Already closed | 1h 25m | Upper W Side

The Oregon Trail

From 56 member  reviews
Members say: Funny, Clever, Quirky, Entertaining, Great acting

About the show

Fault Line Theatre presents a play that contrasts the trials of an adolescent girl growing up in the late '90s with her 19th-century video game counterpart. More…

It’s 1997. Alone in her computer lab, 13-year-old Jane escapes from the awkward throes of puberty by virtually jumping in a covered wagon headed west on "The Oregon Trail." Under the guidance of the all-powerful Voice of the Game, we watch "Then Jane" navigate the perils of 1850s frontier life, while '90s Jane navigates the different but all-too-real dangers of high school, college, and, eventually, adulthood. Jane soon finds herself in her 20s, unemployed and battling an undefinable lifelong sadness she cannot name, even as “Then Jane” continues to face the tribulations of the trail. With nearly two centuries between them, both Janes face hardships that seem impossible to overcome—until they find one another.

Member Reviews (56)


Funny, Clever, Quirky, Entertaining, Great acting
Avg Score

During previews
Clever, Entertaining, Interesting

See it if You want to see an interesting storyline and staging...decent Performers!

Don't see it if You're expecting a great play.

During previews
Ambitious, Delightful, Great acting, Quirky, Refreshing

See it if you enjoy stories of the everyday trials of sometimes-frustrating characters. Healthy doses of dry humor and emotional growth.

Don't see it if you prefer spectacle or clean cut endings or explanations. You don't like split stories.

During previews
Quirky, Funny, Cliched, Entertaining, Indulgent

See it if you'd enjoy seeing the step-by-step decision-making of the classic Oregon Trail game applied to life. You don't mind depression as top plot.

Don't see it if you'd be turned off by a theater that is basically falling apart, or if plots in different eras converging à la The Lake House disturb you.

During previews
Delightful, Entertaining, Funny, Great acting, Resonant

See it if You have ever felt lost, and need a good laugh. See it especially if you are in your 20's or 30s- it is delightfully nostalgic.

Don't see it if You feel like you can't connect to story about someone feeling lost. Or if you don't like split story lines.

During previews
Clever, Funny, Delightful, Entertaining, Relevant

See it if You like weird comedy with a nostalgia feel that also proves touching. Filled with females being funny watching it was so much fun.

Don't see it if You don't like comedies.

During previews
Great acting, Funny, Intelligent, Profound, Resonant

See it if 30 hit you like a ton of bricks and you want to see a world where 90s video games and 2017's economy have a dialogue.

Don't see it if you prefer something familiar or conventional

January 22nd, 2017
"A feisty, formally inventive comedy...Ms. Brunstetter has scripted earlier plays...'The Oregon Trail' is a great improvement, particularly in its nifty first half-hour. In Ms. Vaynberg’s expressive hands, contemporary Jane’s sly humor and cringing embarrassment feel wonderfully real and raw, hor...
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January 26th, 2017
“A sour, low-stakes comedy…Beyond scratching a specific nostalgic itch, the play offers few rewards…Jane's not really functioning, yet throughout the show's 90 minutes of self-destruction and indulgent passivity, neither she nor her doctor sister brings up therapy or medication. Whether Brunstett...
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January 22nd, 2017
"The subject is heady, and for a good chunk of the play, 'The Oregon Trail' delivers both a nuanced portrait of depression and a gently humanized vision of a game where, for the most part, the main goal was to kill weary travelers from typhoid...Yet 'The Oregon Trail' also never feels as fully fl...
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February 1st, 2017
"Depression is not an easy state to dramatize, and, in any case, Jane comes off as a pill—whiny, narcissistic, a perpetual victim...The fact remains that Jane's depression is presented without any insight and we are led to believe that her sufferings are equal to those of Then Jane, a notion that...
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