Theater review: 'Caught' at the Zephyr Theatre
In the midst of all the fussy preparations Kenneth (Corey Brill) and Troy (Will Beinbrink) are making for their upcoming nuptials, Darlene (Deborah Puette), Kenneth's sister, arrives with her small-town prejudices and wild-card daughter, Krystal (Amanda Kaschak), in tow. Family members, start your dysfunction.
"Caught," a new play by David L. Ray now at the Zephyr Theatre, gets its comic spark from the familiar spectacle of a culture clash. There's not much new in this drama, directed with polish by Nick DeGruccio. It's a genial, same-sex marriage soap opera that wears its good intentions on its sleeve. The story is pat and the stereotypes fly free, but Ray daubs his characters here and there with real color.
Darlene may have walked out on her philandering fundamentalist preacher husband (Richard Jenik), but don't think she's as willing as Krystal to turn a new leaf in open-minded Southern California. Old bigoted habits die hard, but wisecracking Splenda (Micah McCain) is on hand to preach the gay gospel. He's just been ordained on the Internet so he can marry Kenneth and Troy, and when Darlene's hypocritical, Bible-thumping worse-half turns up to retrieve her, a battle of the scriptures breaks out.
Television-style resolutions evaporate from memory almost instantly, but their ease can be satisfying in a harmless, diversionary, make-believe way.
-- Charles McNulty
“Caught,” Zephyr Theatre, 7456 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles. 8 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays. (Call for exceptions.) Ends Jan. 23. $25. www.CaughtThePlay.com or (800) 595-4849. Running time: 2 hours, 15 minutes.
Upper photo: Micah McCain, Will Beinbrink, Corey Brill. Credit: Michael Lamont
Lower photo: Deborah Puette. Credit: Michael Lamont