For once it’s nice to have a comedy back on Broadway and especially a comedy written by Steve Martin, starring Amy Schumer. It’s called, for some inexplicable reason, "Meteor Shower" and it opened at the Booth on Shubert Alley the other night. Frankly, just call it 80 minutes of nonsensical fun, and who can’t like that in this era of harassment and rockets.
It’s 1993, and we are in a garden apartment in Ojai, California and Corky and Norm, that’s pudgy Amy Schumer doing her best to keep us roaring with laughter, and Jeremy Shamos, who is just fine, have invited a couple, Laura and Gerald, over for drinks to look at a meteor shower zipping back and forth across the terrace. The streak of light serves no purpose except maybe for an errant bolt that crashes to earth so to speak. Laura and Gerald are played by a new look, non-musicalized Laura Benanti and a lanky newcomer, Keegan Michael Key who is making his Broadway debut.
The four of them spend the evening trading zingers somewhat like the lines (but not quite) that Neil Simon used to write, and at times the words and especially the nuances are very, very funny. As the play continues, there’s a switch in what we are watching, but for me, it didn’t quite make sense. Maybe you can figure it out.
Since the play doesn’t quite work, I can only comment on the actors, and in that category, the two woman, especially Ms. Benanti who looks like a million as a vixen in shining lame are the most interesting and easily the funniest. Mr. Samos, who I last saw in "Noises Off," is fine but when that meteor gets in his way, he becomes more than silly. Keegan Michael Key isn’t quite ready for fast-moving comedy.
So do you spend the big bucks to go see "Meteor Shower" since the ticket demand so far has been off the walls? Well, yes, if you’re an Amy fan and like Mr. Martin’s sense of humor but for me, the shower should have been hotter.