apropos of nothing

Is a ‘Wet Hot American Musical’ on the Way? Reading David Wain’s Tea Leaves

Courtesy of Eureka Pictures

According to a report on the MTV Movies Blog, Wet Hot American Summer director David Wain is considering making the film into a musical. The evidence for this consists solely of the quote “there’s been talk of a musical,” which is obviously open to interpretation. What does it actually mean? Some possibilities:

1. The MTV reporter was in the middle of a fairly mundane conversation with David Wain about DVD rereleases when Wain mentioned an idea that’s been kicked around but not developed much further than that. This possibility is boring.

2. Same as above except Wain was being coy about a serious plan that’s definitely in the works. The problem is, the elaborate vaudevillian theatricality of certain State sketches and offspring like Stella has always been at odds with the aesthetic of the alt-comedy scene from which Wet Hot etc. draws its cult of fans. For example, we’ve found ourselves enjoying Wain’s low-budget online sketch series Wainy Days much more than we did his elaborate, set-piece-filled movie The Ten. We speculate that the kind of people drawn to the slouchy alt-comedy scene have a generally “meh” attitude toward the grandiosity of musical theater and thus a “meh” attitude toward loving parodies thereof. So this possibility is, in our opinion, unfortunate.

3. The MTV reporter mistranscribed Wain’s quote. What he really said, referencing Bono’s “this is not a rebel song” pronouncement from U2’s 1985 live album Under a Blood-Red Sky: “There’s been talk of a musical. Maybe too much talk. This is not a musical … this is ‘Sunday, Bloody Sunday’!!!” Then Larry Mullen fell in with a kick-ass martial drumbeat, and they blew Red Rocks away. This possibility is the result of our drinking too much coffee.

Leave your ideas in the comments! We’re going to go lie down. —Ben Mathis-Lilley

Is a ‘Wet Hot American Musical’ on the Way? Reading David Wain’s Tea Leaves