Act Two is set seven years later. An amateur theater group has taken that Simpson’s episode and turned it into a play, which they rehearse by candlelight since there’s no electricity. The play includes this musical number where the survivors get nostalgic about the old days, like taking a road trip in the family car.
Act Three takes place 75 years into the future. A new generation of actors is doing the same “Simpsons” episode. But the show has evolved in spooky ways, becoming a legend about civilization’s fall. The perky tune about “Driving Through the American West” has become something much darker.
It has now become a ritual interpreting the day that technology collapsed, and cities perished – the way we recall the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 or the San Francisco Earthquake of 1906.
Tales of big, deadly disasters exert a tidal pull on the human imagination. And that’s what this futuristic, unconventional show is about. Is it a comedy, or a tragedy?
The performances are excellent, and beautifully coordinated by Capital Stage’s new artistic director Michael Stevenson.