Friday, August 21, 2009

Gutter Star

Gay women are under-represented on stage compared to gay men, so it's especially regrettable to report that this musical - about a screen star in "golden age" Hollywood whose lesbian affair threatens to destroy her career - is disappointingly bland and often inept. The show's synopsis promises "a trashy tale of forbidden love from the tawdry pages of pulp fiction" but the show lacks not only the heightened style needed for pulp but any style at all. Plot holes and contrivances are plentiful - you wonder why the studio chief goes to all the trouble of having his male assistant dress in lesbian drag to spot the screen star in the all-girl Coconut Club when he's just going to rip up her contract anyhow, and why he says things to the star like "We don't tolerate that sort of thing in this day and age" as if toleration used to be policy.

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