Entertainment » Theatre

The Nerd

by Meca McKinney
Wednesday Jul 12, 2017
The Nerd

"The Nerd" promises to be a "ridiculously funny comedy." It is surely a comedy and absolutely ridiculous at times but despite the sporadic hilarity, it is rather vapid.
"The Nerd" is like nothing I've seen before and therefore earns an "A" for originality but truthfully, it lacked depth.

Written by Larry Shue, a well-known actor in the '70s, it opened on Broadway in 1981 and had a year and a half run. Shue wrote the play to ensure he's have a great part to play as "Willum," the lead.

The premise of the story revolves around a dinner party Willum, an architect, throws for himself and invites his best friend Axel (played by Gavin Lee of Broadway's "Les Miserables"); his crush, a weather forecaster named Tansy (played by Clea Alsip of Broadway's "Madame Butterfly"); his client, Warnock Waldgrave (Grant Shaud) along with his wife Clelia ("Gossip Girl"'s Zuzanna Szadowski); and kid, Thor (Avey Noble).

Many years prior to the night of the dinner party, Willum almost lost his life in the Vietnam War but was rescued by a complete stranger named Rick Steadman. Because he was unconscious during the rescue and shipped out directly from the hospital, he had never played eyes on Rick. He did, however, send him a thank you letter stating his gratitude and promising to be there for him in his time of need forever.

For his dinner party, Willum rounded out his invitations with one to Rick and to his astonishment, he just happened to be in town! But when Rick arrives, what ensues is nothing short of pure anguish.

Chances are that you have never been this offended by the off-putting behavior of others but Rick's will likely make you contemplate what you'd do if such a creep entered your life and refused to leave. What if he ruined your birthday party, offended your best friends, and jeopardized your career? What lengths would you go through to get this weirdo out of your life without offending him?

The absurdity equates to hilarity. Set in the 1970s, the costumes and scene design is on-point; completely believable. And the acting is truly GOOD. It's a very talented cast with great chemistry.

The only issue I found is that I was left feeling like I needed much more. The script itself, although funny, is just spare, minimal, empty. My favorite part of the play was its location. Trekking an hour from Philly to New Hope was thoroughly pleasant. It's an awesome, scenic ride and such a cool place.

"The Nerd" runs through July 15 at the Bucks County Playhouse, 70 S. Main Street in New Hope, PA. For tickets or information, visit http://bcptheater.org/2017-season/the-nerd/

Meca McKinney is the lead product designer of Jypsea Leathergoods (www.terinanicole.com) and a serious arts & culture fanatic. She's also a DIY home decor blogger and instructor. Follow her antics on Twitter and IG @theterinanicole.


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