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We Bombed in New Haven

de Joseph Heller

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Joseph Heller uses the catchet arising from Catch-22 to assemble a play about a fictional war crime which leads to a serious condemnation of the vietnam era's military bureaucratic processes...well intentioned, but not good theatre. ( )
  DinadansFriend | May 20, 2019 |
The author of Catch-22 takes on war once again in this unhinged comedy of war time. From bombing Constantinople (while recognizing it no longer exists) to wiping out Minnesota, the characters learn the downsides of war (death) while playing basketball and ribbing each other about who is the better actor. In a style Brecht would appreciate, the characters never let you forget you are watching a play by frequently stepping out of character and complaining about their lines, quoting Henry V, and just in general rebelling against not only the war but the play itself. A worthwhile read, but probably much more fun to watch. ( )
  Devil_llama | Sep 20, 2015 |
I read this play one night while relaxing within the aisles of Wal-Mart a few weeks ago. And that's apparently all I wrote when I started this review four months ago.

Normally, I go around spreading that "It's just like, an opinion, man" sort of philosophy, accepting that we all indeed have differing tastes, but that previous reviewer is downright a fucking lying son of a bitch. Once again--sigh--Heller delivers a most mediocre of the mediocre story, attempting to follow and copy the success of Catch-22 in play form (which he also did another time by literally adapting Catch-22 into a drama, and as could be expected: it sucked) by featuring a story about war, this time...Vietnam!, and focusing on the absurdity of it all. Again. Except not as good.

I'd say the biggest fault of this play, and it seriously took me until the halfway point to realise what bothered me was part of the point, the main themes of the...uh, play, was the self-consciousness of it., a character just has to reference the audience, and that nothing is real. Alright, being honest, being 4 months after I read the play, with roughly 50 books between that time and this morning at 2:47 a.m., I can't actually remember the play too well. Let's see, the entire thing took place in a couple of offices, discussing going off for way, occasionally going off and coming back 5 seconds later with a character dead--reminder: take everything I'm saying here as only a possibility; with 50 books between us, this all might be a lie--, maybe two, and I also remember the hero of sorts fighting to keep his son out of the war, who went from being a baby to an eligible boy in 5 minutes.

The self-referential gags inserted within every joke that actually had potential kinda ruined it in the end. It's not bad by any means, but it's nothing special either. It...tries too hard; Heller takes his jokes simply too far. I would guess I giggled softly maybe two times, and smiled to myself...ohhh, five times max. A lot of that bullshit "internal" "Ohthat'salmostkindaclever" smiling went on.

Ignore this play, and in fact, ignore everything ever written by Joseph Heller that is not called Catch-22, unless, that is, you actually find this somewhere, as it's hard as the dickens to come by (for my reaction upon finding this book for a dollar, see my review for The Ninth Configuration).

F.V.: 5.5/10

[36, now 39.] ( )
6 vota tootstorm | Apr 19, 2008 |
good anti-war fiction. really gets to the absurdity of war. ( )
  sadiebooks | Jul 19, 2007 |
  kutheatre | Jun 4, 2015 |
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