Chaos Attraction

Watching Hamilton

2016-12-10, 5:35 a.m.

So, I finally saw Hamilton!

Wait, you’re thinking, this girl’s not an East Coaster with a billion bucks--how’d she do that? Answer: someone managed to sneak a camera into Hamilton awhile back and put a pretty decent recording of it on YouTube, which took several days for the lawyers to notice. It apparently has all the original regulars in it (I think only small parts had substitutes) to boot. And while the lawyers took awhile to notice, I got to watch it.

I want to thank the hell out of that anonymous person for recording and posting it* because it was up during my week o’ hell and that actually gave me something to live for to watch it that week.

* look, if I could reasonably see it any other way, I would, but I can’t (so missed out on trying to get SF tickets), and these days folks will find a way if there isn’t a reasonable/legal way.

Anyway, I want to attempt to do some catchup entries for the days I missed, so I thought I’d write up what it’s like to watch it as opposed to listening to the soundtrack for months on end straight.

* I’m not used to hearing laughing during certain lines, such as “You punched the bursar?”
* Burr uses hand gestures to indicate “Talk LESS. Smile MORE.”
* The set changes are pretty quick and subtle. You blink and you’re all,”oh, wait, there’s a bar!”
* LMM kinda acts out King George’s “spending spree.”
* There’s a lot of manly squatting in the bar scene.
* Mulligan flaunts his leg in a manly squatting fashion on the bench on “I think your pants look hot.”
* They start throwing furniture around a bit. Hope nobody drops it!
* I’m amused at how much Peggy gets yanked about and acts like a 12-year-old. That actress does get one of the biggest switches between acts.
* Angelica reads while she walks.
* Eliza is doing a smug head-bob during “You want a revelation? I want a revelation!”
* That turn table is all kinds of excellent. I wonder how the hell community theaters will do without in 10 years when the kids can put this on in high school, or whenever that happens.
* Didn’t realize that Samuel Seabury was some kind of preacher?
* Mulligan is behind Hamilton, egging him on like a boxing manager.
* They’re having a bit of a shoving match on a box.
* A MESSAGE FROM THE KING! My, does he get smirky/angry/glare-y. And then he busts out into a shoulder twitch with his giant cape on. Wait, I think someone randomly got killed at the end of that song?!
* Peggy definitely gets to be on stage more than you’d think from the soundtrack alone.
* Lin changes coats when he changes roles: brown for student, blue as a soldier, green as a finance guy, black for death.
* I think I was expecting more of a reaction from Burr on “Close the door on your way out” than I saw.
* They show Hamilton kissing Angelica’s hand and her staring thoughtfully before “Helpless” busts out.”
* Oh, look, all the general cast ladies have skirts on now! So much pretty swirly!
* The dancing in “Helpless” is both lovely and romantic and slightly dirty.
* The girls are all sitting on a bench while the stage revolves and they wait for Hamilton to talk to her their dad.
* LMM does a bit of dirty knee dancing before Phillip Schuyler comes up to him again.
* “Angelica tried to take a bite of me!” --Eliza looks over in a hurry at that one.
* Mulligan is the flower boy in the wedding.
* Angelica draws Peggy in on “from your sister, Angelica” for the toast. Nice of her.
* The “rewind” is super cool.
* Hamilton apparently cock-blocked the Marquis trying to swoop in!?
* It’s kind of odd that during Angelica’s monologue after their meeting, they’re showing all the other action around her rather than her and Ham talking.
* More crotch dancing after the wedding among the menfolks at “at the newly not poor of us!”
* Are you *humping* Burr there, Mulligan?
* No dancing in “Wait For It,” there’s just side characters sitting in chairs.
* There’s a bit of bullet acting at the start of “Stay Alive” with a redcoat taking a shot at Hamilton, only this time the girl quickly goes across the stage, indicating the bullet flying past Hamilton’s head while he writes. Foreshadowing!
* I still wonder how they manage to make Eliza slightly pregnant in the same kind of dress. How much of a pain in the ass would it have been to be pregnant in the corset age?
* Where’s the giant jump that Lafayette appears to do off the balcony? He just jumps off a table. Just wondering.
* Aw, Washington gives Hamilton a sword.
* I’ve heard “Immigrants, we get the job done” was supposed to be HUGE APPLAUSE, but not in this production apparently.
* Everyone’s on the furniture during “The World Turned Upside Down.”
* King George returns without his heavy cape in his second scene--why? He stomps his foot on “I’m so blue.”
* During “Dear Theodosia (Baby Edition),” both dads have no coats but have purple and green vests on.
* The one scene not in the soundtrack is Laurens’s death. They have Laurens singing the end of “The Story of Tonight” on the side. I don’t get Hamilton’s response: “I have so much work to do.” Okay, so it’s a typical Capricorn response, I suppose, but I think it’s pretty weird. And then they swing RIGHT into Hamilton slapping on his new green jacket in “Non-Stop.”
* Hamilton jumps on the table and does a little kick at “practically perfected it.” What, no butt foof like I’ve seen on the Internet?”
* The revolving stage is put to good use to set up a jury trial.
* I continue to be baffled at “What if you’re defending the wrong horse?” What other option did you have at that point but working on improving the thing?
* Angelica and Hamilton say good bye in a cuddly sort of way. Then as Angelica revolves away, Eliza revolves back in.
* Hamilton is forced to write on a very slanted table at one point. Strange.
* Washington is on a staircase on the top at the end of “Non-Stop.” Hamilton stomps up to join him and lights out!
* “Who, me?” Jefferson humblebrags as the spotlight goes to him and his freaking fuchsia suit. He gives himself props. He does a lot of little kick dances and prances and bopping around. Jefferson is a bigger ham than Lafayette, even. Actual Jefferson was a soft-spoken dude who didn’t like talking in public and eventually stopped being a flashy dresser and probably rolls over in his grave every time this show is on.
Madison’s primary characteristics: gray suit, hanky, pretend coughing, being dull. Quite a comedown for Oak in the second act.
* “I can’t believe that we are free,” Jefferson says on a staircase on wheels as everyone else hauls him around.
* Hamilton pretty much shoves his way in front of Washington to shake hands with Jefferson. Uh-HUH.
* Jefferson literally drops the mic and Madison catches it.
* I love Hamilton’s prancing around to imitate Jefferson in the doofiest way possible, and Jefferson claps a bit at it.
* Hamilton does a little kicking with his leg (before “shoe fits” as he starts into Madison.
* So they just have Phillip as an adult pretending to be weird.
* Eliza straight up beatboxes. It looks so silly.
* Ham, you coulda had a threesome with your two favorite ladies, but you decided you had to work. Typical Capricorn.
* Hellooooo, Peggy, all grown up and slutty. Er, Maria, that is.
* I was expecting “Say No To This” to come out sluttier, somehow.
* That’s quite an outfit on James Reynolds. Kinda Indiana Jones cowboy.
* Hamilton’s hand gestures during “Talk less, smile more” are funny. At first he imitates Burr’s gestures in the sky for “talk less,” then he goes to the preening gestures and a bit of “jerking off” to finish it.
* “You get nothing if you wait for it, wait for it,” has some cute little shrugging with it.
* Watch Burr bust into his own kinda prancing during the end of “The Room Where It Happens,” followed by running around and putting his feet on the table and hopping on the table.
* “Dresses like fake royalty,” says the guy in (slightly toned down by now) fuchsia to the guy in a medium green.
* Hamilton acting out King Louis’s super dead head is great.
* “Which I WROTE!” Madison just kinda wanders in. There’s no set at all here, just three bros bitchin.
* “SOUTHERN MOTHERFUCKING DEMOCRATIC-REPUBLICANS!” has all three dudes doing a little leg dance there.
* Washington walks off as King George walks in again, glaring.
* He uses quote fingers on “country.”
* Who’s next? A girl walks on in a red coat and whispers in his ear. “John Adams?” and she gives a big smile, then stops smiling, then looks more circumspect. He shoos her away.
* Later the girl gets him a stool so he can sit and clap to himself and watch from the side of the stage. He foofs his coat butt out as he sits. And he’s bopping from side to side on the side making everyone laugh as Burr’s trying to sing “The Adams Administration.”
* Hamilton publishes his response from the top of the stage, drops it, and they use bomb-ish lighting.
* I gather “Hurricane” is supposed to be super hurricane-y in the lighting, but it was dimmer than I expected.
* The Reynolds Pamphlet! Hamilton stands amiss on the table while everyone reads and dances with the pamphlet, Maria stands behind him. Jefferson prances and bounces about on the table himself.
* Angelica looks lovely, whips her hand away from him, and chews him out. (Though not as much as it could have been, if you’ve heard The Hamilton Mixtape.) It’s kinda sexy when they’re nose to nose.
* King George jumps in to prance about and throw papers, apparently. I’ve heard they supposedly hand a pamphlet into the orchestra, but it was hard to tell.
* I’m terrible at setting fires, so it’s nervewracking to me to actually see Eliza setting paper on fire live.
* Oh look, Phillip’s all grown up and has dancing bros behind him and a big ol’ hat.
* I was somehow expecting the ladies in their frocks to uh...actually have some frocks on, but they do not.
* Can’t imagine Phillip not being pitched out of the theater for this. Or not being checked for a ticket. Were theaters just public wandering places back then?
* Maybe they should cover duels in boarding school? Lotta hotheads there.
* Eliza screaming after Phillip dies: also not on soundtrack. Don’t think you could take it there.
* I objectively know Angelica sings “It’s Quiet Uptown,” but I somehow always forget that.
* Aw, Hamilton’s crying face at the end of the song. The cuddling. Her crying face.
* Burr does a giant “yessssss!” fist pump and drops to his knee when someone drops the “beer with him” line.
* During “Your Obedient Servant,” the cast are passing letters back and forth between the guys. As in, they pass letter after letter after letter after letter of “30 years of disagreements.” Bwahahahahah.
* “Best of wives and best of women” is said to Eliza rather than in the letter. Aw. Also, the look on his face when she says, “why do you write like you’re running out of time?”
* There’s the girl acting out the bullet, very slowly. I thought this would be a pretty tricky thing to act out slow enough to do it at just the right timing to reach at the end of the soliloquy. Then somehow it becomes a ballet move? They bring out Eliza to say goodbye to...Anyway, I expected to see the bullet girl near and hit him, but that doesn’t happen.
* “She tells my story” is Washington, something I didn’t realize before. Which is dumb because literally, they said “Washington monument.” WTF did I think they meant instead?
* “It’s only a matter of time.” Alexander and Eliza are on stage again, go towards each other, he holds out his hand for her. They walk together and then he lets her head towards the spotlight alone, where she gasps. Lights go out.

Again, thank you anonymous Internet person who may or may not be getting heavily legally prosecuted for this, I’m very grateful.

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