Already closed | 2h 45m | Upper W Side

The Great Society

From 278 member  reviews
Members say: Great acting, Ambitious, Absorbing, Intelligent, Relevant

About the show

Emmy winner Brian Cox stars as Lyndon B. Johnson in this companion piece to the Tony-winning "All The Way," which depicts the tumultuous times that led to the conclusion of the Johnson presidency. More…

From the show:

From the producer, writer, and director of the Tony Award®-winning Broadway production, All The Way, comes a thrilling new play about the LBJ legacy: The Great Society. Presented at the Vivian Beaumont Theater at Lincoln Center, this striking production features a brilliant cast portraying over fifty characters, including Emmy® and Olivier Award winner Brian Cox (“Succession,” King Lear with the Royal Shakespeare Company) as LBJ, Tony nominee Marc Kudisch (“Billions,” A Minister’s Wife at LCT) as Richard J. Daley, Grantham Coleman (Much Ado About Nothing at The Public) as Martin Luther King Jr., and Tony nominee Richard Thomas (The Little Foxes) as Hubert Humphrey.

Member Reviews (278)


Great acting, Ambitious, Absorbing, Intelligent, Relevant

Disappointing, Relevant, Thought-provoking, Absorbing

See it if History buffs and those who care about about social welfare policy (why we are where we are) will appreciate this. Strong ensemble.

Don't see it if You loved Bryan Cranston in All the Way - Brian Cox blew enough lines to be distracting.

Also Casting was odd - part of LBJ's power was his physical size so having ... Read more Read less

Entertaining, Enchanting, Clever, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if You enjoy full throated historical drama which is alive and confusing as its era. The actors are very good especially Cox and Pinkham. Go!

Don't see it if If you saw LBJ and want Bryan Cranston back, want a linear narrative which fully explains the LBJ era, or find politics and power boring.

Great staging, Ambitious, Relevant

See it if you are fascinated by this period in American history (60s). you enjoy seeing historical figures treated as (mostly) multidimensional.

Don't see it if you find vignettes of different moments confusing or frustrating. you want perfect accents.


See it if A powerful history lesson on how we made America almost great, again.

Don't see it if History and mostly arguing defeat you

Great acting

See it if You enjoy a great cast led by Brian Cox portray an important period in American history

Don't see it if You are looking for a nuanced portrayal of Johnson and the other political participants of that time

Also Maybe I've read too many of Robert Caro's books on Johnson and his tim... Read more Read less

Thought-provoking, Entertaining, Great acting, Ambitious, Absorbing

See it if you like plays that deal with and treat political figures as well as our all too recent political past that still resonates today.

Don't see it if you have little interest in or connection to the Lyndon Johnson presidency, the political and social upheavals of that time, quick scenes.

Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Disappointing

See it if The play is well-acted and makes you more curious to delve into history. Sparked a lot of conversation after the show.

Don't see it if I was anticipating the follow up to All the Way for a few years now. This didn’t deliver.

Masterful, Absorbing, Intense, Intelligent, Great acting

See it if You are a history nerd, are interested in seeing some phenomenal monologues,or you want to see some clever staging.

Don't see it if You need to see action to understand it (not as much staging re. Vietnam as Civil Rights) or lack basic historical background about the era.

Also I was kind of dissapointed that after the fuss made over Bobby Kennedy... Read more Read less

Relevant, Great writing, Great staging, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if You are interested in American politics, equality, political activism.

Don't see it if You have no interest in things that matter in life. You don’t like Great acting.

Uneven, Ambitious, Great acting, Clever, Absorbing

See it if Brian Cox is a powerhouse in this play. It is a must see performance. The play itself, staging, and characters had a unique approach

Don't see it if Not interested in that specific period of time. The play was a bit all over the place, but the time went by quickly.

Resonant, Intelligent

See it if you like history and policy. Interesting staging, and the era is presented in ways that echo the present. A bit uneven.

Don't see it if You're looking for something light and fluffy.

Riveting, Profound, Intelligent, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you enjoy high level political drama. Great cast, many who play multiply roles. Interesting use of stage & video background.

Don't see it if you do not political shows with powerful dramatization of our history from 1965-1968.

Also At this time in our history, it is important to see & hear our past le... Read more Read less

Edgy, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if you like shows about real events. If you remember your history in the era of Lyndon Johnson, it will take you right back to that decade.

Don't see it if if you want a comedy or a show which is light-hearted or you are not interested in remembering the Vietnam War and the peace marches.

Plodding, Great staging, Disappointing

See it if You want a refresher course on LBJ’s administration and major events of that era. And if you’re willing to give it 2 1/2 hours

Don't see it if You prefer a play which has something new to say

Also Great Society was perfectly ok, nothing more. It tells the story but a... Read more Read less

Historical, Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Great acting, Absorbing

See it if You’re interested in a history play about the life and times of LBJ. Willingness to sit for three hours and enjoy a live action documentary.

Don't see it if You can’t endure long shows, or have no interest in history or LBJ.

Relevant, Intelligent, Absorbing

See it if If you want to learn about LBJ’s time as POTUS and the politics, Vietnam War, domestic issues surrounding his term in office.

Don't see it if You aren’t crazy about serious dramatic productions.

Overstuffed, Ambitious, Slow, Thought-provoking, Relevant

See it if are interested in the character of Lyndon Johnson as he interacts with the significant figures and events of that pivotal era.

Don't see it if are bothered by Johnson's incessant yelling and also would prefer a deeper focus, rather than packing in every event of the time.

Slow, Intelligent, Great acting

See it if You want to learn about the 1965-1968 period in US history

Don't see it if You want to see a light-and-breezy show

Thought-provoking, Relevant, Great staging, Entertaining, Dizzying

See it if You like history, great actors, constant action, enjoy the R. Caro books, & remember or want to learn about the turbulent era of LBJ.

Don't see it if You do not like history shows, don't like shows with a lot of moving parts, do not want to see the connection of the past with the present!

Great staging, Great writing, Great acting, Slow

See it if You were alive during the era of LBJ's presidency or are interested in that era of history.

Don't see it if you are easily bored or not interested in the topic of the play.

Resonant, Relevant, Great staging, Great acting, Ambitious

See it if You like great performances about historical events and politicians that are all too relevant today.

Don't see it if You want a feel good or flashy night out.

Relevant, Thought-provoking, Intelligent, Absorbing, Ambitious

See it if You are a history buff, you saw "All the Way", you are interested in difficult and raw US history. Deals w very real and relevant topics.

Don't see it if You just want to sit back and be entertained. This show requires your full attention.

Intense, Cliched, Great staging

See it if Are interested in the history and time period

Don't see it if You are looking for a novel approach

Thought-provoking, Profound, Must see, Intense

See it if An interesting reflection on LBJ’s Presidency and what he wanted to accomplish vs what he could. See if you enjoy a reflection on history.

Don't see it if You don’t enjoy history.

Great writing, Absorbing, Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Relevant

See it if For a better idea of how “the sausage is made” in politics; to see behind the scenes decisions on civil rights and Vietnam involvement.

Don't see it if You want a rollicking fun production.

October 1st, 2019
"In ‘The Great Society,’ Another Presidential Nightmare: Brian Cox plays Lyndon B. Johnson at the height of his powers, when history decided to bring him down."
read more
October 1st, 2019
3/5 Stars "Brian Cox plays a weakened LBJ in Robert Schenkkan's Broadway sequel to 'All the Way'"
read more
October 1st, 2019
"The Great-Man Theory of 'The Great Society'"
read more
October 1st, 2019
"Brian Cox stars as Lyndon Baines Johnson in the continuation of playwright Robert Schenkkan's sprawling account of the tumultuous 36th U.S. presidency that began with 'All the Way.'"
read more

Related content