4 out of 4 stars
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American Captain: The First to Avenge by Mike Brown is a parody play based on the movie “Captain America: The First Avenger”. This play follows a similar, but more extreme, version of the original plot, with recognizable characters like American Captain Steve Dodgers, Cold Soldier Barney Bucks, Agent Sassy Garter, and the villain, Crimson Cranium. Barney Bucks is chosen to be America’s first souped-up soldier, but Steve Dodgers happens to be inside the Vital Ray machine when the scientist is demonstrating its properties, causing Dodgers to accidentally become American Captain. Crimson Cranium, a failed souped-up soldier, wants to steal the glowy cube (tesseract) so that he can make everyone in the world look horrific like him. Will American Captain and Sassy Garter be able to stop Crimson Cranium? What will happen to Barney Bucks to make him become The Cold Soldier? You’ll have to read the manuscript or see the play to find out.
As an Avengers fan, I was excited to read this parody play. It hits on all the major plot points from “Captain America: The First Avenger” while adding new, funny scenes that are original to this play. It creates humor by overdramatizing the relationship between Garter and Dodgers and by pointing out plot holes from the original. With a small cast and opportunities for actor improvisation, the show could be changed a little each night to suit the audience’s mood.
I only found a few mistakes in the script, and I think it was probably professionally edited or at least thoroughly proofread, especially because the play has already been performed at a theater. I appreciated that the characters’ lines were properly marked and that stage directions were clearly separated from lines.
The play has two acts with four scenes in each act. It moves relatively quickly, and would probably make for a fast-paced performance since it includes many action scenes. It also has three musical numbers, all of which are set to popular songs like “Raise Your Glass” by Pink. These make for a fun interlude between the action scenes.
Overall, I would rate this play 4 out of 4 stars. It’s a fun parody of the popular Captain America franchise, and fans will recognize the commentary the author is making on the original. With only a few mistakes, it appears to be professionally edited. The humor and language is appropriate for fans of all ages, although those who haven’t seen “Captain America: The First Avenger” may not understand all of the jokes or the ridiculous (but funny) ending.
American Captain: The First to Avenge
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