Who doesn’t love a good musical? Well, me for one, and I’ve always been a firm believer that any man who doesn’t hate their father shouldn’t either. But now I’m a little torn. Why you might ask? Well this week “The Toxic Avenger: The Musical” opened up for previews to the general public in New York City.
The storyline bears little resemblance to the original films. For the most part the characters are the same but the whole thing has been updated, sort of. In the new musical our main character Melvin sets out to clean up his home town of Tromaville by heading to city hall. Unfortunately he quickly discovers that the mayor is the key culprit of all the toxic waste dumping that’s going on in town. Next thing you know her goons are throwing Melvin into a vat of goo and he turns into everyone’s favorite monster, The Toxic Avenger. It’s the age old story of kid turns into freak, kills a bunch of people and sweeps a blind chick off her feet. It’s like they’ve been reading my diary or something.
At the very least I can say that the play isn’t some thrown together piece of crap. The cast and writers are all fairly well known in the theater world. I won’t bother to name them because I don’t think anyone would recognize them but you can trust me, they’ve done some serious Broadway type stuff.
I will mention though that David Bryan, the keyboard player and founding member of Bon Jovi wrote all the music and lyrics for the show. As much as I hate Bon Jovi they are 100% New Jersey just like Toxie so you know it’s going to be good. The only name I think is bigger on the bio page is Lloyd Kaufman, listed as the creator of The Toxic Avenger. To me it’s pretty cool that they didn’t just write some script without his input and if anyone else is following his twitter you’d know that he visits the show pretty regularly. Uncle Lloyd was even at the show last night giving out free DVDs to anyone who said hello. What a guy.
Surprisingly the reviews have all been great for the musical. It really seems like the entire production holds true to the original films and tries to do Troma proud. I may have to bite the bullet and go see “West Side Story” with the wife, but I’m hoping to make it up to see this show sometime soon. Previews run through next week and then opening night is April 6th. You can check out the show's website for ticket info.