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At WaterTower Theatre, Good People Pits Haves against Have-Nots

Jessica Cavanagh, James Crawford and JuNene K. in WaterTower’s Good People.
Jessica Cavanagh, James Crawford and JuNene K. in WaterTower’s Good People.
Karen Almond

David Lindsay-Abaire's two-act dramedy Good People at WaterTower Theatre argues both sides of the same argument. Are good choices or good luck the reason why some people succeed and others don't? Struggling South Boston single mom Margie (marvelous Jessica Cavanagh), desperate for work, begs old high school boyfriend Mike (James Crawford), now a wealthy doctor, for a job. He tries to brush her off, but when she shows up for a dinner party at his ritzy home, with his professor-wife (JuNene K.) as hostess, some bitter old home truths are revealed. He got lucky in life, she says. She made bad choices, he replies. Back and forth they go.

Director René Moreno doesn't let the players push the melodrama too much. Performances are sharp and economical. Everybody nails the Southie accents fine.

Then, just when Margie has uttered the perfect last line of the play, Good People goes one extra inning, requiring a long scenery change and an unnecessary epilogue. Given the subject matter, the additional scene feels like enforced, unpaid overtime.


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