April 18, 2019

The cast, needless to say, couldn’t be better. There are no impersonations here, with Metcalf and Lithgow hitting something deeper and more satisfying, gaining universality while nailing the specific – watch how Metcalf sharpens into another person altogether when an outsider breeches the Clintons’ private realm. In a flash, Metcalf seems to concede Bill’s argument: Hillary is inauthenticity to the bone.


April 18, 2016

In “Hillary and Clinton,” Mr. Hnath presents a fictionalized drama about Hillary Clinton’s initial bid for the presidency. An opening monologue stresses that this is fantasy, asking us to imagine another Earth and that “on this planet, Earth light years away from our planet Earth, there is a woman named Hillary.” A program note urges the actors playing the roles to avoid any sense of mimicry. Hillary is portrayed by a black actress, Cheryl Lynn Bruce, who exudes convincing gravitas. The Other Guy, as her opponent is denoted in the script, presumably represents a fictional Barack Obama. He is played by the Latino actor Juan Francisco Villa. Still, on a basic level, both the characters and the situations are pretty clearly modeled on fact. The play is set a few days before the New Hampshire primary. As was the actual case, Hillary’s campaign at this point would need a crucial win. As she talks with her campaign manager, Mark (Keith Kupferer), he stresses that they are running out of money, and even suggests (here we lapse, I would guess, into total fiction) that Hillary take the vice president slot that has been unofficially offered by her opponent. “We poll well with the poor, but the poor don’t have any money,” Mark says. “The other guy polls well with the rich, and so he gets the money.” (Perhaps a winking paradox in there, given the financial dynamics of Mrs. Clinton’s current campaign.)