Tuesday, April 26, 2011
O Reason Not the Need!
Don't get me wrong, King Lear is a great play. Yet at the risk of sounding like a thankless child, I can no longer be the pattern of patience and say nothing.
King Lear, we know thee well enough. We don't need to see a new production of you every year.
Sure, McKellen was great. I have no doubt Jacobi will be every inch a king as well. Sam Waterson? ...fine. Fair enough. But then we're done.
But as I look to see who might be on deck to take on Lear next, there's no end in sight. This is all speculation, but it's hard to imagine that Patrick Stewart isn't going to be Lear sometime soon. Al Pacino could probably do Lear right now, this very hour, if he felt like it. Philip Seymour Hoffman is going to be hungry for more after he finishes off Willie Loman. Sam Shepard still has an itch, so (hot or not) don't count out old Slim. And now that Helen Mirren is done with "Prospera," I can only imagine that she's waiting for her time in the pool as well.
James Earl Jones already did Lear back in 1974, but he could do it again tomorrow without missing a beat.
There will always be actors that want to be Lear. But that dragon is going to lose his wrath if we see him every frickin' winter.
I love me some King Lear, but let's take it easy. Lear needs to be like a comet, or a perfect game, or a Peter Lugar steak. Because if it's not rare, it's not right.