The script is perhaps a bit loaded with nuclear-family-dysfunction big-ticket items: depression, dead siblings, absent father, infidelity. It helps that Lucy's story is coupled to real events the 1979 Iran hostage crisis, Tiananmen Square, Jack Kevorkian, the rise of Michael Jordan and Bill Clinton which tether her to a recognizable world, because it's not always clear what meaning Crim was trying to tease out of the unhappy family history. Lucy does grow pretty: when she pulls off a hoodie she convincingly transforms herself from chubby twelve-year-old to resplendent young adult, and the change owes a lot to the effective costume design of Meghann O'Malley Powell. The fluid, simple production is directed by Michelle Mountain and rounded out with a solid ensemble including Grant Krause, Michael Brian Ogden, and Rhiannon Ragland.
Growing Pretty continues its two-month run through May 31, Wednesdays through Sundays plus two Tuesdays, May 6 and 27.
[Review published May 2008]