When I heard that the Spiderman musical, Spiderman: Turn Off the Dark, was showing across the street from our hotel, it seemed like an opportune time to introduce my son to the theater at “the best Broadway superhero musical ever.” (Lamar)
My eleven-year-old son will tell you quite candidly that he does not care for cities. A visit to New York City will never rate highly on his list of fun things to do, and attending a Broadway show is more likely viewed as penance rather than reward.
Our recent venture to see the rock musical, Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark, seemed destined to do little to change his views.
I had high hopes that a production based on my son’s all-time favorite superhero would be an enticement, but he gave up his Spiderman obsession long ago. If anything, the focus on this particular superhero may have been a deterrent rather than a draw.
Our decision to attend this Broadway show last Saturday night was a spur of the moment decision as we headed back to the Times Square Hilton. At 7:37 p.m., just twenty minutes before the show was to begin, we walked up to the front box office where we found tickets for just $79/person that placed us front and center in the theater.
We had the perfect vantage point in the middle of Orchestra seating (row Q) to observe the aerial antics of Spidey and his arch-nemesis, the Green Goblin. But before we could get to the splendid Cirque-du-Soleil-like acrobatics we had to suffer through very loud and insipid rock lyrics, including a scene about bullying that left my son wincing.
Even the potential for humor with the ridiculous “Sinister Six” – a new alliance of supervillains that includes Carnage, Electro, Kraven the Hunter, the Lizard, Swarm and Swiss Miss – fell oddly flat.
Truly, the most entertaining aspect of the entire show occurred when the wires malfunctioned and the Green Hornet hung suspended just above and in front of us, camping it up and making light of the halted production.
I didn’t go in with high expectation, and my son didn’t want to go at all. And, yes, it was loud and silly, but I don’t think we could have done better as an introduction to musicals for my son. It was cool to see the super dudes flying above us, and overall the production was strangely mesmerizing.
And yet feats of daring awaited us still as we departed the premises onto the after party that is Times Square on a Saturday night. My gosh! For a moment, I longed for the dingy squalor of yesterday as we fought our way through the swarms of pedestrians, bombarded by neon billboards one on top of another, reaching on high.
Not only did we have to push our way through the crowds, we ended up crossing 42nd street in mid-road in a daring leap of faith that will remain imprinted in my son’s memory for years to come.
I think he quite enjoyed his night in Times Square.
Go See It!
Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark in Previews, Official Opening June 14, 2011Foxwoods Theater 213 West 42nd Street New York, NY 10036
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Sandra Foyt | Sandra Foyt is a storyteller, photographer, and road trip junkie. A veteran of six cross-country road trips, she drove Route 66, the Lincoln Highway, the fossil freeway, the extraterrestrial highway, and even “the loneliest road in America.” Find her on GetawayMavens.com, an award-winning destination guide to extraordinary travel in and from Northeast USA, on her portfolio site at SandraFoyt.com, and in freelance gigs on Family Travel 411, Minitime, Huffington Post, and Matador Network. Email: email@example.com, Twitter @SandraFoyt.