by Laura Hutson
When: Through Sept. 21
Where: TPAC's Johnson Theater
I went to last night's Tennessee Rep performance of Nate Eppler's original script Larries, a black comedy about a failing marriage that involves multiple personalities and alternate universes. Granted, mention "alternate universes" and "black comedy" in your description of anything and I'll show up. But even beyond that, I loved it.
Larries starts out like a Saturday Night Live skit, and maybe that’s why I kept wondering how the playwright was going to wrap it up — too many years of SNL-watching makes you suspicious whether comedy writers can actually finish a joke, no matter how funny it is. Then the character of Mackenzie enters the story — a teenager played by Amanda Card who is smarter than everybody else and unfazed by the supernatural — and this fantastically sympathetic straight man gives Larries a nice Joss Whedon-esque turn.
I don’t want to ruin the plot by giving away too many details, but by the end of Larries my head was swimming with ideas about quantum physics and how we’re all replicas of our parents in some way. The second act was weird and kind of fucked up and didn't have a nice bow around it — and I'm so glad it didn't.
For another opinion, read Martin Brady's review in this week's Scene.