Zombies In Queens and the Complexity of Toast
Yesterday hubby and I made the intrepid trek out to the borough of Queens to see our friend Miriam Lipner in Zombies at The Secret Theatre in LIC (near Silvercup Studios). The theatre itself is charming and intimate. They sell snacks and beverages that you can bring in with you, and there are only about 50-60 seats, so there are really no bad seats in the house.
The short but intensely funny and poignant play focuses on five survivors of a zombie apocalypse, all strangers, who end up in the second floor of a house in the DC suburbs with the stairs destroyed so no zombies can get up. The play focuses on the power relationships between people in general, and men and women specifically, when under intense stress. And of course there is the Battlecat, whose two cameo appearances lend some interesting drama and some huge laughs into the mix.
Tying the chronological scenes together is the radio, with different stations and announcers all reporting news in their own way, while playing great classic rock music over the course of several days, until even the music stops. The play throws some potshots at the futility of democracy, where corporate zombies automatically raise their hands when they hear the word "Vote".
There are several poignant scenes in this comedy/horror, but my favorite was from Lipner's character, the aptly named Miriam. When asked what she misses the most it is the complex simplicity of toast. Starting with bread, and then expanding into the joys of the toaster, the electricity just waiting in the outlet to be used, the spreads, and finally the interactions with her husband. Her story of making toast becomes a parable of all that is now lost in their lives as they move into the unknown.