Dagnabbit! Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark is set to close in January. Noooooooo! Even though many critics have been talking smack about the 75 million dollar musical since it first opened in June 2011, I absolutely loved it. The critically despised show has been one of the most attended shows by fans, so keep running your mouth you judgemental schmoogles because craploads of fans adored it. I’m not ashamed to tell you that I cried fanboy tears of joy when I saw my favorite web-slinger swing across the stage!
Last September, to celebrate attaining my master’s degree, I rejoiced by watching my beloved arachnid battle the Green Goblin while singing catchy pop songs! My “amazing friends” on this exciting adventure were my lovely girlfriend and my cousin Ari (the dude who started my out of control comic addiction in the first place). The show was mainly based on the Tobey Mcguire trilogy, and the musical embodied all the core values of Spidey mythology. (The same values I feel the new Spidey reboot failed to capture.) Spidey was a neurotic, dorky, family man who had to learn to take responsibility due to his insane guilt! I became extremely emotional seeing the characters I love translate onto the stage. And I am not a casual Broadway fan either. I have seen many critically “acclaimed” shows over the past years, but this was my favorite.
I felt like I really got my money’s worth knowing that they barely broke even each week. The show cost $1.2 million a week to produce, so my rush tickets were a steal! Plus, there was no doubt that the stunts were amazing, spectacular and astonishing.
I even bought the CD! And I still listen to it often. A bunch of the songs, such as “A Freak Like Me Needs Company” and “Bullying by Numbers,” are extremely campy and lame. But lets not be to harsh on them; this was a family friendly play, and the kiddos dug the heck out of these songs. Aside from the cornier songs, much of the soundtrack was great and did a wonderful job encompassing the themes of the play.
I had my complaints about the musical, but that was part of the appeal of the show. What fun would comic books be if we could not kvetch about them?
My main objection was that it featured many major villains but, other than Norman Osborn, they were all mindless henchmen “freaks” and their back stories were butchered. Even the Green Goblin was goofy and ridiculous. But in the end, this was not the story of the villains; this play was Peter’s tale, and the musical told his heroic origin perfectly.
The show is sticking around through the holiday season, but will close soon after. Plans are to reopen the musical in 2015 in Las Vegas. I plan to see Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark one more time before it closes. It makes me very sad to see the show leave the city that created our friendly neighborhood web-head. ______________________________________________________________________________________________________