Sunday, May 06, 2018

Back to Musicals Again

Began a quick, cloudy morning with one of my Disney collection CDs as I had breakfast. Chopped up some of the strawberries I picked up from the Acme yesterday and added them to the pancake mix for Strawberry Pancakes. Oh, yum. Best pancakes I've made in a while. They were perfectly fluffy and chewy.

Work, thankfully, wasn't nearly as crazy as it has been the past few days. In fact, it was mostly fairly quiet for a Sunday. I alternated between doing two carts filled with returns and gathering carts outside the entire day. The weather wasn't encouraging; it remained gloomy and damp until it finally started raining around 7:30.

As soon as I got home, I changed, then went to bed. I was up way too late with Lauren last night. I needed a nap. I was out for two hours, despite the noise Charlie and his men and friends were making working on the porch downstairs.

When I did emerge, I did a little bit of writing. The group is heading out to Coruscant, posing as gypsies. Leia takes advantage of the down time to ask Ahsoka about her father working for Palpatine. Yes, he did, Ahsoka explains, at least until Padme announced her pregnancy. He changed his mind to stay with his family. Palpatine did not take it well...which was part of the reason Anakin and Padme were forced to flee Coruscant, well before Palpatine's purge of the Jedi order.

Broke for dinner at quarter of 7. Continued my "flop musicals" theme from last week with the soundtrack from Grease 2 as ate leftovers for dinner. This is another cheese-fest from my early childhood that I still have some fond memories of. "Cool Rider" is by far my favorite number. Mom used to go around the house singing that song (probably because my father rides motorcycles). I also like the "Girls for All Seasons," "Score Tonight," and hilarious "Reproduction" ensemble numbers and the dynamic opening "Back to School Again."

Others don't fare as well. The female half of "Let's Do It for Our Country" didn't make it to the recording session, and the song isn't as fun without her responses. The ballads "Love Will Turn Back the Hands of Time" and "Charade" are drippy and overwrought (and the latter is hurt by Maxwell Caulifield's lack of singing pipes). My sisters and mother and I used to make jokes about how bad the lyrics on "Who's That Guy?" and "We'll Be Together" were.

Honestly, if you love the movie, look for the soundtrack, too. Otherwise, unless you're a huge fan of the cast, it's completely unnecessary.

Made the first Strawberry Flummery of the season while skipping ahead a decade to Newsies. Despite being a far better film than Grease 2 with an excellent score, this flopped in 1991. It's success on the stage over two decades later proved that this show was just ahead of it's time. My personal favorite number is "King of New York," the energetic number for the Newsies after they get a picture of their strike in the paper; I also like "The World Will Know" and "High Times, Hard Times."

Finished out the night with Curtains while going online. This was one of Kander and Ebb's final shows, with an assist from Rupert Holmes. The star of a 50's Robin Hood-in-the-wild-west musical has been murdered. She wasn't very good, and everyone is actually pretty happy she's gone...which means everyone has a motive. David Hyde Pierce is the show business-besotted detective who has to sort through the suspects, including the woman producer who just cares about the bottom line, the dancer who is desperate for a solo, and the formerly married lyricist and composer who are still very much in love with each other.

Once again, I wish we had more of the actual mystery and less of the show business here - I had to look up who was the culprit online. (No, I'm not going to spoil that here.) What is here isn't terrible. Hyde Pierce's touching "Coffee Shop Nights" and fun "A Tough Act to Follow" with Jill Paice were especially good; I also liked "It's a Business" for cynical producer Carmen (Deborah Monk). While it was nominated for eight Tonys in 2006-2007, Hyde Pierce was the only winner (for Leading Actor), and it only lasted a few months. If you're a fan of his or the songwriters and author, it's worth a listen.

No comments: