Thursday, November 20, 2008

Mae West: Wicked

MAE WEST could not have been thrilled during November 1927. The New York Times planted a bitter raspberry with their review of her latest play (published on Saturday the 5th of November 1927). Written by Mae West, age 34, and her long-time collaborator, the production opened on Friday evening 4 November 1927 — — and lasted for merely nineteen performances. Mae West appeared in a bathing suit, a sight which brought out the spite and malice in her longtime detractors. In other words, this project was a turkey that never made it as far as Thanksgiving.
• • Mae West Wins a Bathing Beauty Contest in Her New Play.
• • Although it is milder than "Sex" and will probably not cause Mr. Banton and the gendarmes to come on the run, Mae West's newest contribution to dramatic art, staged last night at Daly's Sixty-third Street Theatre, will doubtless stand as the low point of the theatrical season of 1927-28.
• • "The Wicked Age" is the name Miss West has given it, and according to its own admission it is a satirical comedy, in which case "Bringing Up Father" is simply mordant and biting irony. [Ouch!]
• • Dragging through the evening until nearly midnight, "The Wicked Age" seemed at its first New York performance incredible cheap and vulgar trash, with only such minor amusement as was to be derived from watching the exhibitionistic antics of Miss West as a faintly redeeming feature.
• • The bathing beauty contest as practiced along the Jersey Coast was the pressing sociological matter upon which the author-actress had her say.
• • This permitted her to introduce a contest scene in the second act in which, a blithe spirit of the younger generation, she captured first honors. The third act, up to 11:35, was devoted to . . .
— — Excerpt: — —
• • Drama Review: "The Wicked Age" Tame
• • Published in: The New York Times
• • Published on: 5 November 1927 — — Saturday
• • Come up and see Mae every day online:

• • Photo:
• • Mae West • • 1927
• •

Mae West.

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