**NO SPOILERS** Don’t let the drama heavy premise of two Vietnam vets coming to terms with the past after one meets the other’s sister keep you from this show. Written by Steve Metcalfe and directed by Don Taco for the Majestic Reader’s Theatre Company.
Megs, a Vietnam vet, shows up at his friend David’s, another Vietnam vet, house and meets David’s sister, Martha, who he quickly becomes enamored with. Martha takes a liking to Megs, as well, but her brother David disapproves. This budding relationship causes David and Megs to come to terms with their past.
This show is so funny. I mean, I laughed aloud numerous times and so did the opening performance audience. The script is solid but the gender swap casting of Megs and David is I think what made the story come to life in a different way. Katherine Otten is brilliant as Megs/Joseph, the Vietnam vet with a strong enthusiasm for fishing on opening day. He/she also has a charming way of expressing his like or dislike for something in a completely committed way. No gray area. Katherine has a way of bringing it way down when the moment calls for it and commits to the roles she plays with an “all in” attitude which is clear if you follow her performances. Wendy M. McCoy as Martha was sweet and salty as her character recounts high school memories as well as her current state of loneliness and desire for love. Billie Travelstead, a newcomer to the Majestic family, plays David, a Vietnam vet not ready, or able, to let go of the past and he doesn’t want help from Megs either. Billie has some great potential for future performances with her turn in this show. It took her a bit to warm up, but being her first time out on this stage and in a gender swap (I don’t know if she has gender swapped before…), once she committed to her role as David, she did quite well bringing some delicate moments to the surface.
I disagree with the Majestic site’s synopsis which includes “nothing is resolved”. Yes, things may go awry; but, Megs/Joseph, David, and Martha get everything they didn’t know they needed. And so do we.
Tickets are available for today’s final performances. Get your ASAP! Click HERE for tickets and showtimes. While you’re there, think ahead and get your tickets to upcoming shows: Guards! Guards! Rando Extravando and Tin Woman.