Theater review: ‘Lonely, I’m Not’

He's not lonely, he swears!

Topher Grace, of “That ’70s Show” fame, makes an impressive Off-Broadway debut as Porter in Paul Weitz’s “Lonely, I’m Not” at Second Stage Theatre.  He’s as likable as Weitz’s comedy, which chronicles Porter’s attempts to rejoin the human race four years after a nervous breakdown torpedoed his career as a corporate wunderkind.  

After a slightly false start – an unconvincing altercation between Porter and a barista (Christopher Jackson) about an off-hours latte – “Lonely” finds its footing and its wry humor as Porter interviews for a second grade teacher position and then meets Heather (Olivia Thirlby), an intelligent, ambitious business analyst who happens to be blind.  

Their relationship is the focal point of the play.  It progresses nicely until Porter’s slimy father (Mark Blum) ends up in jail, causing Porter to be three-and-a-half hours late for his introductory dinner with Heather’s mother (Lisa Emery).  He freaks out and leaves after bumping into Heather, sending the Chicken Saltimboca flying.  Meanwhile Heather has problems of her own, in the form of an over-eager roommate (Maureen Sebastian) and a boss (Blum) who can’t see past her blindness.  

The chemistry between Grace and Thirlby isn’t evident, but it’s effective in its own way.  Determined to prove her independence, Heather’s dry, almost mechanical, while Porter’s a moist sponge, soaking up emotions and crying during sex.  Trip Cullman’s direction is crisp.   Weitz populates the piece with vivid supporting characters and gives his colorfully detailed leads plenty of sharp, snappy dialogue.   


‘Lonely, I’m Not’
Second Stage Theatre
305 West 43rd Street. 
$75
212-246-4422
www.2ST.com


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

'Barack Obama cheats on Michelle' claims Japanese politician…

A senior Japanese politician has marred Barack Obama's official visit to Tokyo with bizarre claims that the President cheats on his wife Michelle. Kazuyuki Hamada,…

International

British Royal family devastated by freak NY death…

The British royals have been left devastated by the death of Mark Shand, younger brother of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, after a freak fall in…

Local

Philadelphia principal has President Obama's ear

The West Philadelphia head is gathering ideas to present to the White House.

Local

Neighbors testify at Overbrook roommate slaying trial

Neighbors and roommates were called to testify Wednesday in the trial of Renaldo Robichaw, 56, charged with murder for the death of roommate Albert Smith, 48.

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 9

It was only an hour-long episode, but there's a lot to cover this week. The drama of Survivor strikes again as the identity of the…

Television

TV watch list, Wednesday, April 23: 'Suburgatory,' 'Modern…

'Suburgatory' The men of "Suburgatory" go camping and Tessa mentors a social outcast in a Miss Chatswin contest, which brings her, once again, into conflict…

Movies

Latin culture highlighted at Filadelphia film fest

Get ready to have a “Bad Hair” day at the upcoming Filadelphia Latin American Film Festival. We mean that in the best possible way. The…

The Word

The best lines from Oprah's ex-stepmother's Daily Mail…

Oprah’s ex-stepmother, Barbara Winfrey, is out for revenge.

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24…

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24 version

NFL

Eagles will spend Thanksgiving in Dallas, play four…

The Eagles have an impressive, challenging and exciting schedule in 2014.

NFL

NFL releases Eagles 2014 schedule

The Eagles have four primetime games, face the Cowboys on Thanksgiving and host the Seahawks in a dynamic, challenging and impressive schedule.

NHL

All signs suggest Steve Mason will start in…

Flyers head coach Craig Berube elected to put Steve Mason in net for the final minutes of Game 3.

Style

Pippa Middleton's Etsy pick: Golden Thread Jewelry

Get a look at the jewelry Pippa Middleton loves and find out how you can buy it too.

Parenting

What every parent needs to know to get…

Mom and author of "Small Talk," Tracey Blake, shares her five practical tips to help you develop your children's language skills.

Sex

Subway crush: Meet your soulmate on your commute

Read about a couple who has been 40 years after meeting on the train.

Tech

Happy birthday, Game Boy! The handheld console turns…

Nintendo's Game Boy turns 25 this week. To commemorate, we look at some of its better games, like "Tetris" and "The Legend of Zelda: Link’s Awakening."