"Meteor Shower" by Steve Martin
“I don’t know what’s going on but I’ll just go along with it,” a character says in Steve Martin’s “Meteor Shower,” opening at New Haven’s Long Wharf Theater following a summer co-production at San Diego’s Old Globe. That’s good advice for audiences, too. Figuring out this cosmic comedy from the master of the American absurd can result, as it does for one of the characters in the piece, in “brain explosions.” So sure, there are some rethinks and rewinds along the way in this brisk evening of couples therapy, especially in the post-post-modern second act. But this loopy satire of marriage, sex and the inner id still provides lots of laughs — and another likely staple for theaters that found success with Martin’s two earlier plays.
Director Gordon Edelstein, whose Long Wharf production of Martin’s “Picasso at the Lapin Agile” was a delight a few seasons back, again empowers a terrific cast that embraces Martin’s wild, crazy and yet oh-so-familiar universe. Just watch out for those careening meteorites. They can change everything.
The comedy begins by playfully making gentle sport of Norm (Patrick Breen) and Corky (Arden Myrin), a couple so aware of their own and each other’s sensitivities that they perform a silly, soothing ritual every time their feelings are slightly bruised. That might settle surface tensions, but deep down inside there are other selves eager to break free.