Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?

LimelightMike
Broadway Legend
joined:6/21/06
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/24/12 at 06:02pm
Hello, all!

Just wondering if anyone on here's been to the Neil Simon lately... Haven't gotten much word comin out of SCANDALOUS in a while, and I'm just looking for more thoughts as previews progress accordingly.

Best
- M
LimelightMike's 2010-2011 Theatergoing Schedule: THE PITMEN PAINTERS (10.03.10) A LIFE IN THE THEATRE (10.10.10) BLOODY BLOODY ANDREW JACKSON (10.16.10) THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS (11.06.10) WOMEN ON THE VERGE OF A NERVOUS BREAKDOWN (11.13.10) BRIEF ENCOUNTER (11.22.10) THE PEE-WEE HERMAN SHOW (11.28.10) LA BETE (12.23.10) A SMALL FIRE (01.13.11) THAT CHAMPIONSHIP SEASON (03.09.11) ARCADIA (03.16.11) BLACK TIE (03.19.11) PRISCILLA: QUEEN OF THE DESERT (03.21.11) THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST (03.26.11) BENGAL TIGER AT THE BAGHDAD ZOO (03.30.11) GHETTO KLOWN (03.31.11) HOW TO SUCCEED... (04.07.11) ANYTHING GOES (04.12.11) JERUSALEM (04.20.11) SISTER ACT (04.29.11) iHO: (05.22.11)
egghumor
Broadway Legend
joined:3/9/11
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/24/12 at 06:13pm
Hi, Mike, I was thinking the same thing and considering starting the same thread. In reading more and more about the ANNIE revival and lots of reaction to THE PERFORMERS, it dawned on me that no one has weighed in on SCANDALOUS lately. The preview discussion thread is on page 3 (maybe 4) at this point.

Hope someone will offer a post regarding a recent performance soon. Thanks for re-igniting the discussion.
uncageg
Broadway Legend
joined:5/13/04
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/24/12 at 08:28pm
Kathy Lee said on the Today Show this morning that they were making a lot of changes.

Just give the world Love.
Updated On: 11/7/12 at 08:28 PM
jeffmiele
Broadway Star
joined:11/6/07
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/24/12 at 08:45pm
I was there Saturday night. I really do not see what changes they can make to make this better. It was really bad.
Bettyboy72
Broadway Legend
joined:3/31/06
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/24/12 at 08:54pm
I had 3 friends (separate occasions) walk out at intermission last week. One said it was like a bad theme park show at Heritage USA. They said even Carolee cant keep it afloat.
"The sexual energy between the mother and son really concerns me!"-random woman behind me at Next to Normal "I want to meet him after and bang him!"-random woman who exposed her breasts at Rock of Ages, referring to James Carpinello
bjh2114
Broadway Legend
joined:4/19/06
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/25/12 at 12:48am
I was there tonight. It was a disaster. I don't see how they can fix it, honestly. I expect it to close before Christmas.
jbm2
Broadway Star
joined:3/26/11
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/25/12 at 01:38am
I will be surprised if it lasts until Christmas.
I was there on Sat- and I really, really wanted to like this.... its bad. There is such a huge story to tell here, that almost no story ends up being told.
I heard KLG being interviewed and she talked about the incredibly interesting life Aimee lead (which she did) and how she got kidnapped by the KKK twice- ummmmm, thats no where in the show!
I sat through the whole show and am still not sure what Aimee was on trial for.
SO much hard work has gone into this show- but, I think its hopeless.
jbm2
Broadway Star
joined:3/26/11
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/25/12 at 01:39am
I will be surprised if it lasts until Christmas.
I was there on Sat- and I really, really wanted to like this.... its bad. There is such a huge story to tell here, that almost no story ends up being told.
I heard KLG being interviewed and she talked about the incredibly interesting life Aimee lead (which she did) and how she got kidnapped by the KKK twice- ummmmm, thats no where in the show!
I sat through the whole show and am still not sure what Aimee was on trial for.
SO much hard work has gone into this show- but, I think its hopeless.
neonlightsxo
Broadway Star
joined:7/29/08
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/25/12 at 04:57pm
"I sat through the whole show and am still not sure what Aimee was on trial for. "
Exactly. That says it all .
From someone who also left at intermission (my first time ever doing so), the only way to "fix" this show would be to get a new composer and book writer.
finebydesign
Broadway Legend
joined:7/17/07
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/25/12 at 05:05pm
The commercial I see every morning on CBS This Morning makes me CRINGE. They actually have a woman describing the show as "Bucket List."

After the "success" of Leap of Faith, why would they even try this again? I understand producers taking risks, and nothing being a sure thing, but these duds were duds EVERYONE saw coming.
bjh2114
Broadway Legend
joined:4/19/06
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/25/12 at 07:12pm
For the record, this one makes Leap of Faith look like Shakespeare.
TheatreDiva90016
Broadway Legend
joined:4/10/04
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/25/12 at 07:59pm
A little bird told me that the creative team was looking rather sad at what was happening on stage.

Oh, and they said a guy with a broken leg walked out during the show.

It sounds craptastic!
"TheatreDiva90016 - another good reason to frequent these boards less."<<>> I hesitate to give this line of discussion the validation it so desperately craves by perpetuating it, but the light from logic is getting further and further away with your every successive post. <<>> -whatever2
jimmit
Swing
joined:8/8/07
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/25/12 at 09:33pm
Saw it last night. Really, really bad. I was tempted to walk out at intermission. I should have.
broadwayguy2
Broadway Legend
joined:5/18/03
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 03:06am
Here's the thing, kids. This is most certainly a must-see event. Quite honestly, one of the worst things I have ever seen on any stage anywhere. I kept waiting for Michael Crawford in a coffin with a sponge, David Turner with a bag of lemons, Betty Buckley and bloody Linzi Hately to walk down those big white stair units, Julie Taymour to drop a sandbag on Carolee Carmello and/or Christopher Guest to come running down the aisle with a camera to find Guffman.

Even in the very center of the orchestra, there were a few rows of seats completely empty - and no, not in the rear of theatre either.

Where to begin?

The music that all sounds like a SNL parody of a bad nightclub act in a sitcom? If you have ever sat through any two of those awful Today Show "Everyone Has a Story" segments where Kathie Lee degrades a poor soul who has experienced a hardship and then trains a camera on them for a close up as she wrings compliments out of them, you know EXACTLY what this score sounds like. PM me on here if you'd like for me to quote my absolute favorite lyrics from this train wreck.

The "book".. Well.. The framing device of the trial? They abandon that about 30 minutes into the show with absolutely NO explanation why, and we are still left on that (mostly) unit set, which then makes even less sense than it did when you walk into the theatre and have to ask yourself why a high school theatre's spa set for Nine ended up on stage at the Simon. The show is literally a bullet point telling of this woman's life.. yet they NEVER show you her children - but they get mentioned a lot - and they leave out HUGE events in the woman's life that have direct impact on the trial at hand... and incidents Kathie Lee harps on about in EVERY interview. Where are they? Not here.. Let's not even get into the lack of a character arc.. curtain rises on act two and you'd swear all of a sudden Carolee is playing Judy Garland in End of the Rainbow. "Pills, pills.. where are my damned pills?" Roz Ryan is wonderful but reduced to playing Mamie - just send the funny black lady on, give her witty comment and then rush her off the stage.

The physical production is revoltingly cheap. I am ALL for economy, but really now... Wrinkled backdrops that billow in the breeze as actors walk downstage or upstage of them, rickety scenic units that jerk on and off-stage in fits and starts and wobble as they go, the most funnily tacky car flat with spinning tires - 2 feet of the ground - where poor Carolee and Candy Buckley have to sit on chairs behind the thing and bounce like it's on a dirt road. Wobbling lights. Horribly missed sound cues. Cheap wigs - some like fresh off the shelf of a Halloween store.. the wigs for the dancing hookers are the exact same wigs worn by the religious church ladies - but they add a clip on pony tail. Costumes are ill-fitting, poorly tailored affairs. A couple of favorites were backdrops CLEARLY ripped off from the work of Bill and Jean Eckart, a giant windmill that would shake and totter about every time it moved, ground rows of wheat there were wrapped in very visible netting, a sweater on a lead that one of my friends had purchased for himself at H&M the week before and Carolee's transformation into Delilah (of Sampson fame).

God love Carolee Carmello, she belts to the rafters, she works her tail off, but you just want to send her flowers and a sympathy card. It's VERY sad watching her have to play a teenaged version of her character, raising the pitch of her voice, bounding around like a child, but still wearing - for all intents and purposes - the same costume and wig she wears as adult Aimee and looking every bit as old as the woman playing her Mother, trying to make this show work and it just never happens. She'll find a moment to draw the audience in - who IS rooting for her as she battles the material - with her big belt and star wattage.. and then they give her some hysterically bad words or stage business and it's like the creatives just stab her in the back.. She'll have to bounce in that car, or take off her pregnancy pad and hang it on a chair where it sits for a full scene, a ridiculous succession of costume changes.. the abrupt changes of tone where she's all of a sudden popping pills.. and yet she has the best of what *is* there.. George Hearn just gets trotted around with this look on his face that screams "Yes, I have to say this". Roz Ryan, as I said, being paraded around for a series of one-liners that seem to have NOTHING to do with the tone of the show... you have to feel for Ed Watts, who spends 2 hours and 45 minutes being thrown out there in the middle of the sinking of the Titanic in a constant revolving door of skimpy costumes for some cheap eye candy.

We have to mention that changed title. "Scandalous." It's a drinking game. You can see that the intent was to justify the title change by including it in the material. They use the word 'scandalous' at EVERY opportunity and after the 10th time, you can just feel the entire cast turn to the audience and wink each time it is said...

Now, for the audience. As I said, fairly empty. Lots of obvious papering. Many theatre folk. Not marquee names per say, but I saw a good number of dancers and performers that regular theatre goers would recognize by sight, name or credit. At the top of the show, the audience was excited. After the first two numbers, you could feel the horror in the house as how BAD what we were watching began to settle in. Yes, there was cheering when Carolee would pull out that big, beautiful belt and rich vibrato or Roz Ryan would walk out and deliver some sass and relief, but otherwise, applause was tepid, curious and nervous.. dare I say, it was also polite and tinged with pity. At intermission, you could truly see people's eyes darting to their neighbor - "is this REAL?" - and theatre folk offering the polite "well, this is interesting" while the subtext screamed "this is a beautiful disaster and we are going drinking after to talk about this, but we can't discuss it in the building here".

Part way through act two, something changed. You got the sense that at some point, the actors on stage were thinking "screw this. We know it's awful, so let's make the best of it" and that feeling spread across the audience, particularly the back half of the orchestra. Confused looks and tepid applause began to be replaced by titters and giggles and rowdy applause at the camp disaster unfolding. Eventually, some of the truly awful sections - and SERIOUS moments - were being met with peals of laughter. During the God-awful song where people are searching for the missing Aimee and singing of their worry, concern and panic, the entire section of the audience where I was sitting was doubled over in laughter, tears streaming down their face.

Yes, as Diva states here and I will verify, there were a few members of the show staff, pads and paper in hand, taking furious notes in the orchestra. At a certain point, where the audience around them was reveling in the absurdity of act two, they started to glance around before finally being reduced to laughter themselves, heads in their hands.. only roughly 30 minutes after intermission, where they were clustered together, looking rather worried.

And yes, as Diva said, there were walk outs, including a man with a broken leg and crutches who left about 15-20 minutes before the show ended. He was seated near the front of the orchestra, stood up and proceeded to HOP UP THE AISLE as he situated his crutches and took off for the door.. and I noticed a few turned heads, pointed fingers and giggles at the sight of someone with a broken leg fleeing the theatre.

I have to be honest though... you don't want to leave at intermission. Act One is bad, but Act Two is HYSTERICALLY bad. If you just go with it, you will laugh your tail off and have stories for YEARS. My friends and I have been quoting lyrics and one-liners to each other since we saw the show. Whether in person or via text message, we all instantly lose it all over again. I'd spend the $27 for a rush ticket. Hell, I want to take my significant other for a good, trashy night out.



Updated On: 10/26/12 at 03:06 AM
egghumor
Broadway Legend
joined:3/9/11
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 03:15am
bg2, thanks for the most fun reading I've had on this board in a very long time. I give ANYTHING to see that show. Hell, I'd almost be willing to b*** Donald Trump for the chance!
broadwayguy2
Broadway Legend
joined:5/18/03
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 03:36am
Well you are quite welcome, but don't thank me. Thank Kathie Lee Gifford.
egghumor
Broadway Legend
joined:3/9/11
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 04:13am
Perhaps after the show closes, Kelly Ripa can host her own "Everyone Has a Story"-type segment and invite Carolee Carmello to tell hers.
broadwayguy2
Broadway Legend
joined:5/18/03
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 04:32am
egg,
Did you check your PMs yet?

Honestly, this show should fold in previews. Purely from a schadenfreude stand-point, it needs to open if for no other reason that I can not fathom how KLG will discuss the reviews. Not to be gleeful, but Ambulance chasers have kept mega-flops open for a month after opening.. they really should buy the tickets to keep this open for a few weeks as well. Give the cast the paychecks. They more than earn it.

Oh, and did I mention the scene where one of Aimee's husbands (the second, if I recall) is given a quick walk-on with no dialogue before being shooed off-stage. The scene immediately following has Aimee in bed with said husband as he sleeps and she journals / writes a letter. HOWEVER, the staging is such that the husband is still walking off-stage as the bed enters from upstage, with the 'husband' already fast asleep in bed. A body double. In a VERY small bed for two people. The husband and the double are visible for several seconds on stage at the same time. IT MAKES IT SEEM AS THOUGH AIMEE IS HAVING AN AFFAIR!

Oh, and because of the two giant - and slightly transforming - stair units that remain onstage for the entire show, the majority of the automated scenic units move from upstage to downstage, or they enter on curved tracks from behind the two stair units. The effect is such that every time a scenic unit moves on stage, it looks like a 20-ft cuckoo clock striking the hour.

There are also a few rather awkward elements to the set - in particular the masked escape stairs from the large stair units - that have the effect of that old community theatre cliche "just paint it black and the audience will NEVER see it."
egghumor
Broadway Legend
joined:3/9/11
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 04:51am
It seems the only thing that could possibly make this show any funnier would be (in reference to a recent column by Michael Musto) to have an actor playing Bette Davis to arrive during the trial and exclaim: "Aimee Semple McPherson Was Nothing But A Whore!"

A few posters have complained that KLG has mentioned numerous times that Aimee had various episodes with the KKK during her lifetime but the show omits such scenes. Imagine how side-splitting it would have been if the creative team had decided to stage (or set to music!) those plot lines!
egghumor
Broadway Legend
joined:3/9/11
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 04:59am
bg2, did I read your PMs about the BM? You bet your sweet assie, me lassie!
broadwayguy2
Broadway Legend
joined:5/18/03
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 05:02am
Oh, they have a KKK scene. Just one. Not the multiple KKK kidnappings that Gifford frequently mentions. Just an attempted bribe - complete with robes and hoods. It's awkward, but it does result in a witty one liner from Roz Ryan, made screamingly funny by the "Yes, I have to say this sh#t" expression on her face as she looks out into the house after.
egghumor
Broadway Legend
joined:3/9/11
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 05:05am
Someone please call Donald Trump for me - NOW!
ClumsyDude15
Broadway Legend
joined:12/11/06
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 06:14am
After reading broadwayguy2's review, I'm kicking myself for not using my comp for last night, but I'll get to this before it folds.


I mean, I hope Leap of Faith 2: Aimee's Turn is just as terrible as it's brother show.
NotYourMemories
Understudy
joined:7/30/09
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 07:02am
broadwayguy2 - How could you? Why would you?!
bjh2114
Broadway Legend
joined:4/19/06
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 08:25am
Are you LOST? Or are you FOUND? Were you baptized? Or did you DROWN?
egghumor
Broadway Legend
joined:3/9/11
Has anyone seen SCANDALOUS lately...?
Posted: 10/26/12 at 09:03am
AIMEE:

Yeah I was LOST, now I'm FOUND (hallelujah!), let's all hoop and hollah and GIT DOWN!

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