Monday, July 03, 2006

lagniappe on *Peter Pan*

I went to *Peter Pan* on Sunday, with my daughter and her next-door-neighbor, and then we ran into friends with grandchildren, and some major theorizing of a dramaturgical nature took place. And you know the thing about kids: They say the darnedest things ...

What do you think of Peter Pan not being willing to grow up?
"He should be willing to grow up to at least 20."
Why 20?
"Because then he’d know what it’d be like to be a grown-up, and then you could go back to being a kid."

Why does Peter fly back to Neverland by himself at the end?
"It’s a setup for Peter Pan too."
"You know, that movie we saw. *Peter Pan 2.*"
Oh, like a movie sequel. Got it. [She meant *Finding Neverland,* but I like how she’s thinking about the long-range profitability of the franchise. Disney could do something with this story.

Still, there's plenty of evidence that the Disney marketing machine is still functioning with strength:
One girl who went with me to the play knew all about how actors are flown above the stage, because she’d seen it all explained “on a 'Behind the Scenes' of *Wendy Woo, Homecoming Warrior.*"
I must have given her a blank look.
"It’s a Disney Channel Original Movie," she explained, helpfully.

The girls made some insightful comments about the play. On the other hand, they also argued “Did so/Did not/Did so/Did not” all the way from the Argonne on-ramp to the Pines Road exit.

I asked them about the stage tradition of Peter being played by a woman.
The reply: “Men can play women. Or at least small men can."
But what Disney execs will like is the footnote that the entering-fourth-grade girl gave:
"I saw it on *The Suite Life of Zach and Cody,* when Esteban played a maid.”

Favorite character?
"I love Tinker Bell — she can fly, and she’s cute, and she’s prissy-prass."
"That’s hyphenated."
"Yeah, it means she’s sassy."

With apologies to the (uncredited) actress who plays the elder Wendy in the final scene:
What was the deal with Wendy at the end?
"She couldn’t fly. She was too heavy."

(Actually, that conversation continued ...
Is that what the play said?
"No. She was too old. She didn't believe anymore."

But my favorite exchange of all between my little junior theater critics arrived during intermission, when I asked them what their favorite bit (in the play) was so far.

Kylie: “When Smee couldn’t get down off the stage. We laughed really hard, and we both snorted.”
Tiffany: “I didn’t snort.”
Kylie [tactful]: “I thought you did.”
Tiffany: “I didn’t snort, but I heard you snort.” [Kylie laughs some more] “There, you just did it again.”
Kylie [defensive]: “Then what did you do? You laughed and then you snorted, too.”
“Did not.”
“Did so.”
“Did not.”
“Did so.”


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home