Recently, I saw Cry Baby on Broadway. Here was the conversation that took place between the two women sitting next to me right at the start of intermission:
"I'm not sure if I like it..."
"Yeah... I've seen worse."
"I mean, I've seen A LOT of bad theater. I've walked out before."
"Yeah, what was the last thing I walked out on...? Urban Cowboy? Yeah, I think I walked out of that. We either left at intermission or moved ALL THE WAY DOWN from where we were sitting to start Act II."
"That was bad. This isn't like that. It's alright. It's just a lot like Hairspray. Did you see the playbill? Half the people in this have already been in Hairspray! It's weird."
"Well, it's the same guy. John Waters."
"Yeah, I know. but this feels like... like a lot of the same thing. it's okay. I like it... it's fine."
This exchange perfectly sums up Cry Baby for me. My expectations were below the basement, and I actually wound up liking it by the end. I thought the performances, the choreography and the set design were very good. I even really liked several of the songs, though some of the lyrics felt a little cheap. I had a much better time with it than I did "A Catered Affair." Deep down it just felt like an unnecessary show. I felt the story fell somewhere between silly and stupid. It's entertaining, but not very substantial, which is why when the end of Act 1 came about the woman sitting next to me was thinking the same thing "I'm not sure if I like it" because there's not much there.
I appreciated the way the whole cast attacked their roles. There was a lot of energy on stage and clearly the cast was very talented. It just didn't feel like there was a ton going on with the story and the show was a little longer than it had to be. It was nice, but a bit thin.
Gypsy this weekend! Woohoo!