The Spider-Man Musical Finally Turned Off the Dark Last Night

After a jillion years, budgetary problems, and the death of several million stunt men, the Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark musical had its first performance last night in New York City. Now, it was a preview performance — the first official performance is on January 11th — but even in a preview, certain things aren’t supposed to happen. Things such as:

? Characters are not supposed to get stuck in mid-air for several minutes.
? Pieces of scenery are not supposed to be missing.
? Acts are not supposed to end early because other characters get stuck in mid-air for several minutes.
? Wires are not supposed to drop on audience members.
? Characters are not supposed to have to play songs from other musicals to fill the time while various equipment is fixed.

So guess what happened?

? The show had to be stopped four times in the first act alone for various snags. (Via NY Post)

? As
the character [Arachne], played by actress Natalie Mendoza, finished her big
number “Rise Above” while suspended over the crowd, an apparent wire
malfunction left her stopped in midair — where she remained for an
embarrassing seven or eight minutes as stagehands worked feverishly to
figure out the problem. (NYP)

? At 7:23 p.m., an aerial scene began in Peter Parker’s bedroom to the
delight of some audience members — yet it was halted two minutes later
with the first of four pauses in Act I, apparently to free the lead
actor, Reeve Carney (who plays Peter Parker and is one of those playing
Spider-Man), from an aerial harness. (Via NY Times)

? As the Goblin — played by Patrick Page of
“Grinch” fame — sat down at the piano for a scheduled number, he was
left to continue playing on . . . and on . . . as stage workers openly
rushed around to fix faulty equipment. Page finally started vamping it up for grateful audience members, riffing on the tune, “I’ll Take Manhattan.” (NYP)

The fourth and final pause at the end of Act I was the worst glitch of
the night by far. Spider-Man had just flown and landed onstage with the
musical’s heroine, Mary Jane Watson (played by Jennifer Damiano), in his
arms. He was then supposed to zoom off toward the balcony seating area,
a few hundred feet away. Instead, a harness and cables lifted
Spider-Man several yards up and over the audience, then stopped. A
production stage manager, C. Randall White, called for a halt to the
show over the sound system, apparently in hopes of fixing and re-doing
the stunt.

Crew members, standing on the stage, spent 45 seconds trying to grab
Spider-Man by the foot, as the audience laughed and oohed. When they
finally caught him, Mr. White announced intermission, and the house
lights came on. (NYT)

? Parker’s love interest, Mary Jane, was supposed to be saved from atop the Chrysler Building. But part of the building was missing, and Mary Jane was no where in sight. (NYP)

? Act II began shortly after 9 p.m. and unfolded fairly smoothly until
about 50 minutes later, when Mr. White called for a pause. After a few
minutes, as some audience members were stretching, a woman in the
audience suddenly shouted, “I don’t know how everyone else feels, but I
feel like a guinea pig today — I feel like it’s a dress rehearsal.” She
was met with a chorus of boos. (NYT)

? In its last 10 minutes, the show was completely stopped for at least half that time to work out kinks. (NYP)

But as long as the story was good and the music was cool, it’ll be all right, right?

?  Last
night’s opening pre view of Broadway’s most expensive production ever,
“Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark,” was an epic flop as the $65 million
show’s high-tech gadgetry went completely awry amid a dull score and
baffling script, theatergoers griped. (NYP)

I’m not going to make any comment, because really, what can I say at this point that isn’t just adding insult to injury. But I will say this: Apparently Arachne — the 8-legged spider-lady from the beginning — is the radioactive spider that bites Peter Parker. Yes, the spider that gives Spider-Man his powers is played by a human in a spider costume and gets her own song.

…yeah. Thanks to everyone who sent these in.