Thursday, May 03, 2007

Dry Daisey - The Phoenix:

It’s too bad Invincible Summer monopolized Daisey’s residency at American Repertory Theatre because, for my Monopoly money, this is a far better monologue, hardly impersonal but devoid of self-indulgence as Daisey, never leaving his post behind the table, swings like Tarzan between threads of interconnected story that encompass the methodical Edison’s slap down with visionary immigrant Nikola Tesla over direct versus alternating electrical current; Daisey’s own losing battle to get a 500-pound “lightning-throwing death machine” known as a Tesla Coil into this very monologue;  the gravitational power of Bill Gates’s wealth; the dubious history of the Parker Brothers board game of the title; and the merchandising takeover of the monologist’s nondescript (well, sucking) small Maine hometown by Wal-Mart. As Daisey points out, monopoly the game can be endless; likewise corporate proliferation and greed. Human beings, by contrast, are finite – the game of life eventually bangs up against that “black gate” manned by the Reaper. You do not get to pass go or collect $200.

3:25 PM