BWW Reviews: 42nd Street Moon's SUPERMAN a Memorable and Fun Time
It's a bird! It's a plane! No, it's 42nd Street Moon's campy production of Superman the musical! In the same line as the original Batman television series, It's a Bird... It's a Plane... It's Superman makes fun of comic book heroes in a light way that most fans will appreciate: melodrama. Striped villains sneak about to the piano reel. The kooky Dr. Sedgwick plots her revenge for the Noble Peace prizes denied her. Lois Lane ponders life without her giant crush on the perfect man. And Superman gets a new and surprising weakness during a hilarious second act.
Due to limitations from DC Comics, the musical's only familiar characters are its setting and its two lovebirds, Superman and Lois Lane, but that does not limit the show; It adds to the zaniness with new and exaggerated characters, including a picture perfect crazy scientist portrayed with villainous laughter by Darlene Popovic.
Lucas Coleman was made to play Clark Kent. Whether he's stumbling over a chair or pushing his glasses up, Coleman excels as Superman's nerd disguise at the Daily Planet newspaper. His Superman trades a large, muscled physique for a tall, thin appearance with a deep voice that adds to the comedy of the production.
Opposite Coleman, Jen Brooks is a strong and sharp Lois Lane. She flirts with scientist Jim Morgan, a largely forgotten and underused character played by the talenTed Trevor Faust Marcom. Meanwhile, office peer Sydney, the sidesplittingly entertaining Sadiya Ferdericks, attempts to give Clark a makeover while still holding a thing for columnist Max Mencken. Naturally, Max wants to undermine and uncover Superman. He also comes with a smooth, lady-killing personality as performed by the charming Brent Schindele. Fredericks and Schindele boast outstanding vocals next to a cast that sounds nice, but still has minor vocal struggles.
The script, itself, lags a bit in the first act, but livens up in the second act to the effect of a standing ovation. The productions brightly colors itself with Staci Arriaga's fantastic go-go-boots-inspired choreography Alvin Shiu's colorful comic book scenic design complete with a phone booth / changing booth, and Felicia Lilienthal's popping 60's costumes. The musical features catchy songs by the creators of Bye Bye Birdie played on the piano by Music Director Dave Dobrusky and Nick di Scala on woodwinds. Director Dyan McBride does a wonderful job with this lost Broadway gem. It's A Bird... It's A Plane... It's Superman has superpowers all its own in the capable and much appreciated hands of 42nd Street Moon.