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Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth

Members say: Funny, Entertaining, Quirky, Cliched, Clever

About the show

The Playwright's Realm presents this world premiere comedy about conception and deep-space travel.

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Friends William and Betsy haven't seen each other since high school. They've both followed their dreams, but something is missing: his all-consuming job at NASA doesn't leave time for a family, and she can't bear another unsuccessful round of IVF with her partner Shoshanna. When Betsy texts William out the blue and asks him to be her sperm donor, both friends are forced to make decisions that will shape the rest of their lives. This new comedy explores a different sort of coming of age - when dreams give way to plans, and idealism becomes realism.

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See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews


"Nguyen wants the play to be grounded in life experience, but neither the work itself nor the production earn the serious emotions that he and director Carroll are trying to elicit...A play in the style of a traditional television sitcom, one that relies too heavily on jokes...All of the performances feel too false to convey the necessary humanity needed in order to make the final scenes work...Unlike her costars, Oguma is able to create a wholly original performance that is oddly believable." Full Review

Lighting & Sound America

"An apparently sincere attempt at dealing with a modern phenomenon, it consistently relies on lame gags and tired tropes to make its points...It's a tired sex-farce idea, and it hits the trifecta, being awkwardly written, directed, and performed...Under the direction of Jade King Carroll, the actors skate across the surface of the dialogue, playing for laughs that aren't there and declining to probe the characters' deeper feelings." Full Review

The New York Times

"Ambitious and labored...Nguyen has a fine concept and a genuine sweetness to his writing...The characters feel like rough sketches rather than people and despite a few nicely observed moments, they act in ways that have less to do with human behavior than with Nguyen setting up jokes and set pieces...When the stage realism fails, there are enjoyably surreal interludes, courtesy of a creature called the Farthest Explorer...Played with cheery wonder by the adorable Olivia Oguma." Full Review

Theatre's Leiter Side

"Written, acted, and directed…for broad farcical effects - there was…laughter…even at the most innocuous comments - but, eventually, things settle down...'Hello, From the Children of Planet Earth' is the kind of play in which…men have their private conversations while defecating in adjoining stalls…, or in which the sperm donor, given a thick stack of porn…, chooses…to masturbate to a copy of 'Little Women'...These and other puerile choices make it difficult to take anything seriously." Full Review

Talkin' Broadway

"An uneven mix of sitcom humor and a tender-hearted examination of love, friendship, and hope...Nguyen shows some real strengths whenever he touches on the emotional elements of the story...But none of this is explored adequately...The playwright falls down the rabbit hole into the world of television comedy and bromance movies...The actors and director King-Carroll do their best with the underwritten roles." Full Review

Village Voice

"A sitcom-y space drama about family-making and personal risk...Clunky but sweet, Nguyen's piece is an invitation to value impossible odysseys, no matter where they might end...An odd mixture of thudding cliché and engaging ode to personal growth...The play's central comparison is between a fetus and a space probe...Won't launch you on a journey to wildly unknown terrain, but he'll lead you onto familiar ground with compassionate humor." Full Review

Diandra Reviews it All

"A sweet look into the ups and down of being human and making one...A play that gives hope in humanity...Your heart grows bigger and bigger for these characters because you understand them...Funny, kind, and plays like a living film...Oguma (Farthest Explorer) steals the show...Surprisingly 'Oprah-esque' in its desire to reach and elevate audience's hearts...A celebration of people's resilience to not simply fight against those that oppose them, but to love those that support them." Full Review


"Nguyen's poetically sly sensibility comes through loud and clear. When it comes to the human characters, though...we have a problem...Sitcom-style characterization and banter...None of the capable quartet makes much of an impression. Their performances all operate within the same basic bandwith. Carroll's staging doesn't help them find room...Oguma, this anthropomorphized Voyager I, becomes the production's most recognizably human creation." Full Review

See: Critics' Reviews | Members' Reviews

Goodbye from frustrated audience

See it if you are under 30 and vibe with the silliness on stage.

Don't see it if you need serious drama at this venue. Botched mashup of styles: sitcom humor and earnest LGBTQ love. After an hour, it was tiresome.

Also Olivia Oguma is terrific as the alien creature. She had a better handl... Read more Read less

Indulgent, Confusing, Slow, Dull, Cute guy

See it if you're really into people talking about getting pregnant and outer space jargon.

Don't see it if you have a choice. or you don't like babies, gays, or space.

Relevant, Confusing, Interesting, wierd

See it if you want to see a play about Lesbians trying to find a surrogate to have a baby with tied into space exploration & the future of humans.

Don't see it if you feel like you have seen this subject manner done many times in other plays and movies.

Predictable, Game cast, Heavyhanded, by-the-book playwrighting, Both comedy (sitcom) & drama (lifetime tv) contrived

See it if you want to support a venturesome company taking a chance on a new(ish) playwright; don't expect a lot in the way of depth or originality

Don't see it if the thought of a cute, talking Voyager II space probe as a character makes you cringe; stereotypes (butch dyke, oafish straight guy) offend

Also It's unfortunate that most of the material (set in 2012 to align with ... Read more Read less

Depressing, Slow, Confused, Stereotypical

See it if You've ever wanted to see a show about lesbian pregnancy AND space exploration.

Don't see it if You are offended by gay storylines.

Clever, Intelligent, Entertaining

See it if enjoy mixing disparate topics together, done well and written well

Don't see it if wish for depth into the topics

Funny, Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Cliched

See it if you might like a 90 minute show that parallels the creation of a baby with the creation of the universe. Occasionally funny and relevant.

Don't see it if you're looking for something profound or are averse to sexual themes and language. It's a cute show, but don't go in with high expectations.

Thought-provoking, Quirky

See it if you enjoy bold new work from a promising emerging playwright.

Don't see it if you need a dramaturgically sound bold as the concept of the play is, the structure and writing sometimes fails the production.

Funny, Intelligent, Thought-provoking, Relevant, Indulgent

See it if You're interested in a couple's struggles to conceive

Don't see it if The question of whether to have children doesn't interest you

Also The framing device of Voyager 1 talking to the audience was severely m... Read more Read less

Quirky, Indulgent, Banal, Excruciating, Slow

See it if You like vulgarity and superficial phony profundity.

Don't see it if You want to see real characters that make sense

Banal, Disappointing, Excruciating, Cliched, Slow

See it if You like lots of juvenile, clichéd mentions of sex acts from supposedly well-educated people in their mid-thirties.

Don't see it if You expect a thoughtful play featuring supposedly intelligent characters facing thwarted hopes.

Clever, Quirky

See it if One-act dramedy focuses on lesbian couple relying on childhood friend for donor IVF with clever reproductive correlation to space program.

Don't see it if Makes light of infertility issues with multiple "Star Wars" references. A few hostile remarks from threatened partner lobbed at male friend.

Funny, Ambitious, Quirky, Entertaining, Fluffy

See it if You wanted to see a talented multi-ethnic cast in a charming and mostly light-hearted comedy-drama

Don't see it if you like a big message with your shows or are looking for a straight comedy or drama

Absorbing, Ambitious, Clever, Entertaining

See it if You like light comedies that make you think a little too. It’s a clever concept with pretty good follow through.

Don't see it if You’re bothered by silly jokes or plays that are good but with some flaws. The dialogue towards the end could use a little work.

Absorbing, Intelligent, Refreshing

See it if You like intellgent, contemporary works that have a si-fi quality

Don't see it if You don’t like fanciful elements mixed in with straightforward storylines

Funny, Cliched, Entertaining, Great staging

See it if you're in the mood for a mostly-funny (though sometimes broad) comedy (sort of) that also has moments of tenderness, sorrow, and heart

Don't see it if you don't want sometimes-childish humor, you don't want to see a play about struggles with infertility

Also I really liked the set/staging of this, and found the dual storyline a... Read more Read less

Thought-provoking, Disappointing, Slow

See it if you want to see a show that isn’t too thought-provoking.

Don't see it if you are expecting it to be a show about space

Ambitious, Clever, Intelligent, Thought-provoking

See it if Your seeking a different view of how people come together and drift apart.

Don't see it if you're uninterested in the struggles of friendship and community

During previews
Funny, Great acting, Entertaining

See it if you are looking for an entertaining take on a sperm donor story.

Don't see it if you are looking for a straightforward comedy or a searing drama. It oddly teeters between the two. Wonderfully staged and acted.

During previews
Ambitious, Thought-provoking, Disappointing

See it if You won't mind a script with good moments that needs a lot more work. There's something interesting here, the play just hasn't found it yet.

Don't see it if Strange and unproductive acting/directing choices bother you. The delivery was so off on much of this.

During previews
Entertaining, Thoughtful concept, Well acted although characters one dimensional

See it if The alignment of the Big Bang with the personal desire for a child is a good idea, just seems a bit influenced by Judd Apatow: characters...

Don't see it if out of a rom-com. Likable, emotionally accessible, needs to dig deeper into characters & not strive for laughs. Enjoyable 90 minutes.

During previews
Funny, Great acting, Cute

See it if You want a play that's acted well, filled with lovable characters and handles its subject with creativity and tact.

Don't see it if You're bothered by a script that can sometimes be a little sitcommy.

During previews
Clever, Great acting, Quirky, Romantic, Great writing

See it if If like seeing off -the-wall comedies. It's a talented cast that takes you on a planetary adventure

Don't see it if If you don't enjoy seeing plays about gay romance and relationships.

During previews
Disappointing, Sitcom-y, Half-baked, Unspecific

See it if you enjoy average sitcoms.

Don't see it if you expect a show with this premise to have something to say about it (they just use it as a jumping off point for bad jokes and melodrama).

During previews
Great staging

See it if You like interwoven stories that pull together.

Don't see it if You want an evenly paced show. (It could use cutting 30 min)

Cast & Creatives (12)