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Exactly... but is the Witch the one truth-teller of this fairy tale?
Posted by: GrumpyMorningBoy 08:27 am EDT 03/31/21
In reply to: re: ending of "Last Midnight" - ShowGoer 09:31 pm EDT 03/30/21

Exactly.

And to be fair to those audience members, they're being asked to keep track of a whole lot of very specific spells and curses, and you can't blame them for getting a bit muddled about who did what to whom and what you need to reverse this curse or that curse.

I think most of the audience is just proud of themselves that they're remembering a cow as white as milk, the cape as red as blood, the hair as yellow as corn and the slipper as pure as gold.

And even that one got repeated two dozen times. ;)

And beyond all this, I think there are any number of productions where the audience never really builds sympathy for the Witch, even after she's beautiful and we recognize that she'd been cursed by her own mother. I do think that the Witch's need to earn the audience's sympathy can make or break the show, but for a character who begins by cursing other people and ends by cursing other people, it's a heavy lift.

And so much of that journey is right inside "Last Midnight." It reflects a turning point where the Witch simply gives up...

"Oh why bother? You'll just do what you do."

And then she basically offs herself.

Sondheim and Lapine, is that really the lesson you think we should be telling our children?

Is the Witch the one truth-teller in this story?

Does her journey -- and her pessimism -- serve to contrast from the optimism (and maybe not-quite-honest storytelling) which Baker and Cinderella eventually show to the Baker's own child?

- GMB
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