Come Back Little Sheba
Are there not enough new playwrights out there? Why is there a need to resurrect old plays? I realize that Come Back Little Sheba, Inge’s major hit in the 1950’s could be called a classic but I much prefer the new vs. the old.
The story line is depressing. Couple has been together for over 25 years because she got pregnant and he had to do the right thing. They lost the baby, never had any kids, and all they have is each other. After all, this is the 1950’s and they were basically outcasts. He has been dry for 10 months but did some serious alcohol abuse before. A young woman, who is going to the local college comes to live with them. The entry of this woman in their lives brings back a lot of old angry memories.
The main character played by S. Epatha Merkenson is superb. Although her character is just classic 1950’s wife. She keeps the house clean, and doesn’t do such a good job at that while spending the day attempting to talk to anyone from the postman to the milk man or the neighbor if they will listen to her during the course of the day. She is lonely and beyond subservient to her husband. Kevin Anderson, who plays the husband is also quite good. There are a few young actors who are making their debut which is always nice to see too.
It was just an incredibly depressing play. As we were walking out, the couple in front of us, who had obviously seen Come Back Sheba the first time around made a few comments that just summed up the play. He said to his wife, “well that play did not stand the test of time”. She said, “they don’t make women like that anymore, thank goodness.” Thank goodness is right.