This play, production, reception invites a broader conversation about works that find most of their power in the final third. I was as undecided as Brantley until the series of reversals, and then left with an impression of the play's worth 180 from my take at intermission.
Trying to remember examples of other plays where I changed my mine -- or rather, made up my mind -- so late. It happens.
(Not a good example, but my own mother hated "Follies" until Loveland!)
I know people who dislike "Cat" until Big Daddy appears (admittedly, early; the top of act 2.) . And I must confess that I usually find "Night of the Iguana" scattered until the (beautiful) scenes between Shannon and Hannah quite late.
Not to pick on Williams. more recent examples, very random:
Craig Lucas's "Prelude to a Kiss" bored me until its darker threads were revealed.
And though I don't agree, friends loathed "The Humans" until it begin to coalesce around crises, in the final portion.
And I found last year's Pulitzer winner, "Cost of Living," heavy slogging until quite late.