Wrong Mountain By David Hirson
By the time this goes to press, David Hirson's Wrong Mountain, the only new nonmusical to open on Broadway this season, will already be under tremendous pressure to close. This is sad, not only because my expectations were extremely high for this second play by the author of the brave, smartly wacky and ill-fated La Bęte, but also because the fault is clearly Hirson's this time. That deprives me of the pleasure of composing a jeremiad about the guardians of middlebrow normalcy who still pose as critics in our dailies and who sneered La Bęte into financial oblivion in 1991 after 24 performances. Nine years ago, one couldn't help admiring the chutzpah of Hirson and company in bringing directly to Broadway a play of ideas not trivialized and speciously packaged like Peter Shaffer's?set in 17th-century France and written in heroic couplets, no less. Today, with a nonrhyming prose drama whose contemporary setting is only half-conceived, the choice of Broadway seems foolhardy and rash.