVEROMGOMG.  As I said, they talked through the whole thing, but it wasn't just the talking.  I knew they were enjoying themselves which was why I kept my trap shut (something I often have trouble doing), but the fact that they looked around after each comment to see, I can only assume, who was impressed with their Pee-wee knowledge was really too much.  Did you really pay all that money to see a show so people could know how much you love the show you paid a bunch of money to see?  Doesn't that kind of go with the teritory of paying a lot of money to see a show opening night?  Wait, at one point Pee-wee makes microwave popcorn and the guy goes "Popcorn!  Hahaha!  Popcorn!  Hahahahahahaaaa I told you'd there be popcorn!" at top volume.  Oh brudda.  So they were a pain, but not a total distraction, and as the show ended we all started filing out of the theatre when I heard, "You keep your goddamn hands off me!!"  Surprise, surprise it was mouthy Jones and his partner starting a fight with a 60-year-old man.  Come ON.  They continued to fight as they walked out of the theatre and try as I might to catch up with them I missed it all.  I did catch someone coming down the stairs say, "he had his hands around his throat!"  REALLY??  I guess I just assume a Broadway production brings out the best in people and then I look around to find jeans, fanny packs and wife beaters and reality sets in.  I once exited a show to hear a woman scream, "Oh no you did NOT just stick your hand in my purse!  She's tryin' to steal my shit!"  Now DAS classy.

So, in closing I say: go see Pee-wee if you're a fan of the show, go see Pee-wee if you're not a fan, just go see Pee-wee.  It's one of those experiences you really should have before you die.  Wait, maybe the guy causing a ruckus in my row was from the Buried Life... they seem pretty douchie.  (Really, marrying a stranger in Vegas is something you have to do before you die?  Pu-leeeeez.)

Oh and if you do end up going - behave yourself!



The Pee-wee Herman Show on Broadway plays through Jan 2.  More info here!

A Great Show! (I know you are, but what am I?)


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