Last weekend I went to see Second Stage’s newest production All New People, written by the talented Zach Braff. Braff starred in Second Stage’s production of Trust last season with Sutton Foster and I guess after that he was bitten by the theatre bug. I expected comedy and comedy we got in the 90-minute one act.
The curtain rose to reveal a beautiful condo on an island in the Carribean and Charlie (Justin Bartha) trying to hang himself with an extension chord. Fate intervenes when a young British real estate agent, Emma (Krysten Ritter), opens the door and saves him from snapping the extension chord and his neck. She explains that she is trying to rent out the condo (which one of Charlie’s friends owns) in an attempt to get hired and renew her visa so she doesn’t have to return home. Her friend, local fireman and town drug dealer, Myron (David Wilson Barnes), shows up shortly after with a vast supply of pot. Charlie continually begs them to leave so he can off himself, but they refuse to let him kill himself. Charlie’s friend has sent an escort, Kim (Anna Camp), to cheer him up. She exclaims, “You can do anything you want but please stay away from my asshole.”
There are numerous one-liners that sent the audience into fits of laughter. There were also video clips inserted into the action as well which I found kind of perplexing. It wasn’t something I had seen before but the clips served a purpose to transport us back in time and show us why these characters were all in a limbo of sorts, instead of them simply telling us.
There was pontification on life, faith, and what is the meaning of it all? during the show, and overall the entire play was random. But Charlie’s new friends succeed in not letting him kill himself and he even falls for Emma. Braff has a talent for writing believable dialogue that culminates into attention-grabbing plots. That being said I look forward to seeing his next play.