On of the most anticipated New York theater pieces this fall is the opening of Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead.
"Dog Sees God: Confessions of a Teenage Blockhead’ is an "unauthorized parody" that follows the Peanuts gang – all grown up. Set approximately ten years after the events in the fifty-year-running comic strip, ‘Dog Sees God’ begins with Snoopy’s death, and things for the introspective "CB" go downhill from there. Still trying to understand life’s darker meanings, still plagued with his endless identity crisis, CB talks to his gang of friends to find answers to his many questions. Of course, this gives us the chance to laugh at seeing what became of these well-loved and recognizable characters.
Clearly, producers are trying to mirror the success of "Avenue Q," where the characters are modeled after the former-happy-go-lucky creatures of ”Sesame Street.”
It’s a perfect formula to appeal to the media obsession and ironic tendencies of the younger generation. Take some old time childhood comfort and throw in some modern edge.
Was this the same formula that was used to update everyone’s favorite childhood movie, "The Wizard of Oz," into Wicked?
"Wicked," which has won 10 Tony nominations, finds good and evil reversed. Glinda the Good is a ruthless alpha girl, embodied by Kristin Chenoweth as the queen of spiteful, popularity-obsessed perk. Her nemesis, Elphaba (Idina Menzel), the Wicked Witch of the West, is an idealistic do-gooder and social pariah with a scary green complexion, who is fanatically intent on liberating Oz’s caged animals.
Of course, Broadway isn’t as predictable as most Hollywood movies. There are other ways of capturing nostalgia without destroying our memories of childhood classics. How about reliving the favorite songs of our past in a musical with no plot? Let’s see, there have been musicals based on the music of Billy Joel, the Beatles, the Beach Boys, Queen, Abba – am I missing anyone?
Today, I sat down and decided to develop a Broadway hit. What if I could create a show that combines the characters of a childhood favorite (using a edgy gimmick) with a lively musical that features the hit songs of a popular singing group? And I found it!
Broadway’s next hit — Alvin and the Chipmunks! What other cartoon characters also have a #1 Billboard album? Sit back and watch as Alvin, Simon, and Theodore, now middle-aged, deal with divorce, tummy tucks, and Alvin’s pornography addiction (with plenty of their old songs to rock the house!)
(All right you Chipmunks)
(Ready to sing your song)
(I’ll say we are)
(Let’s sing it now)
(Okay, Alvin, Alvin, ALVIN, Where’s ALVIN?)
(He’s online downloading photos of MILFs again!)