Closed 2h 25m
Invincible
Midtown E
78

Invincible NYC Reviews and Tickets

78%
(119 Reviews)
Positive
81%
Mixed
18%
Negative
1%
Members say
Funny, Great acting, Entertaining, Absorbing, Relevant

About the Show

The Original Theatre Company and Ghost Light Theatre Productions present this madcap comedy of manners in which class and culture collide in small-town England. Part of the annual Brits Off Broadway festival.

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Member Reviews (119)

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80
Clever, Funny, Relevant, Edgy, Raunchy

See it if Bickering middle class couple meets lower class couple and surprises ensue. Class evil + human foibles + farce. Some very funny moments.

Don't see it if A bit disjointed and confusing. It took some effort to figure out the significance of the neighbor's cat and the play's title.

67
Well intended, Great acting, Disappointing, Repetitive, Slow

See it if English class distinctions amuse you.

Don't see it if you are expecting an American style comedy. There are some funny moments but overall this is a depressing experience.

Critic Reviews (27)

June 18th, 2017

"A caustic comedy about country and class...Had it been staged a few years ago, it might have felt timely. Now its arguments are obvious at best...Despite a vein of Ayckbourn-esque melancholy and a nod toward state-of-the-nation seriousness, Betts and director Darcy keep surging past naturalism toward strident farce, then stumbling into tragedy. The production spells out what was already pretty intelligible and which recent elections have made glaringly evident."
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June 13th, 2017

"Under Darcy's sluggish direction, the ostensibly comedic first act mostly fizzles—despite strenuous efforts by the cast, especially Brookes as a garrulous oaf—and the much darker second act, which hinges on absent kids and a missing cat, is an overwrought bust. The characters reveal fears and disappointments that eat away at their souls, but it's hard to care about people who have been written as stereotypes. At the end one couple is completely broken, but the audience is merely bored."
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June 13th, 2017

“The only thing playwright Torben Betts forgot to include is humor. Neither director Stephen Darcy nor the cast supply it either…The problem with Betts's script isn't the presence of complications; it's their number and treatment…Darcy's direction does nothing to clarify matters…This inconsistency does the actors no favors. They play their parts with energy, but the result is an amplification of the script's contradictions and inanities.”
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June 14th, 2017

“This superbly written play has splendid direction by Stephen Darcy and features a stellar cast. ‘Invincible’ is a wholly entertaining yet emotive show that reminds us of why we love the theatre. Don't miss it…The cast of 'Invincible' delivers Torben Bett's wonderfully crafted dialogue with impeccable timing. There are laugh-out-loud scenes and some that are completely heartrending…This show should absolutely be on your summer must-see list.”
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June 14th, 2017

“Betts understands what ails his country, but his point is so broadly argued, and so stylistically wobbly, that it fails to land…The actors score intermittently…If Betts had worked more felicitously, ‘Invincible’ might have done for the English class divide what Lynn Nottage's 'Sweat' has done for the current state of American politics. Instead, it's all over the place, a stew of comedy, drama, and editorial commentary that never really coheres.”
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June 13th, 2017

“The play does a fine job of shedding light on how difficult it is for members of the middle class and the working class to find common ground…If there is one problem with the play, it is the abruptness of the transition from the silliness of Act I to the more complex character development that takes place in the second half. But the four cast members are pitch-perfect under Stephen Darcy's direction."
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June 23rd, 2017

“Betts' ‘Invincible’ has been compared to Alan Ayckbourn's work. Although there are similarities, particularly in Betts' ear for capturing the jargon of his characters and his feel for social class distinctions, Ayckbourn's plays are more delicately constructed and make their points - whether social or emotional - more cleverly than Betts. Even so, ‘Invincible’ - the title a football reference - is satisfying as both a comedy and a drama, breaking more than a few hearts.”
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June 16th, 2017

"This clever, laugh-inducing play provides plenty of comedic relief along with some deeper thoughts regarding class...The characters themselves are stereotypes...However, these stereotypes become more complex and the sitcom humor widens and deepens into something far more thought-provoking...Each of the actors succeeds in transitioning their character from a superficial comedic sketch to a more complex and emotionally dramatic performance."
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June 20th, 2017

“A glorious reminder that sharp theater is alive and kicking...'Invincible’ will make you laugh, break your heart and leave you gobsmacked…Four characters, each one a masterpiece of individuation...Dawn and Alan are two of the most flesh and blood characters I’ve ever encountered...It’s practically impossible to convey the vigor, enthusiasm and inspired comedy of Graeme Brookes. His Alan is a showstopper...Do see this one. It’s the bee’s knees.”
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June 14th, 2017

“Here are actors working so very hard and doing fine work, but they are impeded by an inadequate script and unimaginative direction. It’s like watching an athlete run up the down escalator over and over…Betts has written a play that tries to be too clever by half and is too long…These characters remain stereotypes and never become fully formed…Each of these actors is skilled at their craft and never wavers for an instant. In another play they would have been a pleasure to watch.”
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June 15th, 2017

"The dynamics of class and intellectual/educational differences paired with the neurotic and stressed-out liberals all add up to a surprisingly strong cocktail too tasty to say no to...The dynamics of loss and the pain of motherhood and parenthood in general, are all slowly exposed but so many loose ends are left dangling. The performances are exacting and etched in detail and depth."
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June 13th, 2017

"If a single play could be both laugh-out-loud funny and cry-out-loud sad at the same time it would be Torben Betts' fast-paced, high-energy, and consistently attention-grabbing 'Invincible'...It's also the rare play capable of handling multiple subjects and themes...The characters' exaggerated behavior is occasionally hilarious...Alan, as played...by the bearish Brooke, is especially memorable."
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B
June 13th, 2017

“An impressive play…The awkward encounter between the privileged hosts and their down-to-earth guests is a monumental clash of class and culture…The hilarious first act leads to darker moments in the second act…The characters are extremely vividly drawn and their problems resonate for us. The actors are all strong, especially Graeme Brookes, whose take on Alan is worth the price of admission…It’s a play that provides both lots of laughs and lots to think about.”
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June 14th, 2017

"An entertaining and incisive drama...The ease with which all is integrated not only stems from the savvy play text but on the four excellent actors who make the characters come vividly alive...There are relationship ramifications all around as the play intensifies. The four actors are terrific and keep us involved. With the Brits Off Broadway series one can generally count on such acting expertise."
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C
June 14th, 2017

“Betts has manipulated us cleverly to look at our own humanity and the humanity of those with class perspectives and behaviors precisely counter to our own...Darcy’s excellent direction and the tremendously affecting performances in this strong ensemble piece reveal ‘Invincible’ to be a complex, thought-provoking production which examines the best and worst of our prejudices and attitudes and the strength of human character required to be truly invincible in the face of loss.”
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June 13th, 2017

"'Invincible' is a terrific satire on leftist elitism that turns, quite suddenly, into affecting domestic drama. Though Mr. Betts follows an old and perhaps overused theatrical convention - a dinner party turned referendum on the relationships of those present - the humor is sharp and relentless, and the characters so clearly drawn, that it hardly matters."
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R
June 14th, 2017

"'Invincible' is a story that explores our views and expectations of others in the current political dynamic, utilizing a British culture clash. Amazingly, 'Invincible' does this with a large dose of humor, running from oddly quaint and British to dark humor that is jet black. And the four excellent actors deliver the show with honesty and surprising clarity."
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June 19th, 2017

"Betts’s play 'Invincible' is messy, heavy-handed and pandering, turning everything that Ayckbourn does so effortlessly in his class-conscious plays into fodder for cheap easy laughs...What in Ayckbourn are endearing eccentrics are in Betts’s hands easily manipulated chess pieces...Director Stephen Darcy makes it all go by in a whirlwind, and his expert cast both gets laughs and finds the poignance missing from Betts’s script."
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June 14th, 2017

"A wonderfully entertaining first act...It is in the second act that everything comes together and that all the loose ends are tied up...By play’s end, we have also re-discovered deeper truths...Elizabeth Boag does an excellent job of revealing the dreams and aspirations that the lower-class poorly educated Dawn still harbors in her soul. And Alastair Whatley does a similarly fine job in exhibiting Oliver’s growth over time."
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W
June 17th, 2017

"In a hilarious first act, it seems the two families couldn’t be more different...As events unfold we find that they have for more in common than they would like. There are many great moments in 'Invincible,' but in particular Betts does a wonderful job of connecting his layered, complex, damaged characters on multiple levels in unexpected ways. Each character is an individual and every performance is pitch-perfect...A rare treat, a lovely, funny, smart and poignant piece of theater."
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June 13th, 2017

“The opening sequence of ‘Invincible’ has exuberance and humor and the quirky vivid mannerisms of the characters/actors hold our attention. But in its subsequent two scenes, the play expands into dangerous territory, becoming baldly obvious, its clever lampooning overwhelmed by clichéd pathos. The mix of writing and acting styles here—naturalism versus theatricality—is interesting but finally distracting and off-putting.”
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T
April 8th, 2016
For a previous production

"Some issues do best as satirical or farcical comedies...Others sit less easily with the comic muse...Torben Betts, in this terrific play, is comfortable handling both, and does so with almost total success...Brookes’ performance is splendid, nuanced, genuine...The fate of Alan’s beloved cat becomes both comic and profoundly sad...As a portrait of flawed people in a Britain divided by class and also at war, it becomes genuinely beautiful as well as sharply perceptive...Catch!"
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April 11th, 2016
For a previous production

"A sharply observed bittersweet comedy about class...The first act lulls you into a false sense of security, with obvious laughter lines, but the comedy becomes darker in the second act and its characters reveal themselves to be flawed...Betts’ perceptive dialogue bristles with dark humor...Bowker gives a strong and emotive performance...The few moments that Brookes lets his guard down are incredibly moving, albeit fleeting...Simply superb."
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April 7th, 2016
For a previous production

"At the beginning, the characters are so very stereotypical that they don’t seem real at all, but gradually their inner selves are revealed...Not an easy play as speech is very rapid and often one is speaking on top of another as they argue out their case with anger rising...Very well acted...Smartly directed...Interesting and amusing but not wildly funny, although many in the audience would disagree with me."
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April 20th, 2016
For a previous production

"Entertaining, thought-provoking and has a heart...The dialogue is sharp and fires across the stage at the speed of bullets from a machine gun. As a result, the pace of this bittersweet comedy never flags...Torben Betts, the director, and the cast have invested a lot in these characters and have resisted turning them into caricatures. They have made them into real people who you care about."
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April 6th, 2016
For a previous production

"Betts’ superbly crafted play shines the spotlight on the north-south divide, stereotypes and political correctness. From laugh-out-loud moments to tragic revelations, this tightly-choreographed production has it all–the pendulum swing of emotions keeping the audience guessing to the very last...Refreshing, original and above all, highly entertaining, this is a bold statement from an emerging writing talent, and another fine production from the Original Theatre Company to boot."
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April 6th, 2016
For a previous production

"Not exactly laugh out loud perhaps, but happily providing us with a continuous round of chuckles and a darker critique as relationships come under strain...A cast of four have a lot to do to keep us amused for two hours, but Bowker as Emily, Whatley as Oliver and Bennett as Dawn all give us good measure, although for me, Brookes as Alan held centre stage...Congratulations, too, to Christopher Harper, the director, for keeping up the pace and giving us such an enjoyable evening."
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