Thursday, November 6, 2008


I went to see Equus a couple of weeks ago.   I knew nothing about Equus the play - nothing about the playwright - I only knew that Daniel Radcliffe, little Harry Potter, was in it and at some point, he would prance around on stage naked.

Now, it's true: it's severely creepy for a 27 year old woman to be leering at naked 19 year olds, especially tiny, young-looking naked 19 year olds like Daniel Radcliffe.  I guess there's no getting around it.  And although I wasn't attending in order to ogle him - for pure ogling potential I'm sure I could have found something better - my motives were essentially perverse.   I just wanted to see Bad Harry Potter, the same way spending four years at a Catholic high school makes me giggle at tasteless jokes about Jesus.

Actually, I just looked up perverse and here's the number one definition: willfully determined or disposed to go counter to what is expected or desired; contrary.  So I guess guess perverse really sums it up. 

Here are some observations about my perverse excursion:

1.  There's been so much press about the nude scene, but it's short, the stage is dark, and Daniel Radcliffe is not facing the audience for most of it.  Forget about the nude scene.  What about the scenes when Daniel Radcliffe is twining himself around strapping young men wearing horse-heads and showering them with big, open-mouthed kisses?  If you ask me, those were much weirder.

2.  I didn't bother to find out what it was about before I showed up and, hey, it's kind of depressing and intense.  Go figure.  The playwright said his goal was to try to make sense of a senseless crime - something he heard about, although he never did track down the real event, if it ever occured.  Namely, a teenage boy who blinded six horses at a stable where he had been working, by stabbing them in the eyes.  He comes up with a fairly elegant, and inspiring, answer; too elegant, and too inspiring, if you ask me.  Or maybe I just don't care if there's some sort of indomitable spirit motivating animal torturers; nothing good comes of it, after all.

3.  Sure, I bought the ticket for silly, gimmicky reasons.  But I didn't go see a silly gimmick; I saw a great play.  I walked in with a snicker and walk out enlightened and thoughtful.  What's the lesson there?  That sometimes even your worst instincts can send you off on worthwhile journeys?  Maybe that's not a good lesson.  

4.  I got two Harry Potter actors for the price of one: the main character, the child psychologist treating Daniel Radcliffe, was also the guy who plays Uncle Vernon in the films.  He did a truly fantastic job, really great.  

5.  On the other hand, he also kind of reminded me of what Albus Dumbledore would be like, if he were a 20th century child psychologist treating severely disturbed teenage boys.  Harry Potter Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest?

6.  Captain Janeway had a role too.  She has nice calves.

No comments: