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Comic Book Theater Festival Brings Superheroes to the Brick's Stage

Friday, June 03, 2011

Spider-Man isn't the only comic book character hanging out onstage this summer. The first-ever Comic Book Theater Festival, which runs through July 1 at the Brick Theater in Williamsburg, features nearly a month of plays that bring beloved pen-and-ink figures to life in front of an audience.

The festival's mission purports to "invite one of history’s newest art forms to meet one of its oldest" — ie comics to theater. But Time Out New York theater editor David Cote said the festival is tapping into something much broader.

"The comic book aesthetic is everywhere," he said. "It's in major television shows, it's in movies, of course, like the summer blockbusters. It could be a very visually exciting festival."

The 16 plays that are part of the festival use comic books to satirize and play with mediums that they pay tribute to.

"Batz," for example, is a riff on last season's Off-Broadway hit "Gatz!" in which the characters read "The Great Gatsby" aloud in its entirety. ("Batz" uses the batman comic book "The Dark Night" as its inspiration.)

"Death Boogie," on the other hand, uses hip-hop and comic book illustrations to tell the story of a guy whose life during the day is different from the life he leads as a revolutionary by night.

The Comic Book Theater Festival kicked off on Thursday. Tickets to the shows cost $TK.

Josh Mertz, Harrison Unger, Ed Lane in "Batz."

Pictured above: Josh Mertz, Harrison Unger, Ed Lane in "Batz." Photo by Erik Bowie.

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Comments [1]

nathan shinder from levittown NY

Can't agree at all with the comments about Batman, by that psychologist. Batman represents rationality, analysis, reason. Why were his parents killed? Why do criminals do it? He is, after all, the 'Worlds Greatest Detective'. The conflict is largely played out by the Joker. The Joker represents what cannot be explained. Indeed, the best part of the Dark knight was that Joker had no identity, no real name. He lies compulsively about his past. He is the Joker of the deck of cards, the random element, that makes the odds hard to calculate. Batman MUST try to categorize him. Must put him in a box, the square peg, in the round hole. BUT- Batman has a blind spot- Wayne's method, his symbolism, is irrational, weird, it begs an explanation- when it comes, Wayne will overcome his neurosis.

Jul. 15 2012 11:53 AM

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