Theater: The Spy Who Left Us Cold

Democracy recounts the story of Willy Brandt's betrayal by a top aide. Good history, bad drama

The Brits have stuck by us in Iraq, and they continue to supply a good portion of our Broadway theater. But that doesn't mean we have to thank them for everything. Take Democracy, the new Michael Frayn play about former West German Chancellor Willy Brandt that just opened on Broadway. The play won nearly unanimous critical raves in London, walked away with major awards and promised to provide Broadway with at least one prestige dramatic hit of the season. But Democracy is one British import that doesn't survive the crossing.

Frayn charts the rise and fall of Brandt--the left-leaning Chancellor who...

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