Saturday, April 8, 2017
NO ONE IS COMING TO SAVE US By Stephanie Powell Watts
''Do we struggle through the world as it is, or do we choose our own lives? Even the ability to ask that question is a hard-won privilege for the characters in Stephanie Powell Watts’s skillful riff on “The Great Gatsby,” which revolves around a contemporary black family in a declining North Carolina town.
Which doesn’t mean that “No One Is Coming to Save Us” is some kind of Jay Z Gatsby fantasy. There are no parties up at J J Ferguson’s new place on Brushy Mountain Road. There’s hardly even any furniture, and definitely no soft rich heaps of beautiful shirts. J J doesn’t seem to care about those things. His dreams of Ava, the novel’s Daisy, aren’t wrapped up in a desire for fortune and status. No, what the virtually orphaned J J wants is family, which Ava has in the form of her mother, Sylvia, who takes on the Nick Carraway role even as she refuses to remain just an observer...''