Nick Jonas: brooding auteur and future leading man

I know this isn’t the promised “Sleazy” analysis.  Deal.

Confidential to caelestis albinus bibaculus: this one’s for you, kid.

Boy, am I glad he’s not engaged.  #stopreadingthoserumorsLadyG  #itsbadforyourhealth

Congratulations to Tara Rubin Casting; you may have just scored the biggest hat trick* of your career.    After all of the media types have finished blogging about this, please take the week off.  You deserve it.    (As a fangirl tangentially in the industry, I’d like to add: OMG CAN I WORK UNDER YOU????)

Those of you who don’t stalk Broadway.com might not know what I’m referring to.   Here, have some links from reputable sources in the lamestream media:

http://blogs.wsj.com/speakeasy/2011/09/07/nick-jonas-to-star-in-how-to-succeed-in-business-without-really-trying/

http://artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/09/07/nick-jonas-will-star-in-how-to-succeed-on-broadway/

And one excited link from fan media, just ’cause:

http://www.hypable.com/misc/2011/09/07/nick-jonas-to-follow-dan-radcliffe-darren-criss-in-how-to-succeed-starring-role/

*Tara Rubin has signed three talented young heartthrobs of similar coloring and build to the starring role in a Broadway revival within months.   This thing is already a box-office juggernaut for its tax bracket.  Every tweenmag is probably “hiring” another 5 PR interns right now just to track her movements.  They should give out casting awards.

What the Media’s Saying and Why I Disagree

The role of J. Pierrepont Finch, a window cleaner who rises through the ranks of the World Wide Wicket Company, calls for singing, dancing and, of course, acting. “The score is amazing, the music is absolutely incredible,” Jonas said. Perhaps because of the scope of the role, Jonas said that “I’m considering it my first Broadway experience.”  — WSJ

The WSJ arts analysis has always been written by and for Old White Suburbanites, most of whom seem to have definite tastes but not a whole lot of industry knowledge or industry-common sense.  Pre-Murdorch-takeover, I’d be inclined to believe that he actually said this, but check out what the NYT wrote (and what I already knew to be true):

Years before he was a teen pop heartthrob, Nick Jonas made his Broadway debut as the youngsters Little Jake in “Annie Get Your Gun,” Chip in “Beauty and the Beast,” and Gavroche in “Les Miserables” — three roles he credited for developing his voice for his band, the Jonas Brothers. The acting bug stayed with him, though, and he took the supporting role of the love-smitten revolutionary Marius in the London production of “Les Miserables” last year.

Yeah, somebody involved with the WSJ piece lied, and I don’t think it was Nick.   Although maybe they took his quote waaaay out of context.

ETA:  WHOAH, did not watch the end of that video before I posted it.  NSFW, guys.  I can’t believe the same Disneylebrity who used to wear a chastity ring was OK with this.  Wonder if all the tweenyboppers picked up on what she’s doing.

I fully believe this boy has the chops to succeed.  If you love Broadway, get over your (deserved) anti-JoBro bias.   Talented Jonas has always been talented, and he’s about to leave Slimy Jonas and Married Jonas behind in the dust.   Good riddance.

 

Is That Show Sexist?

Yeah, probably.   I know M Marian thinks so, and I hope you expound upon it here, darling.    I haven’t seen How To Succeed, but the original soundtrack includes titles like “A Secretary Is Not A Toy”…

I have a lot of emotions about the song “Brotherhood of Man”, but they can basically be summarized as follows:

Non-hazing, roofie-free fraternities are a positive good for American culture.   I have close friends in several different fraternities who give me hope and I have also had long conversations with them about this.   Feminists have been historically leery of large groups of drunk white men for good reason, but NOT ALL MEN ARE BAD.   (Yes, it gets tiring to have to say this.)

I HATE YOU; DANRAD 4EVAH!!!!

Look, I think  Mr. Radcliffe was adorable at the Tony Awards and by most accounts he seems to have won over lots of viewing hearts in this production.   But he’s not a natural dancer or singer, which is why — despite what I’m sure were fervent fangirl dreams — he didn’t get a Tony nod for simply deigning to grace Times Square with his presence.   He tested the theatrical waters with Equus first; if he’d started with a musical, his “serious” acting career would be going nowhere right now.   DanRad is getting excellent career guidance from someone right now (probably his father: LINK), but he’s not a triple threat and shouldn’t stay on Broadway forever.  Then you wouldn’t get to see him in movies again any time soon!

Bottom Line: if you love DanRad, you’ll let him go.  Nick is a uber-qualified replacement who is actually more natural at this.   And DanRad didn’t originate the role, anyway.  It’s a revival.

I HATE YOU: DARREN 4EVAH!!!

I’m a StarKid too, relax.   I miss the floppy curls and giggle at his goofy facial expressions and sigh during fan videos of his concerts.   Not only have I seen Little White Lie, I bought the soundtrack on iTunes.   Duder’s A Spy is currently one of my most played songs on iTunes, ever since I lost a lot of my collection this summer and had to make do.   I cannot WAIT until he’s released from Glee Hell either, but I am kinda considering buying The Warblers album because I’m a sucker for all-male a cappella.

Darren > Daniel, absolutely.    I won’t go as far to say that Nick > Darren, both because I’d be lynched and also because Darren has the age factor on his side.  (Nick will be 19 very soon, folks.  Don’t you feel old, now?)

Bottom Line: I wish Darren had more time on Broadway, but I wouldn’t be able to see him in January anyway.   Let him do the whole LA-TV-movies-rockstar thing and he’ll come back to his theatrical roots when he’s good and ready.   Plus I’d rather have him rehearsing A Very Potter Threequel; wouldn’t you?

Why Do You Keep Calling Him “Talented Jonas”?

Shut up.   Why are you still reading?

If you have to ask, I doubt another link will convince you, but here you go.

The song below is from Nick pre-JoBros — which, BTW, everyone involved acknowledges was formed solely because the IndustryBrains liked how his voice sounded when flanked by his brothers.  He was Nicholas Jonas back then, and all the recent fan-comments  persuasively argue that he gives early!Biebs a run for his money.

Aaaaaaaand here’s my favorite interview with him Of All Time, which I found and bookmarked to-blog-about a few weeks ago.   This proves that I have a Spidey Sense about soon-to-be-publicly-relevant celebrities, right?   Right?

Predict His Future, LadyG!

Well, his solo band is doing its thing right now too, and since Married Jonas is Married, when Mrs. Married Jonas pops out a baby I imagine the JoBros will officially disband for a while.    That gives Nick the chance to shine even more brightly while Slimy metamorphoses into a lounge singer/pedo!proselytizer . He’ll be back on Broadway, for sure.   If we’re looking to child-star archetypes, I’m thinking he’ll be a non-Mormon Donny Osmond.   Although I bet he wants to be a straight Neil Patrick Harris.   (I want to DO a straight Neil Patrick Harris.)  When he finishes puberty, etc. we’ll see if he can eventually become a more whitebread Hugh Jackman or Harry Connick, Jr.

As for his political aspirations (go watch The View clip, srsly), I wouldn’t dismiss those just yet.   He’s got looks, charisma, talent, and a great set of handlers.   I doubt I’d agree with his opinions but I’d love to watch him debate when he’s older.    Just as long as he doesn’t turn into Scott Baio, the putz. And I reserve the right to call him Senator Jonas in the future should he get too ridiculous.  If he actually makes it to Congress, I’ll send him flowers or something.*

And by the way, I adored Jack and Bobby.   I was one of like 6 people to be sad when the WB cancelled it.

*Not a binding contract, people.

Is He Single?

No.

Good on him for landing an older woman.   Dating the female Disney Channel heartthrobs causes nothing but trouble; everyone knows that.     Plus it gives us ancient cougar fanbloggers hope.  (j/k, still saving myself for Sterling Knight.  Email me, Ster!)

I don’t want to talk about Miley in this post.  He was in way over his head with that one.

Bottom Line?

[[There is a gay pun here on the tip of my tongue.    CAB, put it into words for me.  Innuendo only, please — nothing too explicit.]]

Anyway, I’m glad this casting happened.  It’s directing media attention to all the right people and productions.   Except for Elisabeth Hasselbeck and, inevitably, Slimy Jonas.

I have family in the area and if I make it to NYC in the spring, I’ll try to find cheap seats for this.   Hopefully his contract gets extended, although his schedule is probably tight enough that it won’t.   I absolutely promise to review it here if I get to go.

Finally, there wasn’t a better section to put this link, but it definitely deserves a mention:

http://ohnotheydidnt.livejournal.com/48152122.html

Enjoy.  😉

Think I’m going to ignore “Sleazy” for a little while longer.    Kreayshawn is next; she’s newer, more controversial, and more complex.

Now it’s time for your thoughts!   So have I convinced you or do you still irrationally hate his face?   Can you think of a bit of relevant Broadway history that I didn’t mention?   If you’re a JoBro fan and you found us via Google, welcome!    My posts are intended for people ages ~17+, but if you play nicely with the big kids, you can stay.


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26 thoughts on “Nick Jonas: brooding auteur and future leading man

  1. Alice says:

    I still can’t really tell the Jonas Brothers apart. I guess you’ve sort of convinced me that Nick Jonas could be okay? Still he did date Miley Cryus.

    Honestly about the whole Broadway thing, I agree that he’ll probably do a better job than DanRad, who cannot really sing or dance (and thank you for that video btw, I’m still sort of confused about what I just watched). Not surprisingly, I think Darren will do the best job.

    The only Disney star I could be convinced to approve of is Zefron. And only because he got really hot. All other Disney kids are too tween for me. Case in point, Nick Jonas is 18. TOO YOUNG. I like my teen shows with actors who are actually 23 pretending to go to high school.

    • LadyG says:

      YOU APPROVE OF THE ZEFRON?

      ARE YOU FOR REAL OR ARE YOU A TROLL PRETENDING TO BE ALICE????

      I can’t even respond like a normal person. First of all, go Google Corbin Bleu because he’s way more legit a Broadway star than Zefron will ever be.

      Secondly, NO.

      • LadyG says:

        Thirdly, STERLING KNIGHT.

        I can’t even with you.

      • Alice says:

        I approve of Zefron in the “I find him attractive” way. Not in the “he can actually act” way. There’s a difference okay?

        I saw Corbin Bleu in In the Heights. He was surprisingly good. He still has such a Disney face though.

      • Cranky says:

        “YOU APPROVE OF THE ZEFRON?

        ARE YOU FOR REAL OR ARE YOU A TROLL PRETENDING TO BE ALICE????”

        Multiple lols on a Sunday morning

  2. M Marian says:

    Yes, you have convinced me that Talented Jonas will be okay in this show. And, you did it without all those links, which don’t seem to be working for me here. : (

    However, I think you should back off on the DanRad hating. I saw the show knowing that he couldn’t dance, and I was very impressed with his performance, especially in the “Brotherhood of Man” scene which involves super athletic jumping/leaping/flipping/dancing. Also, fyi I did not find that song at all objectionable/sexist. Celebrating male-male bonds does not necessarily entail degrading female-male or female-female ones imo. Also, although his singing wasn’t worth writing home about, but it was totally acceptable.

    But Rosemary, the character who plays opposite DanRad/Darren/TJ is really problematic for me, as are most of the numbers involving the secretaries. There is one point where the other secretaries tell her that she can’t give up on her relationship with Finch because she’s the only one who’s managed to “make it” and if she dumps him they they don’t have any hope of ever climbing the ladder. *Gag* I get that it’s supposed to be funny, but I wasn’t, it was just upsetting. (But perhaps I have been in my little anti-patriarchy hole too long.)

    • LadyG says:

      What can I do about the link issue? Is there a non-YouTube service for videos that works better?

      There are hundreds of thousands of people who irrationally hate DanRad in everything he does and hundreds of thousands of people who irrationally love him. I choose to be neutral on his abilities, his aspirations, and his looks. Although I am tickled that he is such a geek.

      I bet there could be a great blogpost/cultural examination regarding the recent fascination with the ’60s, which extends to civil rights issues (marriage equality) as well as style. examples for thesis: Hairspray, How To Succeed, Mad Men, Hair (recent revival). I haven’t seen all of them or I’d totally write it over the course of a month.

  3. Cranky says:

    “Little anti-patriarchy hole” – you guys are too much.

    I agree from watching the video that Daniel Radcliffe is adequate if not awe-inspiring. I was more impressed that I didn’t recognize him as Harry Potter for the first 10 seconds – that deserves some props does it not. There is also a question of genre – the two videos featured different kinds of songs and roles, I can buy Radcliffe in a young Matthew Broderick role and I can buy Talented Jonas in a young John Travolta role but I definitely can’t buy Radcliffe as a crooner and I don’t know enough about TalJonas to visualize him in the other role.

    More critically, LadyG, what does this post has to do with feminism? Or is your desire for an independent blog about pop culture gushing out?

    -Cranky

    • LadyG says:

      A) Everything has to do with feminism, particularly a show set in the 60s.

      B) The fangirl phenomenon is fascinating to me, and a gender issue worth exploring in detail later.

      C) Nick Jonas makes me laugh.

      D) If not now, when?

      • Emmy says:

        I think Cranky has a point though. If a show set in the 60s has something to do with feminism, it would have been cool to hear it talked about, and the fangirldom also talked about too. Queen Elizabeth I does provide some interesting comments though.

      • LadyG says:

        Having not seen the show, I can’t really say anything concrete about it. Remind me to talk about Broadway and the cult of male tween heartthrobs in the future. Donny Osmond is the poster child for this.

  4. Queen Elizabeth I says:

    So, I have to weigh in on both DanRad’s talent or alleged lack thereof and on potential feminist objections to How to Succeed.
    Having also seen the show without expecting much from him singing-wise, I was actually pretty blown away by his performance. I found him a very impressive actor, quite an impressive dancer, and an acceptable singer. Additionally, I found his somewhat lacklustre singing to be perfectly within the realm of the JPFinch character as played by DanRad. Kind of goofy, awkward, dorky, “eager beaver” guy…a touch of dorky sounding nasal-ness or high pitched-ness or something totally seemed to fit, given that I actually found his voice probably more than halfway to decent. I’m sure the others will also do a good, possibly better, job with the role. But I did enjoy Daniel Radcliffe.
    Regarding potential sexism in the show: I am a feminist and a huge fan of How to Succeed in general. I don’t find much if any of it objectionable (not even “Cinderella Darling”–the song M Marian was mentioning) because I think almost all of the stuff that could be objectionable is SUPER tongue-in-cheek. I think the irony is inherent in the show with some of the lyrics. “Cinderella Darling” actually has one of my favorite lyrics possibly from all of musical theater that I am aware of–“Don’t spoil our enjoyment/you’re the fable, the symbol/of glorified unemployment.” Interestingly, actually, they left that line out of this revival production. I noticed because I was waiting eagerly to hear those lyrics live and I didn’t.
    That particular omission seemed to be part of an overall trend in this production of playing a lot of the tongue-in-cheek parts a lot straighter than in the original production. I didn’t know how to feel about that when I saw it. On the one hand I guess they needed to do something different with the interpretation, so why not try being more subtle. On the other hand, I found the over-the-top ridiculousness of the original production HI-larious, and this was at times less funny. Also, y’all now are pointing out to me, possibly less comfortable feminist-ly because the irony is less clear. So, still not sure what to think of those interpretive choices.
    However, I LOVELOVELOVE the show. I think songs like “Secretary,” “Cinderella Darling,” “Brotherhood of Man,” well, really most of the songs in the show, actually, are quite honest and sensitive depictions of the time period. In addition to being among the funniest, cleverest, best written showtunes I know. If depicting sexism onstage is your metric for a show being sexist, then yes, the show is sexist. But like, it’s set in a 1960’s office building! Even though Rosemary does kind of sell out in the end, I find most of the female leads to be depicted in quite a sympathetic way. Sexual harassment in the workplace is not really a joke; however I feel that the jokes “How to Succeed” makes are for the most part in good taste. They’re not the type of anti-feminist jokes that say “LOL it’s funny ‘cause the womenz think this is an issue BRO-BRO-BRO.” Rather, I feel like most of the show is more just satirizing the whole environment of ‘60s office culture in a way that allows you to laugh at it but still take the issues seriously.

    • LadyG says:

      Again, I can’t argue with any real standing here, but I was less offended than saddened by the snippet M Marian quoted.

      And I think the way you feel about How to Succeed is how I feel about Kiss Me, Kate (and also The Taming of the Shrew). I think it’s fantastic, but I recognize that it can be absolutely ruined. Still think it’s Wunderbar!

      • M Marian says:

        How to Succeed-Taming of the Shrew is a great parallel! It makes me understand better why I was uncomfortable with HTS, and it helps me understand how responsible human beings could like Taming of the Shrew.

        Dislike Petruchio. Dislike, Dislike, Dislike. Kate should have stabbed him with a meat cleaver. : )

        Okay, I withdraw allegations of sexism and claim it as simply not my thing.

      • LadyG says:

        “Dislike Petruchio. Dislike, Dislike, Dislike. Kate should have stabbed him with a meat cleaver. : )”

        Certain productions make me feel this way, but that has nothing to do with sexism and everything to do with individual characterization. Just sayin’.

        • M Marian says:

          “. . .but that has nothing to do with sexism and everything to do with individual characterization.”

          Is that true though? The whole idea is that Kate is too opinionated and snarky, and that he has to beat/trick her into falling in love with him to tame her crazy nature and impress his friends/get her money. I’m sure that individual characterization can make that plot more entertaining, but can it make it any less obnoxious?

          (Do tell me if I’m wrong.)

        • LadyG says:

          Promise I’ll review THE movie version of Kiss Me Kate before the end of 2012.

          We’ll talk more there.

  5. Queen Elizabeth I says:

    Sorry that was way too long. lol. I had a lot of thoughts.

    • LadyG says:

      Don’t apologize! Long comments are the BEST comments, especially when long comments have lots of good thoughts.

      Also, love your name. I have such a girl crush on Liz I.

  6. Grace says:

    Hello! It’s my first time here, and I love it. Will be back soon. Anyway, I too saw the show in NYC, and thought DanRad was surprisingly good in it. I disagree a little bit about the casting of Nick Jonas, though. He is arguably a much better singer and dancer, which will be a welcome change. However, the role really doesn’t require too much vocal range; it’s definitely more of an “acting” role (Yes, I know how silly it sounds to split up a Broadway show into components… deal). And I for one was a little disappointed with his portrayal of Marius in the concert version of Les Mis in London. Very flat, with absolutely no character growth that I could discern. He should’ve been able to start the show as a dreamer who falls too quickly, progress to a young man caught between two dreams, and finish as a man who realizes that your dreams can turn on you and you just have to move on. Mostly I saw him being “lover boy”. *sigh* But perhaps this show will be more up his alley, since the character of Finch is a lot more constant throughout, and he will definitely be able to capitalize on the stunned look out to the audience.

    All this said, I agree with you. Best. Casting. Decision. Ever.

    • LadyG says:

      Hi Grace! Pls to be commenting all the time!

      Sad to hear about his Marius. I haven’t seen the concert version in full, despite the fact that my lil sis DVRed it. That thing is LONG. I did hate the Eponine, though. Lea Salonga FTW.

      If I were a Talented Jonas fangirl, I’d argue that this was his “interpretation” of said role but yeah, no.

  7. Grace says:

    In the sense that the show and Nick Jonas will make bank. 🙂

    • LadyG says:

      Speaking of nothing, this video was made for you, Grace.

      It gets amazing around 4:00, but the whole thing is phenomenal. Saw the full thing in NYC two weeks ago; still in heaven.

  8. Queen Elizabeth I says:

    Actually–speaking of the nature of the Finch character–one of the things I really liked about Radcliffe’s performance of Finch was how he developed the character so it wasn’t static. At the beginning, he wasn’t at all what I expected from the character–too eager, awkward, dorky, incompetent. I was expecting a smooth-talker all the way through, and I didn’t know if maybe DanRad just didn’t have the charisma to deliver that. WRONG; he gradually grew the character until by Brotherhood of Man he was exactly the Finch I expected him to be. And actually, it totally makes sense that a window washer walking into an office for the first time ever might not be dripping with charisma.

  9. […] my unabashed love for all things Broadway, you shouldn’t be surprised.  I also love high school dramedies, goofy pop covers, and […]

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