Are the Greek masks now "comedy" and "downer?"

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Auggie27
Broadway Legend
joined:10/13/03
Broadway Legend
joined:
10/13/03
Seeing HOUSE OF SAND AND FOG and hearing people announce their intentions to stay away has me ruminating. Is there an audience for tragedy anymore? An unrelated thread asked posters what musicals have "downer" finales. It startled me how any show that had sad elements in the catharsis/resolution was deemed by the consensus as "...a downer..."

Do we no longer find tragic stories cathartic? Satisfying?

Is it because we can turn on CNN and in 10 minutes see people attempting to cope with the impossible: 30,000 people disappearing into the dust and rubble of Iran? Is real tragedy so instantly, unavoidably ACCESSIBLE in our lives, we simply don't want tragic dimensions in our stories?

I'm not looking for easy answers, but I do think the non-stop blurr of "bad news" -- and the spin on it -- has created an intolerance to a serious examination of human pain and suffering. This really isn't intended to be a political thread ... but perhaps it's no surprise then that the Government has decided there will be no photos of flag-draped coffins at Dover. At the same time a MOW can be rushed into production about Jessica Lynch--with a happy ending. Real tragedy can be "spun," to make sure even war isn't "a downer."
"I'm a comedian, but in my spare time, things bother me." Garry Shandling