UnNews:'Spider-Man' Broadway show opens without a hitch; closes while on top
15 June 2011
NEW YORK, New York -- The brand new, mixed-review Broadway show, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark finally opened today after a series of performance related injuries, technical errors, and a general inability to complete the two-act musical in under four and a half hours delayed its original release date by several months. The cast and crew were pleased to say that the show "opened without a hitch," which was new for them. The opening night of the $65 million show went so well, according to director Julie Taymor, that "tonight's show marks the closing of Turn off the Dark."
Ms. Taymor continued her interview by saying that "it was a difficult decision to make, but I, along with the cast and crew believe that closing the show tonight is the best option. We've been pushing the envelope of musical theater ever since production of Spider-Man began, and we feel this way we can go out on top."
U2 front man and music director for the show, Bono couldn't have been happier about the outcome of the closing night performance. Bono had a lot riding on the success of Spider-Man. Critics of the show called it "U2's biggest mistake," and he had to prove them wrong. "That was a fantastic save," he could be heard telling co-music director and bandmate The Edge, after the orchestra started playing the wrong song just 20 minutes into the show. Acting on their toes, the cast just skipped the three scenes between where they were and what song they were playing and went on with the show near seamlessly, with just some quick changes happening in the wings, and Spider-Man engaging in a battle sequence while wearing pajamas.
"I had a terrible feeling that the show was going to end up just like every exhibition show we did. Right off the bat we had a lighting fixture come crashing down, injuring seven of the ensemble members during the opening number, but to our surprise we faced very few problems for the rest of the night," said Reeve Carney (Peter Parker) as he limped out of the actor's exit with the sprained ankle he'd received towards the end of the first act, when the cable supporting him snapped as he flew around the theater. Luckily, his 25 foot fall was broken by four patrons in row C. Hospital reports show that all are in stable condition.
On the other hand, Spider-Man fans were highly disappointed by the lack of spectacular falls and curtains catching fire in the show's closing night. One distraught fan expressed his concern on his blog less than 10 minutes after the final curtain call, describing it as "an embarrassment to theater," and "the biggest waste of money since I went to that Islanders game and no fights broke out." Another fan told reporters that "Spider-Man fans have come to expect a certain level of amazement when they see the show. One of the actors MUST be seriously injured in a fall at some point in the show, usually around the middle of the second act, to keep people awake. A single sprained ankle in the first act doesn't excite the fans because they are expecting nothing short of a near-death fall from no less than 50 feet, into the orchestra, mangling their instruments, and his own organs into an incomprehensible mess."
Had Spider-Man opened on its originally expected release date, the harsh reviews from audiences may have been much more positive. In the last four months, the exhibition shows have seen a steady decrease in the socioeconomic standing of the audiences viewing Spider-Man. Audiences have for the most part dropped the tradition of attending shows wearing semi-formal attire, in favor of custom hockey and football jerseys with the actors' names on the back, beer-drinking hats, and foam fingers.
- ""Spider-Man" stars rationalize injuries." CBS, March 1, 2011
- Cathal Dervan "U2 warned over 'Spiderman' mistake." Irish Central, March 13, 2011
- Kara Warner "'Spider-Man' Musical Debuts After Web Of Issues." MTV, June 14, 2011