The Life and Times of a Wonder Woman
nytheatre.com review by Robin Reed
August 15, 2004
Now I might be just slightly too young to remember the exact details of the television series Wonder Woman, but that doesn’t stop that little tingle in my belly when I think about it. Frankly, what gets me excited is what gets most Generation X-ers (are we still using that term?) charged on this seemingly endless surge of retro kitsch we call now: these jump-cut flashbacks to our not so distant youth. In my mind, Wonder Woman conjures up a young me, in my Underoos, running around the neighborhood and rounding up evil-doers with my lasso of truth, lies ricocheting off of my super-powered bracelets, riding off into the victorious sunset in my invisible jet.
Skullduggery’s The Life and Times of a Wonder Woman filled me with that same giddy excitement, and although I left slightly enlightened I also left a smidge embarrassed. If she knew then what I know now, my mom probably would not have let me stay up past my bedtime to watch Lynda Carter spinning into a crime-avenging frenzy.
This piece could have been subtitled “A Ride Inside her Little Black Book” as we become privy to who, between Batman and Superman, is a better lay; stories of lesbian trysts with Helen of Troy; and a funny little rant about lingerie.
That’s right, kids, when she’s not conquering villains, Wonder Woman is a naughty, naughty lassie. Terry Newman’s exploration of the ass-kicking Amazonian Princess takes us inside her boudoir and shows that there is more to her than just being a super hero. She’s the one who the boys want to bed and the girls want to be. The play boldly takes the comic book/TV heroine far beyond the everyday retro-rama that makes hipsters want to buy lunchboxes.
Tara Hendry is just excellent as Wonder Woman. She not only looks the part (with a stellar Lynda Carter meets Catherine Zeta-Jones beauty) but plays to the audience with as much grace and charm as can be expected from a gal spinning around on stage in spar-spangled knickers. She’s got the kicks, the spins, and the bullets-reflecting-off-the-bracelets down pat. All is accentuated with a simple strobe light to give it that slightly cheesy 70s chase scene feel.
This show was a hit in Edinburgh and I can see why. Welcome to New York, Skullduggery. I hope we get to see a lot more from these folks in the future!