No Matter Watt - The Musical!

gordon stephen matheson jr · Ages 16+ · United States of America

world premiere
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August 23, 2021 certified reviewer

What I liked

The opening number is a poignant moment, and the song/scene “Superman” portrays the lure of codependent relationships with humor and some great lyrical turns. There are some really cool musical licks and ideas along the way.

I absolutely think Gordon should continue to develop the show so it can reach its full potential.

What I didn't like

We never perceive the choice or moment that leads to Posco’s turnaround, so his recovery feels abrupt and uncaused. He’s passive throughout most of the show. The mentor figure Shubop is revered but it’s never clear why. Some of the other characters are a bit unfathomable; they feel inspired by the larger-than-life archetypes from shows like Tommy, but their intentions aren’t always clear.

Some songs feel written for the album, where you can carefully balance voices in a mix. Here, actors end up singing over one another and obscuring the lyrics.

Also… I don’t get the pun of the show’s title.

My overall impression

It seems that most people reviewing this musical agree that there’s a solid idea here that needs more development. I’m inclined to agree. The benevolent intentions of this show are evident at every step, and the road from self-destruction to recovery is a very worthy subject for a musical. What I’d love to see is a more coherent narrative, simpler and clearer lyrics, and more choice and action on the part of the protagonist.

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