Laura Bush Killed A Guy: At 17 years old, Laura Welch ran a stop sign in November 1963, colliding with another vehicle and killing the teen driver. Such mishaps don’t typically end up on “Family Guy,” but this one did since Laura Welch later wed George W. Bush and rose to the position of the first lady of the United States.
The title and plot of the solo production “Laura Bush Killed a Guy” at the Flea Theater are now based on the cartoon’s comedy.
Three brief segments make up Ian Allen’s comedy, each of which opens with Mrs. Bush (a very modest Lisa Hodsoll) bemoaning that, according to Google searches, her two most significant claims to fame are her recipe for Cowboy Cookies and that fatal night in Texas. (I helped myself to one of the free snacks at the movie for analytical rigor; it was excellent, even if the coconut-cowboy connection is still hazy.)
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The fact that Mrs. Bush casually states that the accident was a cover-up for an intentional murder in the first scene makes it evident that this will not be a typical bio-play. She claims to have been inebriated when the second portion begins, and the third time is a straightforward narrative of a driving error with tragic results.
Mrs. Bush blends fact and fantasy throughout the non-chronologically arranged program, which makes me think of the term “truthiness” that Stephen Colbert used to describe the Bush administration’s iffy relationship with reality.
For example, there are conflicting stories about how Laura Welch met her future husband. Was it in Midland, Texas, at a BBQ and then on a first date at a mini-golf course? Or was the infamous George W. Bush the rowdy neighbor she asked to quiet down in her Houston apartment building?
“I’d wonder whether everything everyone said was true,” Laura dreamily recalls, as if picturing a lovably frat-boyish Prince Charming. “He couldn’t keep a job. He was an alcoholic, a womanizer, and just generally wild.”
Although the BBQ was held at the Chateaux Dijon complex, it sounds much more fun. Additionally, it has a stronger connection to the true enigma at the center of Mr. Allen’s play, which John Vreeke skillfully directs: Laura Welch married a rapscallion, so what in the world did she see in him?
Mr. Bush was an unexpected soul mate for the self-described “moderately sexy librarian” in the program since he was a glib, hard-partying intellectual lightweight when they first met. Her one vice was smoking. However, every time Mrs. Bush mentions George, her grin fades, and a romantic haze obscures her gaze.
The fact that Mr. Allen struggles to connect the public and private worlds, despite bringing up several events that characterized the Bush administration, such as the 2000 election and September 11, is a significant problem. Additionally, the Bushes are portrayed as having little to no philosophy, which is undoubtedly untrue.
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However, “Laura Bush Killed a Guy” is a romantic comedy about two people finding atonement rather than a political satire: “I’m the girl that sadness made,” Mrs. Bush concludes. “And then there’s George.” This may be the only time a mention of the 43rd president could elicit an “Awwww.”
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