April 2, 2014
How Pop Culture Is Re-evaluating Lyndon B. Johnson’s Legacy

Fifty years after his greatest electoral and legislative triumphs, Lyndon Baines Johnson is getting a worthy reappraisal in, of all places, a Broadway production: All the Way, written by Robert Schenkkan and starring Bryan Cranston as LBJ.
Adorned with prosthetic earlobes and two-inch shoe lifts, Cranston has transformed himself into the outsized physical stature of Johnson, and provides theatergoers with a brilliant portrayal of America’s 36th president. Onstage and surrounded with a large and fine cast of characters of that era—from Lady Bird Johnson and Martin Luther King Jr. to Sen. Richard Russell and Defense Secretary Robert McNamara—the action gives the audience as near to a feeling of what it must have been like to experience Johnson close-up as they are likely to get in any artistically inspired setting. The standing ovations that Cranston receives from audiences in the sold-out Neil Simon Theater are for his powerful representation of the man, but inevitably, this play inspires an examination of Johnson that he deserves—and has largely not yet received.
Read more. [Image: Evgenia Eliseeva/AP]

How Pop Culture Is Re-evaluating Lyndon B. Johnson’s Legacy

Fifty years after his greatest electoral and legislative triumphs, Lyndon Baines Johnson is getting a worthy reappraisal in, of all places, a Broadway production: All the Way, written by Robert Schenkkan and starring Bryan Cranston as LBJ.

Adorned with prosthetic earlobes and two-inch shoe lifts, Cranston has transformed himself into the outsized physical stature of Johnson, and provides theatergoers with a brilliant portrayal of America’s 36th president. Onstage and surrounded with a large and fine cast of characters of that era—from Lady Bird Johnson and Martin Luther King Jr. to Sen. Richard Russell and Defense Secretary Robert McNamara—the action gives the audience as near to a feeling of what it must have been like to experience Johnson close-up as they are likely to get in any artistically inspired setting. The standing ovations that Cranston receives from audiences in the sold-out Neil Simon Theater are for his powerful representation of the man, but inevitably, this play inspires an examination of Johnson that he deserves—and has largely not yet received.

Read more. [Image: Evgenia Eliseeva/AP]

  1. brain reblogged this from theatlantic
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  7. stephreads reblogged this from theatlantic and added:
    LBJ deserves a good turn.
  8. ryanlintelman reblogged this from theatlantic and added:
    !!!!!! Want to see this!
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