I saw Our House, the latest comedy-drama by Theresa Rebeck at Playwrights Horizons. Rebeck is primarily a playwright, but she also wrote episodes for NYPD Blue, which I’m assuming provided her with a pretty healthy income. She burns so many bridges in Our House that I can only assume she never wants to work in TV again.
There are several plot strings but the funniest and most interesting (to me) was the biting parody of the real-life relationship between the skeevy CBS president Les Moonves and his young, hot employee, Julie Chen.
Ms. Chen was a B-list member of the CBS news team, which is an old and dignified news organization. After fucking old Les (he is old enough to be her father) she scored a plum position as host of Big Brother. It’s the oldest story in the oldest book.
There was a lot of gnashing of teeth in the newsroom over Moonves’s decision. The conflict of interest could damage the network’s journalistic integrity, but top-shelf sex will make a man do crazy things (see recent Republican foibles). One character in the play accused “Wes,” of “…thinking with is dick.” I‘ve done that myself once or twice.
The story has two great plot twists, but I found the casting and acting to be uneven. It’s always a shock to see sub-par acting being performed at an established company like Playwrights Horizons.