Yesterday a polarizing trailer dropped for a polarizing musical: Dear Evan Hansen. Ben Platt was mocked for reprising the teen role he originated in 2015. But there’s more to analyze in the trailer.
- It reveals all the major plot points.
- It features the eight principal characters.
- It offers a glimpse of some new characters.
- It features one song, “You Will Be Found,” to confirm that this a musical.
- The tone is earnest, with no hint of the show’s dark comedy.
- It does NOT include any of the new plot points from the 2018 novelization.
Musical adaptations will always be controversial. Some want the original cast and plot on stage. Others want sweeping changes. I prefer professional recordings of stage shows. Others cannot connect to those. I decided to chart Rotten Tomatoes scores for musicals from the last two decades.
The Rotten Tomatoes ratings don’t reflect my own feelings. I hated Beauty and the Beast and Sweeney Todd. I enjoyed Hello Again and The Last Five Years. But the list reminds me that Broadway casting is rare and risky.
What are your thoughts on the trailer? Will Dear Evan Hansen’s age inappropriate casting send it the way of Rent?