The Thinking Man's Idiot

The unruly brain and bad habits of a writer, artist, and grilled cheese sandwich-enthusiast.

Lousy Shot: ‘Office Hour’ at Berkeley Rep

Berkeley Rep veteran Julia Cho returns with a school shooting drama that’s both impotent and exploitative.

Saturday, 3 March, 2018 · 1 Comment

Shooting Blanks: The ‘Death Wish’ Remake

If White privilege and MAGA hats were movies, this would be their BIRTH OF A NATION.

Thursday, 1 March, 2018 · 3 Comments

Of ‘Rags’ and Richies: ‘Ragtime’ at Berkeley Playhouse

Though the script is over-packed with characters, the combination of great direction, performances, and tech make this another winner for Berkeley Playhouse.

Friday, 23 February, 2018 · Leave a comment

Baldur’s #GamerGate: ‘Non-Player Character’ world premiere by SF Playhouse

Toxic masculinity is taken to task in this SF Playhouse world premiere dramatizing the #GamerGate controversy.

Saturday, 17 February, 2018 · Leave a comment

‘Stuck’ Up its Own Ass!

Fuck this movie. This is misogynist hypocrisy at its worst. Seriously, fuck this movie.

Friday, 2 February, 2018 · 10 Comments

Pillar of Salt: Looking back at the Best and Worst of 2017

Sorry, Frank – it was NOT “a very good year”.

Still, there were bright spots to be found.

Saturday, 13 January, 2018 · Leave a comment

Only a Fraction of an Idea: ‘An Octoroon’ at Berkeley Rep

Fine acting and great Berkeley Rep production values can’t save Branden Jabobs-Jenkins’ God-awful script.

Sunday, 2 July, 2017 · 3 Comments

The ‘How’ and Why: ‘How to Be a White Man’ World Premiere by Faultline Theater

A Black woman aims for biting social commentary, but winds up giving herself the “All Lives Matter” treatment in this uneven new satire by Luna Malbroux and Faultine Theater.

Thursday, 22 June, 2017 · 2 Comments

Delusion of ‘Grandeur’: Han Ong’s world premiere Gil Scott-Heron play at The Magic

Not even amazing set design and two-out-of-three great performers can save an unforgivably terrible script in this Magic Theatre world premiere.

Thursday, 15 June, 2017 · 3 Comments

Playground Double-Feature: ‘Hedge’ and ‘Kano + Abe’

I spotlight two shows in Playground’s “Best Of” festival, both of which focus on Bay Area neighborhoods.

One is a hypocritical gentrification drama, the other is a creative (if flawed) crime story.

Friday, 9 June, 2017 · Leave a comment