Written by Michael McKeever
Directed by Joe Brancato
April 15, 2017
💉💉 out of 5.
I have figured out that the problem with gay plays is not a problem with the plays but is more a problem with me. There was a time in my twenties that I would have gone to see ANY production with ANYONE as long as it included a gay character. I was so fascinated to be with “my people” and see the stories that we could tell. I loved to watch men in these stories hold hands, snuggle, and dream together – – much less kiss. Being a gay play was more than enough to win my patronage!
And then the stories all became about AIDS and the ruthless damage done to a community that was just being gaining to wake up and reach for something clean and beautiful in the light. But that was gone. Loss and death and ostracization on page after page. I was in the audience for each of these plays – almost overwhelmed with the grief. Then Angels in America lifted out of this gloom and doom theatre into a – – – well that part is not yet written.
Daniel’s Husband is not a very good play. It is a predictable “we don’t know what we got until it is taken away play.” The characters and dialogue are simple which is a blessing against all the “too gay” plays that do more making fun of gay men then shedding light on them. Daniel’s Husband was like a really good Lifetime movie on stage – – but of course everything is better on stage as you sit only a few feet from them and you can feel them breathing. The best scenes of all were between the primary couple when all the friends and relatives were gone. The way they sat and touched and flirted with the idea of a relationship and then later of a relationship going to marriage was really sweet, simple and moving. What I had wanted to see sooooooo many times as a young gay man was being told in such a free honest way.
I am confident that there will be another Angels in America to take gay literature to a next level – – but till then I need to just relax and let all of the simple Lifetime movies play out with all male casts – – – which just makes my soul feel right.