The Theater: New Musical in Manhattan, Nov. 26, 1956

Li'l Abner (based on Al Capp's characters ; book by Norman Panama and Melvin Frank; music by Gene de Paul; lyrics by Johnny Mercer) sometimes gloriously explodes, sometimes damply splutters, as a big Broadway show. Suddenly, with something fine and deafening from the orchestra, suddenly with something fine and floor-shaking from the chorus, Al Capp's comic-strip community bounces to life. At other times, behind musicomedy goggles, Capp's satiric eye notes and needles skulduggery, stupidity, conformity. But there are numerous occasions when the Capp menagerie, let out of their neat newspaper cages, noisily...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!